Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.04mi
  2. Distance: 0.19mi
  3. Distance: 0.23mi
  4. Distance: 0.24mi
  1. Distance: 0.04mi
  2. Distance: 0.19mi
  3. Distance: 0.23mi
  4. Distance: 0.24mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.04mi
  2. Distance: 0.19mi
  3. Distance: 0.23mi
  4. Distance: 0.24mi
  1. Distance: 0.04mi
  2. Distance: 0.19mi
  3. Distance: 0.23mi
  4. Distance: 0.24mi

About Scales

A traditional New England restaurant with some modern touches. Located on Maine Wharf next to the Casco Bay Ferry Terminal. Enjoy classic fried seafood as well as locally sourced land fare, while enjoying the view of a quintessential working Maine harbor.

68-72 Commercial St
Portland, ME 04101
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Seafood, American

Hours of Operation:
Bar & Raw Bar:
4pm to Close (Daily)

Dinner:
5pm-9:30pm Sunday through Thursday
5pm-10:00pm Friday & Saturday

Dress Code:
Smart Casual

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(207) 805-0444

Website:
http://scalesrestaurant.com/

Parking Details:
We have complimentary Valet for those who are dining with us. Parking in Portland can be difficult, so we're glad to be able to offer this amenity to our guests.

Executive Chef:
Frederic Eliot & Travis Olsen

Additional:
Beer, Full Bar, Wine

Scales Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.6

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.6

ambience

4.5

value

4.1

Noise

Moderate

96% would recommend it to a friend

Fit for Foodies (54)
Waterfront (52)
Local Ingredients (45)
See All
Special Occasion (44)
Scenic View (39)
Good for a Date (38)
Creative Cuisine (34)
Good for Anniversaries (32)
Fun (28)
Good for Groups (28)
Casual (25)
Good for Birthdays (23)
Bar Seating (23)
Authentic (22)
Hot Spot (22)
Worth the Drive (18)
Notable Wine List (16)
Vibrant Bar Scene (14)
Business Meals (13)
Comfort Food (13)
Neighborhood Gem (13)
Romantic (13)
Cozy (11)
Healthy (11)
Handcrafted Cocktails (8)
People Watching (8)
Seasonal (8)
Kid-friendly (5)
Great Beer (4)
Happy Hour (4)
Pre/post Theatre (4)
Quiet Conversation (4)
Great for Lunch (3)
Disabled Access (2)
Organic (2)
Late-night Find (1)
Great for Outdoor Dining (1)
Paleo Friendly (1)
Quick Bite (1)
Sunday Lunch (1)
Tapas (1)
Tasting Menu (1)
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347 reviews
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 (Las Vegas)·Dined on January 11, 2018

Food was very salty and rich

1 person found this review helpful.
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food2
ambience4
service4
value2

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on January 7, 2018

Everything was perfect!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on January 3, 2018

Great food, perfect wait staff, comfortable seating, new favorite!

Tags: Good for Groups, Good for Anniversaries, Worth the Drive, Quiet Conversation, Good for a Date, Waterfront, Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine, Casual, Special Occasion, Healthy, Scenic View, Romantic, Local Ingredients, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on January 3, 2018

Excellent food and service in an interesting, comfortable atmosphere. This was our second trip there and we have been completely satisfied both times. Will definitely return!

Tags: Local Ingredients, Pre/post Theatre, Casual
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
·Dined on January 2, 2018

Beautiful setting, wonderful ambiance, extremely knowledgeable wait staff, and on top of all that...great food. What's not to like?

Tags: Fun, Business Meals, People Watching, Fit for Foodies, Scenic View, Waterfront, Creative Cuisine, Worth the Drive, Local Ingredients, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date
1 person found this review helpful.
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on January 2, 2018

Food was outstanding . Service great. However difficult to enjoy a expensive meal when a newborn is screaming .

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Worth the Drive, Good for Birthdays, Cozy, Waterfront, Good for Anniversaries
1 person found this review helpful.
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food5
ambience2
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on January 2, 2018

Second time my husband and I have been here. Food, service, ambiance were all on spot. This will be on our rotation of good places to eat in Portland.

