Legal Sea Foods - Charles Square

4.3
1356 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Seafood
The signature dish at Legal Sea Foods – really fresh fish. Located in the courtyard of the Charles Hotel, our restaurant evokes the simple style of the original Legal Sea Foods that was in nearby Inman Square, Cambridge. In warmer months our outside patio reels in those who choose the fresh seafood and fresh air combo.

We’ve received a boatload of accolades including “#1 Best Seafood Restaurant” (USA Today, 2013), “Most Popular Boston Restaurant” (Zagat, 2012/2013), “Best Seafood Restaurant” (Improper Bostonian, 2010), “Best Chowder” (Boston Magazine, 2010) and the honor of serving our legendary New England Clam Chowder at every presidential inauguration since 1981.
What 1356 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.2
service
4.0
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Moderate
85% of people would recommend it to a friend
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N
New England
21 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 3

I am an older woman and I don't appreciate Legal's habit of hiding older patrons. It's quite obvious and it's insulting. If we hadn't had tickets to a performance, we would have left. I noticed we were shunted into a corner with other older women. Mix us in - we like the action.

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JR
New England
3 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

Food is always great, but service not so much. Very busy for a Friday night and staff seemed to be unable to handle it.

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JM
New York Area
14 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 2food 4service 2ambience 3

Had to reach out to manager twice because of poor service. Failure to bring proper drinks (alcoholic beverage mis-mixed from instructions and sparkling water not served), ordered appetizer was not served, and couldn’t get assistance when looking for sugar. My salmon was good.

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K
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

Very unfriendly service. The food was bad - very sour. The shrimps looked like frozen food. The parking was very pricey, even with validation. Will never visit here again.

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CA
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Went for the Restaurant Week. Lunch menu options were great and the tiramisu was my favorite part!

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N
Cleveland
2 reviews
Dined on March 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Always consistent quality and service at a reasonable price. Great selection of beer and wine sure to please.

With several locations around town, they are accessible and in great locations.

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ML
1 review
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

The service was painstakingly slow. We waited 15 minutes for water and were not given bread. Our server was impolite and checked in infrequently. The food came out quickly and tasted fine. It took far too long to have our order placed. Noisy and bustling atmosphere.

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KD
London
13 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food as usual

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on March 8, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

The wait was long before our order was requested. The waiter forgot to bring my friend her tea. She reminded him when he brought the check and he apologized and said he’d get it right away but we were already late so didn’t accept. We had to speak loudly to be heard. The food was great but next time I think we’ll try another place.

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OT
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on March 3, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Good food, service a bit slow despite the slow afternoon, but cordial

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L
New England
2 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

We usually have excellent service at this location but you were quite busy Saturday night. We were left alone, which is fine, but we had to ask for ketchup twice which we didn't receive until three of us were all done eating and only my son was left with a pile of french fires he could now eat. We also had to ask for rolls twice.

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a
New England
4 reviews
Dined on February 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love this Harvard Square location of Legal Seafoods. The atmosphere, service and food - always SPOT ON.

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p
New England
3 reviews
Dined on February 27, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 5

My order of swordfish was completely undercooked and had to be sent back. It took a very long time to get the "corrected" piece of fish, which was delicious and properly cooked, by the way. The restaurant was very nice to not charge me for my order of fish which was appreciated. Generally, food at the Legal Seafood in Charles Square (Harvard Square) is usually very good. The staff did make a reasonable effort to correct the problem.

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BL
1 review
Dined on February 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

As always the food is very good. The seafood casserole was delicious and full of scallops and lobster. Try the wonton appetizer. 4 large wontons. Very tasty

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DL
New England
5 reviews
Dined on February 25, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

We had a quiet booth. The place was not crowded. The food was absolutely delicious. Very patient waitress.

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TB
New England
2 reviews
Dined on February 25, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 4

The food was good, as expected, but I was very surprised by the very slopping plating. I was entertaining some Japanese guests, and the plates were a mess! My own dish was the lemon sole. which was very tasty, but pieces of fish were dumped on top of a clump of rice, next to a blob of spinach, and capers were strewn across the plate with no attention to where they landed. I have rarely seen a visually more unappealing plate in a quality restaurant. I certainly will not bring Japanese guests again.

