The Rudder, the newest addition to Barbara Lynch’s family of restaurants, is officially open for business in Gloucester’s Rocky Neck neighborhood. Nestled in among the art galleries and storefronts on the waterfront, the new (and only North Shore) outpost from the chef behind No. 9 Park, Menton, The Butcher Shop, B&G Oysters, Sportello and Drink has come to life in the same spot where the much-loved original was established in 1957, and is a modern, cozy and elegant update and homage to the building’s beginnings.
The coastal Italian, French, and New England-inspired menu leans into simple preparations that allow high-end ingredients to shine, with a rotating selection of local oysters and shellfish at the raw bar and locally-farmed produce, fishes and handmade pastas on the dinner list. Head in by land or by sea (yes, you can show up by boat) for some summery light fare like Jumbo Lump Crab and Heirloom Tomato Salad with baby frisée, lemon and olive oil, or Babette’s Butter Soup with scallops, clams, lobster, milk & honey and Osetra caviar; or satisfy a beach-day appetite with mains like Roasted Beef Tenderloin with pommes robuchon and beef jus, or Butter Poached Lobster with pickled mushroom and parsnip. Finish the evening with something decedent from an ever-changing selection of sweets like Vanilla Bread Pudding with spiced prunes and chantilly cream, and Chocolate Mousse.
The dining room features dark, midnight blue walls and light hardwood floors, with dark-stained chairs and tabletops, blue wide-paneled windows looking out to the dock, and a long wood-topped bar for a quintessential fishing town meets summer restaurant vibe. There are just a few tables inside plus outdoor seating on the deck overlooking the water in warmer months, perfect for lingering over a craft cocktail or a glass of rosé. It’s the ideal spot for either a special occasion or a weeknight indulgence after a day at the beach.
The Rudder is open Tuesday through Saturday from 3:00 to 9:00pm (the bar stays open until 10:00), and you can either make a reservation online or give them a call at 351.217.1265. Give them a follow on Instagram, and keep an eye on the website for menu updates and special events.