Reading Room Restaurant at The Bar Harbor Inn
Excellent food and service. Piano musician superb!
Excellent service, food expertly prepared
Check-in: late-season reservation meant that the restaurant was not full, yet instead of seating us at an open table near the windows/view, we were seated at a table near the bus station. We had to ask twice to be seated at a better table.
Food: we ordered the scallops, lobster pie, and surf and turf, plus chocolate cake for dessert. The scallops were rubbery and room temperature; lobster was tough and served with out-of-season, limp, room temperature asparagus. The steak was probably the best part (which is a compliment from two Chicagoans). Anything that was chilled (butter; chocolate cake) was rock solid and seemed to have just been removed from the cooler. Almost a laughably bad food experience for the price.
Wine service: Wine glasses were cloudy and need of cleaning; service was inconsistent (our bottle of wine was open and poured immediately; table next to us ordering the same bottle received a decanter and had the bottle decanted prior to consumption).
Overall: it felt as though the Reading Room has stopped trying. With such a great reputation, perhaps they think they can skate by on the pretty view and people's enthusiasm for good vacation experiences? For convenience, this was great. Otherwise, I'd say save your money.
Food was overrated and over priced!
Both the service and food was well below what I expected from such a well established hotel.
Seating was in a place where other customers walked or brushed past and the dress code of smart casual appeared not to be enforced, a small number of customers wearing jeans, tee-shirts/crew neck sweat shirts, each of which received preferred seating (window seating).
This restaurant was recommended by neighbours who had visited a number of years ago, but regrettably did not live up to their experience.
I would not make a reservation in the future as their are better restaurants in Bar Harbour.
Delicious food and abundance of lobster served in the lazy lobster and lobster pie which is NOT a pie at all.
An outstanding dinner, fabulous service, lovely ambiance - if we get back to Bar Harbor, we’ll revisit for sure!
Great food and atmosphere! The service was great and the staff members were very friendly and knowledgeable of the menu!
We’ve dined here a number of times and this time it appeared as if more tables were added to accommodate more guests / tables were too close to each other and noise level from guests was high, drowning out the piano! What a shame. Our anniversary dinner was just ok - service was very good as was the lobster pie; however, atmosphere left a lot to be desired. Not certain we will return.
We wanted a nice, comfortable, scenic location to watch the sun set & have a more upscale meal. Once we were seated in a timely manner, the server quickly approached, in a jovial mood with the intent to make this a very nice evening for the four of us. The pace is terrific, no hurry to order drinks. My husband appreciated the bourbon choices & my martini was poured with the shaker left at my discretion to add when appropriate. Our meals came out hot & accurate. I can't imagine anything here would not taste good. You can't beat the view but reservations are necessary.
Delicious food, elegantly served in a spectacular setting. A must visit if you are in Bar Harbor. We loved it.
Everything thing was wonderful
The Reading Room was one of our best dining experiences in our recent trip to Bar Harbor. The historical pictures and the waterfront setting are amazing. The staff is first class as well as the meal. We had the crabcakes, the lobster stuffed sole, and the lobster pie. All were excellent. Wish we had left room for some dessert but maybe next time.
The food was decent and the view was great but the over-sized hostess was very rude! Probably will not bother going back.
Beautiful views, service was outstanding, and the food fresh and well done. The menu is pretty traditional, and we both had steak, prepared exactly as we ordered. The lobster tail was fresh and cooked perfectly. This is fine dining, and while pricey, we found most restaurants of this type to be the same in the Acadia area. Most important, they were open when some other places had either closed for the season or were not open Monday or Tuesdays.
I give service and overall a two-and-a-half 3 because it was my birthday I was solo single woman sitting and they sat me in front of the serving cart. I asked if I could sit by the window that have wonderful Bay views which they had available but told me know they had it reserved even though I did reserve a table.
We had a lovely dinner at the reading room. The lazy lobster was delicious- best I’ve had. Makes me want to move to Maine.
It is a lovely dining room and has a great view. The wait staff is very attentive and wants your experience to be a happy one. The food is fine but nothing special and for the price it really should be special. The risotto was gummy and the mediterranean salsa did not enhance the salmon. My husband's dinner had 2 sauces neither added to the dish. The desserts were excellent -cheesecake and blueberry pie. We ate here a couple of years ago and had a better experience with the entrees.
Table light not lit until asked. Food mediocre and cold, and over priced. Service a bit cold.
