I think it’s a safe bet that the vast majority of people who have visited Mohegan Sun Casino have probably made a stop at Johnny Rocket’s 50’s style burger joint. It’s a quaint little place, with red vinyl booths, wait staff that wear white uniforms and paper hats, vintage wall décor, and jukeboxes at every table. The staff will even regale you with a song, if you’re lucky enough to be there when Aretha Franklin’s “R-E-S-P-E-C-T” hits the jukebox. It’s an experience well worth the sometimes long line to get in, and we eat there almost every time we go. We love it.
And that’s why, when we found out about a new restaurant that recently opened in Wallingford, we were quite excited to give it a try. Last week, Rockin’ Rob’s Seafood & More opened up at 822D East Center Street. It’s very similar to Johnny Rocket’s, but without the glitzy wrapper supplied by the casino. There’s chrome everywhere, and red vinyl booths, and a jukebox in the corner blasting out old tunes from the 50’s and 60’s, as well as a nifty black and white tile floor and vintage wall décor. You almost expect to see The Fonz sitting at the counter in his black leather jacket. Aaaaaayyyyy!
Anyway, we decided to try it out a couple days ago for lunch. We settled into one of the red vinyl booths and looked over the laminated menu. The restaurant touts itself as a seafood restaurant, but since we were there for lunch we opted for a chocolate shake and a burger with the works for me (a “Juicy Jeff”) and a cream soda and a chili cheese dog (a “Muscle Dog”) for my wife. My burger was a little overcooked and lacked some of the requested toppings, but was otherwise tasty. My wife’s chili cheese dog, however, was fantastic. The foot-long Hummel dog was covered in American cheese and a chili that was perfectly spicy, and no beans, just like she likes it. Both orders were accompanied by thick, crinkle cut fries that were done just right, and some cole slaw that was not to my liking. The waitress was very friendly and attentive, several times coming over to ask if everything was all right and if we needed anything. We struck up a conversation with her and found out that the owner, Rob Hurowitz, was planning a grand opening in the near future. The cook also came out to talk with us and listened attentively as we gave him our verdict on the meal and offered a few suggestions for his consideration.
All in all, the portions were more than generous and the service was good. We’ll definitely go back again, perhaps for dinner so we can try some of their signature seafood (the whole belly clams were kind of calling to me as I looked at the menu!). We’re looking forward to the grand opening and recommend Rockin’ Rob’s as a must try food destination in Wallingford.
Rockin’ Rob’s Seafood & More is open during the winter from 11AM to 9PM Tuesday to Thursday, 11A to 10PM Friday and Saturday, and 11AM to 8PM on Sunday. They are close on Mondays. Their summer hours will keep the same opening time, but each day’s closing time will be extended by one hour. They welcome call-in orders, which can be placed by calling (203) 269-7627.