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May 24, 2001 05:30 AM

Salem MA Area

  • b

We will be "headquartering" in Salem for a few days and touring the Essex area. We like to eat where the locals chains or such. Seafood is at the top of the list but we certainly enjoy ethnic and other. Prefer very casual attire.

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  1. In a Pig's Eye was a favorite of my husband's before we were married and now it is a favorite of mine as well. It is a small one room bar/dining room with a very friendly staff and a regular clientelle. Monday (special mexican menu) and Thursday evenings they have entertainment beginning at 9 with no cover. Check out their website:

    FYI Salem is fighting a no smoking ordinance and could possibly be overturned by the time you visit.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Carol

      I second the suggestion of In a Pig's Eye. Its got a VERY local see the same faces at the bar every night. And the food is good too...especially their seafood and soups. The best chowder around. Finz just opened in Pickering Warf. Has the very best calamari I ever tasted.

    2. j
      Jason Valdes Greenwood

      Our favorite Clam Shack is Farnhams in Essex. Great fried clams and other fried seafood. Onion rings are great too, fries not as good as the onion rings. They are rumored to still fry in lard. I haven't been as happy with the clam chowder the last few times we went, so I'd avoid that. The fried platter is humongous so we usually split it between two of us.

      1. in salem try major magleashes for a great chowder (hate to differ w/ the pig lovers) also great burgers. a baroom very casual on washington st. a grill menu with ribs tips etc. the pig is also good food.. seafood in marblehead at the barnicle...always good/fresh

        1 Reply
        1. re: Joe

          Okay - In a Pig's Eye was nothing impressive. Not to be a stiff, but if this was my local and I needed to eat, then I would be very content. Chowder was okay, but nothing really in it. Not clams, not vegetables, nothing. Baked clams were a travesty. These poor animals died for nothing.

          However - the atmosphere was nice, folks were friendly, music was lively, beer was cheap. Just don't go for the food & you'll be fine.

          1. You can't get much more local than the Witches Brew and the people who dine in the bar are very friendly. I felt very much at home the first time I stopped in. They had some good specials, especially with lobster. Of course, I'm just now noticing how old this thread is, but it may still be helpful for someone else. One not to miss place is the AJ King Bakery, for their amazing croissants.