Best dining decks in Southern Maine

A gin cocktail on deck at M.C. Perkins Cove.

After a dour springtime in Maine, June is coming on strong. Time to hit the deck! Standbys like The Porthole in Portland and Portland Lobster Company are always a good time, but not all decks are created equal. Some are crowed with bad beer and bad tattoos, while others have James Beard winning chefs and synchronized service.

Two years in the making, M.C. Perkins Cove in Ogunquit just opened an intimate deck overlooking a postcard view of the Atlantic. The high-end bistro voted “Top 10 places in the world with a view,” by USA Today now has an alfresco spot from which to drink it all in.

Up on the second floor, a three-season porch feels like the top deck of a ship. A sheltered terrace with retractable sides and roof and heat lamp capability means the unpredictability of Maine weather is no worry. The home of James Beard chefs Mark Gaier and Clark Fraiser is ready for the summer throngs.

M.C. Perkins Cove new deck.

The ceaseless waves surge against the rocks as an early sloop swans by with billowing sails. In synchronized array, corn chowder with Maine lobster and fish cakes appear like magic. Sides like onion rings, light and crisp, go nicely with duck confit, or try them on their own paired with a Hidden Cove Summer Ale for an ideal taste of summer. For your next topside toast, hoist a lavender cocktail in a shimmering hue evocative of Provence. 

Shade at Higgins Beach Inn.

Throw no shade on the new Higgins Beach Inn deck. Opening Thursday, Shade, the new restaurant at this historic Scarborough inn was named after its expansive, sheltered terrace. This party deck will shield surfers and tourists alike from the hot sun and pelting rain. With wine on tap, fish and chips, Damariscotta oysters and other fine fare on the menu, Shade brings a new dimension to this close knit beach community. Huddle here for the next hurricane party.

The Bait Shed in Pine Point.

Next stop, The Bait Shed. Most Pine Pointers know The Bait Shed as the hidden gem for seafood in the rough. But things aren’t so rough here anymore. The bar with a prolonged deck that overlooks Jones Creek in Scarborough has upped its game with tuna tartare, great cocktails (try the punch bowl for two) and views, views, views. The only thing you have to watch out for here is eagle-eyed seagulls looking to steal your lunch.




Kathleen Pierce

About Kathleen Pierce

A lifelong journalist with a deep curiosity for what's next. Interested in food, culture, trends and the thrill of a good scoop. BDN features reporter based in Portland since 2013.