Muddy Waters is a real find, a warm and homey cafe within walking distance of the train station and the ferries in downtown New London. It is open for coffee and pastry from early morning until late afternoon, and the kitchen serves a limited menu of really good, simple, generous sandwiches and hot food until 3 p.m. most days.
The place has real character. There's a busy and convivial front room, and a back room more suited to lounging, with a jumble of worn but comfortable furniture, a grand piano, a fireplace, and walls filled with historic photos and newspaper clippings. Large glass doors open from the back room onto a terrace with several tables that overlook the harbor. Depending on the hour, there can be an interesting mix of people: business folk, academics from one of the nearby colleges, students, tourists, and people who just wander in off the streets.
This is probably not everyone's cup of tea. The historic building is simple and a little shabby inside. But if you are into simple pleasures, the only thing more satisfying than settling in with a book (or your laptop) on a blustery winter day is to lounge on the sunny deck in summer, watching the trains, the ferries, and the occasional freighter or submarine pass by. It is also a great place to meet someone for a quiet working lunch or coffee. I live half an hour away, and I come here whenever I can.