Chatham Bars Inn Summer Clambakes
The essential New England clambake.
Our last clambake of the season is on September 27 - please join us!
No visit to Cape Cod is complete without a clambake. And no one does a clambake better than Chatham Bars Inn.
During the summer season, guests, visitors and locals gather at Chatham Bars Inn to experience a genuine New England clambake for themselves. Attendees feast on lobster, corn, potatoes and, of course, clams. All seafood is locally caught around Chatham and all produce is sourced from the Chatham Bars Inn farm.
The Chatham Bars Inn clambake is a blast for adults and kids. While adults relax on the beach kids enjoy programming planned by our rec crew, including cornhole, sandcastle building and more.
Clambakes are a New England tradition that dates back centuries. During a proper clambake, seafood such as lobster, mussels and quahogs (along with all kinds of tasty vegetables sourced locally from our 8-acre farm) is steamed over a wood-fired pit layered with seaweed or rockweed. The result is fresh, full-flavored seafood unlike anything you’ve ever tasted before.
More than that, a clambake is a social event where friends old and new gather on the beach, enjoy each other’s company and make the most of a beautiful summer evening.
Throwing a clambake has a few basic steps:
1. Dig the pit.
Our clambake pit was dug out with an excavator and lined with two tons of fieldstone. It’s served us well since.
2. Set the fire.
To kick things off, we lay down nine inches of wood and eleven bags of charcoal and let them burn for about four hours to get the heat just right.
3. Layer the rockweed.
Next, we rake the coals and add a layer of rockweed. Rockweed is filled with capsules of seawater, producing a delicious layer of steam to cook our seafood.
4. Layer the feast.
After that, we put down a layer of corn, potatoes, lobster, mussels, steamers and other freshly caught seafood and add another layer of rockweed on top to keep things moist.
5. Seal in the steam.
Next, we put down a canvas tarp (soaked overnight to prevent burning) to hold in the steam and cook everything evenly for about an hour.
6. Unveil and serve.
Finally, we pull back the tarp, collect the seafood and serve our guests!