The Library Restaurant
401 State Street
Portsmouth, NH 03801Neighborhood:
SteakhousePrice: $31 to $50
The Library Restaurant
- Dining Style: Casual Elegant
- Website: http://www.libraryrestaurant.com/
- Phone: 6034315202
- Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Monday - Saturday: 11:30am - 3:00pm; Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:30pm, Friday & Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm; Brunch: Sunday: 11:30am - 3:00pm
- Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
- Cuisine: Continental, Steakhouse
- Dress Code: Casual Dress
- Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
- Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Private Room, Wine
A word from The Library Restaurant
Join us for traditional New England fare, while surrounded by architectural treasures of an era gone by. The Library is prestigious while reasonably priced, with something for everyone through all seasons. It is the perfect setting for a business luncheon or dinner. You can also enjoy lighter fare or a friendly cocktail in our lounge. Our dining and board rooms are always available for private functions.Continued
Foodspotting photosSee all photos
Awards voted by OpenTable diners
- Diners' Choice WinnerBest Ambiance
- Diners' Choice WinnerNotable Wine List
- Diners' Choice WinnerRomantic
The Library Restaurant - Best Restaurants in Portsmouth ›
The Library Restaurant reviews from OpenTable diners
96 reviews since May 5, 2014
- Ambiance4.5Noise LevelModerate
special occasion (65)romantic (52)notable wine list (28)fit for foodies (27)neighborhood gem (26)good for groups (24)great for lunch (12)great for brunch (9)late-night find (4)vibrant bar scene (3)hot spot (2)kid-friendly (2)scenic view (2)great for outdoor dining (1)Show More
- Great Service, average foodOpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 8/24/2014The Wine list was amazing, our server was fantastic, the food was no better than average. Steak was VERY over cooked, bake stuffed haddock and Lobster were very dry, grilled Salmon was dry and flavorless. I would go again merely for the neat atmosphere and the wine list- but not for a meal.Special Features:
- Dependably great experienceWesleyDined on 8/23/2014The Library is our "go to" place for a reliably terrific dinner. The room is beautiful in an Old World way, filled with dark woodwork and books. The potstickers, tenderloins, au gratin potatoes, and sautéed mushrooms were perfect. We split a piece of bourbon pecan pie which was quite good -- not overly sweet so you could really taste the nuts. Lovely service from Hannah. Highly recommended.Special Features:
- Another stellar dining experienceOpenTable Diner Since 2007VIPDined on 8/23/2014We always comment on the consistency at the Library but they even out did their usual. The steaks were cooked to perfection and our waiter didn't mind asking for Med / med rare which gave us perfectly pink and juicy steaks. All was 5 star.Special Features:
- Parking IssueRickettsDined on 8/22/2014Overall a pleasant experince...except for parking. Findind a parking space on a Friday night was so difficult we almost just gave up and drove off.
- Always amazing....portsmouth28Dined on 8/22/2014We have always had wonderful meals at The Library. The steaks, the sides, and all the sauces are delicious. The Sunday breakfast/brunch is well worth the two hour drive (and the Bloody Mary's are great too)!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- lovedinerIIlovedinerIIDined on 8/22/2014Nice ambience, food okay, service very good ... pricey food fair and pedestrian dessert listing.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Outstandingjkling5Dined on 8/21/2014We hit the Library at least once a year and have never been disappointed. The steaks are awesome and so is their other selections. The only problem is we are always too full for desert. If you like steak and seafood then the library is where to go.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Very good!Luv2dineDined on 8/20/2014Excellent food with solid service...unique interior...was a bit noisy especially considering the style of restaurant but nothing overpowering. Would recommend.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Another notable mealEatsoutalotDined on 8/16/2014This is now our third time eating at The Library in the last month (1 dinner and 2 lunches), as we passed through Portsmouth to take our daughter to camp. This last time the waitress remembered us from our first visit and why we were passing through and asked how our daughter liked camp. The food is very good and there is something for everyone. One of our new favorites... Our daughter loves that see can pull a book off the shelf and read a little before her food comes!Special Features:
- OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIPDined on 8/15/2014I was never more disappointed in a restaurant which had such high reviews. My wife and I both had steaks that were over cooked and had a strange texture which they wouldn't know since they didn't ask. Our table was in the center of the restaurant and the servers ran into one of our chairs at ten times each. It appeared that their main objective was to turn each table. We bought a bottle of wine which I poured. We couldn't leave fast enough.
