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The 20 Best Restaurants in All of Massachusetts


There are lots of famous Bay State foods that characterize New England’s most populous state – the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Massachusetts is known for lobster (more specifically, lobster rolls), crab, oysters, New England Clam Chowder (pronounced by locals as chowdah), and fried clams. It's also the birthplace of cannoli, Nestle Toll House Cookies, corn muffins, and Boston Cream Pie. The state’s cranberry bogs produce about one-third of the cranberries to meet global demand.

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has some amazing restaurants that specialize in its well-known cuisine and many more that bring a flair of fusion influence to some long-time favorites. From fresh seafood on Cape Cod to small eateries that dot the mountains in western Massachusetts and everything in between, there is something for even the finickiest palates in the Bay State.

Our Methodology

Admittedly, ranking the best restaurants in all of Massachusetts leans a bit subjective because comparing a neighborhood café to a steakhouse with white tablecloths is less than scientific. So, to rank the 20 best restaurants in the state, we included several important facets of the = experience we deemed essential –

  • The quality and uniqueness of food options.
  • The quality of service and dining room
  • The overall restaurant atmosphere.

Essentially, our ranking sought to determine and then rank just how closely the restaurant fulfilled its core cuisine and experience objectives.

The 20 Best Restaurants in Massachusetts

Below, find our list of the 20 best restaurants in Massachusetts.

20. Uni –  Back Bay, Boston

Located on Comm Avenue near Boston University, this sushi bar is the culinary inspiration of Executive Chef David Bazirgan and Ken Oringer. Nowhere else in Boston can you find Maine uni nigiri matched with this restaurant’s in-house crafted earthy-sweet miso. In addition to delicious sushi platters, Japanese Wagyu Beef Dumplings, Crispy Fried Chicken Bao Bun, and various sashimi and nigiri options, Uni has developed into an after-work hang as it offers some snacks and menu options that are drink-friendly and delicious.

19. O ya - Boston

In 2007, Tim and Nancy Cushman created an outstanding Japanese restaurant in Boston’s Leather District, which has since garnered multiple accolades and nominations. O ya is widely recognized to be among one of the best restaurants in Boston, Massachusetts, and  New England. Furthermore, O ya offers a high-end, visually striking menu of sushi, omakase, and other classic menu favorites from Japan that are beautifully presented. Although O ya is one of the most expensive restaurants in Boston, the price is worth the culinary treat.

18. Cedar Street Grille, Sturbridge

Cedar Street Grille is located in the village of Sturbridge, which is about 50 miles from Boston on Massachusetts’s southern border with Connecticut. The restaurant offers a refined yet warm and inviting atmosphere, highlighted by dimly lit walls, wood floors, and a crackling fireplace, adding to the ambiance. Diners can enjoy the food either at a small table or one of the cozy booths. There are several dishes to share on the Cedar Street Grille menu, including mussels in a mustard sauce, pork belly sliders, and a Duo of Duck. Book a table in advance, as this is a popular eatery that fills up fast.

17. Spoke Wine Bar, Davis Square, Sommerville

Since Spoke Wine Bar opened in 2013, people have been flocking to this restaurant that offers a unique yet intimate approach to combining hospitality with wine with amazing food. There is a focus on curating the best locally sourced fresh ingredients and produce (with a menu that changes seasonally), which is offered as New American small plates and a comprehensive wine list. Spoke is an intimate place, so if you want to ensure you don’t miss out, it is recommended that you make an advanced reservation.

16. Orta Trattoria and Lounge, Kingston

Chef-owner Brett Williams learned the art of Italian cuisine from his grandfather, who ran the famous Italian restaurant Lombardo's in Boston. Orta Trattoria and Lounge, in Kingston, a southern suburb of Boston, is named to honor a lake region in Italy. Italian restaurants like this remain a hidden gem for a reason. It offers an extensive wine list and menu inspired by Northern Italy that includes delectable options like braised short ribs with Parmesan cream, slow-roasted beet salad, fresh burrata, duck confit, and beef carpaccio with lemon aioli.

