The gist: In a gorgeous, soaring space overlooking one of Portland’s busiest working waterfronts, you can watch the boats go by while you tuck into chef Fred Eliot’s French inflected seafood-centric menu.
The food: Scales employs one the city’s best bar crews, so start with an icy martini (or your favorite beverage) and a plate of smoked bluefish pate, fried whole belly clams, raw oysters or crudo before moving onto larger dishes like local Bang’s Island mussels with a mustardy cider cream sauce or pan roasted halibut with brown butter and hazelnuts. Desserts include a butterscotch sundae with vanilla frozen custard, maple cream, and caramel popcorn.
The cost: Starters and entrees range $8-39, most cocktails are $12, and beer and wine go for $4-14. Gift cards are available by phone.
How to order: Make a reservation on OpenTable for limited indoor or seasonal outside seating.