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Black Trumpet
Black Trumpet

Black Trumpet Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.blacktrumpetbistro.com
  • Email: info@blacktrumpetbistro.com
  • Phone: (603) 431-0887
  • Hours of Operation: The dining room is open Sun-Thurs: 5:30pm - 9:00pm / Fri & Sat: 5:30-10:00pm. The wine bar opens nightly at 5:00.
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Global, International
  • Executive Chef: Evan Mallett
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Restaurant, View, Wine, Wine Bar

Getting there

  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: Nearby Parking Garage, or Street
A word from Black Trumpet
Black Trumpet is a two-story bistro and wine bar in the heart of Portsmouth’s historic old port. Both floors offer views of the Piscataqua River and the oft-photographed tugboats that still escort enormous tankers into the harbor. Our first floor dining room offers a cozy, romantic setting with warm, unassuming service. The upstairs wine bar is a more intimate, convivial space. The menu changes every six weeks to capitalize on the freshest seasonal ingredients. The wine list features a variety of unheralded gems that pair well with the bold flavors of Chef Mallett’s cuisine. Black Trumpet’s cuisine reflects the chef-owner’s culinary curiosity, drawing inspiration from the Mediterranean as well as the Americas. A typical Black Trumpet menu may include influences from Spain, North Africa, Turkey and the Mexican heartland. Reservations are accepted in our dining room, the upstairs wine bar is first-come-first-served. Continued
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Overall
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Ambiance
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Food
Diner Reviews
  • "The menu was unconventional and delicious. More spice and less salt would improve taste. It was very loud. And the walls and floor had nothing to absorb sound. I love that the food was local and portions were perfect."
    Dined on 4/13/2014
  • "Restaurant Week visit -- Our table tried just about everything offered and everything was unusual and delicious. Love the Black Trumpet cocktail, too."
    Dined on 4/12/2014
  • "Drinks was good food was ok! Most likely will not go back!"
    Dined on 4/12/2014
  • "We were a very pleased party of 3 visiting Black Trumpet for the first time and participating in Restaurant Week. The food was outstanding and we look forward to returning."
    Dined on 4/10/2014
  • "Our new favorite restaurant...trumps Cava and Anneke Jans even. Trendy, well-displayed and apportioned servings. Dessert has been the only let down the several times I've gone. Best wine menu in town (nice to see some French selections). Would do well to include a few more gluten free options, but server and kitchen were able to accommodate with substitutions."
    Dined on 4/8/2014
  • "Excellent meal, great wine, service was okay. As a server myself, splitting a check shouldn't be too hard when there are 4 checks and it's restaurant week ( you are only splitting based off of who drank what...), but our waiter gave us grief about that. Outstanding food though!"
    Dined on 4/7/2014
  • "Lovely table, attentive wait staff, delicious food."
    Dined on 4/6/2014
  • "Highly recommend the Black Trumpet. We had an all around great experience. It has a romantic setting and historic Portsmouth charm that will impress locals and visitors alike. Great wine list as well."
    Dined on 4/4/2014
  • "There is a great atmosphere for having a special and personal dinner. The place is quiet and set up very nicely. The servers are extremely nice and wonderful. The food was delicious."
    Dined on 4/4/2014
  • "We all loved our appetizers and our meal and only wish we could have had dessert, but we were watching calories. The flavors were so interesting and complex and we really appreciate that you use fresh, local ingredients as much as possible. The wine was terrific, too!"
    Dined on 4/4/2014
  • "always interesting options, prepared well, and presented nicely. Once again Black Trumpet is a keeper for a great evening out."
    Dined on 4/3/2014
  • "We chose this rest. for the uniquie dinning experience it offers. We were sat promptly. However, it appeared that our server was a bit occupied with other tables as it took a while to get our drink order in. Plus our table was set at an akward angle which made me feel uncomforatable. I asked our server if i could adjust the table and she said "sure." A few minutes later the manager noticed i had moved the table and made sure that he pointed out that i was not supposed to do that beacuse he was going to have to sit the reservation next to us. Not sure what the issue was there. Apps and desert were incredible but my duck entree was overcooked & there was way to much starch on the plate."
