RE: Trip Report- Buffalo, New England, etc.
I live in Mystic. Abbott's does have a great atmosphere, but it does rankle the locals to pay those prices for lobster on paper plates while you fend off the aggressive sea gulls. I'd say aside from the atmosphere, it's no better or worse than other lobster pounds. Also, there are very few options for the non-lobster-eaters in your crowd.
A cheaper spot which also has great atmosphere is right next door -- "Costello's" (it's owned by the same folks...)Their menu is more of the clam-shack variety. There are burgers, scallops, chicken, chowder, fries, clams, lobster roll, that sort of thing. The eating deck is second-story, which gives a great view of the Mystic River.
Nearby(also in Noank)is a tavern called the Seahorse that serves a very good pub menu -- terrific sandwiches and burgers, soups, and salads. Their more formal dinner menu doesn't do much for me, but the pub grub is great. An ideal place for a "cheeseburger in paradise".