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OT
New England
3 reviews
Dined on February 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was great!

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FI
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on February 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I wish Legal Sea Foods was in NYC, the food was extremely fresh and delicious. I highly recommend to anyone visiting the Boston area.

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F
Chicago
1 review
Dined on February 17, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Good food, great service. Tended to be “out of things” which I found a bit surprising for such a well run franchise,

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BM
Chicago
22 reviews
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 2ambience 2

OH MAN, DO THEY NEED HELP AT THE BAR!! One Bartender for the entire restaurant on a very busy Saturday night? Ridiculous. The service was ok, food excellent, BAR WAS A TOTAL JOKE AS WE WAITED OVER 20 MINUTES FOR DRINKS EVERY TIME. F for fail

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I
New England
7 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

THANKS FOR MAKING THIS A BETTER EXPERIENCE THAN THE LAST TIME

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OT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service and food!

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JU
Louisville
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I ate at the bar and the service was great! Professional, attentive, and courteous. Seafood selection was ample and food quality was good. Would recommend to a friend!

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OT
New England
2 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 2

Considering it was Valentine’s Day, there was no shock in it being packed— however, we were put at a blatantly makeshift table next to the emergency exit doors, and I could hardly squeeze into my seat (which was mere inches from the wall). That being said, the seafood was excellent, and the managerial staff quite nice— our waiter was a tad awkward and not that present, but again there were a lot of diners that evening.

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m
1 review
Dined on February 13, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Hard to say. It's a lovely location and appealing menu, service was ok but my particular item, kale salad, was basically just a huge quantity of kale, underdressed and with three or four small squares of sweet potatos and some apple slices. I would have done waay better at Sweetgreens et al.

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OT
1 review
Dined on February 3, 2019
Overall 1food 3service 1ambience 4

Very poor service. We had to wait for evrything quite a while.

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OT
New England
7 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 3

Very disappointed with the Shrimp special. Over cooked.

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OT
New England
10 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Tom is a great waiter! Service food ambiance enjoyed

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OT
1 review
Dined on January 28, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

Great, fast and friendly.

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S
Atlanta
1 review
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The best seafood and clam chowder ever! I highly recommend it!

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w
New England
32 reviews
Dined on January 18, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

Main arrived before apps were done and the restaurant was empty. No excuse.

Wait staff scripted interaction.

Preparation was boring.

Past it’s glory.

Too bad.

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PD
New England
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We enjoyed a fantastic fish meal
So delicious
The waiter outstanding
No rush
Could stay as long as you wanted
The dessert was perfect to end the meal
Sherbert tasty good
We will soon be back for another great meal

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J
New England
10 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

My wife and I like to make a meal of Legal's excellent starters. This time we had tuna sashimi, smoked salmon with brioche bread & steamed mussels, preceded by a margarita, accompanied by a glass of Sancerre and followed by pumpkin cheesecake & espresso. Altogether a very festive New Year's Eve dining experience.

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L
New England
9 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Another great server - Chloe.

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LR
1 review
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were in Boston for Christmas Day, away from home. The staff was attentive, kind and pleasant. Our meal from drinks to appetizers to entrees and desserts was delicious. We enjoyed our experience and we will definitely return.

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p
New England
25 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 3

Delicious food. Same classic Legal menu unlike some Legal restaurants that have limited menus and no substitutions. Tried the new chestnut hill restaurant... but had to return here!

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LA
New England
5 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Nice but cramped! Chairs knock tables;( but great food

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HL
New England
7 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 3

Christmas Eve was very busy but service was ridiculous. Our appetizers and main dishes arrived all at the same time and there were missing drinks and food items

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L
New England
16 reviews
Dined on December 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great eatery. Gave us table we wanted and they did all the rest.

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L
New England
10 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Excellent new server called Autumn.
Manager arranged for table change in a better area.

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