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Nearby points of interest

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About 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.

29 Ceres Street
Portsmouth, NH 03801
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Global, International

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.

Dress Code:
Smart Casual

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(603) 431-0887

Website:
http://www.blacktrumpetbistro.com/

Parking Details:
Nearby Parking Garage, or Street

Executive Chef:
Evan Mallett

Private Party Facilities:
The Black Trumpet dining room is available for social or corporate events seating up to 34 people. The entire restaurant is available for up to 68 people. The historic character and beauty of the room, along with unparalleled food and service, makes a truly memorable evening.

Private Party Contact:
Denise Mallett: (877) 766-0994

Additional:
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking, View, Wine

Black Trumpet Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.5

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.6

ambience

4.6

value

4.1

Noise

Moderate

94% would recommend it to a friend

Creative Cuisine (49)
Fit for Foodies (45)
Romantic (42)
See All
Good for a Date (41)
Special Occasion (40)
Cozy (40)
Good for Anniversaries (32)
Local Ingredients (32)
Neighborhood Gem (32)
Worth the Drive (31)
Waterfront (21)
Authentic (20)
Quiet Conversation (19)
Good for Birthdays (18)
Notable Wine List (18)
Handcrafted Cocktails (17)
Casual (13)
Seasonal (13)
Tasting Menu (13)
Bar Seating (11)
Healthy (10)
Tapas (10)
Pre/post Theatre (9)
Good Vegetarian Options (9)
Scenic View (9)
Organic (8)
Fun (7)
Business Meals (5)
Comfort Food (5)
Hot Spot (5)
Gluten Free Options (4)
Good for Groups (3)
Vibrant Bar Scene (3)
Great Beer (2)
Late-night Find (2)
People Watching (2)
Disabled Access (1)
Happy Hour (1)
Great for Outdoor Dining (1)
Quick Bite (1)
Sunday Lunch (1)
Vegan (1)
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1388 reviews
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 (New England)·Dined 5 days ago

Finally had a wonderful birthday dinner at Black Trumpet after often drooling over their menu posted outside as we walked by. The small and medium plates are a wonderful way to try and shared several different dishes. Everything we ordered was thoughtful, interesting, and super delicious. Can't wait to go back!

Tags: Notable Wine List, Creative Cuisine, Neighborhood Gem, Cozy, Local Ingredients, Fit for Foodies, Tasting Menu, Good for Anniversaries, Handcrafted Cocktails, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (New England)·Dined 7 days ago

Have been here a number of times when we visit from Boston. It's excellent every time. We just visited Saturday with friends and family for a special occasion. The service from John could not have been better.

Tags: Great Beer, Vibrant Bar Scene, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine, Local Ingredients, Authentic, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on November 9, 2017

Black Trumpet was fantastic! From the service to the food, we had an excellent evening.

Tags: Romantic, Good for a Date, Notable Wine List, Creative Cuisine, Cozy, Neighborhood Gem, Special Occasion, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on November 9, 2017

Small, intimate dining area in historic area near waterfront. Upscale menu with high quality ingredients.

Tags: Tasting Menu, Quiet Conversation, Special Occasion, Gluten Free Options
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
·Dined on November 3, 2017

Fantastic food and fantastic service !

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (New England)·Dined on November 2, 2017

We (two people) ate upstairs for the first time and liked it even more than downstairs. The food is wonderfully cooked and the wine list is fascinating (though we had beer).

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Fun, Neighborhood Gem, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine, Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value3

 
 (New England)·Dined on November 2, 2017

Absolutely super. We went there for Portsmouth Restaurant Week and the food was really REALLY good. We will be returning there again 🤗

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Local Ingredients
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on October 28, 2017

Great ambiance and nice location, we are locals and had been meaning to go here for a long time. Very good bread and drink offerings. Unfortunately we were disappointed with the entrees. I ordered the seafood paella, which is one of my favorite things to order out. I had high expectations as this is a very well known restaurant in Portsmouth. The paella came with ONE scallop (it was cooked perfectly), two SMALL pieces of fish (salmon and white), six tiny mussels, and three to four tiny overcooked shrimp. The rice was greasy and crusty. For $32 and a restaurant of fine dining caliber, I expected a lot more and was very disappointed. The flavors of the paella could not individually tasted, they all blended into together, which made the dish boring. My husband ordered the pork fried steak, which was good, but it was accompanied by very salty greens. Again, we had higher expectations. We finished with Mexican Tiramisu, which ended up being very good (though I was nervous when ordering due to lacking entrees). Despite the ambiance and bread, I do not think we will return.

