Nearby points of interest

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  1. Distance: 0.08mi
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Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.08mi
  2. Distance: 0.08mi
  3. Distance: 0.10mi
  4. Distance: 0.11mi
  1. Distance: 0.08mi
  2. Distance: 0.08mi
  3. Distance: 0.10mi
  4. Distance: 0.11mi

About The Library Restaurant

Join us for traditional New England fare, while surrounded by architectural treasures of an era gone by. The Library is prestigious while reasonably priced, with something for everyone through all seasons. It is the perfect setting for a business luncheon or dinner. You can also enjoy lighter fare or a friendly cocktail in our lounge. Our dining and board rooms are always available for private functions.

401 State Street
Portsmouth, NH 03801
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Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Steakhouse, Continental

Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Monday - Saturday: 11:30am - 3:00pm; Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:30pm, Friday & Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm; Brunch: Sunday: 11:30am - 3:00pm Menu served daily in The Lounge from 3:00-5:00 PM

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(603) 431-5202

Website:
http://www.libraryrestaurant.com/

Private Party Facilities:
We are delighted that you are interested in celebrating your special occasion at The Library Restaurant!

Private Party Contact:
Lauren Looser: (888) 637-0296

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Wine

The Library Restaurant Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.3

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.3

service

4.3

ambience

4.6

value

3.9

Noise

Moderate

85% would recommend it to a friend

Special Occasion (41)
Romantic (37)
Good for a Date (35)
See All
Good for Anniversaries (33)
Cozy (28)
Pre/post Theatre (24)
Good for Birthdays (22)
Worth the Drive (22)
Business Meals (20)
Quiet Conversation (20)
Fit for Foodies (17)
Bar Seating (16)
Good for Groups (15)
Neighborhood Gem (14)
Notable Wine List (14)
Sunday Lunch (13)
Authentic (11)
Casual (9)
Creative Cuisine (8)
Fun (8)
Great for Lunch (8)
Comfort Food (6)
Vibrant Bar Scene (6)
Local Ingredients (6)
Handcrafted Cocktails (5)
Great for Brunch (4)
Paleo Friendly (4)
Gluten Free Options (3)
Hot Spot (3)
Happy Hour (2)
Healthy (2)
Late-night Find (2)
People Watching (2)
Scenic View (2)
Seasonal (2)
Tasting Menu (2)
Afternoon Tea (1)
Kid-friendly (1)
Great Beer (1)
Great for Outdoor Dining (1)
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1055 reviews
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 (New England)·Dined 2 days ago

The Library never disappoints. Great food and the atmosphere is great.

Tags: Good for Groups, Special Occasion, Cozy, Good for Anniversaries, Pre/post Theatre, Romantic, Good for a Date, Quiet Conversation, Bar Seating, Worth the Drive, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined 2 days ago

We spent the weekend at the Portsmouth Harbor Inn & Spa and had dinner here Friday. The staff was friendly and we loved our waitress. She gave us helpful advice and answered our questions about the beautiful building. She was attentive but also gave us space to enjoy our meal. The ambience was wonderful: quiet music, low lighting, everything was clean and neat. We loved the stained glass windows and the carved wooden walls and ceilings. The food was INCREDIBLE, we ordered steaks and they were melt in your mouth, cooked exactly like we ordered. We shared a side order of Mac and cheese and that was also delicious. We can’t wait to take another trip to Portsmouth and go back to The Library Restaurant!

Tags: Good for a Date, Handcrafted Cocktails, Sunday Lunch, Bar Seating, Paleo Friendly, Pre/post Theatre, Good for Groups, Business Meals, Fit for Foodies, Good for Birthdays, Comfort Food, Quiet Conversation, Worth the Drive, Notable Wine List, Authentic, Cozy, Healthy, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine, Fun, Neighborhood Gem, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (New England)·Dined 3 days ago

Lunch was disappointing, despite the food being good.
The restaurant charged extra to split plates for lunch and for the steak sauce. The steak was extremely overpriced for lunch and the cut.
The menus were plastic laminated; the ambience and service was not aligned with the high prices. I would be more than happy paying if the experience was better.

Tags: Paleo Friendly
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value2

vip
 (New England)·Dined 4 days ago

In my past dining experiences at the Library I would have it on my "B" list but we had a really great meal on this visit and we moved it to our "A" list. The atmosphere cannot be beat, the most beautiful restaurant in Portsmouth. We have always had good service and this time the food was excellent. It was a quiet night and that added to the pleasure as there was no noise to contend with.
We shared the New Orleans bbq shrimp for an app and I had swordfish not only prepared perfectly but the lime butter on top was perfect. My husband had a sirloin that was also prepared perfectly.
We will be back!

