Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.09mi
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  4. Distance: 0.21mi
  1. Distance: 0.09mi
  2. Distance: 0.13mi
  3. Distance: 0.15mi
  4. Distance: 0.21mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.09mi
  2. Distance: 0.13mi
  3. Distance: 0.15mi
  4. Distance: 0.21mi
  1. Distance: 0.09mi
  2. Distance: 0.13mi
  3. Distance: 0.15mi
  4. Distance: 0.21mi

About Legal Sea Foods - Charles Square

The signature dish at Legal Sea Foods – really fresh fish. Located in the courtyard of the Charles Hotel, our restaurant evokes the simple style of the original Legal Sea Foods that was in nearby Inman Square, Cambridge. In warmer months our outside patio reels in those who choose the fresh seafood and fresh air combo.

We’ve received a boatload of accolades including “#1 Best Seafood Restaurant” (USA Today, 2013), “Most Popular Boston Restaurant” (Zagat, 2012/2013), “Best Seafood Restaurant” (Improper Bostonian, 2010), “Best Chowder” (Boston Magazine, 2010) and the honor of serving our legendary New England Clam Chowder at every presidential inauguration since 1981.

20 University Road
Cambridge, MA 02138
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
Seafood, Oyster Bar, Fish

Hours of Operation:
Sunday - Thursday: 11am - 10pm
Friday & Saturday: 11am - 11pm

Cross Street:
Elliot

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, JCB, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(617) 491-9400

Website:
http://www.legalseafoods.com/Restaurants/Cambridge-Charles-Square

Entertainment:
Rock the boat at our downstream Terrace Bar in the lower atrium of Charles Square. It’s a popular lure in season, open daily mid-April to mid-October from 11am to 1am, with light fare available from 11am to 11pm.

Parking Details:
Our validation will net you savings at two area garages. Park before 5pm for discounted rates and after 5pm for a $11 maximum rate at the adjacent Charles Square Garage. Or park for $12 before 5pm on weekdays and $8 after 5pm on weekdays and weekends at the nearby University Place Garage, 124 Mount Auburn Street.

Public Transit:
Harvard Square (Red Line) "T" stop.

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Special Events & Promotions:
Celebrate a special occasion or host a corporate event at Legal Sea Foods. We customize every menu and finishing detail. Here at Charles Square, our semi private dining rooms can accommodate up to 50 people for special functions.

Specials

Christmas Eve Special Menus & Offers

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Christmas Day Special Menus & Offers

Monday, December 25, 2017

Specials

Christmas Eve Special Menus & Offers

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Details

We're open and serving up yuletide cheer.

Christmas Day Special Menus & Offers

Monday, December 25, 2017

Details

Join us for a ho-ho-holiday feast.

Send a Gift Card

Buy now and send it instantly by email, or print a card to give in person.

Legal Sea Foods - Charles Square Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.3

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.2

service

4.3

ambience

4.0

value

3.9

Noise

Moderate

87% would recommend it to a friend

Casual (14)
Good for Groups (12)
Great for Lunch (12)
See All
Local Ingredients (12)
Healthy (11)
Good for a Date (10)
Great for Outdoor Dining (10)
Business Meals (9)
Special Occasion (9)
Neighborhood Gem (8)
Authentic (7)
Bar Seating (6)
Gluten Free Options (6)
Good for Birthdays (5)
Comfort Food (5)
Creative Cuisine (5)
Pre/post Theatre (5)
Quiet Conversation (5)
Worth the Drive (5)
Cozy (4)
Fit for Foodies (4)
Great Beer (4)
Notable Wine List (4)
Quick Bite (4)
Sunday Lunch (4)
Good for Anniversaries (3)
Fun (3)
Late-night Find (3)
Tasting Menu (3)
Kid-friendly (3)
Disabled Access (2)
Happy Hour (2)
Hot Spot (2)
Paleo Friendly (2)
Romantic (2)
Great for Brunch (1)
Handcrafted Cocktails (1)
Live Music (1)
Tapas (1)
Vegan (1)
Good Vegetarian Options (1)
Vibrant Bar Scene (1)
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1142 reviews
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 (San Francisco)·Dined 5 days ago