Tags: Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience4
service4
value2

 
·Dined on October 21, 2017

We arrived early and expected wait, but they showed us to our table immediately. Every member the staff we encountered was cheerful, polite and helpful. I don't recall if I mentioned our anniversary in our reservation or if they overheard, but our waitress surprised us after dinner with a slice of their amazing tiramisu with a candle in it. We had a wonderful experience, and recommend Chef Evan's restaurant and food to everyone. If we are lucky enough to be in Portsmouth again, we will surely return to this cozy gem.

Tags: Special Occasion, Notable Wine List, Cozy, Romantic, Fit for Foodies, Local Ingredients, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
·Dined on October 20, 2017

Exceptional food. Wonderful service and ambience. Creative cocktails. What's not to love?

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Quiet Conversation, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries, Handcrafted Cocktails, Good for Birthdays, Local Ingredients, Worth the Drive, Fun, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on October 19, 2017

highly recommend...interesting menu coupled with excellent service and the food was delicious

Tags: Bar Seating, Casual, Cozy, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (New England)·Dined on October 19, 2017

Great meal, fun food, great service, relaxed romantic atmosphere upstairs...

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Birmingham)·Dined on October 16, 2017

Enjoyed the ambiance and view! Awesome bartender! Food was delicious!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on October 14, 2017

One of the best meals I've had in quite a while!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on October 13, 2017

I am a foie gras fan,,, the portion was way too small, was like 2 bites!! 😳 shouldn’t be chopped either!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Romantic, Cozy, Tasting Menu, Waterfront, Healthy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (New England)·Dined on October 7, 2017

Enjoyed the atmosphere and the service. We were allowed to have dinner at a slow pace. Each course was well prepared and presented.

Tags: Authentic, Waterfront, Local Ingredients, Handcrafted Cocktails, Good for a Date, Seasonal
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience5
service3
value4

 
·Dined on October 7, 2017

Very creative and talented chef with a choice of small, medium and large plates. Great cocktails, excellent wine and awesome food made with fresh local ingredients. Very impressed

Tags: Bar Seating, Good for Anniversaries, Tapas, Cozy, Creative Cuisine, Notable Wine List, Special Occasion, Pre/post Theatre, Local Ingredients, Handcrafted Cocktails, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Las Vegas)·Dined on October 6, 2017

There are only two tables upstairs overlooking the water and we happily sat at the bar until one opened up. The bar menu is creative. The drink special in honor of Tom Petty and the signature Black Trumpet were both tasty and visually appealing. I would say that about all the food. Our waiter helped us with planning our meal. I am sorry I was too full for dessert, but don't pass on the bread.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine, Authentic, Bar Seating, Waterfront
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 30, 2017

The atmosphere is relaxed and comfortable. The service was awesome and everyone was friendly. The special fish dish was really good as well the "small" meals we ordered.
I would recommend to friends and family. We will be back a again for another great meal.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Neighborhood Gem, Cozy, Worth the Drive, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
·Dined on September 30, 2017

My wife and I celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary here Saturday night. The customer service was impeccable. We enjoyed a cocktail upstairs while they got our table ready. The staff worked as a team to accommodate us all night. The food was great and very filling. Somehow the staff new that it was our anniversary and brought us dessert on the House. I would highly recommend this place for an anniversary or group outing.

Tags: Casual, Fun, Romantic, Great Beer, Tasting Menu, Authentic, Good for Anniversaries, Worth the Drive, Special Occasion, Comfort Food, Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Groups
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on September 30, 2017

Excellent as always. A favorite spot to end the week....romantic and delicious. Service is top notch and the food is yummy.

Tags: Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on September 29, 2017

Enjoyed dinner here while in town for a wedding. Our group of four split a few small plates and entrees. Our server was extremely fun and knowledgeable. The cocktails were fantastic and the atmosphere is cozy but upbeat. Great spot for a dinner out!

Tags: Fun, Romantic, Cozy, Tapas, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Baltimore)·Dined on September 23, 2017

The duck confit appetizer was excellent and a generous portion (don't make it smaller now). The clam with polenta had far too few clams and too much clam broth - didn't quite hit the mark. The paella was delicious, but light on the fish/shellfish. The rice, however, was extremely flavorful and perfectly done. Our waitress was very friendly and quick with recommendations when asked. The whole restaurant staff was very attentive and friendly.

The restaurant started quiet, but then a table of eight arrived and the noise level became uncomfortable. Some of the volume is due to the hard surfaces of the restaurant - something they can resolve with some insulation. Restaurant owners need to let parties know when they are getting too loud and negatively effecting their fellow patrons.

