Captain Scott’s Lobster Dock in New London, CT

I lived in Southeastern Connecticut for over 20 years and never heard of Captain Scott’s Lobster Dock. It was my boyfriend’s passion for good food and his Yelp skills that led us to this glorious eating place in 2009 when we made a month-long trip to the East Coast to visit friends and family.

We drove down the narrow gravel road into a large, packed parking area. Then we saw the lobster pots, picnic tables, and finally the place we were looking for. The line was at least a couple hundred people deep, and the dining was very unique. There were no waitresses or waiters: you just stand in line, order, take your number, and find a seat or place to stand. They call you and you eat. Dozens of familiar customers came prepared with picnic baskets, plates, tablecloths, and their own silverware. Tons of families were there and even though there were lots of seats, they were nearly all full with hungry diners.

The wait was substantial, but the docks are fun to explore and within earshot of the food retrieval area. When our number was called, I nearly sprinted to get it. The tray was loaded with delicious seafood. We had clam strips, fritters, lobster rolls, onion rings, and fried shrimp. We brought our own assortment of local brews from Magic Hat Brewing to wash it all down.

Seating was full by the time we got our food, and we didn’t really want to sit with strangers, so we backed the truck up to the edge of the inlet, put the tailgate down, and enjoyed our meal right there in the parking lot. I would say that the only thing we didn’t care for, primarily because they were too dry, were the fritters. I wouldn’t get that again, but I would highly recommend everything else. Next time I go, I have to try their clam chowder.

When we returned to my family’s home to tell them all about it, they said “Oh my gosh, Laura, I can’t believe you’d never eaten there!”. As if I should have known better. They were right. A place like this is known worldwide, has a huge following, and it’s not even open year round. They are open now, but weather permitting. Since I now live on the west coast, I make sure to go there every time I’m visiting.

Captain Thomas A. Scott 1830 – 1907 T.A. Scott arrived in New London in 1871 when his marine construction company, The T.A. Scott Co., Inc. was building Race Rock Lighthouse. Hopkinson Smith, a friend , biographer and one closely associated with T.A. Scott in various marine constructions, wrote in one of his book, published in 1908, Captain Thomas A. Scott, Master Diver:

“In the thirty-seven years I knew and loved him, he has always been, and will always be, to those who had his confidence, one of nature’s noblemen – brave, modest capable and tenderhearted. The record of his life must be of value to his fellow countrymen. Nor can I think of any other higher tribute to pay him than to repeat the refrain… one who was not afraid and spoke the truth, a description of Tommy Scott even at age 1515.”

T.A. Scott was so much beloved and. his charity so extensive that over 600 people gathered in or about his Pequot Avenue home at the time of his funeral in February 1907. CSLD

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