    Dined on 3/21/2014
  • "Black Trumpet is always consistently excellent. They have a young staff that really makes the most out of a really small kitchen. We started with the fried Oysters & "snails" The Oysters were perfect. They'd make a great entrée. The snails was a kind of take on Escargots. They were prepared with a creamy risotto. For our mains we had the Paella & Grilled steak fillet. Both were done perfectly. I guess my only complaint was the steak was quite small, but still was done perfectly. The Paella was, perhaps. the best we ever had. Really full of flavor. The dessert was the "Chocolate Bomb". Very good & very rich."
    Dined on 3/16/2014
  • "Took my parents to Black trumpet and had a fabulous meal. Being a meat eater I took a night off and enjoyed some wonderful vegetarian meal and it was beyond delightful"
    Dined on 3/14/2014
  • "The food is great and it is a pretty place. But we reserved for 7:45, got there early to meet friends for drinks and were told the bar was too crowded and they referred us elsewhere for drinks, which was nice of them. But when we returned at 7:45 we had to wait 45 minutes for our table. Things happen but they weren't especially gracious about it and the bar was still crowded. After about 30 minutes they bought us drinks. I think this happens and since they had my cell phone number which they had called earlier to confirm, they could have called at 7:40 and said they were running late. Perhapsthe lingering table comprised regulars and we are from Portland ME and NYC respectively."
    Dined on 3/8/2014
  • "Love the food: always fresh, unique, delicious, and perfectly portioned. The Chef's Meze plate is just amazing, every time I've been there each of the 3 mini plates on that appetizer have been different. Can't wait for another excuse to go to Portsmouth and come back here."
    Dined on 3/8/2014
  • "All great food with Mediterranean flair Only complaint was hangar steak was quite small for $32"
    Dined on 3/7/2014
  • "From the tucked away charm of the location to the imaginative preparations, innovative approach and stunning (yet somehow anassuming) presentations, Black Trumpet delivers huge across the board. Best of all, the food is not only good, but it's also good for local farms and fishermen, as Black Trumpet sources pretty much everything locally. To round out the experience, everyone from server to chef was remarkably inviting, friendly and professional. The Black Trumpet is in a leagues all its own."
    Dined on 3/7/2014
  • "My sister and I ate here on a bitter cold Wednesday night, to celebrate her birthday! We sat upstairs right by the window; to our surprise we were cozy and warm - no draft! We had the meze plate to start - scrumptious, a delicious Vermont cheese with orange marmalade and crostinis to follow, and then as entrees it was the duck breast for me and the lamb short-rib for her. Each dish was savory in its own way. For dessert, we had the chocolate cherry bomb and it was da bomb! I love it here and will definitely be back with my boyfriend. Also - the service was stellar. We were not rushed whatsoever, nor were we overly doted on. Thanks Black Trumpet!"
    Dined on 2/27/2014
  • "We had requested a window seat and they set us up in the wine bar (classy) it overlooked the harbor and with the candle made for the most romantic evening. The service was spot on and never felt rushed or that we were waiting too long for anything. The chef deserves to be cooking at the James Beard house, the food was out of this world!!"
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "The entire experience was fabulous. The decor and ambiance were warm and comfortable. The menu was not overwhelming but provided sufficient choice. We were a party of five, everyone got something different..but everyone sampled everyone else's as the presentation encouraged temptation. Portions were moderate which was great as it allowed us to sample every course! Qualityt ingredients yeild a quality product and this was quality all the way. Can't wait to go back!!"
    Dined on 3/2/2014
  • "Had dinner with my older daughter. Wonderful experience. Wine was superb, meal was fantastic. Can't say enough about the paella. They even have a fantastic rum to finish off the meal, which is a rare find. Would definitely go back and would definitely tell a friend."
    Dined on 2/27/2014
  • "We went to this hidden gem based on a friend's recommendation and are glad we did. The atmosphere was very cool with the historic brick walls of the lower level of the building on the waterfront. Service was great end to end; personable but not intrusive. The food was outstanding! From fried oysters, kale Caesar salad, paella, lamb shank to cheese plate, all were unique and memorable. We will go back for an encore!"
    Dined on 2/27/2014
  • "The chef is a James Beard semi finalist but the food was just ordinary. Better Portsmouth restaraunts w/o the hype. I would not go back."
