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Summer Shack

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COVID-19 update: See the added health and safety measures this property is taking.Read more

Ratings and reviews

RATINGS
Food
Service
Value
Atmosphere

Details

PRICE RANGE
$30 - $50
CUISINES
American, Seafood
Special Diets
Gluten Free Options
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meals, features, about
Travel safe during COVID-19
Visit our Travel Safe hub to see how we're helping you make more informed travel decisions during COVID-19.
What you can expect during your visit
  • Face masks required for staff in public areas
  • Hand sanitizer available to guests & staff
  • Socially distanced dining tables
  • Staff required to regularly wash hands
  • Tables disinfected between guests
  • Face masks required for guests in public areas
Read more
Updated 09/03/20 Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.
A note from Summer Shack
Updated 09/03/20 Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.
Reviews (361)
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Traveler rating
133
103
70
27
14
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All reviews lobster skewers fish and chips salad excellent seafood fun atmosphere jasper appetizers
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Reviewed April 8, 2022

I've been coming here for many years. Mainly I go to the bar for sports with friends, but I've also eaten here at least a dozen times. The good: the food is good, it's a fun atmosphere, we often bring visitors here because you can...get "Boston seafood" and the quality is reliable. Some faves: fish tacos, fish and chips, pasta with shrimp, wings, raw bar oysters, clam chowder, and do note they have sushi specials on Monday night. The sushi is good, although not mind-blowing. Prices are a bit higher than you might want, but that's true almost anywhere. I'd say it's almost fairly priced for what you get. Now on to the bar, which is what cost this place a point in my rating: meh. Service is a bit spotty, but mainly the problem is the prices are on par with high-end cocktail places but the quality is not. Cheap sour mix, non-tasty margaritas, some bartenders will top off an old-fashioned with club soda: just, no. I come here because it's close to me and it has a large parking lot, which is important in Cambridge/Somerville, esp. in the winter. But the cocktail program needs to step up a notch. And this is not a recent, covid-era development. It's always been this way.More

Date of visit: March 2022
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Reviewed December 30, 2021 via mobile

Stopped in for lunch with friends. Three of us had fish & chips & one had a tuna poke bowl. All meals were fabulous! Definitely the best fish & chips I’ve ever had!! Great server & yummy desserts as well. Highly recommend!!

Date of visit: December 2021
Helpful?1  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed December 30, 2021 via mobile

Always a great experience at the Summer Shack and today was no exception. Delicious salads and fish and chips. Wait staff is attentive and polite. Restaurant is clean, warm and spacious. Ample parking.

Date of visit: December 2021
Helpful?1  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed October 16, 2021 via mobile

We have been coming to Summer Shack for years, but after our latest visit for lunch on Saturday, we are left wondering if they are under new ownership. Most of the food was terrible and the service was confused. We were sat promptly outside but...then left to wait with our menus for 20 minutes without acknowledgement. Then a host came over with a pile of menus and was confused when we said we already had menus (in front of us) and that we were ready to order our lunch. When the waiter arrived she was pleasant and took our order. The lobster potstickers came out, but we had no utensils, drinks, or plates. The runner seemed confused when we asked for plates and utensils, but said "ok." About 5 minutes later our server arrived with all we needed and apologized. The potstickers were very good, but half the other meals that arrived next really fell bellow minimal standards. My shrimp and grits were terrible - the shrimp was extremely over cooked and the grits were a watery polenta-like substance with the consistency of baby food. The flavors were ok, but there was no getting past the textures. My daughters sweet potato fries tasted days old (we looked past the coldness of them since it was windy, but they were incredibly stale tasting). My husband got the crab cake blt, as he has in past visits, but it was nothing like before - the crab cake was tiny and too wet and the brioche hum was disappointing (the remoulade was good though). My daughters' chicken sandwich and shrimp tacos were good, but could not make up for how disappointed were. The water offered to bring me another shrimp and grits (we were running late, so I thanked her but declined). The manager came over to apologize and took the appetizer and shrimp off the meal, which we appreciate. However, it will likely be sometime before we give Summer Shack another try.More

Date of visit: October 2021
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Reviewed July 30, 2021 via mobile

Does not live up to meals pre covid...the bluefish was smothered in a greasy mustard sauce, the orders of Gulf Shrimp were unequal - by 1 entire skewer of shrimp - the clam chowder was over salted, having been heated too long, and the sides-...tough asparagus, over garliced potatoes...please bring back the quality I knew!More

Date of visit: July 2021
Helpful?1  
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Reviewed July 29, 2021

We went here because of its reputation for great lobster rolls. They were totally Undersized. Probably 1/4-1/3 the size of Kelly’s lobster roll. We had a hot one and a cold one. They were tasty just skimpy. Cherry stones were good. Lobster pot stickers outstanding....Potato chips were delicious but VERY salty. Service was mediocre and tediously slow. It would be worth the ride to Hampton Beach to the Beach Plum or to central Mass to Howard’s for that price you could drive there and back including gas and tolls. I’m usually not critical of restaurants but I was disappointed.More

Date of visit: July 2021
Helpful?1  
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Reviewed June 9, 2021

I agree with previous review Sadly Dreadful !!!! We supported Summer Shack through the pandemic as we like to dine local . Tonight we got food to go, half hour wait , that was longer then we ever waited & when we went in to...get the food were told someone took our order . So my husband waited , got home and the box of clams was mostly French fries basically paid $28 for a order of fries . Jasper White would be appalled . He should not allow the new owners to use the summer shack name . I called & spoke to the manager Jeff .....who was very unprofessional and said sold by weight . He wanted me to speak with the general manager , WHY ? Done with summer shack I can cook my own lobster very easy !!!!More