15. The Inn on Shipyard Park, Mattapoisett

The Inn on Shipyard Park ranks among the best and oldest of America's seaside inns. It is located in Mattapoisett, a quaint and historic village situated on the southern shore of Buzzards Bay, and given its age and reputation, reservations are highly recommended. The Inn on Shipyard Park closes for the winter season but opens in March when diners can once again enjoy ocean views as they dine on the many delectable local seafood entrees and specialties offered on the Inn’s multiple menus. However, there are also other options, including pizzas with various toppings.

14. Nightshade Noodle Bar, Boston

Nightshade Noodle Bar, which serves Vietnamese-influenced dishes, first began as a pop-up food business and brainchild of chef-owner Rachel Miller. In 2019, she achieved the success and reputation she needed to open the Nightshade Noodle Bar restaurant. Nightshade’s hand-pulled noodles are served creatively, including inside sea urchins or noodles soaked in a home-crafted spiced broth. Other options on the Nightshade Noodle Bar menu, include foie gras with coconut rice, malty shrimp toast, stone crab claw, lobster laced with vanilla, and various seafood specialties.

13. Gibbet Hill Grill, Groton

Set against the rolling hillsides of Groton, a northwest Boston suburb, Gibbet Hill Grill is contained within a 300-acre Gibbet Hill Farm compound. The farm-to-table ethos of Chef Tom Fosnot employs as much produce from the farm as possible to create seasonal dishes (many grill-inspired) that highlight New England flavors. Although the cuisine and menu options are served with a rustic flair, the preparation and presentation are both thoughtful and visually appealing. To keep the restaurant serving some of the most popular dishes all year long, the staff employs a winter greenhouse and a root cellar.

12. K Restaurant – Peabody ranks K Restaurant within the top 40 best New England restaurants. K Restaurant opened to bring healthy, nutritious, and delicious Korean foods to Peabody, a suburb north of Downtown Boston. The chef’s 30-year experience seeks the universal love of Korean traditional food through every dish offered to the patron of K restaurant. From unique starters to noodles and rice and Korean Grill and stir-fry specialties, K Restaurant has something for everyone on the K Restaurant menu. And for deopbap lovers, there are four crafted versions.

11. Table, Boston

The city of Boston offers dozens of amazing Italian eateries; however, Table offers a dining experience with a difference as it offers communal table dining – encouraging diners to socialize. Diners can select from home-style, Italian-American favorites, plus a unique seven-course fixed-price menu option on specified nights. Table's friendly and warm atmosphere offers a great atmosphere in which to enjoy a meal with friends and family and try the grilled octopus with roasted shallots or the artichoke and mascarpone/parmesan risotto, among others.

10. The Blue Ox, Lynn

Thrillist suggests booking a table to ensure you get a seat at The Blue Ox in Lynn, a North shore Boston suburb that is near the New Hampshire border. Despite being an upscale dining choice, The Blue Ox restaurant offers a relaxed and unpretentious atmosphere in which to enjoy a menu of American dishes with a modern twist. The Blue Ox in Lynn won the Battle of the Burger award from Boston Magazine multiple times, so burger gourmands do not miss out.  

9. Sarma, Boston

Sarma, which offers Mediterranean and Middle Eastern options on its menu, has become a hot Boston eatery in recent years. Chef-owner Cassie Piuma offers various dining options with a prix-fixe culinary experience and a meze option. Sarma is a vegetarian’s ideal choice because there are delicious and unique plant-based dishes available on Sarma’s menu. Some people visit this Boston venue just to enjoy a cocktail, says Time Out, because the classic cocktails and potent potable options include aromatic drinks that highlight flavors like cardamom, fenugreek, and orange blossom.

8. Skipper Chowder House, South Yarmouth

One of the top places for seafood lovers to visit in Massachusetts is the Skipper Chowder House located at the beginning of Cape Cod. Skipper’ is a casual joint, but you can anticipate some of the freshest and mouth-wateringly seafood served at this casual eatery that is a local favorite. Check out the popular dishes on the menu - including lobster rolls, Skipper’s fresh cod fillet fish sandwiches, fresh fried calamari, and the ice cream shack, to name a few, when the restaurant reopens in April for the upcoming season.

