The Best Waterfront Restaurants near Gloucester MA
A salty summer breeze sticks to your slightly tender, glowing skin as you take a healthy sip from an ice-cold cocktail and prepare to indulge fresh seafood that was pulled from the very water that you are overlooking. Sounds like the perfect way to cap off a beautiful day on Cape Ann.
With the freshest local lobster, tuna, haddock, cod, and monkfish, Cape Ann is the perfect place to enjoy all the fruits de mer.
In this article, we will explore the best waterfront restaurants near Gloucester, MA. We will cover something for every taste bud and occasion. From casual fish shacks to inspired chefy cuisine, we will provide you the definitive list of waterfront Gloucester restaurants.
So without further ado, let’s dig in!
Saying that Gloucester has a rich fishing tradition is like saying that the Babe Ruth trade to the Yankees may have been ill-advised. A vast understatement. The history of fishing in Gloucester is fascinating and goes back to the inception of our nation.
Many local mariners paid with their lives. In fact, since the time of the colonists more than 10,000 Gloucester fishermen lost their lives in pursuit of their profession. Pretty incredible. It gives you a whole new level of respect for the fresh catch on your plate.
First up on our waterfront restaurant list is the latest addition to The Gloucester House Restaurant, Blue Collar Lobster.
The Gloucester House is truly a Cape Ann institution. The history of the Gloucester House restaurant goes back to 1958 and it has been operated by the Linquata family since its inception. A more recent addition to the restaurant is Blue Collar Lobster, which provides for more casual dining both inside and outside.
Blue Collar Lobster is located right on the harbor at Seven Seas Wharf in downtown Gloucester. You can enjoy a casual dining experience that includes dishes like New England clam chowder, lobster rolls, fried clams, haddock, fresh lobster and more.
They have an indoor deck, an outdoor deck, a full bar, and indoor seating area and they serve their dishes fish-shack-style on a tray.
You can enjoy a beautiful view overlooking the harbor where the fishing boats come in and out of port and even catch a glimpse of the Schooner Lannon parked right next door.
If you’re looking for a casual lunch or relaxed dinner on the water, Blue Collar could be just what the doctor ordered.
Blue Collar Lobster
63 Rogers Street
Gloucester, MA 01930
View Menu: http://thegloucesterhouse.com/index.php/blue-collar-lobster-menu/
The Studio is a hidden gem located in the artist community of Rocky Neck that oozes Gloucester charm and creative vibes.
Overlooking Smith Cove, diners can enjoy delicious fresh sushi, sashimi, as well as scallops, fish tacos, lobster rolls, boiled lobster, baked haddock and more.
The Studio has a bar inside that is perfect for relaxing and unwinding in a casual, fun atmosphere, as well as a deck with a second bar that is right on the water.
The Studio is also located right next to the Rudder, which will be opening again soon under the leadership of famed Boston Chef, Barbara Lynch. This could make this location a very popular summer hideaway.
Insider Tip: follow The Studio on social. They sometimes will do a half price on random weeknights. We stumbled upon this one night and were pleasantly surprised! Here is a link to their facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheStudio51/
51 Rocky Neck Ave
Gloucester, MA 01930
View Menu: https://www.facebook.com/TheStudio51/photos/p.1797667957061630/1797667957061630
Another one of our favorite waterfront dining options in Gloucester is Talise. We love Talise because it has a small, regularly changing menu with creative cuisine but it doesn’t take itself too seriously.
Located right on Lobster Cove in the picturesque village of Annisqaum, Talise is the perfect spot for a date night or an evening out with close friends and family.
Start your meal with some tasty Swayze oysters from Wellfleet or a nice ceviche or tuna tartare and move on to anything from a ribeye burger to seared scallops, to crusted blue fin tuna. The options change every night which keeps the dining fun and interesting. What doesn’t change is that the ingredients are all fresh, organic, often super local, and the food is handcrafted with care.
In addition to some deliciously prepared cuisine, Talise also offers a thoughtfully curated selection of beer and wine to choose from.
Pro tip: try to time your reservation for sunset, it can make for a beautiful backdrop to your delicious meal.
33 River Road
Glocuester, MA 01930
View Menu: https://www.taliserestaurant.com/menu
Lobsta Land is definitely a dark horse on the Gloucester restaurant scene. It has a relaxed New England seafood restaurant vibe with reasonable prices, but it absolutely packs a punch in terms of the variety and preparation of cuisine.
Located right before the bridge off Route 128, Lobsta Land overlooks the marshes and has been serving up delicious seafood for over 30 years.
The eclectic menu is really what drew us into Lobsta Land. You can enjoy a wide variety of dishes that include Seafood Risotto, A Sashimi Tuna Tower, Paella, Bouillabaisse, Lobster B.L.T.A. (*Best of Boston Winner*) Sole Meuniere, and, if you’ve had your seafood fill for the day you can even get some tasty half pound burgers.
