The Best Places to Eat on the CT Shoreline on the Water
For this list we have partnered with local blogger Mary Beth Henry from With Laughter and Style to bring you her favorite places to eat on the CT shoreline, waterfront.
There is nothing like dining with a beautiful view and the Connecticut Shoreline might just be my favorite place to do so. When we go out to eat my first choice is and always will be a local spot on the water. After a long day, a stressful week, or even as the perfect ending to a perfect day- being able to find a spot on the water for dinner or drinks is like transporting directly into vacation mode. How lucky to live in CT near so many gorgeous spots on the Long Island Sound! Here are a few of my favorites on the water and why I love them.
1. M&J Beach Grille and Seafood in Madison, CT- favorite outdoor picnic and BYOB family spot. Located at Madison's Surf Club, at first glance you might think this is the typical snack bar at the beach. Quite the contrary! This family owned restaurant is fantastic, and provides the freshest seafood, salads, sandwiches all made to order. You can also get many of the typical snack bar specialties, ice cream, chips and candy. By far the prettiest spot on the shoreline. Here's how I like to do this- load the kids in the car, swing by the package store and pick up a bottle of wine, order and eat a delicious dinner at M&Js, and then sit and enjoy a glass of wine while the kids play on the playground or in the sand. The M&J Beach Grille and Seafood in Madison is open seasonally with free parking at the Surf Club after 5pm.
2. Shell & Bones Oyster Bar and Grill in New Haven, CT - favorite spot for a date night. A delicious menu of fresh seafood, steak, and raw bar in a beautiful nautical setting. Perfect for an anniversary dinner, or special date night out. My husband and I last went in the fall and it was just so nice to look out onto the water, sip a cocktail, fill up on delicious food, and sit by the fire. My plans are to do a weekend brunch this summer for the full experience on the deck, perhaps for our 11 year anniversary coming up in June!
3. The Guilford Mooring in Guilford, CT- family friendly go-to spot. The Guilford Mooring is a go-to spot for my family all year round. Very family friendly with a $5 children's menu (with 4 kids that's pretty awesome) , a fabulous cocktail menu (I recommend The Whitfield 505), and excellent food! Some nights there's a band, which is always a plus in my book, but perhaps the best part is their new outdoor tiki bar area. Eating lunch outside, while listening to good music, and hearing the sounds of boats and buoys splashing in the water, just so relaxing!
4. Sunset Bar and Grill at The Water's Edge Resort and Spa in Westbrook, CT- best Friday night happy hour spot. This is our secret spot that we've loved since we moved to the shoreline. Talk about feeling like you're on vacation! Open only for the summer, this outdoor spot is our favorite on Friday nights when they have live music. Most people are coming up from a day down at the resort's beach, with bathing suits and sandy feet, and the food is really like an upscale clam shack. The view is spectacular and everyone there is in full vacation mode- dancing, smiling, and carrying on. There have been many times our kids have been invited up for a dance, and we just watch and laugh. So much fun! Our walk to the car afterwards always includes the "can you believe we live here" conversation. Definitely recommend!
5. The Wharf at the Madison Beach Hotel - Breathtaking views, and a calm beach feel. It's awesome to sit down on the porch for some bar bites, a glass of wine or a cocktail, and also to be able to walk down to the beach to sit or climb on the rocks a bit. I am here constantly over the summer because they host the best free events! From movie nights under the stars for the kids (they literally serve special treats for free) and summer concerts once a week. They are so incredibly accommodating to the locals and vacationers alike. A great place to grab a drink with an out of town visitor too.
Now that the nicer weather is here I hope that you can get out and enjoy our beautiful surroundings here in on the CT Shoreline! If you see me, make sure to clink glasses with me!
We recommend you check out Mary Beth Henry on With Laughter and Style.