Permanently Closed - SALT Restaurant

4.5
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109 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Contemporary French / American
This restaurant is permanently closed. We're a small place - 30 seats, 10 bar stools - and we occupy what used to be the town's 19th Century apothecary. The space is intimate and comfortable.

We're classically French-trained and we do things the old way, from scratch, with love. Many of our ingredients are brought in through our back door by our friends - Vinalhaven lobstermen, fishermen, and farmers. What we can't get on-island comes mostly from other local Maine sources. We aim not to get in the way of the products we serve - we try to make it simple, delicious, and beautiful.

We offer a wide selection of interesting and carefully selected wines - at very comfortable prices - and our inventive cocktail list is always evolving. Our focused beer selection features Maine's best beers and ales.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Contemporary French / American, Seafood, Bar / Lounge / Bottle Service
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Hours of operation
We're in post-season mode: Open Saturday and Sunday for dinner.
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Phone number
(207) 863-4444
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Payment options
MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
John Feingold
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
Water Street
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Parking details
Public lot adjacent to restaurant.
Additional
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cafe, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Weekend Brunch, Wine
What 109 People Are SayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.5based on all time ratings
4.6
food
4.5
service
4.4
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
96% of people would recommend it to a friend
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KK
1 review
Dined on October 7, 2018
Overall4food3service4ambience4

Hamburger a friend ordered was overdone and not medium rare as she had requested.
Salad wonderful!
Drinks fabulous!

AM
1 review
Dined on October 5, 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fancy, delicious menu items. A bit overpriced, but really fun for an occasional night out.

RK
Richmond
1 review
Dined on October 5, 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lively, island gathering spot. Delicious menu items. Friendly, warm atmosphere. We'll return!

LF
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My husband and I happened by Salt during our visit to Vinalhaven and we were not disappointed! Excellent food, friendly and attentive staff!

JD
1 review
Dined on September 22, 2018
Overall1food2service1ambience3

I thought salt was going to be a great experience... Our server did not check on us at all during our meal, we had to bug the bar tender several times for drinks and other amenities... The food portions were incredibly small and very very basic... I had ordered their burger which was hardly fit enough to feed a 7 year old child... My Girlfriend got their salmon fillet... 1”x6” strip of salamon over lettuce? I’m sorry but that wasn’t a fillet.... we each had 2 drinks and a meal which was 118 bucks plus tip... we left there hungry and very disappointed...

SJ
1 review
Dined on September 16, 2018
Overall4food5service2ambience4

Food was great. Nice atmosphere a bit loud but not too bad. Server was ok- never came back to ask if we wanted another drink or to ask how food was. Server only down side.

g
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 29, 2018
Overall3food3service4ambience3

The dishes are innovative, and interesting, but the menu never changes for the whole summer season and this is a summer community. The noise level is intense and off-putting. The bar is wonderful for excellent drinks and a place to stop in for dinner if you are alone and want to socialize.

CD
1 review
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food, service, atmosphere, all fantastic. LOVED it!

JG
New England
2 reviews
Dined on August 23, 2018
Overall3food4service5ambience2

Great room; great bread; good salad; entree this time just ok; best ice cream I've ever had; great coffee; very good service; uncomfortable noise level. Impossible to have a conversation without shouting. I've been to this restaurant several times as it's one of only two games in town and the food is usually very good, but not always. If it weren't for the noise, it mostly would be a very good experience.