Don’t get us wrong, you can have all the New England seafood classics: lobster, fried clams, clam chowder and they are all fantastic, but we think that the variety on the menu really separates it from other local restaurants and keeps luring us back to try new dishes! It had to make the cut for the best waterfront Gloucester restaurants.
84 Causweay Street
Gloucester, MA 01930
View Menu: https://www.lobstalandrestaurant.com/dinner
Just like Gloucester, Rockport has a storied fishing history and a quick walk past Rockport Harbor will make it clear that lobstering and fishing is still a way of life in this scenic seaside village. So let’s take a closer look at some of the waterfront front dining options in Rockport, Massachusetts.
Almost every restaurant in Rockport provides a view of the water, but we decided to feature Roy Moore Lobster Co because it is such a beloved part of Rockport and has charm in spades.
A weathered old fishing shack located right on Bearskin Neck, Roy Moore’s is the epitome of a no-frills New England Clam Shack.
You order right at the window and the menu includes, oysters, shrimp, clam chowder, hot boiled lobster, lobster rolls and more. You can then take your order and enjoy on their weathered wooden deck overlooking Rockport Harbor and just across from Motif #1.
The food could not be fresher. The lobster gets pulled right from the harbor and comes right into the back door. And, the staff is always energetic, fun and attentive. It’s definitely worth a stop if you’re visiting Cape Ann.
Roy Moore Lobster Co
39 Bearskin Neck
Rockport, MA 01966
View Menu: https://www.facebook.com/Roy-Moore-Lobster-Co-125287641097/
Perhaps the most romantic location of any of the restaurants on this list, My Place By The Sea is situated right at the end of Rockport’s famous Bearskin Neck.
Jutting out into Sandy Bay, overlooking Rockport’s craggy coastline, My Place offers diners the option of dining indoors or enjoying the beautiful Rockport scenery and a tasty meal out on their deck.
Owned and operated for over 20 years by Barbara Stavropoulos and Chef Kathy Millbury they have local, sustainable coastal cuisine down.
Start your meal off with some delicious clam chowder and mussels simmered in garlic white wine. The perfect way to wind down the day with a nice adult beverage of your choice and take in the salty sea air on the Rockport coastline.
After the sun goes down you can move onto some more hearty fare that is always expertly prepared. Dishes like lobster tacos, swordfish and angus Garlic Rubbed Black Angus Sirloin are sure to hit the spot.
We will now take a moment to confirm that the legend of the My Place reservation is true. If you want to get a reservation you will need to call at noon on the day you’d like to dine. You should be able to walk in for lunch without too much trouble, but we’d recommend that you stand outside the restaurant just before noon to ensure you will get a coveted spot for a dinner by the sea.
My Place By The Sea
68 Bearskin Neck
Rockport, MA 01966
View Menu: http://www.myplacebythesea.com/images/All-Day-Menu.pdf
Another scenic seaside village on Cape Ann that is fun to explore is Essex. It is well known for its impressive artists and antique trail and it has a great variety of dining options as well. Let’s take a closer look at a couple of great waterfront restaurants.
Situated on the scenic Essex River, CK Pearl is a family owned and operated restaurant that serves up a creative and eclectic mix of traditional New England seafood fare with a few interesting twists.
You can start with something from the raw bar, which CK Pearl takes seriously, offering a nice variety of those briny little beauties. They also have a great selection of appetizers which include everything from mussels and coconut shrimp to fondue and ceviche.
The entrees at CK follow suit. You can get a more traditional haddock or salmon dish, but they also feature Lobster Carbonara and even Peking Duck!
The staff at CK Pearl is very friendly and inviting and the location in downtown Essex is fantastic. We’d recommend making an afternoon of it, exploring the local antique shops, taking in the beauty of the town and capping it off with a great meal at this waterfront restaurant.
112 Main Street
Essex, MA 01929
View Menu: https://www.ckpearl.com/allday-menu
If you’re not feeling a sit-down meal and would like something more casual, JT Farnham’s in Essex could be the perfect spot. Another classic roadside New England clam shack, Farnham’s overlooks Eben’s Creek and the Great Salt Marsh.
Farnham’s has served clams at this location since 1941 and is famous for their golden-brown fried clams and their seafood chowder. Another no-frills establishment (noticing a theme) you can eat inside or outside at their picnic tables.
A little lesser known than Essex’ other fried clam spot, Woodman’s, Farnham’s is a good spot to beat the crowds and their clams are truly delicious. True to their word you will leave – happy as a clam!
88 Eastern Ave
Essex, MA 01929
View Menu: http://www.jtfarnhams.com/new-page
We hope that you’ve enjoyed our list of the best Waterfront Restaurants near Gloucester, Massachusetts. While it doesn’t cover every single waterfront restaurant, we think it will point you in the right direction! If you’re coming up to Cape Ann for vacation be sure to check out our articles on Things to Do In Gloucester and Things to Do In Rockport. If you’re looking for a great place to stay we’d always love to have you here at Addison Choate!
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