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Food & Drink

Top Seafood Restaurants In Connecticut

March 12, 2014 9:00 AM

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(Photo credit: ROD LAMKEY JR./AFP/Getty Images)

(Photo credit: ROD LAMKEY JR./AFP/Getty Images)

With the sound of the waves rushing up to the shore, the aroma of freshly baked and stuffed lobsters, fresh cooked clams and sautéed sole, as well as  the sound of seagulls squawking over head, one has to wonder why Connecticut’s seafood restaurants even need a sign announcing their specialties. Seafood restaurants in Connecticut are one of the best things about living in the state. With its rich and extensive coast line, Connecticut is made for seafood lovers. Here are a few restaurants that will satisfy the most finicky seafood lover.

Harbor Lights
82 Seaview Ave.
Norwalk, CT 06855
(203) 866-3364
www.harborlightsrestaurant-ct.com

Whether you arrive by sea and dock your boat or arrive by car to Harbor Lights, the important thing is to get here. A beautifully romantic setting makes a great first impression at this waterfront restaurant. However, it’s the menu that makes one salivate. East Coast oysters, cherry stone clams and poached lobster will satisfy any sea lover’s luncheon.  With its Mediterranean flair, dinner flaunts Calamari Fritti accented with “pecorino romano cheese” and a delectable sauce. Salmon tartar, grilled octopus and crab cakes also get star billing.

Related: Best Summer Seafood Dinners To Catch Yourself

U.S.S. Chowder Pot III
560 E. Main St.
Branford, CT 06405
(203) 481-2356
www.chowderpot.com

Family owned, this restaurant has been winning accolades for its incredible chowders. New England clam chowder, Rhode Island clam chowder and chowders & bisque, along with a delicate lobster bisque, puts this seafood restaurant in the winner’s circle. According to its history, for more than 33 years customers have enjoyed the delicious recipes this family owned restaurant has created. In addition to the two large dining rooms, the the Captain’s Lounge and raw bar are a favorite among clientele. Experience it to believe it.

Splash Restaurant & Bar
260 Compo Road
South Westport, CT 06880
(203) 454-7798
www.decarorestaurantgroup.com/splash

Located in the Long Shore Inn overlooking Long Island Sound and adjacent to the Long Shore Golf Course, this restaurant not only flaunts its seafood menus, but its decidedly Asian character. There’s a raw bar, oysters and Maine lobster, as well as many other seafood specialties including its signature “crispy calamari,” which is served with crispy goat cheese dumplings. This restaurant’s brunch has become so popular that in addition to its Sunday brunch, it now features a Saturday brunch. One visit turns visitors into regulars.

Related: Connecticut’s Best Seafood Joints

Jimmie’s of Savin Rock
5 Rock St.
West Haven, CT 06516
(203) 934-3212
www.jimmiesofsavinrock.com

Jimmie’s of Savin Rock is not just another seafood restaurant. It’s a Connecticut landmark. What makes this place so special are the huge portions served to its seafood loving customers. It all started with its  famous lobster rolls and deep fried tender clams that are sweet and succulent. Another big hit here is the fried filet of sole, fried calamari and scallops. Of course, the fresh, daily caught fish dishes and lobster ravioli are also memorable enough to create seafood cravings that can only be satisfied at Jimmie’s. A water front restaurant that is historically popular.

Ancient Mariner
21 W. Main St.
Mystic, CT 06355
(860) 536-5200
www.ancientmarinermystic.com

It’s impossible to think “seafood” and not think of Mystic, Connecticut. Here is where the staunchest of landlubbers fall in love with the sea and the quaintness of this seaside town is where you’ll find Ancient Mariner, a fabulous seafood restaurant. Inhale the aroma of baked oysters with a shrimp and scallop stuffing, or imagine a “lil’ lobby Mac, which is a small version of the Mariner’s lobster mac and cheese. Want an authentic lobster bake complete with a 1 ½ pound lobster, steamed clams, red potatoes and corn on the cob? It’s a regular on this traditional seafood menu. In the mood for mussels, crab cakes, sesame tuna, baked haddock or Creole seafood pot pie? Then look no further than this gorgeous Mystic restaurant.

Joanne Greco Rochman is the arts editor of The Fairfield County Review, a columnist, critic, feature story writer and English professor. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Republican-American and Hersam-Acorn Publications. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.

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