Date of visit: June 2021
Helpful?1  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed May 27, 2021

In this pandemic period, I have greatly adjusted my expectations for restaurants, but this experience was dreadful. The food was worse than cafeteria fare. They once were a great place to eat, but no more. They were short-staffed and the servers were trying their best,...but the service was terrible and inattentive. There was construction next door so the patio was a nightmare. Not a good place to eat, sad to say.More

Date of visit: May 2021
Helpful?3  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed May 24, 2021 via mobile

The service it’s very good! Polite and nice! But the food it’s very over priced and no so good. Everything taste super blended and missing flavor! When you pay $30 for a lobster roll you expect a delicious dish, but reality it was mostly cucumbers...and lettuces on a roll. I would never go there again $28 for a plate of fries and couple of calamari not worth it. Fish and chips so blend and tasteless. The food presentation looks so yummy but not at all.More

Date of visit: May 2021
Helpful?2  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed August 31, 2020 via mobile

Have a great time and a great food. Lobster is wonderful and the salmon is delicious. Great service and good drinks.

Date of visit: August 2020
Helpful?
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
vincentl383, Owner at Summer Shack, responded to this reviewResponded September 4, 2020

Thank you for the kind review Oscar. We are happy to hear you enjoyed you experience at Summer Shack!

Reviewed August 28, 2020

Went for lunch. Outdoor seating in parking lot was OK. Food average, at best. Service fair, at best. Very slow. Would not return.More

Date of visit: August 2020
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vincentl383, Owner at Summer Shack, responded to this reviewResponded September 4, 2020

Thank you for your review. We deeply apologize about your experience at Summer Shack. We always strive to make sure our guests are full & happy, so we would like to rectify this for you. Please email our Director, Vinny, at vlombardi@shackfoods.com, and we can...More

Reviewed April 4, 2020

The food at Summer Shack in Cambridge is always fresh and delicious . . . lots of variety, lots of lobster dishes, and always delicious. So it deserves a high mark just for that. BUT, not they do take-out in this touch environment. We brought...in dinner tonight and it was both delicious and a welcomed change of pace. We could have had it delivered by Grubhub but we went by to pick it up . . . I ordered it in advance, when we got there we called them and they brought it out to the car . . . very efficient, and as expected, ti was all delicious -- we had the lobster potstickers, mussels, fried shrimp dinner and fish and chips. The portions were most generous and the food was delicious. Let's support those who are staying open to help us out -- and we get a delicious dinner at the same time. How can you beat that?More

Date of visit: April 2020
Helpful?2  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Emily_LyonsGroup, Marketing at Summer Shack, responded to this reviewResponded April 6, 2020

Thank you so much for taking the time to write us a review during these difficult times. We're thrilled to hear you loved your dinner and appreciated our curbside takeout system. It means the world to us that we have such incredible guests and friends...More

Reviewed February 16, 2020

I've been eating at the Summer Shack on visits from the UK since 2011 and try never to miss it. The food is excellent, the wine list has some enthusiasts' surprises (Vie di Romans anyone?) but most of all I just like the atmosphere. It's...an interesting blend between a sports bar and a family restaurant. If a colleague had not recommended it, I'd never have thought to find a high quality individual restaurant tucked just behind the car park of a T station - I'm glad he did!More

Date of visit: February 2020
Helpful?2  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
aleylewis, Owner at Summer Shack, responded to this reviewResponded February 21, 2020

Thank you so much for stopping by! We hope to see you again at Summer Shack soon!

Reviewed January 14, 2020

I have been coming to Summer Shack again and again over the past 10 years. With a large group, with family, friends. Even by myself. My overall conclusion - the place is solid. It had its ups and downs, but overall consistently good. Expensive? Kind...of. But what is cheap these days in Bean Town. I would give the place 5 stars, but it is still a Shack. Don't expect Menton service. What I consistently liked? Stuffed lobster (pricey!), fresh oysters, Bermuda Fish Soup. Last Monday I tried clam linguini and it was excellent! Still, it's $38 for lunch without beer. So be ready!More

Date of visit: January 2020
Helpful?1  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
cfinigan, Owner at Summer Shack, responded to this reviewResponded January 22, 2020

Thank you for the feedback, we really appreciate hearing from our guests.

Reviewed December 24, 2019

We love coming here for the food, which is absolutely top notch for the area. Servers are great. The portion sizes are good but not excessive. It's excellent quality with a very interesting menu that changes often to accommodate changes in food. However, the seating...policy is poorly thought out. We are here today off-hours with only a few other families, and are packed all at side-by-side tables, perhaps to suit some assignment of wait staff by region. It's pointlessly noisy listening to conversations at adjacent tables, and booths that are old and need replacing are such that every time our neighbors lean forward and back, it's like being on a plane and being kicked by kids from behind. We could have been spread out and avoided this. We've complained to managers about this before and it hasn't helped so time to just warn other patrons. It'd be five star if not for this.More

Date of visit: December 2019
Helpful?
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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July 1, 2016|
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Response from Chip_Berlet | Reviewed this property |
It is a few hundred yards from the Alewife station and parking garage on the Red Line, and the Charles Hotel is three blocks from the Harvard Square stop on the Red Line.-- 15 minutes underground. The Charles Hotel to... More
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Frequently Asked Questions about Summer Shack

Yes, Summer Shack offers takeout services.

Yes, Summer Shack is taking precautions against COVID-19. A full list is available within the "safety precautions" section of this page.

Summer Shack is rated accordingly in the following categories by Tripadvisor travelers:
  • Food: 4
  • Service: 4
  • Value: 3.5
  • Atmosphere: 4