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The Essex

4.8
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305 reviews
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$31 to $50
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American
Modern American Dining With a Focus on Sustainable and Local Product, Cutting Edge Fish Program with $1 oysters ALWAYS.

"Voted Best New Restaurant in New England" Yankee Magazine 2018
"Best Restaurants in Connecticut" CT Magazine 2019
"Not to be Missed" Town And Country

The Essex provides an intimate yet energetic upscale casual dining experience built around our double sided open fireplace. Focused on our locally sourced products from the New England Family Farms, Fishermen, and our partner farms along the shore, we provide a food forward experience with cuisine that plays with flavor profiles of Japan, Korea, Thailand, and China rooted in familiar styles from American Dining Favorites.

Experiences

Select an experience by choosing a date, time and party size
Explore unique dining experiences for every mood—from prix-fixe menus to can't-miss promotions.

Special menus

  • $1 Oysters!

    Starting Jul 18, 2020 · Thu - Sat 4:00 PM - 7:45 PM
    Come enjoy all the $1 oysters you can eat with dinner and drinks!

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitising
  • Surfaces sanitised between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Clean menu provided to every guest
  • Sanitiser or wipes provided for customers
  • Contactless payment available
  • Sealed or wrapped utensils used
Social Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
Personal Protective Equipment
  • Waiting staff wear masks
What 305 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.8based on recent ratings
4.8
Food
4.7
Service
4.7
Ambience
4.5
Value
Noise · Moderate
95% of people would recommend it to a friend
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M
vipMaggie
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Absolute pleasure...food outstanding

CM
vipChristinaM
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Fantastic meal and wonderful service. As good as any NYC restaurant. A hidden gem!

M
Michelle1
New York Area
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

The food and the service was amazing. The restaurant is on the expensive side but it was worth it. If you're able to I suggest treating yourself to a delicious meal there. I did the tasting menu and I loved every course!

PW
PeterW
London
4 reviews
Dined on 23 July 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Our waiter was world class

We loved the food

Cocktails were creative and fun

Super experience

j
jean
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on 18 July 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

The food was excellent thoroughly enjoyed the rolls--different presentation from the usual. Service was very knowledgeable & attentive (our waiter brought a complimentary proseco toast even though we didn't expressly tell him it was our anniversary). We sat indoors with distance seating and felt very comfortable. Good & somewhat unusual wine selection. A very enjoyable experience!

B
Babs
New England
1 review
Dined on 18 July 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

The food was delicious. Farm to table.
We ate outside, where the accommodations were pleasant and plenty of space between tables!
Chef Taylor is innovative and serves top notch meals!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on 17 July 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Amazing! Every time we eat here it’s better than the last! It’s definitely a MUST try if you haven’t been.

JK
JudithK
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on 17 July 2020
Overall4Food5Service4Ambience3

It is hard to make a final judgement about the overall experience given the unique times we are living in. Each dish that we had was outstanding and unique, with extremely large portions Even though there were few tables in the room, the noise level was high and voices and sound carried throughout the room. Service was a challenge with a wait time for our first course of over an hour...apparantly our order was never entered...and others ordering after us had already been served.
However, given the high quality of the food preparation, we will give it another go.

LC
LisaCiv
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on 17 July 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Delicious food-oysters were outstanding.
Very good service too!

C
vipCaren
New England
99 reviews
Dined on 16 July 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Another amazing dinner....fabulous cocktails...namely the Hibiscus 🌺 Punch and the Lost in Paradise. We had the $1 Mystic oysters, the Hawaiian Poke with salmon belly and Wahoo to start...then the Double Double Wagyu Burger, CT lobster roll and the buttermilk fried chicken with "Mac-n-greens" and kimchee. For dessert we shared the Corn 🌽 Pavlova and the S'mores Tart. Everyone sitting around the table is really happy and full.

JR
vipJackR
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on 11 July 2020
Overall5Food5Service4Ambience4

We are self-proclaimed foodies and dining is a major activity for us that has been impeded somewhat by Covid-19. We were delighted to discover this neighborhood gem on one of our first post-lock down outings. The food was well-prepared, served attractively and exceptionally flavored! The wine list was well-suited for the menu and reasonably priced. We were seated inside by request, but there were also attractive outside tables available.
Prices were reasonable for the quality of food and service. Recommended for most any occasion.

AC
AC926
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on 9 July 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

We were so pleasantly surprised with the Essex. We did the chefs tasting menu and every dish was executed to perfection. Couldn’t recommend more!

