The Griswold Inn

4.5
204 Reviews
$31 to $50
American
The Griswold Inn is an inn and restaurant located in the historic seaport village of Essex. The Gris, as it is affectionately known, has been in continous operation since 1776.

`Currently we are offering dine in, dine out, and Gris To Go! Inside, guests may enjoy dining in historic, art-filled rooms which exude character, charm and tradition. Seating for the alfresco experience is available on a first-come, first-served basis, with the exception of larger parties of 7 or more which may be made by calling 860.767.1776.

The Inn boasts a wine list consistently recognized by Wine Spectator with the prestigious Award of Excellence; Food & Wine and Travel + Leisure have recently recognized the Inn's restaurant as "Connecticut's coziest" and it is included in Patricia Schulz's "1000 Places to See Before You Die". The Griswold Inn is also the recipient of Connecticut's Highest Award for Hospitality. The best of old and new meet here.

Support The Griswold Inn during COVID-19

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
  • Sealed or wrapped utensils used
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
What 204 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.4
food
4.4
service
4.7
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
94% of people would recommend it to a friend
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A
Amanda
New York Area
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great summer menu, love sitting on the bigger patio, lovely ambiance.

VW
VictoriaW
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall4food4service4ambience5

Love the atmosphere and the food is very good. Friendly waitstaff. Wish we lived closer, we’d be here often!

OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
5 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food4service4ambience5

Beautiful inn for a special meal

T
Tracy44
New England
6 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The service, ambiance and food were awesome! Essex is a great place to take a stroll before and after you eat or happy hour! Highly recommend!

B
vipBobby
New York Area
20 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great place. Old beautiful Inn with nautical theme. Impeccable service….had the Caesar salad and Baked cod. Very good meal

o
orchard
New York Area
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall5food4service5ambience5

My sister and I had a lovely lunch in celebration of her birthday!

TH
TheaH
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on June 13, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We dined on a Sunday evening in mid June, before the busy summer season and it was a very pleasant experience The servers were very attentive and we felt well taken care of. In fact, when deciding between two dishes, the server suggested the fish and chips because the preparation (potato crusted) is unique to the "Gris" and it was an excellent recommendation. The menu was varied, portions not skimpy, and the food hot and delicious.
I believe they have entertainment in the taproom every evening in the summer and pay homage to the shipbuilding history of the area in their decor. The covered bridge room is literally covered with pictures of ships dating back to the Revolutionary War. The Gris seemed to be popular with guests at the Inn as well as locals. I would definitely dine there again when in the Essex area.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
6 reviews
Dined on June 12, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The Gris always delivers. From service to main course to dessert.
Excellent!

DK
DianeK
New York Area
1 review
Dined on June 8, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience5

Hello,

The Gris is always a relaxing place for a meal.
There was a more limited menu than I recall from past visits.
Salads were a bit expensive for just greens.

f
foolishdiner
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on June 7, 2021
Overall5food4service4ambience5

Wonderful place on a lovely evening to enjoy an outdoor dinner to celebrate an anniversary. The food was very good (but one of us was hoping for a duck option) and the service fine. We retired to the Tavern for the sea shanties but it was packed, could not hear, and no effort to social distance. Hopefully that need will be behind us soon.

F
Foodiegirl
Orange County
2 reviews
Dined on June 5, 2021
Overall3food1service1ambience5

Server was awful. Watched him run his fingers threw his hair as he looked at his reflection in the window. Never smiled, never came back and checked on our empty drinks, seemed really inconvenienced by our presence. Food was mediocre at best.

SM
StevenM
1 review
Dined on June 3, 2021
Overall3food3service2ambience4

We have been to the Griz many times and always enjoy our evening. Unfortunately this trip was disappointing and especially so as we had out of town guests.

The ambience was great as usual and were seated right away. However, our server (table 56 on 6/3 at 6:00) was very rushed and short with us all night and we even got a dinner that we didn't order. Our guest decided to keep it, but they got the Swordfish instead of Salmon. We also had a hard time getting our server back to order more rounds of drinks and to get the check.

We'll be back for sure, but are looking forward to our typical experience.

S
Sean
1 review
Dined on June 3, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food was excellent as always. Staff was friendly and attentive.

DB
DouglasB
1 review
Dined on June 3, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Our food was excellent and the wait staff was extremely courteous and friendly. She definitely enhanced the experience for us.

T
vipToptip
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on May 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food of type and quality you cannot get in NYC. Well worth the two hour drive.

V
Vimana
1 review
Dined on May 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Very consistent quality in an authentic, historic setting, free of stuffiness!

AJ
AuntieJ
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on May 26, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent pulled pork tostado small bites. Although sangria wasn’t on the menu the waitress ordered it for us and bar service made it for us

RA
RobertA
New England
11 reviews
Dined on May 25, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience5

Visit to Essex.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
11 reviews
Dined on May 25, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Wonderful welcome and new patio dining was perfect. Make sure your reserve ahead for smooth sailing to your table .