RQ
New Orleans
1 review
Dined on August 22, 2018
Overall3food4service2ambience4

We dined at Salt on 8/22 while on vacation. The food was delicious, seasonal, well prepared, creative and elegantly presented. My major issue was the service - there are only 10 tables, in addition to seating at the bar, and the restaurant hustles you along because tables are in high demand. We were dining with our middle-school aged children who were impeccably behaved and used to dining out, but I feel we were targeted because we were the only table wth children. I counted 3 servers working the room, an expediter, and a bartender, ample staff to provide a strong dining experience. And yet our server E asked if we were ready to order when she should have been asking for our drink order. We were never offered the chance or order a second round of cocktails, she never checked to see if our meals were satisfactory, and she presented us with the check at the same time we received our desserts. Our dinner tab came to $203 before tip, and while we are used to paying this amount for a dinner at our home outside of NYC, we expect excellent service to match.

l
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2018
Overall4food4service5ambience3

The food was good, but the noise was so extreme that my daughter and I could barely talk. There were a couple of shrieking women behind us at the bar. If a bartender had asked them to keep it down, my not inexpensive dining experience would have been a lot more enjoyable.

EM
1 review
Dined on August 17, 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Creative food preparation using many local ingredients. The duck breast was cooked rare as requested much to my delight! My husband ordered a bouillabaisse which had a variety of fresh local shell fish, bivalves, and fish. My only criticism would be the lack of creativity in the desserts of the evening.

LC
1 review
Dined on August 15, 2018
Overall4food4service5ambience4

One meal great the other just so so. One dish no longer comes with wine sauce so it was no longer as tasty.

DM
New England
1 review
Dined on August 9, 2018
Overall4food4service5ambience3

The haddock was excellent but the cucumber tomato salad was very small for $16. Disappointing.

OT
New England
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

NH oysters with mignonette were a fabulous starter and the scallops were out of this world scrumptious. Simply perfect!!

H
London
15 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Love this restaurant Menue changes and is always innovative So glad its on vinalhaven

H
London
15 reviews
Dined on July 22, 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is a great placefor drinks and food and just relaxing Fun staff great bartender on a lovely island ❤️

DM
New England
2 reviews
Dined on July 21, 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I have eaten at the salt many times. I truly love the food and the service. I would like to add that this time upon receiving my cocktail there were paper straws in them. I appreciate the owners for doing there part to help protect the island environment and changing from plastic to paper straws.

SK
1 review
Dined on July 13, 2018
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Great drinks... awesome bartender, hostess, waitstaff.... food is excellent. Best dining in town!

JG
New England
3 reviews
Dined on July 2, 2018
Overall3food4service5ambience2

The food quality is irregular: sometimes great, sometimes disappointing. The service has always been quite good, despite fairly chaotic conditions. The room or physical atmosphere is warm and inviting. When crowded, the most annoying aspect of the whole experience is the unbelievably unpleasant din resulting from the need for everyone to shout to be heard because of the dreadful acoustics. There are no soft surfaces to absorb the sound. Normal conversation is impossible except on a slow night or if you arrive early enough and eat and run before it gets busy.

LS
Washington DC
15 reviews
Dined on June 27, 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

There are many lovely places to eat on Vinalhaven but Salt is always the highlight of our stay. Service is top notch, and our food was excellent. I highly recommend Salt if you come to visit the island.

LF
New England
2 reviews
Dined on June 23, 2018
Overall3food5service3ambience2

The chef is excellent
The food is consistently excellent
But
The servings are too small
The prices would make sense if the servings were about 1/3 larger

g
New England
1 review
Dined on June 22, 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It never let us down. Food is always outstanding and creative delicious cocktails too!

CW
New England
2 reviews
Dined on June 9, 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Love this place. We don't go out very often so when we do we want it to be good and Salt is very good. Love the room and we can walk home. It is worth the trip to the island.

DM
New England
2 reviews
Dined on June 8, 2018
Overall5food3service5ambience4

The oysters are a bit pricey but probably the freshest you can get. They were perfectly prepared. A must is a tequila cosmo. It’s not on the menu but order it with patron silver and you will just melt away. They had avocado ice cream that came with a shot of expresso. OMG. To die for.

OT
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2017
Overall5food5service3ambience5

Food was awesome. Lobster bisque was outstanding. Service was good, very busy due to a wedding in town. Seemed short staffed.

