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The Top 5 Clam Shacks in Chatham, Massachusetts
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, November 16, 2020

Spending your vacation in Chatham puts you in the heart of one of Cape Cod's classic small towns. Upon arrival, you can wander Main Street and explore the shops, head to the beaches overlooking Nantucket Sound or Chatham Harbor, or enjoy the parks, trails, marinas, and ponds.

Of course, you'll surely get hungry as you explore everything Chatham has to offer, giving you the perfect opportunity to check out a clam shack or two.

The good news is that Chatham has some outstanding clam shacks all over town, so you can experience some of the Cape's best seafood without having to venture too far.

Here's a look at the top five clam shacks you'll come across in Chatham, MA.

1) Kream N' Kone

There are Kream N' Kone locations in West Dennis and West Chatham. Both venues are family-owned and operated, ensuring you get to experience a local gem during your time on the Cape.

The West Chatham restaurant sits on Main Street, across the road from the Chatham Farmers Market. This eatery has been around for over 30 years and is a summertime favorite among Cape Cod residents and visitors.

The menu is what you'd expect to find at a small clam shack, as there's a significant selection of fried seafood plates and rolls, including their famous lobster roll. You can also choose between grilled or broiled fish dishes or go with a non-seafood option like a burger, chicken sandwich, or hot dog.

Dessert is always on the menu, too. There are ice creams, sundaes, malts, and frappes, and you can even get a beer or a glass of wine with your meal.

There's a lot to like about the Kream N' Kone, so make sure you stop by when staying in the Chatham area.

2) Mac's Chatham Fish & Lobster

Mac's Chatham Fish & Lobster is about a ten-minute walk down Main Street from the Kream N' Kone, and it features an equally impressive menu.

Here, you'll find a great selection of seafood dishes, including swordfish, clam chowder, sea scallops, steamers, mussels, and fish tacos. There are also classic Cape Cod specialties like fried clams, lobster rolls, fried cod, and crab cakes, in addition to a raw bar featuring local oysters. You can even grab a lobster dinner if you're into a fancy meal.

Mac's has other locations in Wellfleet, Provincetown, Eastham, and Dennis, making it a chain you'll likely come across at some point during your Cape Cod travels.

3) Chatham Fish Pier Market

There are a couple of different reasons to visit the Chatham Fish Pier because it's a market and restaurant in one. If you're looking to grab some food to cook at your vacation rental, this is a great place to start because you can buy the freshest seafood you'll find anywhere on the Cape.

You can also pick up a ready-made meal at the Fish Pier Restaurant. The venue's menu includes lobster rolls, various fried seafood baskets, clam chowder, and crab cakes, many of which come with coleslaw and fries. There's a kid's menu, too, which is a perfect option if you're traveling with the family.

The Chatham Fish Pier is on the town's east side on Barcliff Avenue. It overlooks Aunt Lydia's Cove and features outstanding views of Tern Island and North Beach Island. In short, it's a one-of-a-kind location that is worth checking out for the scenery alone; the food is just a bonus.

4) Chatham Fish and Chips

Location is the name of the game for Chatham Fish & Chips, as they sit on Old Harbor Road, about a block from Main Street and steps from Veterans Field, home of the Chatham Anglers. If you plan to attend a baseball game on your Cape Cod vacation, stopping by this restaurant for a quick dinner beforehand is always a good idea.

The menu at Chatham Fish & Chips has a little bit of everything: There's a wide selection of fried seafood dishes, including fish and chips, scallops, clams, and shrimp. You can also grab a lobster roll, crusted haddock, or clam chowder. There are boiled and roasted options, too, in addition to chicken and salads.

Chatham Fish & Chips has indoor and outdoor dining areas, so you can spend your time on the patio enjoying the fantastic Cape Cod weather while you eat. Keep in mind that this restaurant chose not to open in 2020 but plans to get back to business in the summer of 2021.

5) The Impudent Oyster

Location is also an important consideration when visiting the Impudent Oyster, which sits across the street from Kate Gould Park, home of the Whit Tileston Bandstand. This park hosts concerts by the Chatham Band every Friday night between early July and Labor Day Weekend. If you plan to make one of these concerts part of your vacation, it makes sense to begin your night at the Impudent Oyster.

The menu at the Impudent Oyster is diverse, as there's a raw bar, some salads, and clam chowder, in addition to seasonal dishes featuring scallops, lobster, crab, sole, and oysters. You'll also find lobster rolls, fish sandwiches, scallop sandwiches, and burgers on the menu. There are significant beer and wine lists, too.

Overall, the Impudent Oyster provides more of a sit-down experience than other restaurants on this list, particularly at dinnertime. Still, it also has many clam shack staples that you're sure to enjoy.

No Wrong Choices in Chatham

The great thing about these clams shacks is that you can't go wrong, no matter which one you select. Chatham has a fantastic dining scene for such a small place, and once you wander through this charming Cape Cod town, you're sure to fall in love with everything it has to offer.