Tags: Business Meals, Good for Groups, Good for Anniversaries, Romantic, Quiet Conversation, Pre/post Theatre
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (New England)·Dined on January 13, 2018

Wonderful service, wonderful food. Very consistent.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on January 13, 2018

We had a great experience at the Library! Everything was very good and our server Elise was very friendly and knowledgeable about the food and the history of the restaurant.

Tags: Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Charleston)·Dined on January 12, 2018

This was our first visit to The Library and we will definitely be back. Service was great and food was excellent. Loved the setting of the restaurant. If you're in Portsmouth and want great seafood or steak The Library is a must.

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

 
·Dined on January 12, 2018

CARYN was an excellent waitress! We lived the food and wine from Italy. It was well worth the two hour drive to get to Portsmouth and eat at The Library for the first time

Tags: Good for a Date, Sunday Lunch, Creative Cuisine, Cozy, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on January 7, 2018

Had a wonderful dinner date with my girlfriend. Will return.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 31, 2017

NYE. Very busy but efficient. Staff is wonderful - welcoming and excellent service. The surroundings are beautiful. Food is always good here and they did not disappoint ! Highly recommend !

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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 30, 2017

We go to the Library restaurant regularly. The food is excellent and the staff is friendly and attentive. We have NEVER been disappointed!

Tags: Paleo Friendly, Sunday Lunch, Fun, Romantic, Good for Birthdays, Quiet Conversation, Pre/post Theatre, Good for Groups, Special Occasion, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 30, 2017

Food was average and overpriced for what we got. Ambiance was fantastic and service great, as well.

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food3
ambience5
service4
value3

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

It was a very cold day and the heat was not working well. The dining room was chilly and they were unable to brew coffee due to frozen pipes. Hope they work this out.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

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

I used to come here with my late father. Such a lovely room and it was wonderful being back with my sons.

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

 
·Dined on December 28, 2017

Most enjoyable from the wait staff to the savory food. Will come back again. I am from New York State . But it might be a wild.

Tags: Casual
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food5
ambience3
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 26, 2017

Steaks were excellent but pricey, and we were disappointed to have to pay an additional charge for the sauce, and any side vegetables.

Another drawback was the looping Bing Crosby Christmas music blaring into the room on December 26th.

Tags: Romantic, Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value3

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 25, 2017

We went Christmas Eve (4 of us) with reservations. They were late seating us but we didn't care - it was very busy and people were lingering. Wait staff were great, waitress (Hannah) was especially fantastic! Food is ALWAYS delicious - traditional chop house with wonderful sides! Wine list is extensive.

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for a Date, Notable Wine List
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on December 24, 2017

We arrived a little early on Christmas Eve and had a glass of wine while waiting for our 6:30 reservation. We were seated at about 6 which was fine since we were early. From the time we ordered dinner until it was delivered was over an hour and a half. Our server came by twice during that time to say it should be out soon. The roasted chicken was greasy and the mashed potatoes cold. The other two meals seemed tone better. The server came back one more time to ask if we wanted dessert. We declined, no one apologized, or offered anything in exchange for the 1 1/2 wait for our food and the poor quality of the $25 chicken. Very disappointed.

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food1
ambience3
service1
value1

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on December 24, 2017

We had reservations for 6:30pm Christmas Eve with plans to attend 8:30pm church services very close by. When we arrived we were told they were running late and left standing. We went into the lounge where other people were waiting, and inquiring about their tables. No one was particularily gracious or helpful. When we were finally seated the waitress said the kitchen was running 30 minutes late; however, our food took an hour to arrive. Service was very spotty. We rushed through our dinners and arrived at the church about 15 minutes late. Not how we wanted to spend Christmas Eve.

Tags: Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience2
service2
value3

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 24, 2017

Terrible so disappointed for our Christmas Eve dinner !! Ordered the lobster pie which I get basically every year here and it came out with NO lobster ($30.00) 😡 I sent it back and it returned with 2 1/2 pieces and the mug. gave me a free drink BFD I would of made more of this but didn’t want to embarrass my son and husband . Sad to say we will be looking for a new place on Christmas Eve for sure !! And another the service was so slow !!

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food1
ambience3
service1
value1

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 24, 2017

I have visited this restaurant over the last 20 years, always great, but this time the steak was just warm, with all the sides hot. It was crowded and they said the kitchen was running slow, but many times before we have gone on holidays and never had this problem. They offered to heat up our food, but I do believe it would have taken 5 minutes in the oven to bring the center of the steak to the correct temp. So the sides would have been just warm when we would have gotten back our steaks. No manager came over to apologize or offer any comp. I am not a person that likes to make scene, unless I really get bad service. I believe the reason the kitchen was behind was due to the rooms being at capacity and usually they stagger their patrons arrivals, so that not everyone is eating their main course at almost the same time. The time between our appetizer and main course was 75 minutes. I would still go back. I think the mangers just need to get the kitchen in order. btw, our server was great.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Bar Seating, Good for a Date, Good for Groups, Romantic, Pre/post Theatre, Good for Anniversaries
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food3
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on December 24, 2017

Good, but very traditional fare. Their main menu hasn’t changed in the 6 years I’ve lived here, and their specials (while they do rotate) also represent very traditional fine dining. Would love to see them get a bit more creative with some new dishes! Overall. Enjoyable - if not simply predictable.

