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“Best Food and Atmosphere”

Bill's Seafood Restaurant
Ranked #7 of 36 Restaurants in Westbrook
Cuisines: Italian, Seafood, Steakhouse
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Lunch, Late Night
Westbrook, Connecticut
Level 5 Contributor
61 reviews
44 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Best Food and Atmosphere”
Reviewed July 27, 2014

If you are going to Bill's Seafood for seafood, you will be surprised at the selection of other items on the menu, especially their Italian selections. The portions are huge, and the chef must be from Italy, because the Italian selections are so tasty. The outdoor deck is great, with picnic tables and umbrellas. If you are a boater, you can pull right up to the dock, and come up for lunch/dinner. There is even an outdoor bar area for smokers. The inside dining area is huge with a huge U-shaped bar with eclectic paraphernalia (license plates, signs, etc) and friendly barkeeps. Most evenings there is live music with bands, some just jamming, and some regulars who have been playing there for decades. It is noisy, but the atmosphere lends itself to it...after all, it is a seafood joint with music. You must try the Ashleys ice cream in a building on site. It is so busy during the summer with limited parking that they even have valet service.
For great fish & chips or a veal parmesan, you won't be disappointed.

Visited July 2014
Helpful?
Thank beachguy341
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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399 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    127
    157
    63
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    21
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Korean first
  • Any
English first
darien ct.
Level 5 Contributor
56 reviews
26 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Bad choice!”
Reviewed July 26, 2014

Driving down route 1 with relatives visiting from California ,headed towards Madison we spotted this place on the water and the deck looked so crowded we thought it must be good...well wish we hadn't because it was not a good lunch and all I can say is are there that many people lacking good taste?
Possibly it was busy because it was a Saturday lunch time,not sure.
The place is a dive,everything served on styrofoam,tables outside still sticky,the bridge they call the so called singing bridge,just loud noise from the traffic zooming by the restaurant,who are they fooling?
Fish and chips ordered by 3 in the party,horrible tasteless flat batter.
Lemon wedges on 3 meals were literally recycled and with no pulp,they had been used and replated! Surprisingly we continued with the meal...
Horrible frenchfries,unedible.
Expensive for a seafood dive that doesn't serve good seafood and the inside looks even dingier,not sure why anyone would bother.
A waste of a good opportunity to have a nice seafood lunch with our guests and I guess next time I won't go by the crowd,which has served us well in the past in picking places,next time we will check reviews first!

Visited July 2014
Helpful?
6 Thank playa102
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Killingworth, Connecticut
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“What happened to Bills Seafood?”
Reviewed July 24, 2014

I've lived on the Shoreline for well over 20 years and my husband and I would frequent Bills as often as possible, most times bringing our 3 kids with us. The prices used to be very fair and the proportions to match the price. The quality of food was great as well. WHAT. HAPPENED?? My friends and children asked me last year where I wanted to go for my Birthday. My answer was "Bills of course!" Well, let me tell you if it weren't for the great company my Birthday would have been ruined. I ordered a steak, fried clams and we all shared fried oysters. The clams and oysters tasted exactly alike and portions were skimpy for the price. My steak arrived RAW in the middle. Medium steak is "pink" in the center folks. The waitress took it back, only to come back cold and still raw, same steak. When she finally came back at the END of the meal, I told her it was not edible. All I got was "Oh sorry." It was not taken off the bill. The money spent on this meal for 8 of us was outrageous and it seems like Bills Seafood feels they are doing us a favor! I went back within the past month at a girlfriends insistence. The proportions we got for the price was nothing short of robbery. Awful that Bills is doing this to people. We also got 2 margaritas for I think 7 or 8 dollars each with literally only a small "taste" of tequilla. I know this because I'm a bartender. I well know what a reasonable drink tastes like. Funny, I also noticed how easy it is to get an outside seat at Bills compared to years past. That's what happens Bills when you feel the need to rob your loyal customers! See yaaaaaa!!!! I'm sticking with Lenny and Joes from now on. At least they don't bite the hand that feeds them!

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
4 Thank HisMissy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michigan
Level 6 Contributor
120 reviews
100 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
“My GPS gets thanked for this visit”
Reviewed July 23, 2014

I had a business meeting near Hartford Ct and arriving early wanted to drive to the coast and have a seafood dinner. The first two restaurants I checked were not open yet for dinner so I browsed the selections in my car's GPS and found Bills to be nearby the town of Old Saybrook where I first stopped.

Hoping to find this selection to be open for an early dinner, I was surprised to see that not only was Bills open at the 5:30PM hour, but parking attendants were on hand to handle the influx of customers.

I was told I could select my own table and chose one outside near the river and the flock of birds swimming and jockeying for position to catch samples of left overs that many of the riverside patrons tossed to them!

Bills menu is more than seafood with Prime Rib, sandwiches and many other offerings available. I chose the grilled Cajun Swordfish dinner accompanied by an ear of sweet corn and rice pilaf. I started with the New England Clam chowder.

The food came fairly quickly and was ample in quantity and very tasty. The chowder was very good and I had time to finish it before the main course arrived. The food was served on disposable wear but still pleasantly presented. The ear corn could have been a little warmer for my liking but the rice and fish were perfect.

To have a seafood meal near the marina, with boats and birds in view was just what I had desired. I have since read other reviews about the "singing bridge". but being a calm day I did not get a chance to hear it sing!

I fully enjoyed my meal at Bills and thank my GPS for "not steering me wrong!"

  • Visited July 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Larry B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Watertown, CT
Level 5 Contributor
97 reviews
70 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Bad Outweighs the Good”
Reviewed July 23, 2014

Let's start out with the good---the atmosphere and experience is great. The food, not so much. We found hair in 3 of our 8 meals here, and now every time I think about it, I want to throw up. We sent 2 meals back (and got new ones), but by then everyone had lost their appetite. We didn't even bother mentioning the 3rd one...we just left. And they charged us full price for everything. Not going back. Gross.

  • Visited July 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
5 Thank jsl_96
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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