YM
YuliaM
1 review
Dined on 3 July 2020
Overall5Food5Service4Ambience5

My husband and I had a great time and enjoyed their outstanding food.

DS
vipDocSam
Philadelphia
40 reviews
Dined on 20 June 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

Celebrated my wife's birthday after the re-opening of in-door dining. Tables far apart. Waiters wore facemarks. We kept ours on unless eating. Great $1 oyster deal so ordered a dozen. The fish skewers were tasty but a little skimpy. I had the Korean fried chicken - excellent! Served w/ kimchi. Wife had the long bone Wagyu and one son had the Wagyu steak frites - both superb. Other son had a spicy noodle dish that had a nice kick to it.

Finished the meal with 2 desserts - a sweet corn puree dish and an Asian Yuzu parfait. They put a candle in the corn dessert and sang Happy Birthday.

Very enjoyable and felt safe. Plenty of left overs to take home.

BN
BrigNess
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on 20 June 2020
Overall5Food5Service4Ambience5

Everything was delicious. We started with a salad of greens, tomato, watermelon and goat cheese. Definitely out of my wheelhouse and yet surprisingly delicious! Followed up with a poached halibut in an Asian broth with ramps asparagus and radishes. My tastebuds were delighted and surprised with the flavor combinations. I cannot rate the food higher!

SF
SusanF
1 review
Dined on 13 June 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

It’s always a pleasure to dine at The Essex. Food is beyond incredible and made with the love and joy!

DN
DavidN
New England
1 review
Dined on 13 June 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

The food is incredible, As the wait staff is very good. It was very nice to be there and enjoy eating out on the deck.

FG
FoodGuyCT
Las Vegas
3 reviews
Dined on 13 June 2020
Overall5Food5Service3Ambience5

Great meal as always, half the group did the tasting menu that they loved and the other half ordered off the menu. The food has a fresh full bodied layer taste that helps even the non-foodie among us appreciate the experience of eating at The Essex. Another special occasion celebrated with an awesome dining experience at The Essex.

CR
ChrisR
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on 12 June 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

It’s always a 5 star experience

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on 13 March 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

best restaurant in town. best restaurant in the area. amazing food. wonderful menus. very exciting ideas about creating and sharing new food experiences. they plan to do take out as well during covid 19 distancing. and, open a store part to sell ready made foods. its brilliant.

C
vipCaren
New England
99 reviews
Dined on 7 March 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

The current tasting menu of Chef Colt May be our favorite so far! Incredible experience at one of our most favorite places. The one bite of Prince Edward oyster with live seaweed, fresh sea grapes and Meyer lemon zest was the best flavor explosion!

F
Fudah
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on 15 February 2020
Overall5Food5Service4Ambience4

This was our first visit to this renowned restaurant. The greeting was very warm and pleasant. Seated immediately and primary tap water or bottled questions were asked and served. We waited a while for our server to make it to our table. He took our drink order and we waited a few minutes for drinks. Our martinis were served on a small carafe and on ice. Very nice presentation. Olives were small. A nice Gorgonzola stuffed large olive would be nice. Server could have used 1 less table at prime time because service went from 3-5 after we settled in. Starters were great, my wife enjoyed a dozen oysters and I really liked the spoon Kale salad. Entrees were mixed. My fish was well prepared and nicely spiced with fingerling accompaniment. My wife’s lobster and beef over pasta was not well prepared. Pasta was way overcooked. Bottle of wine was a very nice and well served. Chef owner came to the table to introduce himself. A very nice conversation became better when we found UVM in common. We will return soon and often. Need to try the speakeasy next time.

P
vipPubenthusiast
New York Area
20 reviews
Dined on 15 February 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

Valentines dinner with my wife. First time at the Essex. Started with barrel aged Manhattans, very good. Really good. We shared the Spoon Salad. Perfectly lightly dressed, great combo of veggies, cheese and nuts. For main course I had the Lobster Beef Fusilli and wife had the Salmon. The chef here innovates with combinations of seafood and meat. Both entrees were quite good. Very attentive service all around.

Our only criticism is that some tables in the dining room (including ours) are next to the entrance area. On a cold night we felt a cold breeze when other patrons entered.

