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Manhattan Clam Chowder

What’s funny about Manhattan Clam Chowder is that it’s origins are actually from Rhode Island, a very easily arguable point in New England. The history of the chowder is that Portuguese immigrants brought their historic use of tomatoes over the Atlantic and of course, used the food of the land (or sea as it may be) to supplement. These days New Englanders are quick to turn up their nose at Manhattan Clam Chowder, claiming it to be not a chowder, but a soup, and certainly not close to as superior as their beloved creamy New England Clam Chowder.

I love New England Clam Chowder, but it’s certainly a treat. Manhattan Clam Chowder is instead an easy weeknight meal, delicious with a sour baguette smeared with salted butter. The tomatoes give it a sweet base with the clam juice and chopped clams adding a brininess that is incredibly satisfying. This pairs perfectly with a soft, velvety red like our Diamond Collection Claret.

The playlist for this recipe is kind of like the soup itself – full of delicious, but a little off-the-beaten path, tracks.

1/3 C. Olive Oil
1 Sweet Onion, Chopped
3 Garlic Cloves, Chopped
1 Russet Potato, diced
2 Stalks Celery, chopped
16 oz Crushed Tomatoes
1 8oz bottle Clam Juice
2 6.5oz cans, Chopped Clams
¼ C. Dry Red Wine
1 Tsp. Oregano
1 Tsp. Thyme
1 Tsp. Red Pepper Flakes


  1. Heat olive oil in a large, heavy bottomed pot over high heat.
  2. Add garlic, onions, oregano, thyme and red pepper flakes and cook until garlic and onions are translucent.
  3. Add clam juice, tomatoes, potato, celery and red wine and bring to a boil.
  4. Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer and cook until the potato is fork tender, about 20 minutes.
  5. Add chopped clams and simmer for another 5 minutes.