- Portsmouth, NH · New American · Small Plates · $$
By Catherine Smart
It was only a matter of time before the owners of Kittery’s acclaimed spots Anju Noodle Bar and The Wallingford Dram came across the bridge. The Wilder serves the best craft cocktails in town—which is what brought us here in the first place—but we couldn’t stop eating the bar snacks. From Korean Sticky Ribs to an excellent version of the ubiquitous kale salad with fried garbanzo beans and cured tomato, everything is extremely flavorful. Those dishes can stand up to inventive cocktails like the tropical Welcome Trolley: lemongrass-infused blanco tequila, pineapple, and chickpea water—which lends foamy, egg-white-like oomph—plus cardamom and lime. When you’ve had your fill of lobster rolls and cold beers on the city’s many decks (it can happen), step inside The Wilder and be transported into the kind of gastropub that could compete in any American city.
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