RB
RoseannB
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on 14 February 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Absolutely a fantastic restaurant outstanding food as always it is truly my number one favorite restaurant in the world the food there’s not even enough words in the world to describe how fantastic the chef is a genius we can take everything and make it taste so delicious we can’t get enough in the staff I just love the stuff so nice and helpful and educated about the food the wine everything I have to mention my favorite waiter Peter my all-time favorite he’s so knowledgeable and knows everything inside and out of that restaurant 😍😍😍😍🥇⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️🔥🔥🔥

C
Chisin
New England
6 reviews
Dined on 14 February 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

OMG!! Valentine’s pre-fix menu was to die for. Great wine pairings, even pave on the courses, just the right portions and amazing changes in tastes/flavors from course to course. Started with a few craft cocktails up stairs (works of art, really) seated prompt/y on time. Could not have had a better experience. Sign me up for the next one!

RH
RachelH
1 review
Dined on 12 February 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Amazing experience from start to finish! My husband and I are already planning our next trip back! From the moment you enter the restaurant you are met with an intimate décor; cozy seating; and a double sided fireplace! The menu was incredible; it was difficult to narrow down what to order. My husband and I decided to try two appetizers; one entrée each; and then two desserts! Presentation; food; and the options were an experience not to be missed! Highly recommend this wonderful spot!

DN
vipDumplingNmore
New York Area
27 reviews
Dined on 30 January 2020
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

We were the only people in the dining room but it was early on a Thursday night. The duck appetizer was amazing omg and almost meal size. It filled me so much I really couldn’t eat the fluke entree which was also delicious. A table across the fireplace had the the nine course tasting which I will definite get the time. It looked wonderful from my mirrored angle of view. My wife and I both loved the specialty cocktails. So the bar is someplace I’ll go again as well.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
2 reviews
Dined on 23 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Unbelievable, must go!

RG
RichardG
1 review
Dined on 19 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service4Ambience4

Fabulous experience for may first time at The Essex! The food was sensational, the best around here on the shoreline. It was a very cold Sunday night so it was quiet with very few diners and the temperature of the room was very cold (until our server kindly raised it at our request) but the restaurant is beautifully decorated and the food was fantastic. We tried the tasting menu with wine pairings and everything was exquisite. Can't wait to return and try the menu.

B
vipBay1
New York Area
32 reviews
Dined on 15 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Consistently delicious and so creative! Plus, the staff is engaging and thoughtful....

GG
GloriaG
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 11 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

I loved how you could visit 3 places in 1. There is the very classy, comfy restaurant, the upstairs lounge, and the Mexican ‘cantina’. Each of these offers a different experience. The food at The Essex was delicious! And the service exceptional. We’d definitely go back. It was worth the 40 minute drive.

e
vipevam
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 3 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Such a great discovery. Amazing food, drinks and service.

DJ
DJT1
New England
1 review
Dined on 3 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Excellent atmosphere. Service was 5 star. Owner/chef has a great personality and obvious culinary skills. Will return often.

WP
WilliamP
1 review
Dined on 28 December 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

A wonderful dinner experience!! Nice people, outstanding food, and a personal welcome and follow up discussion with the chef!!

OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
4 reviews
Dined on 27 December 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Wonderful experience! We enjoyed our meal and it was great to have the opportunity to meet the Chef and members of his team!

A
Andy
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on 27 December 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Delicious and inventive

E
Ellenl
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on 27 December 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Perfect! Beautiful venue with fireplace comfortable cozy seating. Definitely will go back

LS
LindaS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 21 December 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

Fabulous, inventive food that is delicious and surprising.

GS
GailS
New York Area
19 reviews
Dined on 20 December 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

All I can say is wow! This is my new favorite restaurant. The food is spectacular-- there were four of us in our party and we all ordered something different for sampling purposes. Every single meal was out of this world. I had a lobster and fusilli with beets. The flavors were complex and everything was cooked to perfection. The service is top notch. Our server, Peter, who we knew from L&E is always wonderful. Colt, the chef and owner, came out to speak with us several times to make sure we were having a good experience. Great ambience as well. There was a very loud party in there and it was difficult to hear, but it's Christmas time and to be expected. My only regret is that I waited so long to try this place. I'll be back again soon.

l
landd
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 18 December 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

We had a wonderful meal at the Essex on Wednesday night as part of their Wednesday night supper club.
The food was amazing. We enjoyed the family style serving. We had a wonderful seat in front of the fireplace and very close to the beautiful Christmas tree. Our server, Peter, and chef and owner, Colt, along with a cocktail expert all showed concerned that our every need was met. Just a great experience all the way around. Hope to be Wednesday night regulars!

FAQs

The Essex offers takeaway which you can order by calling the restaurant at (860) 237-4189.

The Essex is rated 4.8 stars by 305 OpenTable diners.

You can book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size.