Very disappointing food. Appetizers were gummy deep fried shrimp and cauliflower. The main course (which unfortunately 3 of 6 at our table ordered) was Mahi-Mahi with "pumpkin puree" or some sort of pale bland squash sauce topped with a huge jolting glob of cranberry sauce. None of us could finish it. I grew up in Boston and always looked forward to meals at Legal Seafoods, but I won't go there again.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food1
ambience3
service3
value1

vip
 (Phoenix)·Dined 6 days ago

The seafood was excellent service was very good seating was good we had a booth
The only problem is the lite Chowder would not recommend it to any one please take it off the menu it does not belong it should not be served to anyone it is dishwater

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value3

 
 (Atlanta)·Dined on November 11, 2017

Our server, Roger, was extremely attentive and took great care of us. The food was excellent - typical of Legal Sea Foods but worth mentioning nonetheless - and our experience was great. 5/5.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on November 10, 2017

Great food, as usual, but a little loud because of a large party with two seating areas and people bouncing about table hopping! They needed a private dining area! For those of us who eat out often, it’s a little pricey! How about two affordable dinner specials every day?

Tags: Great for Lunch, Great for Outdoor Dining, Tasting Menu, Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience3
service5
value2

 
 (Richmond)·Dined on November 9, 2017

The worst fried clams ever. Very disappointing for being in business all these years.

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food2
ambience3
service4
value2

vip
 (Chicago)·Dined on November 2, 2017

As always. Good food. Pleasant staff. Good go to

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food3
ambience4
service5
value5

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

Nice lunch here 2 days in a row. Ordered same dish each day. I guess I'm a creature of habit. Jasmine Special - a shrimp, rice & cheese dish was tasty both days.

The preparations varied slightly when it came to the melted cheese (first day, golden brown and nutty from being under the broiler, I presume; second day, runny and gooey).

Also, on the second day, something got lost in translation and my request for brown rice went unheeded.

Regardless of prep and type of rice, delightful dish.

Tags: Great for Lunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service3
value4

 
·Dined on October 27, 2017

Oysters were TOO salty and not as fresh as the ones at Henrietta’s Table and Benedetto. Scallops were too well done.

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food2
ambience2
service3
value2

 
·Dined on October 27, 2017

Waiter and ambiance were terrific! We had heard wonderful things about the food and decided to try during our visit to Boston. Food was not very flavorful so disappointing. The crab cakes were yummy but cod and scallop special were boring.

Tags: Cozy, Great Beer, Local Ingredients
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food2
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (New England)·Dined on October 27, 2017

We have never been disappointed with Legal Seafood. A colleague and I dined there this Friday, en route to the opening night of the Harvard & Radcliffe Gilbert & Sullivan play PIRATES OF PENZANCE. We had great and plentiful meal (fish) and then attended a spectacular show.

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

vip
 (New England)·Dined on October 26, 2017

The decor is a bit tired, but the fish was very good, and so was the service. For the prices, though, the atmosphere should be a little better. Good location, close to Harvard Square.

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food3
ambience3
service4
value2

 
 (New England)·Dined on October 25, 2017

The shrimp scampi was terrible. The 4 shrimp were overcooked and rubbery and laid in a thick dry bed of broken up Ritz crackers - the crab meat in this "crab meat stuffing" was non existent. for 30 bucks it was a complete rip off.

