You can certainly add bacon or fat back if you want! Rather than starting with butter, fry up a few pieces of meat first, take the meat out and break it up, fry the vegetables in the fat, and add the meat back in later.
In a heavy pot, melt the butter. Sauté the celery and onion until soft. Add the garlic and cook for a minute or two longer. Stir in the white pepper.
Add in the clam juice, the water with bouillon in it, the potatoes, and the clams, undrained. Simmer, uncovered, for about 20. minutes until the potatoes are cooked.
In a small bowl, slowly whisk the half and half into the flour, then add this mixture gradually into the pot until blended.
Heat through. Continue to cook at a low temperature to cook out the flour taste. If the chowder is too thick, add more chicken broth.
Add chopped fresh parsley before serving if you like. Serve with oyster crackers.