    Dined on 2/24/2014
  • "We will be back....what a delightful experience in every way."
    Dined on 2/23/2014
  • "The food was excellent! Sourcing their food locally, they change their menu every 6 weeks to adjust to seasonal availability. The restaurant came highly recommended and we were not disappointed!"
    Dined on 2/22/2014
  • "Pricey and limited menu, but otherwise, excellent food and service. Because of price level, would only consider for special occasions."
    Dined on 2/20/2014
  • "I went to the Black Trumpet with my girlfriend on Valentine's Day this year and I can't imagine picking a better spot. Right when we went in, the ambience was romantic; rustic brick walls were lit by dim cast iron chandeliers. The waitstaff was very polite and attentive, but gave us plenty of room for our special night. It may have been the best meal I've ever had. We started off with Brioche Texas Toast stuffed with cheeses and sauteed mushrooms and topped with incredible sweet butter. She's a vegetarian, so she ordered a jacketed sweet potato stuffed with spicy lentils and an amazing yogurt cheese. I got the Valentine's Day Special: bay scallops with a saffron risotto that was unbelievably aromatic. We finished with a truffle sampler."
    Dined on 2/16/2014
  • "My husband and I visited the Black Trumpet for the first time on Valentines day. The restaurant itself is very quaint and cozy. I have a gluten allergy and the gluten free menu was very good. Our server was very friendly and accommodating. We both had the short rib and it just melted in your mouth. Perfection. We will definitely be back and soon."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "Amazing wait staff and service. Romantic environment and delicious food. Would absolutely recommend to a friend for special occasion or a simple romantic night out."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "Black Trumpet is in the top 5, if not the best, restaurant in Portsmouth."
    Dined on 2/12/2014
  • "I love this place and have eaten here several times. I don't know if it is just this most recent menu but I had a very difficult time finding three small plates to enjoy that did not have meat. For such an extensive menu it had a lot of meat and seafood. I eventually had to go with the one main couse that was vegetarian, which was a stuffed squash with lentils, and it was very disappointing. It was something I could eaily make at hoime,"
    Dined on 2/8/2014
  • "We were in Portsmouth for a wine tasting and our hotel bartender suggested this resto. It was amazing. The staff was incredibly nice and knowledgeable about the food and wine. I had the short ribs which melted in your mouth deliciousness. Met the chef on the way out and he was so nice and wonderful! Definitely go if you're in Portsmouth. Amazing!"
    Dined on 1/31/2014
  • "My wife and I went there on a Friday evening and the ambience was wonderful, the were people friendly and attentive without being in the way, the presentation was wonderful and the everything was very tasty. I highly recommend the Black Trumpet."
    Dined on 1/31/2014
  • "Many of our guests praise The Black Trumpet, and now I see that the praise was well justified. Great food, attentive service, nice atmosphere. Should be on your list."
    Dined on 1/24/2014
  • "I brought a group for a dinner meeting. They were just as impressed as I was. Many small plates were outstanding but my short rib was outstanding."
    Dined on 1/23/2014
  • "My husband and I wanted a special dinner and we definitely had one! The small plates were creative and the flavors were incredible. The vanilla citrus butter for the fresh baked bread was so good I could have eaten it straight out of a bowl. I had the borscht which was unlike any I have ever had, with crispy beef and rosemary. Our main course was the antelope with parship gnocchi and collard greens. The sauce was delightful. For dessert my husband had the banana crusted grilled pineapple. It was so delicious! Flavors truly popped in our mouths. I would definitely go back."
    Dined on 1/17/2014
  • "This was, as my wife said, "fine dining as it is supposed to be". Everything was excellent from the food to the service to the atmosphere."
    Dined on 1/17/2014
  • "Mediocre food. Doesn't come close to what Portland or Boston have to offer."
    Dined on 1/11/2014
  • "We had a great time at the Black Trumpet. The atmosphere was interesting and pleasant. The food was delicious and my drinking friends loved the cocktails. We found it pricey for the small portions, however. Also, I chose the Black Trumpet based on an online search for vegan and vegan-friendly restaurants in Portsmouth. While the staff and kitchen were very accommodating to my need for vegan options, there were no vegan items on the menu."
    Dined on 1/11/2014