- Too expensive for what yout getOpenTable Diner Since 2010Dined on 8/15/2014No substitutions allowed on menu, even with food allergies. Food came so quickly that it had to be "pre-cooked" ahead of time. Sat us next to a open window which had a fly in it. Definitely too expensive for what you get. Really a shame, because the place is unique and we wish it would have been a keeper for us. Our waitress was very nice though. This was an anniversary dinner for us too, so that adds to the total disappointment. We won't be going again. You only get one chance for a first impression.Special Features:
- OpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 8/14/2014This was my first experience at The Library. Outstanding location and ambiance. If my travels bring me back to the Portsmouth area, I will definitely come again!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Great Food!JeffBDined on 8/9/2014As always, a perfect meal. The steaks are our favorite with the lobster mac and cheese. The Bang Bang shrimp are to die for! Whenever we want to go out for a nice, fancy meal, The Library is our choice.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- outstandingjroushVIPDined on 8/9/2014The food was great and the lobster pot pie was amazing. Service was second to none.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Nice place to talkmseeligDined on 8/8/2014The atmosphere was very nice and the service was very good as well. This place losses point because my dates Hadock was undercooked. When I got home talked to some friends who had the same issue on the same dish. Definitely will give it another shot but for the price things like that should be automaticSpecial Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Always a good betOpenTable Diner Since 2007VIPDined on 8/2/2014We got our usual. Filet au poivre, crab cake app and au gratin potatoes. Steak was tasty but a bit tough this time and one was overdone a bit. Potatoes are to die for as was the crab cake. Wine was a little pricier than I remember (only 1 choice by the glass for Malbec or Reisling). Still a great value for money for an 8 oz filet. We will continue to spend Saturday nights here regularly.Special Features:
- Eating in the LibrarymajorettefoodieVIPDined on 8/1/2014The Library is a phenomenal spot for dinner. The architecture is amazing, the waitstaff is professional and perfectly paced and the food was over the moon great! I would eat here every night if I could - oh wait, maybe I can...the do have condos in the building!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Perfect 10!NHVacationDined on 7/31/2014This was our first time at the Library, and we loved it! Our server was really nice and checked in often enough that we got what we needed but not so frequently that it was too much. Most entrées are listed "to order", which is a relief to those of us that may require modifications but don't want to be a burden or offend the chef. All around, great ambiance and delicious food. Definitely made our list of restaurants to go back for special occasions!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- The LibraryOpenTable Diner Since 2007Dined on 7/29/2014While the place was impeccable and the staff was excellent - the food was not as good as I thought it would be. I had the Filet Mignon-it was tough and not cooked to my specifications. I definitely would not only not recommend this restaurant, but would not visit this restaurant again. Thank you.
- Lick the plate clean!NancyHDined on 7/27/2014Filets, Lamb, all veggies were fantastic. This was the best piece of swordfish I have ever eaten! A very special restaurant to celebrate my brother /sister-in-law, 45th Wedding Anniversary.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Best steak in PortsmouthbeornDined on 7/25/2014If you're in the mood for an outstanding Steakhouse experience on the Seacoast, you can't go wrong with The Library. High quality cuts of beef, brilliantly prepared. Sides are large and reasonably priced, salads very good. Wine list good sized with price points for all budgets. We will be backSpecial Features:
- Always A Great Place To GoMomof3Dined on 7/25/2014Have never had a bad meal here. My husband travels a lot for work and says his steak at The Library was the best ever. Even better than very high end steakhouses.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Wonderful last minute findEatsoutalotDined on 7/19/2014We were traveling and had planned to eat when we got to our final destination, but after issues with traffic and problems with rental car, we decided we would not be able to get there before everything closed. So we "Open Tabled" and found The Library and thought it sounded like a neat place, especially for our bookish 9 year old. The atmosphere was excellent, the wait staff was wonderful, and the food was incredible. Our daughter now wants to stop there whenever we are passing in the area. Thanks!Special Features:
- ExcellentFineFoodLoversDined on 7/19/2014We celebrated our 34th anniversary. The food and service was outstanding. The dividers with books in them makes your table feel private. The ambience is excellent. I wish this restaurant was local to our home.Special Features:
- Birthday Luncheoncook2gardenerDined on 7/7/2014Coming from Maine, The Library is one of our favorite destination restaurants because of the pleasing ambiance, delicious food and convenient location to meet up with our NH and MA relatives and friends. The haddock, shrimp scampi and grilled salmon were delicious. Loved the zucchini slaw. Very nice lemon cake and cheese cake but the peanut butter pie produced raves. Our server was appropriately sensitive to our wishes and very pleasant. A very enjoyable experience and we look forward to returning many times.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Did not meet expectationboatdinerDined on 7/6/2014We went to the Library Restaurant to celebrate my daughters birthday. We have been before and enjoyed it very much. This time was quite different. The quality of the wait staff was deplorable. There was no sense of timing for appetizers, drinks, and main course. We ordered a bottle of wine and the waitress did not know how to serve it. I don't need to see the cork and I have never sent a bottle back but there is a minimal level of service when ordering a $50 bottle. The steaks were good but not great. Lastly, somebody decided not to use the A/C and instead rely on mother nature. Big mistake. It was 80+ deg out and while the breeze was pleasant, it did not cool the dining room sufficiently to enjoy our meal.
