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2023 Mediterranean

Editors’ Choice

Bar25, Newburyport

Try a little bit of everything at this small-plates–focused Persian spot where owner Reza Rahmani draws upon his family’s recipes to craft delicious Middle Eastern food. Vegetarian-friendly dishes like Aubergine Hummus—made with flash-fried eggplant and Haifa Gardens Flatbread, topped with tomato fondue, sharp cheddar, and root veggies—and a variety of salads are built for sharing. But there’s plenty for carnivores, too, like carefully marinated, deeply flavorful kebabs with basmati rice and a healthy selection of vegetables. The craft cocktail list changes with the seasons and fits well in the urbane, three-story space lined with exposed brick and chic lighting. 25 State St., 978-255-3322,

Yella on the Water, Gloucester

Owners Danielle and Carlo Berdahn continue pleasing palates with their New England-meets-Lebanon mix, serving up fresh fish—and a multitude of other Mediterranean favorites—just down the street from the Fisherman’s Memorial. Whether you want to try the catch of the day, a felafel salad (we’d recommend getting extra felafel, made fresh and irresistible), or a house-made pasta stuffed with short ribs, the sunlit space and the large beachy deck make it a perfect place to enjoy a meal. Even the drinks menu shows Mediterranean influence, with a sumac-infused take on a French 75, and a bourbon cocktail enlivened with turmeric and rosemary honey. 25 Western Ave., Gloucester, 978-491-5334;

Readers’ Choice 

Adriatic Restaurant, Salem

Fans can’t get enough of the “Bag of Munchkins”—lobster, corn, and scallion fritters, served with sriracha mayo—and the attentive service at this dining spot. Choose from pasta, flatbreads, and a heavily Italian wine list in a charming space. 155 Washington St., Salem, 978-594-1832,
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