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“Disappointed ”
Review of Old Port Sea Grill

Old Port Sea Grill
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Ranked #56 of 638 Restaurants in Portland
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$15 - US$35
Cuisines: Seafood
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Bar Scene, Business meetings, Romantic, Special Occasion Dining, Groups
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: Custom House St.
Description: TO VIEW OUR CURRENT MENU, please visit our website. The Old Port Sea Grill, opened in the fall of 2002, is located in the heart of Portland's historic Old Port district. Our modern interior features a custom concrete bar, a large lounge area and a dining room that can accommodate up to 60 guests and features a 250 gallon salt water fish tank. Our seafood driven menu focuses on a variety of local and imported fresh fish and shellfish, with an emphasis on east coast cold water oysters and other raw bar offerings. We pair that with a food-friendly wine list, local craft-style beers on draft and an extensive cocktail program to make for an exciting dining experience.
Reviewed 7 October 2017 via mobile

Went to eat some seafood and were disappointed with the overall dinner. We made reservations and were seated promptly. I did not have an issue with the service other than I had to ask for bread. However, I found the food lacking in flavor and just "trying too hard" - instead of offering a plain salad selection - there were spring greens with melon and vinaigrette (not very appetizing together) - the Brussels sprouts were grilled without any softening so you could not even cut them and when I was able to get one cut there was no taste! My husband ordered lobster and it came steamed but there was no offer of preparing it for easier eating by cracking it prior to serving. It might just be a bad month for lobster but both my lazy man lobster and his whole lobster were stringy and difficult to eat (I'm not sure I want to make that a chefs issue) the ambiance was pleasant but the cost of the meal did not live up to the taste of the food.

Thank Debbie0791
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oldportseagrill, General Manager at Old Port Sea Grill, responded to this reviewResponded 8 October 2017

Hello! Thank you for your feedback. I would like to address some of your issues:

1) Offering bread to guests - Our servers are trained to bring bread to all guests after the order is taken and before appetizers arrive. I apologize that you had to ask for bread, and I can assure you that this will be brought to our staff's attention.

2) Salad selection - The mixed greens with the cantaloupe, crispy proscuitto, and mozzarella pearls is one of our most popular salads, but I understand it is not for everyone. For those who desire something a little more classic, we also offer a Caesar salad and a simple house salad with mixed greens, tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, and balsamic vinaigrette.

3) Brussels sprouts - I personally find our pan-roasted Brussels sprouts to be tender and full of flavor, but again, everyone's palate is different. My hope in your case is that your server offered to bring you a different side dish.

4) Lobsters - We will happily crack your lobster for you upon request. Most guests come for the "Maine lobstah" experience, which includes cracking into the lobster themselves. Our servers are trained to instruct you on how to do this, but if you prefer that our chefs crack the lobster for you, we are happy to do that too. As far as the quality of the lobster - this may be a matter of taste again. Lobster is generally "meaty", but yes, some parts can be a little stringy, as you described. That is just the nature of the beast.

I hope my response is helpful. Most importantly, I encourage you to bring any concerns you have to your server's attention - not only in our restaurant but anywhere you dine. As trained professionals in the service industry, we all share a common goal of making sure our guests are satisfied and have an outstanding dining experience. If your experience is anything less than impeccable, then please give us a chance to make it better. Guest satisfaction is always the first priority. Thank you again, and we hope to see you in the future!

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13 - 17 of 376 reviews

Reviewed 6 October 2017

We stopped here on recommendation from our hotel attendant. It was happy hour when we went in and we sat for a drink. The bartender had her hands full with tables and guests at the bar. I would say there wer about 15 people she was taking care of. It seemed that our wait was a little lengthy so we only had 1 app (clam strips) and left. THe clams were good but wait was not.

    • Value
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    • Food
Thank kruezers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oldportseagrill, General Manager at Old Port Sea Grill, responded to this reviewResponded 8 October 2017

Thank you for your feedback. Sometimes we get "rushes" of people all at once, especially during happy hour. It sounds like that's what happened in your case. I apologize for the lengthy wait - I am actually adjusting staff schedules to provide more coverage during those busy afternoon happy hours, so hopefully this will not be an issue in the future.

Please do stop in again the next time you are in town. We would love to take care of you!

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Reviewed 3 October 2017

Wonderfully appointed restaurant with great food and friendly, efficient service. Sat at the windows overlooking the Harbor. Ordered appetizer, drinks and whole lobster. Everything was thoughtfully prepared and beautifully presented. Best meal of the whole trip.

    • Value
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    • Food
Thank Candy H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oldportseagrill, General Manager at Old Port Sea Grill, responded to this reviewResponded 5 October 2017

Thank you so much for your kind words! We hope to see you again the next time you are in town. Cheers!

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Reviewed 30 September 2017

Went for lunch. Sat next to the very dirty fish tank. The service was slow, even though there were only a few tables seated. The food was OK, but nothing to write home about. Would probably not go back

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank LuckyMesaAZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oldportseagrill, General Manager at Old Port Sea Grill, responded to this reviewResponded 3 October 2017

I am sorry your experience did not meet your expectations. Regarding the saltwater fish tank, we have a professional company that cleans it weekly. While you may have perceived it to be dirty, I assure you it is well-taken care of.

In regards to the service and food, I do hope you will come again and give us another chance to satisfy you.

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Reviewed 27 September 2017 via mobile

We traveled to Portland Maine to enjoy the leaves and lobster. Upon arrival at 5:30, the happy hour was in full swing in the bar but the dining room only had one other diner. That should have been a sign that this place is not too popular.

We had a great server. She was pleasant and helpful.

The atmosphere was not so great. Trying to enjoy dinner while the manager was busy loudly booking a baby shower brunch nearby was not pleasant. There's an old restaurant saying that staff should be seen but not heard. Hmm.

The sales presentation was completed and the manager moved to the bar where we could hear him telling stories to other guests. He is loud!

The $55 market price Lazy Lobster dinners arrived. The hot lobster meat was cold..The squash and the Brussel sprouts were not cooked tender and were too tough to cut.

Our server was great offering to bring us something else. We asked for more bread but passed on the veggies. We ate the lobster. I have had more tender lobster in Seattle.

There was no sign of the manager checking on meals. He continued to talk in the bar. I was waiting for him yo ask us about our meal as we departed. No such luck. The restaurant was still empty as we left at 6:30.

High prices, poor food, a loud manager, and a great server. That's what you get at The Old Port Sea Grill.


Thank DewPortland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oldportseagrill, General Manager at Old Port Sea Grill, responded to this reviewResponded 3 October 2017

Let me start by personally offering you my sincerest apologies. Admittedly, I do have a loud voice. Your feedback is duly noted.

I also apologize that you were not 100% satisfied with your dinner. But I am happy to hear that your server did everything they could to meet your expectations.

And I am sorry I did not have a chance to check in on your table. I do try to engage as many guests as I can, but I am not always able to touch every table. Yes, the bar was busy and that is why I was there supporting my staff. Unfortunately, it was to your detriment. I hope you enjoyed the rest of your stay in Portland. All the best to you.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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