7. Sorrelina, Boston

Sorrelina is among the top restaurants in Boston, offering some of the finest in elevated Italian cuisine, and is ranked as one of Boston's most romantic dinner venues. Chef Jamie Mammano is in charge of the classic Italian dishes that have been given a modern Mediterranean twist in this fine dining restaurant. Book early if you want a table in this elegant atmosphere for a date night or to celebrate a special occasion with specialties from a creative menu that includes potato dumplings, Maine lobster and mushroom, and black truffle butter fettuccine, among others.

6. Hope & Olive, Greenfield

Located in Greenfield – a suburb of the greater Springfield metro area, Hope & Olive is a small bistro that is hard to find but worth the effort as the menu is chock full of delectable delights. The Hope & Olive bistro culinary team have partnered with local farms to utilize the finest quality ingredients available in the area. The menu at this small restaurant changes based on available seasonal ingredients. The Hope & Olive bistro is open for brunch, lunch, and dinner, and you can even grab a late-night snack. Options include five-spice Brussels sprouts, butternut and apple fritters, and scallops crafted with a maple butter glaze.

5. Mamma Maria – North Square, Boston

One of the top Italian eateries in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is Mamma Maria, an institution in North Square (one of America's oldest public squares) that has been open since 1973. Over the past five decades, Mamma Maria has established itself as one of Beantown’s top Italian venues with its beloved menu. In addition to the traditional Italian standout dishes, such as osso buco, Mamma Maria’s menu includes excellent steaks, duck two ways, oysters with caviar, and a seafood trio. Save room for dessert, which include Venetian Chocolate Torta and Panna Cotta, etc.

4. Belfry Inn & Bistro, Sandwich, Cape Cod

The Belfry Inn & Bistro is located in a former Catholic church in Sandwich, Massachusetts, that was built just after the beginning of the 20th century. While the exterior of the structure remains the same, the Belfry Inn & Bistro’s interior has been updated and shows no signs from the previous century. Chef Nicci Tripp is responsible for the food offered at the award-winning Belfry Inn & Bistro restaurant, with a menu of refined dishes, roasted pears and gorgonzola, New Zealand Lamb Loin Wellington, and Mongolian BBQ Faroe Island Salmon, to name a few.

3. Mill on the Floss, New Ashford

New Ashford is a small town in the Berkshires or western Massachusetts, and the Mill on the Floss is among the best restaurants in the area and in Massachusetts. This beautiful restaurant offers a menu of French food and has a reputation for exceptional dining service. The Mill on the Floss’s objective is to support local farms, so the cuisine offered is seasonally based and locally sourced. Diners can enjoy delicious food in an elegant setting that has a history dating back to pioneer days. Check out the roast duckling, tournedos bearnaise, and sweet bread, among others.

2. Alvah Stone, Montague

According to Only In Your State, Alvah Stone in Montague is among the best restaurants Massachusetts in the recent past. The town is located north of Springfield in western Massachusetts. The restaurant is housed in one of Montague's most historic buildings - a nearby former book mill built in 1834. Alvah Stone's menu consists of American fare, with an obvious farm-to-table ethos well-established by the restaurant.

1. Branches Grill and Café - Chatham

According to, Branches in Chatham placed in the eighth overall best restaurant in New England and top honors for Massachusetts. This Jamaican-themed, family-owned restaurant is about a mile from the ocean and offers fresh and delicious menu options (that includes a full bar), plus Asian or Jerk wings, fish taco, grilled cajun shrimp, salmon, pesto, and frenched chicken breast confit, to name a few.

Dana Hanson

Written by Dana Hanson

Dana has extensive professional writing experience including technical and report writing, informational articles, persuasive articles, contrast and comparison, grant applications, and advertisement. She also enjoys creative writing, content writing on nearly any topic (particularly business and lifestyle), because as a lifelong learner, she loves to do research and possess a high skill level in this area. Her academic degrees include AA social Sci/BA English/MEd Adult Ed & Community & Human Resource Development and ABD in PhD studies in Indust & Org Psychology.

Read more posts by Dana Hanson

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