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food1
ambience4
service4
value1

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on October 21, 2017

The reservation was easy to make through Open Table, and the restaurant host was expecting our party and seated us directly, even though some of the group hadn't arrived yet. The food was excellent, perfectly cooked vegetables and rice and everything seasoned exactly as one would want. We had 2 appetizers which were delicious, especially the BamBam Cauliflower (I think that was the name!). Spicy enough to have a pleasant zing but not mouth-burning hot. Every entree was raved about, and one guest with allergieswas particularly relieved that there's a nut/allergy manager on site who certified that meal to be nut-free. That brought enormous peace of mind. The only thing I will change when I return will be to request the flame-grilled salmon be cooked well. For my taste, the serving I had was slightly undercooked. Otherwise, I heartily recommend this restaurant and staff. Thank you.

Tags: Good for Groups, Authentic, Casual, Healthy, Local Ingredients, Gluten Free Options
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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on October 21, 2017

Legal Sea Foods - Charles Square is a "must do" every October when we are in town for the Head of the Charles Regatta. The menu offers something for everyone and it is all good. Well-trained servers who provide great suggestions.

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

 
·Dined on October 21, 2017

Food was excellent, service was slow, but this was during a major Regatta so there were a ton of people in town.

Tags: Tapas, Comfort Food, Worth the Drive, Creative Cuisine, Business Meals, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience4
service3
value4

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

Again I was very disappointed with my meal at legal seafood. I hadn’t been there for months after it I relatively bad experience with poor service and poor food I Decided
to give it aNotherchance. I think that’s the last time I will go to this legal seafood. I have had good experiences at the legal seafood in Chestnuthill

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food3
ambience3
service2
value3

 
 (New England)·Dined on October 16, 2017

Dependably very well prepared fish. From basic to creative preparation, never had a bad meal. Perfect atmosphere and noise level for conversation without straining to be heard. Service is always friendly and professional.

Tags: Good for Groups, Pre/post Theatre, Creative Cuisine, Good for Birthdays, Quiet Conversation
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food4
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Hawaii)·Dined on October 16, 2017

Legal is the premier place for seafood. Their clam chowder is exceptional and the combos give you a taste of the best the ocean has to offer. The quality is worth the price. The Charles Square venue has more of a neighborhood feel and is a great place for solo repasts at the long bar.

Tags: Special Occasion
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on October 16, 2017

I had an unusual special request. My server was very helpful.

Tags: Great for Lunch, Sunday Lunch, Business Meals
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (New England)·Dined on October 16, 2017

Hi,

I had the grilled haddock, it was considerably undercooked. On the other hand the service was very attentive. First poor meal I have experienced in a Legal.

G

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food1
ambience5
service5
value3

 
·Dined on October 9, 2017

parking stamp value $2 only

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food5
ambience4
service3
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on October 7, 2017

We were a group of 15 for a family celebration. They went out of their way to accommodate our size and modify arrangements. The dinner was excellent - best crab cakes I've had since leaving Baltimore. All enjoyed their dinners and the ambiance and casual pace.

Tags: Bar Seating, Good for a Date, Great for Lunch, Good for Groups, Casual, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (New England)·Dined on October 7, 2017

Been going to this Legal for many years. Lately it has gotten more and more rundown. Tables and seats worn as to be uncomfortable let alone unsightly.
This last visit, however, was the worst. Took far too long to see a server. At least 10 minutes for a glass of water. My wife's swordfish was baked, not grilled as requested.
No excuses.
Be a real long time if ever that we will be back
Photos of seat and table 😱

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food1
ambience1
service1
value2

vip
 (New England)·Dined on September 30, 2017

Lovely Saturday lunch.

The one unfortunate hiccup: my husband's salmon, which he requested medium-rare, arrived well-done. When the waitress finally returned to the table, he noted this to her. The waitress looked at the salmon, agreed it was overdone and stated she would let the chef know, but never addressed it in any fashion again - e.g. saying the chef regretted overcooking the salmon, sending the manager over, offering complimentary anything (meal, coffee, dessert). On our way out, the host/manager, did inquire how everything was, my husband (who rarely provides feedback on meals), noted a second time that his salmon was overcooked to no particular fanfare. Odd customer service, especially given that we are regulars. We still like the place and the food, but certainly did not walk away feeling as though the guests were the establishment's number one priority.

