49 Atlantic Ave., Boothbay Harbor | 207-633-7120 | thelobsterdock.com | $$$
An icon on the East side of the harbor, The Lobster Dock is famous for its bright red picnic tables and its terrific seafood. Sit on the multi-level deck (or inside if the weather is iffy) and tuck into a traditional lobster dinner, first-rate haddock sandwich, lobster or crab roll, even mussels marniere and calamari fra diavolo. Now in his 16th summer, owner Mitch Weiss provides everything you want in a waterside lobster restaurant, and then some: a varied wine list; great steaks, and on the weekends, prime rib.
16 Wharf St., Pier I, Boothbay Harbor | 207-633-6616 | mineoyster.net | $$$$
One of the best places in the midcoast to enjoy oysters is this seasonal restaurant right on the harbor, where the first floor raw bar regularly offers at least a dozen varieties, including the “house oyster,” Glidden Point, harvested from the nearby Damariscotta River. Chef Stephen Richards (Maine Lobster Chef of the Year in 2014) does a superb job with the rest of the menu, and there’s even a sushi bar. In good weather, grab a seat on one of the upstairs decks, which have great views of the busy harbor.
54 Commercial St., Boothbay Harbor | 207-633-2220 | bluemoonboothbayharbor.com | $$
Blue Moon’s awning shaded deck may be the best place in the harbor for breakfast — there’s an expansive view and great food. The cinnamon-pecan crisped French toast is delicious (be sure to order it with real maple syrup), as are the Maine blueberry pancakes; there’s also a variety of creative egg dishes. Benedicts and other specials are added to the menu for weekend brunch, all of which go beautifully with owner Fred Munro’s “most excellent Bloody Mary.” The lunch menu includes hot and cold sandwiches, salads, burgers and soup — everything is fresh, tasty and served with a smile.
47 Commercial St., Boothbay Harbor | 207-633-1101 | portsofitaly.com/boothbay | $$$$
Ports of Italy, on the second floor of a building across from Boothbay Harbor’s bustling waterfront, feels a world away — especially in the summer months. The menu is a large but not overwhelming mix of Italian entrees, insalate, pasti and antipasti; the pasta is homemade and excellent. A house specialty is porchetta, a thickly sliced roll of moist roast suckling pig studded with herbs. Owner Sante Calandri, a native of Perugia, Italy, is a welcoming and constant presence in the dining room.
20 Common Drive, Boothbay | No phone | No website | $
If you’re on your way to Boothbay Harbor, you can’t miss Bet’s “shack” on the left side of Route 27. The menu is limited to fish sandwiches, “fish in a dish” (i.e no roll) and freshly cut fries. The fish — haddock caught by owner Bet Finocchiaro brother — is super fresh and the portions are huge. Two mere mortals can share a “Half.” Grab plenty of napkins and a soda from the machine, choose a picnic table on the lawn behind the shack and dig in to some of the best fish you’ll find anywhere. Cash only.
The approximate cost of two dinner entrees (not including appetizers, drinks, tax and gratuity).
$ – $15 and under
$$ – $16 to $25
$$$ – $26 to $45
$$$$ – $46 and up