Editors’ Choice (Tie)
The vista overlooking Pavilion Beach is one of the nicest around, with the mansions of Eastern Point and Two Pound Light in the distance. Feast on filet mignon or scallops on the deck—there’s a fire pit for chilly nights—or enjoy the polished wood and classic sailboat ambience indoors. 1606 is open for breakfast too; gazing at the peaceful harbor guarantees a serene start to the day.
55 Commercial St., Gloucester, 978-491-5090 ext. 5, 1606restaurant.com
If you can tear your eyes away from the picture-perfect view overlooking boats bobbing in the Annisquam River, you’ll notice a map on the wall showing all the farms and food purveyors the chefs buy from. If it can be sourced locally, it will be. Make reservations or risk a long wait for a seat at the bar—once you’ve made it all the way down the pretty winding road, you’ll have worked up an appetite. No reservations? Try slipping in for brunch—the restaurant opens at 9 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.
33 River Rd., Gloucester, 978-282-0700, themarketrestaurant.com
Mission on the Bay
Sweeping wraparound views from the rooftop deck are perfect on a summer night, but this place also has it going on in the middle of winter—nearly every seat has a water view, with the Boston skyline sparkling in the distance.
141 Humphrey St., Swampscott, 781-691-9277, missiononthebay.com