- Not what it's cracked up to beSaucey4321Dined on 7/5/2014Steaks are not worth the price. Wife had port house and I had rib eye, not much flavor. I am from NY and these steaks are no better than Outback. Crab cake appetizer was actually pretty good that was the highlight to be honest. Much better restaurants in town and much cheaper as well.
- ExcellentDanLDined on 7/5/2014Everything was excellent from start to finish. I'll be back.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Special OccasionltbphotosDined on 7/3/2014This is a wonderful restaurant. Located in an old library, you are surrounded by bookshelves, packed with old books. The food was amazing and with good sized portions. Large wine list and the service was spectacular!!! Definitely NOT a place for kids. It has a quiet library atmosphere, which is great for quiet romantic conversation. It is a higher priced experience, but well worth the money. Definitely going back!!Special Features:
- Consistently OutstandingDickDined on 7/1/2014We dine at the Library on special occasions every year, and always have a wonderful time. Service is always excellent, food is prepared the way we like it, and always served HOT. We really need to go there more often !!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Fun4allDined on 6/29/2014Convenient to get to, great food and service, loved the historic ambiance.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Excellent food drinks & reasonablebasildaveVIPDined on 6/28/2014We eat in the Portsmouth area all the time but have somehow managed to miss this restaurant until now. Thank God we finally ate here! My steak was excellent, perfectly cooked with the aupovie sauce off to the side. We had the seafood tower as an appetizer, all the components were very good with a nice selection of sauces. My wife's dish (haddock stuffed with lobster) was also excellent and the peanut butter pie for desert was fluffy and light but so tasty. Given the good drinks and extensive cocktail menu we will definitely be back.Special Features:
- excellant restaurantTilemanDined on 6/27/2014I ate here on two previous business trips. I've been anxious to bring my wife here for dinner. We decided to take a trip to celebrate our 29th weeding anniversary and I brought here. She loved it!!!! We shared a wedge salad and a steak along with asparagus and pataoes au gratin. I had a hot and dirty martini and she had a glass of red wine. We cant wait to go back!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Excellent experiencegreatplaceDined on 6/25/2014Best steakhouse we have been to. The atmosphere,service and food were outstanding.Special Features:
- Not goodTerribleDined on 6/24/2014The food was average. If you think this is a good place to eat you have been misled. There were approximately 8 people in the restaurant and with the quality of service you would have thought it was crowded. To have such terrible service and have to wait forever to be served you would think the food would at least be good. The food was not good at all. We actually ate half and left. I would never eat here again or recommend it. Totally disappointed.
- Great AmbienceOpenTable Diner Since 2012Dined on 6/21/2014There are about 301 restaurants in the area and I recommend this be one of the 301 you must try. My girlfriend and I were greeted right away and brought to a table in the center of the room with the bookcases surrounding it makes for a unique seclusion of tables. The food was great we enjoyed brie with an amazing raspberry spread atop. For the main course I had a filet mignon which I believed to come with sides for the price which I requested two, asparagus and lobster mac and cheese, upon arrival I realized that they were a large portion and an extra cost. Her dish of lobster stuffed haddock was slightly dry but still delicious and came with a couple sides. In all we loved the restaurant and recommend you check this one out.Special Features:
- Almost 5 starsOpenTable Diner Since 2007VIPDined on 6/21/2014Always love this place. the food would have received a 5 star rating except all three of our steaks were a little overcooked. Usually medium comes out nice and pink throughout with a touch of red in the center. This time they were all brown with some pink in the center. Otherwise the crab cake appetizer and sides were all wonderful. We always love the au gratin potatoes.Special Features:
- Classic delicious foodFoodieDined on 6/19/2014The library has wonderful classic dinners- great steaks and rack of lamb as well as fish and seafood. Also on the menu are classic side dishes like creamed spinach, scalloped potatoes and the best baked sweet potato anywhere! The apps are also great - bam bam shrimp, crab cakes and shrimp cocktail are all fine choices! Salads are traditional and delicious. Don't forget to get the outrageous onion rings!!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- catsgaloreDined on 6/15/2014one of nicest restaurants north of Boston. well worth the drive. food excellent. service wonderful! the setting tasteful but not stuffy.Special Features:
- snoopyjDined on 6/14/2014Haddock was bland. Everything else was 5 stars...........................................................Special Features: