Peter Koge, chef and owner of Sake Japanese Restaurant in Portsmouth, takes his sushi seriously, pampering his fish with salt cures and sake soaks before serving it to the devoted clientele at his 16-year-old establishment. “I’m like a doctor,” says the 62-year-old Portsmouth resident. “I can’t give fish that I don’t know.”
Sweeping ocean views greet diners entering this spacious, upscale eatery on Salisbury Beach. The restaurant may be located in a warehouse-style pavilion, with an unadorned entrance, but once you’re inside, the views are spectacular. Sit at one of the tables perched over the water by the floor-to-ceiling windows and you’ll feel like you’re on the bow of a cruise ship.
It’s hard to imagine a prettier spot on the Seacoast than this postcard-perfect foodie find. Nestled on Harris Island, Dockside Restaurant overlooks a protected harbor and small marina dotted with bobbing sailboats and dinghies, small yachts, and working lobster boats. Look to the east and you’ll see the open ocean, the waves crashing against Boone Island, and a slice of Maine’s rocky, spruce-studded coastline. You could come solely for the setting, but what happens in the kitchen is equally dazzling.
John Welch, executive chef of the Wentworth by the Sea resort, says, "Our entire menu is inspired by the ocean that surrounds us." With a sweep of his hand, he adds, "I want people to know that everything they're eating is right out there."
A commercial plaza on Portsmouth's Mirona Road might not be the kind of place where you'd expect to find authentic Greek fare. Located in Madison Village off Route 1, Café Nostimo serves a variety of traditional Greek dishes (and a handful of American favorites as well), while offering customers an affordable alternative to dinner downtown. Having won Taste's Best Of award for Inexpensive Lunch and Dinner three years in a row, it's no wonder customers say, "It's like eating in Yia Yia's kitchen."
For over 15 years, Blue Moon Market and Café was a natural food store and casual restaurant. But in the fall of 2010 it morphed into Blue Moon Evolution, an elegant but unfussy lunch and dinner restaurant complete with refined table service, candlelight, white tablecloths, fresh flowers, and a superb locavore fine-dining menu. Much more than a glorified café, its worth seeking out this new Moon.