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Diners' Choice: Good for special occasions restaurants in Portsmouth and Merrimack Valley

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OpenTable
Updated July 05, 2024

Looking for the best special occasion restaurants in Portsmouth and Merrimack Valley? You’re in the right place. Each month, OpenTable analyzes nearly 2 million global diner reviews from the past four months. We sort the results by location and category to help you discover new favorite restaurants. It's a great partnership: you reserve, eat, and review. We listen...and deliver the results for all to benefit. Enjoy!


A photo of Hanover Street Chophouse restaurant
4.9
4.9 (3926)
$31 to $50
Steak
Manchester
About the restaurant
We are committed to serving food that will be creative, yet “classic,” service that will be impeccable but not intimidating, in an ambiance that will be elegant, yet comfortable and inviting, ensuring a dining experience that will be extraordinary and memorable!
Top review
GailF
Dined 5 days ago
Service was excellent! Food was delicious however it is pricey. It definitely is a special occasion type place for us. This was our anniversary splurge. Every single thing we had was enjoyed . We left feeling quite full as the portions were ample for us. Had an early 5:30 reservation...quiet with fast service.
A photo of The Carriage House restaurant
4.9
4.9 (778)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
Rye
About the restaurant
The Carriage House, an oceanfront, modern New England restaurant and raw bar, is open at 2263 Ocean Boulevard on scenic Rye Beach, New Hampshire. Committed to honoring the restaurant’s rich traditions rooted in hospitality. Join us for dinner Tuesday through Saturday, sip a cocktail by our working fireplace, or take in the ocean views!
Top review
ChristineHvip
Dined 3 days ago
Great food and amazing dessert! Loved the new pork entree and the cornbread & ice cream dessert. Fantastic cocktails too!
A photo of Ristorante Massimo restaurant
4.8
4.8 (2721)
$31 to $50
Italian
Portsmouth
About the restaurant
Please Note: Online Reservations are for our Main indoor dining room ONLY. Please call us directly for WIne Bar options at 603.436.4000. We reserve the right to charge $20.00 per person cancelation fee, please call us by 12:00p.m.. the day of your reservation to avoid possible cancelation fees.~~~~~~ Nestled like a hidden jewel in historic downtown Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Massimo's warmly lit brick and stone grotto walls, fresh flowers and oil paintings of magnificent Italian landscapes transports guests to Florence, Rome and Venice. Guests relax in a richly appointed atmosphere beneath mahogany-beamed ceilings and private parties unwind in their own intimate dining room. Ristorante Massimo offers authentic dishes from all regions of Italy. From innovative concepts to timeless Italian favorites, our executive chef creates each dish with a distinctive, refined touch as found in some of the world's most celebrated restaurants. **limited dining room availability offered online**

Top review
Italycathy
Dined 7 days ago
Outstanding service by Yahara with fabulous food options! The wine list is outstanding with a variation of bottles and price levels. The pasta options were rich and cooked perfectly al dente - all pastas made in house. The special halibut was enough for two people to share. And the final dessert box to celebrate a friend’s birthday was great fun with a selection of small items including butterscotch cotton candy….very creative!
A photo of Silver Fountain Inn & Tea Parlor restaurant
4.8
4.8 (857)
$30 and under
Afternoon Tea
Dover
About the restaurant
Serving Luncheon and High Tea, from soups, quiches, sandwiches, and salads to the fancy 3-tiered "Duchess" featuring delectable mini-sandwiches, scones w/Devonshire cream & lemon curd, finished with petite fours - for a full menu please see our website - you can reserve from there as well. Come enjoy our relaxing atmosphere in our beautiful 1871 Victorian Bed & Breakfast in historic Dover, NH. We also sell gift certificates, tea pots & accessories, over 30 flavors of loose leaf tea, tea wallets and cozies plus jewelry and other fine gifts! Reservations are preferred to be able to offer optimum service and availability.
Top review
MichelynV
Dined 3 days ago
The food is always excellent. We love trying new combinations of food we haven't had before. The service is pleasant and always friendly. There is a wide variety of teas to choose from. We love all the choices.
A photo of The Puddle Dock restaurant
4.8
4.8 (714)
$31 to $50
American
Portsmouth
About the restaurant
Located on the grounds of Strawbery Banke Museum in historic Portsmouth, New Hampshire, The Puddle Dock Restaurant proudly offers Modern Colonial feel and fare! Led by esteemed Executive Chef Derek Clough, the Puddle Dock Restaurant will take you back to Colonial America featuring English and American favorites, then snap you back to the present with our modern twists.