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food4
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 21, 2017

Food was bland, need spices pasts was bland no taste needed cheese and garlic

Tags: Romantic
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food1
ambience5
service2
value2

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 20, 2017

Great as usual! Always a good choice prior to attending the Music Hall

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Romantic, Quiet Conversation, Good for a Date, Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Adelaide / SA)·Dined on December 18, 2017

Atmosphere was wonderful, server was polite, knowledgeable and attentive. Food was sufficient, nothing over the top. Deserts and beverages were very good though. Bathrooms are located downstairs, but it is an old building so it is a trade off for ambiance.

Tags: Business Meals, Special Occasion, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 18, 2017

Christmas get together

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food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 14, 2017

I have been here quite a bit and never had bad service or food less then 10/10. However I came with a group of 5 people and the food took forever to come out. When it finally made it out my husbands meal was screwed up, the sides were cold and did not taste like they normally do. Our drinks were empty unless we asked for a refill. I will be back because it is one of our favorite restaurants in Portsmouth and I hope our last experience was a one time thing.

Tags: Special Occasion
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food3
ambience5
service3
value3

 
·Dined on December 13, 2017

The meal was delicious and prepared exactly as we requested. The service was equally good with a smiling, personable and knowledgeable waitress.

Tags: Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Seasonal, Good for Birthdays, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
·Dined on December 13, 2017

This was our third time going to the Library and it did not disappoint. Service was friendly, prompt but not pushy. The cowboy cut ribeye was cooked to perfection.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Naples)·Dined on December 12, 2017

This was a bday celebration for my husband with our adult children. We had a fabulous meal and good drinks. Our waitperson was good, but I think they were understaffed that evening and she didn’t check up on us enough!
We will be back.

Tags: Cozy, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
·Dined on December 10, 2017

As usual, The Library Restaurant was great. A group of friends met for lunch on Sunday. Except for one of us, we had all been there before. We had a very nice waitress and a very good meal. We'll definitely return.

Tags: Bar Seating, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Groups
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (New England)·Dined on December 10, 2017

Excellent! Lovely setting in wood-paneled room with fireplace. Ambience surpassed by food, if that is even possible!!

Tags: Authentic, Special Occasion, Great for Brunch
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on December 9, 2017

Made reservations just in case, however there was no wait and I think we picked the perfect time for a late lunch. It felt as if we were the only ones in the lounge . I’ve never been to a restaurant where the coffee I ordered was hot , but I could still drink it right away. So I was already pleased here. The bone-in pork chop and 8oz filet were the best we’ve ever had by far. Even the Mac&cheese and sweet potato fries were amazing. I was full but could not stop my self from still reaching for more of our sides. We were so pleased by the food , atmosphere and service.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on December 6, 2017

The server was wonderful. She was very attentive and personable. The food was great all but the haddock was over cooked. Everything else was superb. The atmosphere was also lovely and we had an enjoyable evening and anniversary dinner. I would recommend this restaurant to friends and family. Cannot wait till we have an occasion to come back again.

Tags: Vibrant Bar Scene, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion
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food4
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (New England)·Dined on December 3, 2017

Consistently good. This is a wonderful, traditional steak house. They don’t make them like this any more. Superior experience.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
·Dined on December 2, 2017

A wonderful restaurant with great atmosphere. Well worth the price for the steaks and the desserts are amazing.

Tags: Good for a Date, Romantic, Good for Anniversaries, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on December 2, 2017

The lamb was incredible. Potatoes au gratin, also delicious. Service was too-notch. Highly recommend eating here.

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food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Miami)·Dined on November 30, 2017

Fabulous food best filet in town and great quiet relaxing atmosphere!

Tags: Fun, Special Occasion, Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 26, 2017

Excellent dinner menu and the steaks are some of the best I’ve ever tasted. Perfectly cooked!!

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Worth the Drive, Business Meals
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Chicago)·Dined on November 23, 2017

Restaurant was more crowded than usual as it was Thanksgiving, but we were seated on time, and the service was excellent. Everyone was smilng!

Tags: Vibrant Bar Scene, Worth the Drive, Sunday Lunch, Fit for Foodies, People Watching
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

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