Ceres Street | The Oar House

One of my favorite parts of Portsmouth is the area near the waterfront along Ceres Street, which runs parallel to Market Street, with its intensely tall buildings (as felt from Ceres Street) that seem to make a person feel more connected with the abutting waterfront.  In this photo, taken from one end of the area, The Oar House is featured with its maroon street front entrance.

 

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Moffatt-Ladd Gardens | The Oar House

The little garden perched above The Oar House Deck and in front of the Moffatt-Ladd House is easy to miss.  It’s this little oasis with fountains and rich colored flowers tucked right on the side of Market Street.  (It’s also often overpoweringly stinky thanks to the dumpsters at the Ceres St. level).  It’s well worth a stroll down if you’re heading towards Annabelle’s for some ice cream or towards the Decks or out for a Harbor Cruise.

Mombo & The Oar House Dock | Portsmouth's (New) Restaurants

This week marks an exciting week in the Portsmouth dining scene.  The former Dunaway Restaurant recently reopened as Mombo Restaurant in time for the Memorial Day holiday weekend, and features “creative, internationally-inspired cuisine prepared and served by an experienced team of culinary professionals in a unique seacoast setting”. (Thanks to Rachel Forrest of the Herald for the info!)

Also, as I was strolling around this afternoon during lunchtime, I saw a new sign up where I’d recently seen some interior renovations going on at the old Blue Claw restaurant.  Much to my surprise, today the sign looked rather familiar with a design I thought I’d seen before, then I realized it read “The Oar House Dock” (the new sign shares the oars around the title just like “The Oar House” does; and the new space shouldn’t be confused with The Oar House Deck).  I’m not sure what the scoop is behind the scenes – but it appears that the owners of The Oar House either bought or are renting the space across the street and are offering a more wallet friendly (my interpretation of the sign) menu with pizza and traditional seafood offerings while still being able to enjoy an outdoor deck.  I for one welcome the change – as I always thought the Blue Claw was overrated and overpriced in a great location.  I’ll be stopping by the new spot in the near future to test it out.

The Oar House | Ceres Street

Today – another one of my favorite spots on Ceres Street, The Oar House.  The Oar House has an awesome outdoor sign, an incredibly well located deck for the warmer months, and one of the most inviting and cozy interiors of any place in Portsmouth.  I don’t get there for dinner too often, but the few times I’ve been to enjoy a glass of wine in the downstairs bar, I was lucky enough to hear Don Fancy on the piano.  The exposed wooden beams on the ceiling throughout the interior add to the building’s charm.

My favorite part of this shot must be the downspout off to the right – I just loved how the copper is worn and discolored with all that character.  The sidewalk in this shot is new, as the City invested some serious dollars this past spring to spruce up the Ceres Street infrastructure along with the new park at The Decks.

The Oar House Deck & Tugboats

I’ve been wanting to get a great shot of the tugboats in a nice winter setting, but the Portsmouth Harbor Cruise deck is now blocked off from visitors. Instead I had to climb up on the side of the Oar House’s deck so that I could get a glimpse of the winter scene and work in some of the waterfront buildings and the Moran Towing tugboats.

Don’t you just feel cold looking at this photo?

The Oar House Deck & Tugboats

I’ve been wanting to get a great shot of the tugboats in a nice winter setting, but the Portsmouth Harbor Cruise deck is now blocked off from visitors. Instead I had to climb up on the side of the Oar House’s deck so that I could get a glimpse of the winter scene and work in some of the waterfront buildings and the Moran Towing tugboats.

Don’t you just feel cold looking at this photo?

The Oar House

I went for a quick walk in the cold New Hampshire air after work.

The lights of the Martingale Wharf building look beautiful at night shimmering inside the structure and reflecting off the water now that work on the building has commenced, and the freighter that is in port was rather inviting too.  Shots of each will probably follow in the next few days, but it was the subtle and inviting glow of The Oar House’s entrance on Ceres Street that won the prize for today’s post.  Love the restaurant, and the very intimate feel with the rich colors of the bricks and the wooden beams inside.  You can even see a wooden ship in the upstairs window.