Summer Guide

10 Can't Miss Waterfront Meals

Every mile of gorgeous Rhode Island coastline should be kept within eyeshot, which is where these restaurants come in


1. Gulfstream Bar & Grille in Portsmouth is housed in an original 1942 Quonset Hut that was built as part of the US Navy’s PT boat training center. Here you’ll find coastal recipes from regions along the Gulf Stream with a New England twist. Dine with your four-legged friend on the patio.

2. Though The Chanler is undeniably elegant, you don’t have to roll up in a Bentley to dine at the Newport hotel’s Cliff Walk Terrace. Overlooking the ocean, the terrace is one of summer’s best kept secrets in the City by the Sea where you can savor lunch, dinner and lovely light bites.

3. As the name implies, Jim’s Dock is, in fact, at the docks, and this decidedly casual, BYOB morning-to-night spot is a local’s favorite. Though the address is technically Wakefield, anyone will tell you that the restaurant is in Jerusalem in Narragansett. Tip: Seek out the day’s specials as you’ll likely enjoy something from the local fishing boats.

4. With its modern-meets-nautical motif, Trafford in Warren’s waterfront historic district is a relaxing respite loved by seafood aficionados and landlubbers alike. Killer sunsets over the Warren River and Sunday brunch make drinking and dining here memorable.

5. A sometimes-overlooked hidden gem, 15 Point Road in Portsmouth is set along the Sakonnet River. Dine on the main floor, upstairs, at the bar or on the patio. The only thing fresher than the seafood on your plate is what you’ll see the local fisherman hauling in.

6. For almost six decades, George’s of Galilee has served boat-to-plate seafood to generations of Rhode Islanders. With its enviable location overlooking the Block Island Sound, diners have six different dining rooms to choose from, the restaurant’s private beach, live entertainment, competitive volleyball and buck-a-shuck every weekday afternoon.

7. The Oar on Block Island’s Great Salt Pond is known for its countless personalized oars, killer lobster rolls and legendary mudslides. And sushi. And maybe Christopher Walken sightings. They don’t take reservations but if you do have to wait, you can play a round or two of corn hole.

8. Family-owned and -operated, Quito’s in Bristol started as a fish market. A brand new outdoor bar and patio have just been unveiled featuring a savory raw bar menu and we predict that the views of Bristol’s quaint harbor will make it trés popular this summer.

9. Evelyn’s Drive-In is a Rhode Island institution and has been the beloved place for fresh (and freshly fried) local favorites since 1969. This humble hotspot on Tiverton’s Nanaquaket Pond celebrates classics (fried clams and fish & chips) and fusion (lobster chow mein) fare.

10. Sometimes overshadowed by its high profile waterfront neighbor, The Safari Room at OceanCliff in Newport merges sophisticated surroundings with a relaxed vibe. Tropical plants and swaths of fabric flowing in the bay breeze overhead – all illuminated by glowing lanterns – set the mood within the open-air restaurant while the patio and Adirondack chairs peppering the lawn are completely laid-back.