Tags: Happy Hour, Kid-friendly, Fit for Foodies, Casual, Local Ingredients, Healthy, Business Meals, Good for a Date, Cozy, Organic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 1, 2018

My husband and I love Scales. Staff is great. We brought our dear friends for New Year's Eve and one friend has a hearing impairment, they really accommodated us, which was so appreciative! We also love to come sit at the bar for a drink and appetizer.

Tags: Special Occasion, Local Ingredients, Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies, Waterfront, Hot Spot, Good for a Date, Good for Groups, Good for Birthdays, Creative Cuisine, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

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

Clean well spaced open kitchen restaurant on the waterfront. Reservations highly recommended. The service was perfect and the food was outstanding. Best fried clams I’ve had anywhere. My wife’s haddock was very good and she can be pretty picky. The drinks were well made and the in house made desserts were spectacular. Highly recommend the sticky toffee pudding. Will be going back for sure

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 31, 2017

Nothing surprising - everything excellent.

Scales was exactly as you'd expect. Wonderfully executed food in a bright, energetic space. If you're looking for creative, innovative cuisine, or want a quiet, cozy, romantic spot - there are better choices in Portland. But everything at Scales was wonderfully prepared, from the oysters (that had a fantastic mignonette), to the salads to the scallops. Good cocktails, too. Really a can't miss spot - a low risk, high reward dining experience.

Added bonus: because it is an open, lively space, there were a number of tables with children - it worked for both the families and for those around them. We'll bring our daughter next time.

Great for families or small groups. Not as great for a date night.

Tags: Special Occasion, Worth the Drive
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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 30, 2017

It was fantastic. Please don't go there ...I don't ever want to be unable to get a seat....just kidding! This is a crown jewel in Portland's restaurant scene.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Local Ingredients, Special Occasion, Good for a Date, Cozy, Waterfront, Romantic, Neighborhood Gem, Creative Cuisine, Notable Wine List, Bar Seating, Scenic View, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 30, 2017

We loved this restaurant! Fresh and creative seafood preparation. Would return next time in Portland.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Authentic, Worth the Drive, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
·Dined on December 30, 2017

The food is really great without being pretentious - and that pretty much describes the staff too.

Tags: Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies, Bar Seating, Fun, Special Occasion, Local Ingredients
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

vip
 (New England)·Dined on December 29, 2017

Scales exceeded our expectations. The food, service, and ambiance were top notch. We will be back!

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Hot Spot
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on December 29, 2017

The food and service at Scales was excellent! We especially loved the haddock, scallops, and seafood stew. Will definitely be back.

Tags: Waterfront, Authentic, Comfort Food, Seasonal, Hot Spot, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date, Local Ingredients, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (New England)·Dined on December 27, 2017

The best way to summarize the experience at Scales is "meh." Beautiful location and decor and the service was excellent, but the food was disappointing at best. For the most part, the seafood was fresh and of good quality but the execution of each dish was seriously flawed. The lobster bisque (a cup is shockingly priced at $9) was extremely over-salted, most likely to compensate for its lack of flavor. The baked haddock was bland and tasted like a dish you could get in an English pub. The grilled whole branzino was the best of the bad dishes we had in that the fish actually tasted good and it would have been a successful dish if it hadn't been swimming in a pool of oil on the plate.

I was surprised to see how many positive reviews this restaurant has received, but when I read through them more carefully I saw that many people pointed out the same kinds of issues with the food. My guess is that its location and big, open layout attract many tourists who perhaps don't have the highest standards when it comes to dining. Given the prices, though, the consistent lack of quality in the food makes this restaurant simply not worth it.

1 person found this review helpful.
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food2
ambience4
service4
value2

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on December 26, 2017

this was a repeat visit. staff are exceptional. food is terrific in general. for example, mussels, fried oysters, fish and chips are the best ever. swordfish preparation was disappointing this trip (compared to the absolutely fabulous preparation last summer). blueberry frozen custard was a delicious finish!

