The Draw: Beautiful row houses, great Spanish food, and one of the coolest parts of Capitol Avenue
The Vibe: Historic, tight-knit, vibrant
While Frog Hollow is mainly a working-class neighborhood, it’s also home to some of the best Spanish food in the city, and one of Hartford’s most up-and-coming blocks. If you’re looking for a place to walk around and take in some of Hartford’s rich architectural history, Frog Hollow is the spot. The row houses on Columbia Street are picturesque—the neighborhood is even listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Columbia Street also runs adjacent to Pope Park, another great park featured in our Guide to Hartford Parks!
Broad Street is home to The Kitchen, a cafe and catering group that is also a Forge City Works social enterprise. The organization offers on-the-job culinary training and food access programs, making The Kitchen one of Frog Hollow’s most popular cafes. Not only can you grab a coffee and a sandwich or salad, but the cafe also offers grocery essentials and meal kits to help “fill your fridge,” along with cooking classes that are perfect for families, parties, or work functions. Heading further down Broad Street, you also can’t miss Hermanas Grocery, whose storefront has been transformed into a beautiful mural of the Puerto Rican flag. Also on Broad Street, El Sarape has some of the best Mexican food in the city.
Frog Hollow also encompasses a portion of Park Street, which has been called “New England’s Spanish Main Street” due to its large Puerto Rican population and shops. Now, there’s an even wider variety of Spanish restaurants on the street. Take a walk down Park, enjoy the street-wide market lights, and sample food from:
The blocks of Capitol Avenue between Park Terrace and Lawrence Street have become one of Hartford’s most popular spots. Red Rock Tavern, formerly Kenney’s, has been family-owned and operated since 1933. With its warm and welcoming bar, newly renovated patio, regular live music, and special events, Red Rock is a Frog Hollow staple.
On the same block, you’ll find Story & Soil, a coffee shop that cares as much about its community as it does fantastic coffee. Next door, Capital Ice Cream serves up cones, sundaes, milkshakes, and non-dairy desserts. They also make create-your-own ice cream sandwiches and specialty cakes for special occasions.
One of the newest additions to this area is Aurora’s, Hartford’s first Guatemalan-style bakery and restaurant. Their pan dulce, breakfast sandwiches, and milanesa are some of their most popular items. Just a little further down the block is Little River Restoratives, a speakeasy-style cocktail bar mixing up drinks with specialty ingredients you may have never heard of. If all these spots aren’t enough for you, head towards Park Terrace to Fire-N-Spice, serving vegan, soy-free, and nut-free dishes from Jamaica, Africa, and India.
With all of the vibrancy that Frog Hollow offers, it’s almost impossible to choose where to begin. Our recommendation—head on down and take in every part of Frog Hollow on foot! Don’t forget to tag @experiencehartford in your posts!