M
Mysticmomma
New England
3 reviews
Dined on May 22, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

My family and I had yet another wonderful dining experience at the Griswold Inn.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on May 21, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Kind and attentive service. Amazing food.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on May 16, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The Inn was outstanding as always. We live in NW CT and look for any reason to dine there. Great food and service with comfortable surroundings.

CC
ChrisC
Los Angeles
3 reviews
Dined on May 15, 2021
Overall4food5service3ambience5

The setting and food were excellent. Service was on the slow side but one of the servers was in training. A great place to meet up with friends.

KF
KristyF
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on May 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

A historical restaurant and inn that oozes with charm in the picturesque village of Essex, Connecticut. Don’t miss it!

GL
GerriL
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on May 14, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience3

We were there for lunch. I ordered the arugala salad. It was $15 without anything added. The server asked if I wanted to add anything and after I thought about it, I added shrimp. It's a good thing I did, because the salad was enough for about 3 bites; very little of anything in the salad and I'm very disappointed. It was absolutely horrifying to see what was presented to me.

JF
JoeF
Miami
5 reviews
Dined on May 9, 2021
Overall5food5service3ambience5

Mother’s Day

FS
FredS
Charleston
5 reviews
Dined on May 9, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were there for Mother’s Day and the menu was different than other days. But, the food was unique, well-prepared and delicious. The wait staff backed each other up and had very nice personalities. One in our group, a seafood lover, said the scollops were the best she ever had!
The desserts were limited. But, again unique and well prepared. We felt we received good value for our money

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on May 9, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Our server was not very attentive..but the food and the ambiance was outstanding

AK
AngelaK
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 9, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience5

The Mother's Day dinner was a hit, creative, delicious and we will go back.

B
Boston
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on May 9, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Upon walking in, I was greeted by a hostess. She aske, "Are you Alan?" Yes I am. We had talked on the phone. She seated me. She went over the entire menu with me. I have allergies. She made sure I was safe with what I ate. Great start.
After we got rid of our apathetic first server who in no way wanted to be there, we were taken care of by the amazing Sandy. The specialty drinks were strong and tasty. The food outstanding. Filet came out medium rare, as ordered, which rarely happens. The desserts were the highlight, but that is not knocking anything eaten prior. Sandy gave me a quick tour of the restaurant. An amazing dining experience from start (well almost) to finish. Griswold Inn is terrific. Dining there is a, and I borrow this from the great movie, Real Genius, "A Moral Imperative"

LM
vipLanaM
New York Area
11 reviews
Dined on May 8, 2021
Overall3food2service4ambience3

Interesting place, tons of props to look at. The food is average. Caesar salad was nothing special. Tiramisu was just a strawberry shortcake and not a good one, very misleading.

JF
JosephF
New England
11 reviews
Dined on May 8, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience4

We were celebrating our Anniversary and enjoyed our evening very much.

p
vippostna
New York Area
35 reviews
Dined on May 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Truly enjoyed this gem of a restaurant. Great food, outdoor and indoor options, excellent service, wonderful historic building.

BS
BetsyS
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Enjoyed a great healthy grain bowl with grilled chicken. Ruined the low calorie count with the signature home-made chips and Gorgonzola sauce!?

E
Erica
New England
1 review
Dined on May 2, 2021
Overall3food4service1ambience5

Our server was definitely not enthusiastic to be serving us. He was not friendly and threw the check on the table while we were still eating. I asked for extra lime in my drink, when he brought it over without lime, I asked for a lime and he brought one in his hand and gave it to my husband. Waters were not refilled, we were not asked if we wanted another drink,, no follow up attention was given to check in and see how everything was. This was Sunday at 430pm. I did not bring it to management attention as it was busy there due to the boat show. This was just disappointing as we ate in the restaurant business and rarely get to enjoy a dinner out. The food was good as always, however I wish I knew the scallops were a small plate size, as I later heard another server explain to her table while they were ordering.

KO
KennethO
New England
2 reviews
Dined on May 1, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

We enjoyed a nice lunch at the Gris this past Saturday. We each had an appetizer, then shared the Fish & Chips. Very nice to be out and about. Great lunch!

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 1, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great location and service! I’ve been here multiple times- always a great experience.

AK
AnthonyK
New York Area
1 review
Dined on April 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Charming ambiance, very attentive to covid protocols without being overwhelming and disruptive

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on April 11, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Good food and service.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
New England
3 reviews
Dined on April 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We loved our second dining experience here. We drive from Rhode Island to dine here so you know it has to be a special place!

FAQs

The Griswold Inn offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (860) 767-1776.

The Griswold Inn is rated 4.5 stars by 204 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.