Take advantage of some of these lovely clam shacks to make the most of your dining experience on the Cape.

Chatham Clam Shacks Fried Clams

The Top 5 Clam Shacks in Barnstable
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, June 24, 2019

clam shack

Any vacation on Cape Cod must include at least one visit to a local clam shack. After all, these shacks are a significant part of summers on the Cape, and you’d be doing yourself a disservice if you don’t check them out during your stay.

Of course, since there are so many clam shacks on Cape Cod, choosing which ones to eat at can be challenging. Barnstable, the only actual city on the Cape, is particularly full of these shacks, with many of them sitting right along the ocean. For that reason, we’ve put together a list of the top five clam shacks to try in Barnstable this summer.


1) Osterville Fish

You’ll find two Osterville Fish locations in Barnstable, one in Osterville and one in Barnstable Village. The original Osterville Fish Market sits just off Route 28, while the newer storefront, Osterville Fish, Too, is steps from Millway Marina on Barnstable Harbor.

Osterville Fish Market allows you to purchase seafood to cook at home, and also has a take-out menu. Osterville Fish, Too offers patio dining, in addition to its take out menu and fish market. The menus at both locations feature everything you could ever want from a clam shack, including lobster rolls, clam boils, broiled seafood plates, crab cakes, soups, and salads. The Barnstable Harbor location also has burgers, hot dogs, and chicken dishes.


2) Baxter's Boathouse

As you'll soon see, Hyannis Inner Harbor is full of clam shacks, and if your Cape Cod vacation rental is in this area, you'll never run out of places to try. The first location to check out is Baxter's, which is two separate entities: Baxter's Boathouse Club, a 21+ establishment, and Baxter's Fish 'n' Chips, offering family-friendly dining. Baxter's is right on the water and has a dock, so you can even take your boat right to the restaurant for a meal and drinks.

The menu is the same at both versions of Baxter's, although the family-friendly side has a kids' menu, as well. On the menu, you'll find local favorites like stuffed quahog, New England Clam Chowder, seafood plates, steamed clams, lobster rolls, and swordfish dishes. There are also steaks, hamburgers, and chicken entrees available.


3) Spanky's Clam Shack and Seaside Saloon

A second option on Hyannis Inner Harbor is Spanky's Clam Shack and Seaside Saloon, a venue enjoying a prime location on Ocean Street and a patio area overlooking the water. Spanky's shares a building with Pirate Adventures Hyannis and is close to the Hy-Line Ferry Docks, so if you want to grab a bit before heading onto the water, this is the place to do it.

The appetizers at Spanky's are always a draw, including the oysters, scallops, baked oysters, crab cakes, and stuffed quahog. At lunchtime, select from a diverse menu that includes the fried clam roll, lobster roll, and fried scallop roll. You can also get amazing clam chowder, choose from a variety of lobster feasts, go with Spanky's Clambake, or try the restaurant's pasta dishes. Of course, if you're not into seafood, steak, chicken, and salad are also available.


4) The Black Cat Harbor Shack

A final option on the Inner Harbor is The Black Cat, which is actually three restaurants in one. First, there's The Black Cat Tavern, a casual, family-friendly option with pub-style decor. There is also a lounge where you'll find live music four nights per week in the summer. Next door is The Black Cat Harbor Shack, which is basically a take-out window, but you can grab a drink and eat on the patio, as well. Finally, you'll find the Shack Out Back Raw Bar behind the Harbor Shack. This venue has a covered patio and full bar, and also offers live music in the summer. Keep in mind that these restaurants are across the street from the Inner Harbor, but still very scenic.

All three restaurants serve a selection of fried seafood, salads, appetizers, and sandwiches, including their famous lobster salad roll. You can also choose from the raw bar and entree menus at Shack Out Back and The Black Cat Tavern.


5) Wimpy's Seafood Cafe & Market

Wimpy’s sits on Main Street in downtown Osterville, so it’s a little away from the waterfront, but it still serves fresh seafood in a laidback, diner-style atmosphere, making it well worth a visit. Wimpy's dates back to 1938 and is both a restaurant and marketplace so you can order a meal to enjoy on-site or grab some seafood to take back to your Cape Cod vacation rental with you. There is often live entertainment on weekends at Wimpy's, as well.

The menu at Wimpy's is a little different from others on this list because it has dinners like meatloaf, chicken parmesan, and turkey, but there is also a great deal of seafood available, starting with Wimpy's Famous Quahog Chowder. You'll also find a raw bar, fried seafood meals, and, as is Cape Cod tradition, a lobster roll on the menu.


Check Out a Clam Shack on This Vacation

As you can see, there is no shortage of clam shacks in Barnstable, and as you start exploring the city, you’re sure to come across many great restaurants to sample. Make sure you get out to at least one of the city’s top shacks on your upcoming vacation because you can’t beat the authentic Cape Cod vibe and fresh seafood that each of them provides.

Barnstable Cape Cod Restaurants Clam Shacks

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