We were traveling and staying at Bar Harbor. The restaurant was recommended to us. Everything about the meal was good. The service was excellent and the prices reasonable.
Exceptional dining experience.
This was our first time in Bar Harbor and we were staying in the Inn. We had dinner reservations for 8 pm on Wednesday Oct.9, our wedding night. We had to wait a bit, but not too long. Even though our dinner was interrupted by the fire alarm and us having to evacuate, we drank our wine quickly and headed outside until all was resolved. The staff and wait staff handled everything calmly ensuring everyone was safely outside. Once we were allowed back in, we soon got our dinner and delicious wedding cake with Colin playing Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together,” the night couldn’t be anymore special and memorable. We loved the service and special treatment we got at the Reading Room. It was our wedding night and we asked a month ahead if we could get a marzipan cake. We couldn’t believe that they remembered and the baker, Dallas specially made a fall topping out of marzipan! We couldn’t have been more thrilled. We even asked the pianist, Colin that night if he could play our song by Al Green which he did. Overall, even with the slight interruption, everything was wonderful.
After receiving a text from the restaurant the evening prior to dinner and confirming with them, I still had to wait 30 minutes for my table. Just as I was finishing dinner, we had to evacuate due to a fire in the hotel. My husband and I stayed around to pay our bill. There was absolutely no communication from any of the restaurant staff to my husband or I during the evacuation or anytime there after. We returned to the dining room to pay our bill, a very empty dining room. We were not offered any sort of compensation including free drinks or offered free dessert. We stayed outside in the crisp fall weather for 20 minutes to do the right thing, I can’t believe I’m saying this but I regret staying to pay. Very disappointed in the lack of communication or appreciation from the restaurant staff. The food was okay, the service was decent, the restaurant was loud but the atmosphere with interesting and unique.
Dinner was going great until the fire alarm went off and we had to evacuate. Luckily we finished our dinner first...but we didn’t get our checks. We feel bad for the wait staff who will lose out on their tips.
We had a lovely experience. The service by our waiter Joseph was excellent. The food was excellent. My husband enjoyed the lobster pie and I enjoyed the filet. The sunset views were spectacular. The piano player a nice romantic touch.
We ate here for dinner 3 out of 4 nights in Bar Harbor. One of our favorite venues. Very busy (and relatively loud) on Saturday vs the other nights. Still a great restaurant with a great menu.
We were celebrating our 45th wedding anniversary. This restaurant made the dinner a very special occasion for us. Thank you so much!
Great food and great service. Robert did a great job helping the servers while they were busy
I just love the Reading Room! Enjoyed my 70th birthday dinner very much. My filet was cooked perfectly along with the lobster tail. The palette cleanser sorbet was a classy addition. Also, the staff handled every detail perfectly. My daughter and son in law had pre-arranged payment (with a phone call) of our meal along with a candlelit dessert, card and the playing of Happy Birthday by the pianist. Nothing was overlooked. What a birthday dinner!
Beautiful view and ambiance. Efficient and friendly staff. Food good but pricey for the preparation.
Although Suzy our server was not aware, she helped us celebrate our 30 year anniversary. She was attentive and responsive. Our meals were superb and the atmosphere was perfect. The pianist was excellent too, making every aspect lovely.
The location is perfect for views of flowers, grounds and harbor. The service was excellent and the food dinner was perfect. We really enjoyed it and look forward to returning next season. The warm fire place provided an great place to relax after a wonderful dinner.
Wonderful service....Birthday celebration....liked the piano playing.....
A bit noisy
Loved the piano. Steak cooked perfectly.. lobster amazing! Highly recommend.
We were there to celebrate our 27th wedding anniversary. We had a lovely time. The food was delicious and the Reading Room was gorgeous. Service was great and the piano player even played a song for us for our anniversary. Thank you for a wonderful time.
Everything was outstanding. Especially impressed with the polish of our waitress.
First time at this restaurant.
Would go back again
Service was spot on
Great place when u want the evening to be special
Nice wine selection
Lobster bisque best ever had
Above all, save room for the Blueberry pie...WOW
Perfect spot for our anniversary dinner. Service was excellent and the food was a taste of Maine. Friendly servers and bartender.
Celebrating our anniversary on vacation
Loved Horace and piano player! Lazy lobster was the best idea ever. Blueberry pie and old fashion beyond compare!