Tags: Healthy, Great for Outdoor Dining
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food3
ambience4
service4
value3

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 28, 2017

Three of us enjoyed an early dinner at an outdoor table. The Chef's Choice, fried clams and swordfish were all excellently prepared. Our waitress was personable and attentive. We all found a wine to our liking. We look forward to dining again at Legal Seafood next time we are back in the area.

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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 24, 2017

We go mainly for oysters and champagne!
Best champagne value in All of USA.

Tags: Sunday Lunch, Quick Bite, Comfort Food
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food3
ambience3
service4
value4

 
·Dined on September 24, 2017

The clam chowder is consistently outstanding. I ordered a seafood casserole , simply delicious. My son ordered the baked stuffed lobster and was delicious as well. Deserves future visits .

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Atlantic City)·Dined on September 17, 2017

Enjoyed my crabcake combo... Wife thought the rainbow trout lacked any flavor... clam chowder was good... experience was good, not great!! Expected alittle more...

Tags: Business Meals, Casual
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food4
ambience4
service4
value3

 
·Dined on September 15, 2017

The booking with Open Table blocked out 6-730. So I made a 545. So when I get there it is empty. Crazy rule to block out as I almost didn't go. Steak was not up to usual standard for some reason and was a disappointment.
Rest of the presentation was fine.

Tags: Healthy, Kid-friendly, Creative Cuisine, Handcrafted Cocktails, Quick Bite, Neighborhood Gem, Casual
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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (Tampa)·Dined on September 13, 2017

Jeremy was an excellent waiter. He was attentive and solicitous.

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food3
ambience3
service5
value3

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 9, 2017

Always a great time , friendly staff , great food !
Love legal seafood !

Tags: Comfort Food, Great for Lunch, Good for Birthdays, Sunday Lunch, Hot Spot
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on September 3, 2017

Family dinner out. We enjoyed ourselves. Food was high quality

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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on September 3, 2017

We haven't been to Legal Sea Food since we left college & it didn't disappoint! It was just as great as we remembered!

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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 1, 2017

I was shocked to hear our waitress said: I don't have all night waiting for you.... if you are not ready, I will come back later.

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food3
ambience3
service1
value3

 
 (New England)·Dined on August 27, 2017

They accommodated the six of us in their lovely outdoor dining area. Excellent service, very attentive but not overbearing. Everything we ate was absolutely delicious, especially the salmon with mushroom ravioli. Glad they have a location in Harvard Square now!! We will be back :)

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (New England)·Dined on August 22, 2017

My friend Phil and I enjoy a monthly lunch here. The food, the service, and the ambiance keep us coming back.

Tags: Casual
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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on August 10, 2017

Wonderful, if you're on the Gundry or Hyman diets. Well-prepared and tasty vegetables, lovely fresh grilled or sautéed fish. Highly recommend the grilled assortment. Gluten-free rolls, if you can't resist.

Tags: Healthy, Creative Cuisine, Great for Outdoor Dining, Casual, Local Ingredients, Great for Lunch, Gluten Free Options, Paleo Friendly
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food5
ambience4
service3
value5

 
·Dined on August 10, 2017

Everything was fine and it was a pleasant dining experience.

Tags: Happy Hour, Great for Lunch, Local Ingredients, Tasting Menu
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
·Dined on August 1, 2017

We got to sit outside on a beautiful evening and therefore it was quiet. The salmon could not have been moor perfect and the waitress was wonderful.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Worth the Drive, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

vip
 (New England)·Dined on July 31, 2017

The usual great, fresh, seafood Legal fare topped off by great service, including a delightful, very talented, Swedish speaking, long time Cambridge resident waiter. Hyman Bloom, the great painter & Legal aficionado when it still was just in Inman Square would have approved, even with his Olympian standards.

Tags: Business Meals, Healthy
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

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