The food wasn't good enough to overcome the noise level...probably wouldn't go back.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Authentic
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food3
ambience3
service4
value3

 
·Dined on September 20, 2017

Great interesting food, a pleasant change from the norm,great wine and beer selection.

Tags: Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value3

 
·Dined on September 19, 2017

Excellent food and great service, warm and inviting space...a great dining experience all around. We had an excellent anniversary dinner. Our only suggested tweak (very minor) was the music being played was a bit too busy and loud for the rest of the vibe/space/evening.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Cozy, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

vip
 (Nashville)·Dined on September 17, 2017

We loved the Black Trumpet and we requested to be seated upstairs which had a great view. Wonderful evening.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Waterfront, Casual, Romantic, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 16, 2017

The Black Trumpet is a dark, cozy, very romantic restaurant. The menu caters to every taste. The drinks, especially "The Black Trumpet " are delicious. The food is creative and exquisite. The service impeccable. A great place for a "special date " whether you've been together for years or are just beginning.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Waterfront, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Casual, Good for a Date, Tapas, Bar Seating, Happy Hour, Good for Anniversaries, Notable Wine List, Quiet Conversation, Tasting Menu, Good for Birthdays, Creative Cuisine, Cozy, Handcrafted Cocktails, Worth the Drive, Romantic, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 15, 2017

The new fall menu was in effect and it was amazing. It was difficult to choose as literally everything on menu was interesting and sounded delicious. We ended up ordering many small and medium plates to share. As for dessert, the pavlova with lemon curd was great, but the Mexican tiramisu my favorite. Best dessert I've ever had. All was exquisitely prepared. Even their signature cocktail was perfection. My only complaint is that "small bites" literally means exteremly small bites. That being said, you'll probably want to try so many different things that it's okay. I will definitely be returning.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Cozy, Fit for Foodies, Local Ingredients, Authentic, Tasting Menu
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 12, 2017

The overall experience was phenomenal. Would absolutely go here again and recommend to others.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 11, 2017

Great service, delicious food.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

vip
 (New England)·Dined on September 10, 2017

Salad was not crisp.The homemade pasta was a nice attempt at originality but fell short with the pasta being a bit too thick and the pulled pork was too salty.

Tags: Waterfront
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience3
service3
value2

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 10, 2017

All around this was an amazing experience! Food was second to none and the service was just as great - the waitress and staff there were attentive beyond any normal restaurant experience.

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 10, 2017

Great food that's not just your run of the mill chain menu. My wife & I had the catch of the day which was Haddock, fresh that day, and it was fantastic!

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Waterfront, Seasonal
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on September 9, 2017

Our second time to Black Trumpet, and our second time wow'ed. The food is incredible and the staff is there to match it. Elevated food in a quiet and romantic setting.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on September 9, 2017

It was our anniversary and by luck we got a romantic corner table. My other half is the foodie so I was more reluctant based on the menu but everything was delicious! We tried a small plate, two medium plates and then had dinners followed by the best desserts! Our waitress Kelly was fantastic! Can't wait to go back again.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 8, 2017

Great food! Very nice wine list! Don't miss this place if you are ever near Portsmouth

1 person found this review helpful.
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 7, 2017

The Black Trumpet never fails. We had a great meal, the ambience was great and the staff were superb. We don't get to Portsmouth enough, but for a great meal and a wonderful date with my wife or a special occasion, this is the place.

Tags: Cozy, Creative Cuisine, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries, Romantic, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on September 6, 2017

The Black Trumpet offers a unique twist on some classic dishes. Our meals were great.

Tags: Scenic View, Fit for Foodies, Neighborhood Gem, Cozy, Good for a Date, Notable Wine List
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on September 5, 2017

One place not to miss when in Portsmouth, we would not consider a trip there complete without a visit to the Black Trumpet. It is a small venue so reservations might be a gods idea. We have not tried everything on the menu but have never been disappointed with our choice, the cuisine is excellent. The service staff is attuned to top notch service while allowing one to dine in a relaxed manner. In a nut shell great meals with matching service, this place is absolutely the finest experience on the waterfront.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date, Handcrafted Cocktails, Quiet Conversation, Scenic View, Neighborhood Gem, Bar Seating, Special Occasion, Worth the Drive, Fit for Foodies, Waterfront, Casual, Good for Birthdays, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on September 4, 2017

I recommend the shrimp etouffee, the grilled oysters, and the pate.

Tags: Cozy, Good for Anniversaries, Waterfront
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food4
ambience5
service4
value4

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