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Relaxing Fun Evening/Night

Boston
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Relaxing Fun Evening/Night

Hello, My husband and I are going to come up from Boston in a couple of weekends to have a much needed night without the kids. We'll be staying at the Ale House Inn and are looking for things to do that are within walking distance. We don't want to do anything that requires schedules (theaters, concerts, shows, etc). Thinking of just walking around looking at shops, prescott park, eating and drinking.

Can you guys give me a few names of great restaurants within walking distance? We love all types of food, but are looking for something that has great food, and is cozy & quiet.

Also, are there any bars or clubs that have dancing? We're in our late 30's so would want to stay away from college age crowds. Also interesting in bars or lounges with a fun casual vibe.

Thanks so much in advance!

MA
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1. Re: Relaxing Fun Evening/Night

For bar/lounge try the Spring Hill Tavern. It is under the Dolphin Striker restaurant. They do have live music but not dancing. Does get pretty lively. It is not a place for college students or that age group. It is on Ceres St.

Boston
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2. Re: Relaxing Fun Evening/Night

Here's a few places that we go to a lot of times. One of our favorite places to go to is RiRa's irish Pub located at 22-26 Market Square. A fun place to have dinner and a few drinks. They have entertainment around 8:30 or so here usually on Thursday thru Sunday nights I believe. We've had dinner here a few times, it's more of an Irish Bistro than a pub. You have to see this place, even if you go in for a drink, look up as you walk in and you'll see the seal of NH in stained glass, it's just so beautiful the way this whole pub was renovated. If you dine here you get taken thru the bar area out back and they have the neatest tables & seats all thru here. When you go here you'll see what I mean, I love this place, can you tell! Here's info on it

www.rira.com

If you want a really good steakhouse then go to the Library located in the Rockingham House on State Street, look for the golden lions. I really think you should probably make reservations at any of these places mentioned as soon as you decide where you're going to dine as the summer is really busy up thru downtown Portsmouth starting right now. This weekend is Market Square day and you won't get near it. It's a good thing you're arriving next week. It'll be packed up thru Portsmouth all weekend long, especially tomorrow if the weather is like it is right now!

www.libraryrestaurant.com

If you like seafood then I encourage you to make reservations for Jumpin' Jay's Fish Cafe, you would really like it here a lot. They have various sauces that you can try on your seafood dishes, in fact that's what they're known for here. It's only 2 blocks down from Market Square. It's got a fun atmosphere, as it's casually hip, with NO pretense nonsense!

If you wanted Italian dining experience with superior service in an elegant yet comfortable surroundings, then head to Ristorante Massimo, google it and you'll be able to make reservations & check out their menu, it's a good one.

Another place that we really like a lot in Portsmouth is the Rosa, it's a good place for lunch or dinner, a family style atmosphere. Right around the corner from Prescott Park & the Strawbery Banke Museum.

There's a Common Man restaurant in Portsmouth now and it's been crowded quite a bit, so it must be good. I still haven't been yet, but one of these days I'll get there. I keep hearing about their seafood on their menu and how good it is, especially their crab cakes. It's very close to the Rosa you can't miss it on that same block!

Lastly, the Portsmouth Brewery & also the Portsmouth Gas Light which is especially good for their brick oven pizza are two places that you would enjoy.

Good luck and have a great time,it's a beautiful time of year to stroll around downtown Portsmouth. Another good one for you, if you see Popovers On The Square, don't hesitate, it's great, it's the same owner as the Galley Hatch in Hampton, they have outdoor seating here.

Boston
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3. Re: Relaxing Fun Evening/Night

I don't know any good places to dance in downtown Portsmouth, but at Hampton Beach the Ashworth By The Sea resort renovated their bar and lounge and the dance floor is bigger than it ever was thru the years with these new owners that took it over, so that's a thought for you. A lot in your age group were there a few weeks ago when we stopped in to check it out. They must be doing something right, there was a good amount of people there dancing up a storm on that dance floor!

Boston
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4. Re: Relaxing Fun Evening/Night

Thanks so much for all the replies. They are much appreciated. I'll have to look up some of the restaurants and make a reservation. They all sound wonderful.

What about eating at Dolphin Striker? Do you recommend that?

We'll keep all the bars listed in mind when we walk around. I'll mark them on a map and see what we come upon. NoMo01, thanks so much for the 2nd comment. :) That place sounds like a lot of fun! I'm assuming that is something we'd have to drive to. If the weather is nice (ahh.. I hope it is!!) then we'll probably just walk around. But, I'll keep it in mind in the event it's raining.

We love live music at bars as well. And we'll for sure check out RiRa's. Even if for only a drink.

Thanks again!!

Boston
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5. Re: Relaxing Fun Evening/Night

I should have put down the Dolphin Striker, YES it's a great restaurant and they also have entertainment on weekends. A latin band next weekend, so that should be fun there. My younger sister and her husband love it there, so check it out to see what you think:

www.dolphinstriker.com

Here's info on the Ashworth By The Sea, the place is called the Breakers and they have DJ Dan on weekends, that's why the place was hopping when we popped in there a few weeks ago. They did an amazing job renovating this place a lot of people are going to be shocked when they see it this summer. May be it will take the shock away from the fire damage a block away!

Here's the info from the Ashworth By The Sea's site:

Breakers Restaurant and Bar

Enjoy ocean front dining at the Newly Renovated Breakers. With a casual atmosphere, the Breakers has something for everyone. Sample our award winning Clam Chowder or order one of our seafood specialties. Cap the night off with a specialty drink in the Breakers bar. Dancing with DJ Dan on Friday and Saturday.

Breakers now OPEN 12pm-10pm Daily.

DJ and Dancing Friday and Saturday 9pm-1am

If I were you I'd park the car & stroll around downtown Portsmouth, you will stumble in to so many places there you won't know which one to stay in I bet.

Have a great time!

New Castle, New...
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6. Re: Relaxing Fun Evening/Night

Hello jowood,

For dining, I would suggest The Back Trumpet, The Wellington Room, or Cava for a unique meal in town. All three are within two blocks of the Ale House Inn. For live music, I also recommend Spring Hill Tavern, The Press Room, and Ri-Ra does have live music occasionally as well. In addition, all guests of the Ale House Inn receive 40% off all dining at Ri-Ra. Just ask them for a coupon when you check in. I'd recommend Ri-Ra for lunch, as it get's crazy loud there at dinner time. You'll actually be able to have a conversation at the other three restaurants at night. If you like good mixed drinks & might want to dance, you should check out The Red Door. Go after 10PM as it gets busier later in the evening. It's a block from the Inn.

Edited: 10:14 am, June 15, 2010
SPB, FL
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7. Re: Relaxing Fun Evening/Night

This is a wonderful thread, with nearly all of the information that I was coming here to ask!

Just one more restaurant question - we would like to have at least one lunch on one of the harborfront decks. Which would offer the best seafood? Any particular favorite local dishes?

Thanks :-)

New Castle, New...
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8. Re: Relaxing Fun Evening/Night

If you really want a no frills waterfront experience, I would suggest Geno's on Mechanic St. Great lobster rolls and pie for dessert is a must. they have been there since the early 60's. Watch the lobster boats haul in the days catch from the outdoor deck. If you want to dine at one of the places near the tugboats off of Ceres St, I would choose The River House.

SPB, FL
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9. Re: Relaxing Fun Evening/Night

Thanks. Geno's sounds perfect! We will certainly give it a try while we are there next week. :-)

We will likely give the River House a try as well.

10. Re: Relaxing Fun Evening/Night

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