Hungry in Nantucket - places worth traveling for

Hungry in Nantucket - places worth traveling for

Nantucket is a New England island south of Cape Cod which has become a favorite summer resort and second house destination for the wealthy and the famous. But it has also become a popular destination for foodies from around the country. This is because some of the best restaurants and other eateries have set up shop there. No matter whether you are looking for a world-class fine dining experience or want to enjoy a cone of the most delicious ice cream, there is a place for you to go to eat and drink on this charismatic island.

Best of all, you can expect to eat food made out of the freshest caught seafood and locally grown and sourced ingredients while spending time in Nantucket.

Some of these places are absolutely worth traveling for. It’s always a good idea to choose a short-term vacation rental if you want to enjoy a more authentic experience.

Here are the best places to dine and drink in Nantucket, MA.


Located in the Wauwinet Hotel, Topper's is one of the top-rated restaurants on the island and in the USA.

The award-winning restaurant has some of the best locally sourced oysters farmed only at 300 feet from the restaurant itself. There are various fine-dining dishes and a carefully curated wine list with more than 1,500 of the best wines from all around the world.

Straight Wharf

If you want to taste some local specials and the freshest catches on the island, but in a unique elevated style, then you should visit Straight Wharf. Apart from the seasonal menu, which can include five iced gray lady oysters and the spice-crusted sustainable catch, you can also select among the best-crafted cocktails, brews, and wines at this top seafood restaurant.


CRU is possibly the most glamorous of all restaurants on the waterfront of Nantucket. It is also the place to go if you are looking for the best oyster bar.

At CRU, you can enjoy eating delicious chilled lobster rolls served with kumquat and tarragon while watching the sunset and the beautiful yachts passing by. While you are there, make sure to try the restaurant's signature cocktail named Crucumber.

Γ’ran MΓ³r Bistro

This beautifully decorated bistro is filled with intriguing nautical antiques and is the place to go to enjoy some mouthwatering Duck Bolognese Cavatelli and Bison Au Poivre, alongside the carefully selected wines and crafted cocktails.

Galley Beach

It is among the best beachside restaurants on the island, where you can relax on the beach with your toes buried in the sand and try out the elevated takes on some local classics made out of fresh-caught and locally sourced ingredients.

The wine list of this century-old restaurant includes over 5,000 wines from around the world.

Named the best place to get married on the East Coast by Oprah Winfrey, Galley Beach is an excellent reason to travel to Nantucket for a romantic dinner on the beach in the sunset.

Via Mare

This uniquely styled restaurant at the Greydon House hotel was designed by Roman and Williams. It not only looks spectacular but also has an exquisite menu. At this restaurant, you can enjoy brunch or dinner with some small Venetian-bacari-style plates, antipasti boards, and second courses with carefully curated Italian wines and cocktails.

You can go to Via Mare for a cocktail on your way back home to your rented vacation home or hotel and enjoy some bar bites such as oysters as well as pancakes and caviar.

The Juice Bar

The Juice bar is a favorite for young and old and for both the local residents and the guests of Nantucket. The reason is that it is the place to go to if you want to have the best and creamiest ice cream served in warm homemade waffle cones on the island.

There are various unique homemade ice cream flavors, including Grapenut and Crantucket, and Rum Raisin. Along with that, you can enjoy a fresh smoothie. But keep in mind that there is no seating, and you will most likely have to wait in line for your ice cream at the Juice Bar.

The Chanticleer

If you go to Siasconset, you must visit this fine dining restaurant there. It is a rustic, charming French-style restaurant that was established back in 1909 and is still among the most popular venues for romantic dates, weddings, and so on.

The menu includes dishes made with herbs and flowers as well as other fresh produce which was grown on the property of the restaurant, along with some of the most interesting crafted cocktails.

The Whale

The name of this restaurant may sound strange, but it is actually the subtitle of the famous novel Moby Dick, which Herman Melville wrote after he was inspired by the real story of the Essex whaleship from Nantucket.

Since Nantucket's history and lifestyle are closely interwoven with the whaling industry, this restaurant is the place to go if you want to feel the authentic experience of the locals who relied on whaling and whale oil to live and prosper.

You can try the unique Thai-inspired shrimp croquettes on the patio alongside some fine wine or a crafted cocktail.

The Club Car

This is another unique restaurant which has part of it situated in a real train car from the former Nantucket railroad. Apart from being a sightseeing sensation, it is a chic restaurant and bar to go to and enjoy some delicious Californian-cuisine-inspired dishes with tropical cocktails and listen to live music.

Cisco Brewery

The only outdoor brewery in the USA, Cisco Brewery is considered one of the top attractions and places to visit when in Nantucket.

The brewery has a large beer garden and is right next to the Nantucket Vineyard and the Triple Eight Distillery. So, there are tastings and drinks for every preference there.

Some of the locally crafted brews to taste include the Gray Lady Wheat Ale, the Whale's Tale Pale Ale, or the Wandering Haze IPA. There are some amazing local wines and unique liquors you can try and buy as presents there.

Best of all, there are food trucks and live music every day at Cisco Brewery.

The Proprietor's Bar & Table

This is a bar where you can sip on the unique handcrafted cocktails in Nantucket made by the owners Michael and Orla LaScola. Of course, you can enjoy eating a comforting dish in this cozy eatery that is designed and dedicated to reflecting and promoting the island's history.


Dune has some of the best locally inspired seafood dishes in Nantucket. There you can eat meals made of the freshest seasonal fish and seafood and the locally sourced produce and meat. There is a quartzite bar, a lovely patio, and a list of unique cocktails to enjoy when visiting this restaurant.


Keepers has been voted the top-rated restaurant in Nantucket on TripAdvisor, and while this can be quite subjective, it is the place to go for the freshest food paired with the friendliest service on the island.

You can enjoy reasonably priced dishes such as grilled shrimp, lemon pepper crusted cod, Western Ross glazed salmon, and others.

Best of all, it is among the few eateries which do not close off-season, so you can enjoy eating at Keepers even if you decide to go on a vacation or trip to Nantucket in the winter, spring or fall.

The fact is, many people prefer to avoid crowds by booking trips during the off-season or the shoulder months of May, June, September, or October.


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