Tags: Comfort Food, Kid-friendly, Fit for Foodies, Casual, Scenic View, Worth the Drive, Local Ingredients, Waterfront
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 23, 2017

The food was exceptional! Had a for fish in cream sauce delightful!

Tags: Good for a Date, Waterfront, Special Occasion, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience3
service5
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 22, 2017

First visit since they opened and rocketed up the ratings. The entire experience was outstanding, from the attentive service, obvious devotion to high quality, and wonderful, tasty food presented and prepared meticulously. Their version of clam chowder was rich, smooth and unctuous, almost like a fine sauce. The artcic char was perfectly done and coupled with a marvelous mixture of braised greens, beans and chopped up something zippy. My dinner companion was wowed by his Branzino. The wait person recommended what turned out to be the perfect pinot noire accompaniment for my char. The extra Brussels sprouts side dish was yet another successful take on the popular Portland specialty. Two dinners, one cocktail, a lint of beer and a glass of wine plus two delicious deserts came to $156. It's not often that a trendy-rustic fish place costs that much, but I'd pay it again in a heartbeat.

Tags: Casual, Hot Spot, Handcrafted Cocktails, Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies, Local Ingredients, Waterfront, Notable Wine List, Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Scenic View, Worth the Drive, People Watching, Creative Cuisine, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 21, 2017

Very fresh and well prepared food. Casual upbeat atmosphere.

Tags: Fun, Worth the Drive, Healthy
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
·Dined on December 17, 2017

Wonderful dinner from start to finish. Great service, best chowder we have ever had, modern and sleek atmosphere. Wonderful place to celebrate or aniversary!!

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Good for Birthdays, Good for Groups, Fun, Comfort Food, Good for Anniversaries, Hot Spot, Local Ingredients, Worth the Drive, Good for a Date, Scenic View
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Chicago)·Dined on December 13, 2017

Great Service and a good place to go when your craving good seafood

Tags: Waterfront, Good for Groups, Fit for Foodies, Business Meals, Hot Spot, Casual
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 10, 2017

We absolutely love this restaurant. Went again on a snowy night. Service with John was outstanding. Great wine list, specials and starters. The tartare and fried oysters were amazing. Garlic bread deserves an entirely new name - just heavenly. Scallops and duck entrees are faves we keep ordering again and again. Unless we are having a burger night at the bar! Thank you to the entire team at Scales. You’ve created a very special place that we affectionately call “our spot”, and that makes this Mainer very proud.

1 person found this review helpful.
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Pinehurst)·Dined on December 9, 2017

The waiter was wonderful but the food was phenomenal !! Such fresh seafood and such a creative menu. The Oysters were wonderful we liked the Casco Bay the best. The signature cocktails are just wonderful and worth a try. Their wine list is equally impressive. I ordered the scallops and it was one of the best dishes I've had in Portland. The apple and Endive salad was selfish as well. We frequent other reputable restaurants in area but this was one of highest on our list now for sure !! Call a week or more early for resi's - well worth it !!!

Tags: Healthy, Happy Hour, Creative Cuisine, Casual, Good for Birthdays, Good for Anniversaries, Handcrafted Cocktails, Local Ingredients, Fit for Foodies, Notable Wine List, Good for Groups, Special Occasion, Scenic View, Good for a Date, Bar Seating
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
·Dined on December 8, 2017

Exceptional! One of the best restaurants we've been to in the past five years. Grilled octopus was phenomenal I cut it with a fork. Calamari was crispy and tender. My wife had lemon sole and said it was delicious. Yes, it's expensive but you know that going in if you read anything. And yes it is loud, but again the reviews warn you. For a special occasion this should definitely be considered.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Notable Wine List, Creative Cuisine, Scenic View
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on December 3, 2017

Ask for a booth, quieter and lots of room. Top notch wait staff, upbeat ambiance. Contemporary Scandinavian-ish decor. Great fish and chips, friend clams good but not best. Didn’t have any, but seemed very focused on fish. Overall highly recommend for a tasteful meal.

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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
·Dined on December 3, 2017

Scales was excellent all around and made for a perfect date night!