Chef Derek takes great pride in growing a lot of our vegetables, foraging our mushrooms, and presenting beauty for your palate. His care is evidence in some of our best-loved dishes, Yorkshire Pudding, Portuguese Salted Cod, Pan-Roasted Duck Breast, and our signature Hoe Cake. Be sure to save room for dessert! All our desserts are made in house - Cinnamon Rum Breading, Dark Chocolate Pudding, and Posset are among the favorites!

Enjoy the ambience of our historic exposed beam building, once a general store offering penny candy, or enjoy our front and rear patios for dinner in the open air.

Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 5 days ago
Incredible first experience, we will definitely be back! Food and cocktails were amazing and service was top notch!
A photo of Ember Wood Fired Grill restaurant
4.7
4.7 (204)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
Dover
About the restaurant
Ember Wood Fired Grill features a locally inspired menu with a casual upscale setting. Our Chef, Christopher Gouzie, best describes our menu as "Globally Inspired". It features familiar dishes with a twist. "We use new and interesting ingredients, and different cooking procedures to introduce our guests to a unique way to present food."

We have taken this same concept for our Specialty Cocktail list. Deviating from the classic recipe with housemade syrups, specialty bitters, and high end liquors and liqueurs.

Enjoy our sleek downstairs dining room, outdoor covered terrace, or upstairs bourbon room, where we house over 100 whiskeys on selection, and offer over 20 wines by the glass and bottle.

We regularly host private events, and therefor reservations are recommended.

Top review
Travelervip
Dined on Jul 3, 2024
The wonderfully balanced Lion’s Tail special cocktail reflected the same care taken in libations as Ember’s skilled kitchen shows with the food.
A photo of CR's The Restaurant restaurant
4.6
4.6 (2374)
$31 to $50
American
Hampton
About the restaurant
Nothing beats an inviting dinner after a drive up the coast or a day on the shore. Indulge in a selection from our award-winning wine list, try a local beer on tap or a specialty cocktail.
CR's is a favorite stop to 'chill out' with friends!
It's where you want to be!

Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 5 days ago
Enjoyable experience. Without the kids we really enjoyed ourselves
A photo of Tuscan Kitchen restaurant
4.5
4.5 (2894)
$30 and under
Unspecified
Salem
About the restaurant
Take a break and relax at the Tuscan Market Trattoria, a café area surrounded by flat screen TV's, while enjoying coffee, espresso or grabbing a bite to eat. For something sweet, an authentic homemade gelato machine imported from Italy will feature different flavors of the creamiest gelato offered this side of Italy.
Top review
DanaC
Dined 7 days ago
Great spot for a special occasion. Food was superb, drinks were great, ambiance perfect. Our waiter Chris made it an experience. No pressure to eat and run. Thanks to all who made it special for our birthday girl.
A photo of Epoch Gastropub restaurant
4.4
4.4 (887)
$30 and under
American
Exeter
About the restaurant
Epoch Gastropub is built on the simple idea that superior, local ingredients will speak for themselves. In that spirit we take a modern approach to classic American dishes, sourcing the freshest sustainable foods in support of the region’s families.
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 7 days ago
We were here a few times in the last week. Food was good, staff was very helpful and very friendly. Would def recommend friends to come and come back.
A photo of The Rail at La Stazione restaurant
4.3
4.3 (38)
$31 to $50
Italian
Dover
About the restaurant
Elevate your evening at The Rail at La Stazione! Join us for a taste of sophistication and culinary innovation. Our meticulously crafted menu promises to redefine your dining expectations. At The Rail we offer an extensive menu for take out or delivery. La Stazione is our Dine In restaurant offering delicious food and drink. Enjoy a meal with us.

We look forward to serving you.


Top review
PatriciaNvip
Dined 6 days ago
Outstanding food and service.. We shared the burrata salad and the arancini as a first course. Followed with chicken piccata and the rigatoni. Every thing had clear, clean fresh flavor notes. The arancini is a standout- must try! Easily shared by 2-4 people. We spoke with the owner, Joe, and the server Q (his name is Quincy but it is routinely mangled in pronunciation). They clearly demonstrate a passion for the business that shows in details both large and small. Excellent. Highly recommend
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