Where Would You Go?

An “06880” reader has guests coming from out of town. She’d like to take them to dinner — preferably at a place that screams “Westport.”

Rather than offer up my own choices, I’ll crowdsource this one.

Click “Comments” to offer suggestions. Feel free to include various cuisines and categories. Please add solid evidence (“Always uses local produce,” “The fondue is to die for,” whatever).

My friend and her guests thank you.

And for a great dessert…

39 responses to “Where Would You Go?

  1. Nothing screams Westport like a seafood place in my opinion.

    Expensive, but nice dinner at the Whelk. It’s about as good of New England seafood as you’ll get. Get some oysters–pretty sure they’ve got some from the Saugatuck. The ingredients are mostly local, the waitstaff is good enough, and the dishes have lots of interesting combinations.

    For a much cheaper, casual option–go to Westfair fish and chips for fried clams and maybe a Connecticut-style lobster roll.

  2. I’d tell them to go to Centro in Fairfield because that’s where all the Westporters who used to go to V now go. (Boy how I miss V.)

  3. I would say–especially after having been to the Arrow reunion a couple of weeks ago–nothing is more quintessentially Westport than the Nisticos’ Red Barn.

    If they are looking for water views along with a taste of a beachside Westport neighborhood, I recommend Positano (or Cafe De La Plage as some of us still think of it as).

    If they are on a budget and/or want to do something informal with views, I would suggest the pizza and picnic tables at Elvira’s or stopping by Joey’s and bringing stuff for a picnic at the beach.

  4. And one more option–if they want to take their guests downtown, Tavern on Main (particularly outdoors with its view of Main Street) is another good choice that screams Westport (especially if they show their guests on DVD the ending of “The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit” before heading out to dinner).

  5. Long-time Westporter

    What says “Westport” more than the Inn at Longshore? It’s pricey, but so is every other restaurant in Westport and the lawn and river are beautiful. Also Acqua, The River House and Positano all have good food and nice views . Also expensive, but the story behind “The Dressing Room” makes it special to Westport. And don’t forget Tavern on Main, prices are a little more reasonable and you can stroll Main Street after dinner.

  6. LeFarm is #1 in my book of favorites for Westport. The restaurant is tucked into an unpretentious strip center downtown. The atmosphere is warm and intimate, the food divine, and the servers are friendly and personable. Locally sourced dishes abound, with sophisticated combinations that delight the most discerning palate. I can make a meal of just the Young Lettuce appetizer, but the Amish Chicken main course, as well as the Cornbread with Bacon for dessert are not to be missed. Happy Eating!

  7. If you mean an old-school Westport, then it’s Mario’s Place.

  8. Chef has the day off

    I’m all for casual, so if I had out of town guests I’d create a picnic dinner or clam bake to go and head over to either Compo Beach or Evan Harding Point next to the Longshore Marina.

  9. On of our favorite places that screams Westport is “Villa del Sol.” The food is Mexican Authentic, the staff is fabulous and my favorite dish is the Super Quesadilla! I always get some type of seafood added to it and pay the difference in price. It’s Kid Friendly and if you haven’t tried the

    1 1/2 oz. Cuervo Gold
    1 oz. Blue Curacao Liqueur
    1 oz. Lime Juice
    Squeeze of Fresh – Lime
    Garnish – Lime Sauce

    Your in for a big surprise! Check it out, you’ll never go to another Mexican place!

    Westport, Ct.
    36 Elm Street
    Westport, Ct. 06880
    Tel: 203-226-7912
    Fax: 203-226-9195


  10. Westport Convert

    Is there any question? Splash at Longshore. Pricey, sure. But the patio dining – with the stunning views and great food – is 100% Westport.

    It’s also perfect for a larger group, as it is “family style.”


    • Another bonus at Splash is that you can experiece the rude behavior and uncaring attitude of the waitstaff. So Westport!

      • Westport Convert

        I have had a couple of bad waiters but, overall, not too bad. Isn’t that almost always the case though?


        • I can only say that Splash was the worst treatment that I have ever gotten in any restaurant. And the bad treatment was not limited to one waiter. It was the only time that I ever considered leaving without paying the bill. If my car was parked in a good place for an easy getaway, I would have stiffed them.

          It is really a shame, because the location is by far the best place to eat in Westport. I cannot wait until a different restauant takes over that location.

    • From my experience of going there for years, the waitstaff is lovely, cheerfully accommodating, &, genuinely interested in seeing that all guests of all ages enjoy their meals & the ambiance of the location.

    • David J. Loffredo

      At least there’s no worry that the menu will ever change….

  11. Spotted Horse. Good food. Reasonable prices. You can walk Main Street afterward or go up to Luxe for a nightcap. Try to sit on the patio, although the interior is interesting.

  12. A slice of pizza on a stool at Westport Pizzeria.

  13. I also say bring food to Compo and enjoy the beach!

  14. Babette d'Yveine

    The Black Duck. The food isn’t gourmet, but the atmosphere can’t be beat!

  15. Simply put: The River House. The Food. The view. The Host(s), Chef and staff. The clientele — all say, “Westport!” befittingly.

  16. Best Westport Dives

    Dunvilles on Riverside screams Westport as does Marios

  17. I would also recommend the River House for out-of-town guests; we have taken visitors there. We also like Mario’s but I would probably recommend the others more highly for bringing out-of-towners.

  18. Villa del Sol !!!

  19. Dressing Room! Casual, great food, local, and the staff is great…. go see Harbor at the Playhouse while you’re there.

  20. Westporter since 1970

    The Mansion Clam House for dinner…
    Golds for lunch…

  21. The Dressing Room, definitely.

  22. If it’s lunch, it’s Oscar’s. Sit out front and watch the world go by.

  23. Viva Zapatas

  24. Martin O'Grady

    COME ON____ BLACK DUCK CAFE!!! The view at the bar is the best in Westport and it’s been there for 34 years —You think MAYBE they have great food?? Steamers and clams casino and stuffed cheese burgers that got them on Diners drive ins and dives as a top ten show 2 years ago?? There is NO place more Westport than the DUCK!!! Duck Man

  25. This is a great question. My favorite places to take friends are not those with the best views but those family-run restaurants where my visitors get to see what it’s like to live in a small town and be greeted warmly and treated like family.
    My two picks:
    Trattoria Finalmente – On the Post Road (across from the old Post Office). The ravioli in truffle oil is incredible!
    Via Sforza – Known to many as that “cool stone building”. Great pizza, sure, but lots of other great stuff. Don’t miss the Carciofi Romana — the amazing artichoke hearts appetizer. And crazy good lasagna.

  26. How could we forget The Boathouse? Great food with the best view!!!!

  27. Cathy (Smith) Barnett

    The Boathouse is an excellent choice for dinner! Yes, please sit on the deck overlooking the river!!!