Being a coastal town, you would think we would have a plethora of outdoor dining options for our area visitors but believe it or not, Marblehead only has two oceanfront restaurants open to the public. Thankfully, those two restaurants both deliver fabulous harbor views, super fresh seafood and a nice strong pour (although that seems to be pretty common anywhere in Marblehead). Another big plus is that both restaurants are within a 5 minute walk of the Harbor Light Inn!
The Barnacle is our go-to lunch spot. Situated right by Fort Sewall with a direct view of Marblehead’s unique lighthouse, you really can’t get much closer to the water since you are quite literally hanging over it. There are a few tables outside on the deck but if you aren’t lucky enough to nab outdoor seating, there is a nice long counter along the windows where you can park it for those 5 star views. They offer a twin lobster special on Wednesdays and when the owner is a lobsterman himself, you can be confident you’re getting some of the freshest lobster in town. A few other staff favorites include: Fried clams (or oysters….really anything fried!), fresh steamers, chowder and the open-faced steak sandwich.
The Landing is the second oceanfront restaurant in town and is in the midst of a total interior renovation. We recently took a sneak peek at the progress and cannot WAIT for the final reveal! With a big new bar in the dining room and a fresh new face lift, we already know it will be one of the hottest restaurants in town! The Landing has a fabulous large deck right on Marblehead Harbor…actually scratch that, it hangs OVER Marblehead Harbor! It’s hard to beat their Lobster Mac’n’cheese (or the Lobster Nachos!) or the Roast Duck New Englander.
One more notable mention for outdoor dining in Marblehead is Wick’s, located on Pleasant Street (and attached to the towns one and only Movie Theater, Warwick Place). They have a great drink list (hello Hot & Dirty Martini!), brick oven Neapolitan Pizza and a lovely outdoor dining space. They also have some of the best nighttime live music entertainment (usually Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights).
For those who want to explore Salem for the afternoon before heading back to their room at the Harbor Light Inn, we love the outdoor decks at both Finz and Sea Level Oyster Bar. Both restaurants are located on Pickering Wharf and offer great views of Salem Harbor. Warning: the buffalo calamari at Finz is hard to forget so only order it if you are OK dreaming about it for the next few months…
There are so many wonderful spots to visit, explore and eat along the North Shore. The concierge team at the Harbor Light Inn is happy to help you with organizing day trips to the neighboring towns and recommending other restaurants with great outdoor dining. Book your stay at this charming boutique hotel for the perfect New England getaway: www.harborlightinn.com or call 781-631-2186