Tags: Cozy, Good for Groups, Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays
1 person found this review helpful.
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food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 3, 2017

Mixed Reviews from table- some of us really enjoyed their meals while others were rather underwhelmed. The oysters , mussels and steak was awesome! All of the salads were extremely bland and the scallops were really tough and rubbery. We also ordered the maple glazed carrots and they were completely tasteless and under cooked. Would consider returning for the raw bar and wine selection.

1 person found this review helpful.
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food3
ambience5
service3
value2

 
 (Memphis)·Dined on November 28, 2017

Unbelievable food, service and atmosphere as usual. That’s it, that’s all and it’s great!

Tags: Notable Wine List, Good for a Date, Cozy, Hot Spot, Waterfront, Local Ingredients, Fit for Foodies, Scenic View, Creative Cuisine
1 person found this review helpful.
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on November 27, 2017

Amazing food! Best meal in Portland by far and we are locals. Best bite is the Grilled Octopus appetizer. Fresh seafood at its best!

1 person found this review helpful.
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on November 25, 2017

Great room. Great service. Nice energy. Scallops were excellent! Our only complaint was the halibut was super-buttery. Over the top really. We had to cut it with some lemon to get it to place where it was somewhat enjoyable. Wasn't a deal-breaker, though. Would definitely go back.

1 person found this review helpful.
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food4
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (Tallahassee)·Dined on November 25, 2017

Food and service did not merit the high prices. Especially do not recommend purchasing the $12 glasses of house wine, most likely poured from a gal. jug! The lobster bisque, chowder, or whatever was so disappointing that we sent it back. The waitress did subtract it from the bill. Very expensive meal, but we liked the location, and there was no lack of patronage. The location is a tourist spot and that is being taken advantage of by the operators. We even had to pay to park.

Tags: Waterfront, Good for a Date
1 person found this review helpful.
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food3
ambience4
service3
value1

 
 (New England)·Dined on November 24, 2017

This was my second visit to Scales- reservations are hard to obtain! Their appetizers are unique and among the best I have ever had. The seafood selection is extensive and there are a wide range of preparations offered- my fish was moist and well seasoned! Despite being very busy both times we have eaten at Scales, the service was warm and just the right amount of attentive. This is a pricy restaurant but for seafood lovers and for those who like a unique menu, it is well worth a visit.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Good for Groups, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion, Authentic, Disabled Access, Local Ingredients, Waterfront, Creative Cuisine, Fun
1 person found this review helpful.
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (New England)·Dined on November 24, 2017

Excellent seafood. Pleasing, large room atmosphere. Friendly, efficient, knowledgeable service.

Tags: Authentic, Waterfront
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on November 23, 2017

Very nice location on waterfront. Good food and service. Only complaint is that it is such a large open space that the noise level is very high. Nothing to absorb the noise so hard to talk.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Waterfront, Healthy
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on November 22, 2017

One of my favorite restaurants in Portland. Best lobster roll I’ve ever had! The menu has options for everyone. Great service and I love their rose by the glass.

Tags: Healthy, Hot Spot, Waterfront, Casual, Comfort Food, People Watching, Fit for Foodies, Worth the Drive, Good for a Date, Creative Cuisine, Romantic, Notable Wine List, Good for Anniversaries, Fun, Good for Birthdays, Local Ingredients, Good for Groups, Special Occasion, Authentic, Vibrant Bar Scene, Scenic View, Quiet Conversation, Business Meals
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on November 20, 2017

Portland is a very competitive restaurant city. Scales is very good, but one notch below the very best in town.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Local Ingredients, Waterfront
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food4
ambience3
service4
value3

 
·Dined on November 19, 2017

Such a lovely place! We had a great dining experience for my inlaws’ 40th Anniversary dinner. The food and service were top notch, and overall it was a wonderful restaurant!

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Business Meals, Seasonal, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays, Hot Spot, Bar Seating, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on November 19, 2017

Magnificent. Food & service over the top.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on November 14, 2017

Always an amazing dining experience! The ambiance and views are noteworthy!

Tags: Business Meals, Good for Groups
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

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