OT
New England
1 review
Dined on September 3, 2017
Overall4food5service5ambience3

We felt the food made the experience!!! Our waitress Annie was very attentive but not intrusive. So nice! The oysters were creative and delicious. I don't often eat fish, but the Monk Fish was fabulous. The Hanger Steak was top of the line exceptional. The hamburger was perfectly cooked, quality beef. The S'more adaptation was out of sight!!!!!! We are still smacking our lips. Although the noise level was very intrusive, the food was excellently prepared. We'll be back again.

FC
New York Area
38 reviews
Dined on August 31, 2017
Overall4food4service4ambience4

I've been pretty regular here for a few years and like to wait til summer's end to summarize multiple visits. All I can say is that last year's food was hipster-bar comfort food with too much cheffy cuteness and, ugh, bacon. This year it's been back to Salt, meaning it is respectful of ingredients and flavors, and without the 'I wanna be a famous chef on television' nonsense (which I actually heard last year's chef say). Glad THAT's over. Anyhow, the salads this year are more diverse that before, and they are just outstanding. The entrees are also more diverse, with interesting takes on local lobster and some very Frenchified items, like their local scallops with scalloped potatoes, and this week's lovely pan-seared/roasted small chicken with polenta. There are some occasional misses, like pairing super powerful broccoli rabe with delicate flounder, and the unfortunate lentil mash (a Mexican prison recipe?) that came with a perfect seared duck breast. But overall, the dishes are terrific and interesting. The effort to source locally really shows, and really tastes good. The service staff is excellent, friendly, knowledgeable, and efficient. The wine list is broad and expansive, and stupidly inexpensive (thank you very much!).

JG
New England
3 reviews
Dined on August 26, 2017
Overall3food5service5ambience2

The food is excellent. The room is very attractive. The high noise/decibel level, particularly when the bar is full, is disturbing and needs to be dealt with. A normal conversation is really difficult. Strategic use of materials such as sound deadening board could help.

L
New England
1 review
Dined on August 18, 2017
Overall4food4service4ambience5

Salt was a cosy spot on a rainy evening
The french fries are super and my son, age 12, and I had great burgers.
Love the size and energy of Salt!

H
London
15 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2017
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Salt is a boon to vinalhaven The menu changes weekly and its possible to try so many new dishes ,but always have a tini best cocktail ever 🎈

OT
New England
2 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2017
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Very good, but loud, worth it though!

a
Fayetteville
1 review
Dined on August 9, 2017
Overall3food4service2ambience4

The food was very good, but the bar is in the restaurant and it was extremely loud, I could not hear the other people I was eating with. I would recommend for a fun evening out, but not for a romantic evening or a quiet conversation.

OT
New England
1 review
Dined on July 28, 2017
Overall5food5service5ambience3

Love the food, service and the historic space. Incredibly loud bat noise.

OT
New England
2 reviews
Dined on July 21, 2017
Overall2food2service3ambience3

Without going into too much detail. The food is very salty. Hence the name. Great drink specials. Prices are too high for what they serve. They could have potential, this was our third try. We would have to be convinced to try it again.

H
Richmond
9 reviews
Dined on July 14, 2017
Overall5food5service5ambience5

As always I enjoyed a great meal and good company at Salt. Vinalhaven is lucky to have such a hopping fun restaurant with good food and a great bar scene

FP
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on July 13, 2017
Overall5food5service5ambience4

This was another excellent meal at Salt. They are in their 4th year this summer, and continue to deliver a quality dining experience.

S
New England
1 review
Dined on July 6, 2017
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Totally fantastic in every way. Thanks for the tastiest meal and drinks we've had in a good long time! I'm tempted to make our reservation now for when we visit the island NEXT summer!

OT
New England
13 reviews
Dined on July 6, 2017
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great meal!

H
Richmond
9 reviews
Dined on July 1, 2017
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and service in Vinalhaven, Maine. So fortunate to have such a terrific restaurant on our little island. Fun small space makes for a noisy but party-like atmosphere. Excellent innovative drinks menu also.