New England Shore Dinner


Along the Northeast’s Atlantic coast, the term “shore dinner” doesn’t just mean some seafood on a plate. Descendant of Algonquin clambakes in which clams and corn were layered in seaweed over hot stones, it is a mighty feast, traditionally built around lobster and clams, but also including red potatoes and corn on the cob boiled in the same salty water as the lobster. Fried fish, grilled sausage, deep-fried clam cakes, and baked Indian pudding or strawberry shortcake complete the picture. Maine is where shore dinner is best, but this route starts with a couple of favorite shore dinner destinations in Southern New England.


Abbott’s Lobster in the Rough

Abbott’s is a Connecticut shoreline lobster picnic featuring bracing clam chowder, steamers and mussels, and gorgeous steamed lobsters whatever size you like.


Champlin’s Seafood Deck

Fried clams are good at Champlin's at Galilee Harbor in Narragansett; fried flounder is even better. And do try the Rhode Island specialty snail salad!


Woodman’s of Essex

Woodman's of Essex Massachusetts, says it invented fried clams. They are lush and crunchy. The full seafood menu also includes beautiful whole lobsters.

Must Eats

Mabel’s Lobster Claw

In Kennebunkport, Mabel's is a long-standing tradition for lobster shore dinner including creamy chowder and concluding with peanut butter ice cream pie.


Clam Shack

Clam Shack fried clams are great; lobster rolls are even more impressive, so huge and fresh. Al fresco dining only at this Kennebunkport landmark..

Must Eats

Lobster Shack

Here is the most dramatic possible setting for lobster-eating – the water's edge, framed by a pair of lighthouses at the entrance to Casco Bay, Maine.


Harraseeket Lobster

Enjoy superb Maine seafood at a picnic table overlooking Freeport's harbor with a glorious view. Specialties: boiled-to-order lobster; Whoopie Pie dessert.


Five Islands Lobster Company

Resilient lobsters fairly burst out of their shell when squeezed with a nutcracker at the unbelievably scenic picnic tables of Maine's Five Islands Lobster Co.


Young’s Lobster Pound

Young's Lobster Pound is a bustling harborside building selling lobsters live or steamed to order for eating here at picnic tables with a view of Penobscot Bay.


Beal’s Lobster Pier

Beal's is a no-frills lobster pound on a working Southwest Harbor, Maine, pier. Lobsters are unimpeachably fresh; the lobster roll is beautiful.