Category Archives: Maine cuisine and restaurants

Forks Up, Coastal Maine Restaurant Week is on!

Love food? Love the southern Coast of Maine? How does a week devoted to dining out on the southern Maine Coast sound? Coastal Maine Restaurant Week is April 26 – May 2, 2015. What started as Kennebunk Restaurant Week in 2013 has expanded this spring to include Coastal Maine towns of Wells, Oqunquit, York, Kittery and Eliot including some of the top places to dine on the waterfront like York Harbor Inn, The Cliff House and MC Perkins in Ogunquit, Ocean, Stripers and David’s in Kennebunkport!

davids-serverMaine Restaurant have become progressive about promoting their talented local chefs and Maine ingredients – by flaunting their fine food during these special culinary weeks in spring and fall, when restaurants aren’t super busy like they are in peak summer. The dining format is three-course themed price fixe menus – above and beyond the Chef’s usual offerings for foodies to celebrate and congregate. Kennebunkport’s top restaurants are participating, Davids, Ocean, Stripers and On the Marsh.

April 26 – May 2 is Coastal Maine Restaurants with special dining menus from Kittery to Kennebunkport– organized by the York County Coast Star. During this week southern Maine chefs will prepare special three course gourmet menus –often with an ocean view at a prix fixe dinner of $25, $35, and $45 per person, before beverages, tax and gratuity. So maybe not a steal of a deal, but a special tasting experience.

Maine has attracted top chefs in recent years, and received high praise in food article from Forbes to Yankee, Gourmet and Bon Appetite, to the New York Times and Wall Street Journal. Many of the culinary talents in the Pine Tree State are focused menus featuring Maine sourced, locally grown and farm raised food, fresh caught lobster and seafood and artisan cheeses. Maine has more than just blueberries, broccoli and potatoes as native food to rave about.

cape-neddick-yorkWhat’s fun about Coastal Maine Restaurant Week, besides the view and delicious cuisine, is meeting fellow foodies in your travels. You meet new people while dining out – folks who share your passion for fine food and wine. Wine pairings and drinks specials are often offered to complement the chef’s menu, but not included- nor is gratuity.

Here are the Coastal Maine Restaurants participating in Coastal Maine Restaurant Week April 26- May 2, 2015:

Ocean 207-967-1504, 208 Ocean Avenue, Kennebunkport
David’s KPT 207-967-8223, 21 Ocean Avenue, Kennebunkport
Stripers Waterside  at Breakwater Inn 207-967-3118, 133 Ocean Ave, Kennebunkport
Mabels Lobster Claw 207-967-2562, 124 Ocean Avenue, Kennebunkport
Federal Jack’s 207-967-4322, 8 Western Avenue Kennebunk
On the Marsh Bistro -207-967-2299, 46 Western Avenue, Kennebunk
Duffy’s Tavern and Grill 207985-0050, 4 Main Street, Kennebunk
York Harbor Inn – 207-363-7151, 480 York Street, York
Jonathan’s Ogunquit 207-646-4777, 92 Bourne Lane, Ogunquit
Bintliff’s 207-646-3111, 335 Main Street, Ogunquit
MC Perkin’s Cove 207-646-6263 111 Perkins Cove, Ogunquit
Angelina’s Ristorante 207-646-0445, 655 Main Street, Ogunquit
The Front Porch 207-646-4005 9 Shore Road, Ogunquit
Clay Hill Farm 207-361-2272, 220 Clay Hill Road Cape Neddick
The Cliff House 207-361-1000, 591 Shore Road, York
The Steakhouse 207-646-4200, 1205 Post Road (Route 1) Wells
Five O Shore Road207-646-5001, 50 Shore Road, Ogunquit
Cape Neddick Inn 207-351-1145, 1273 US Route 1, Cape Neddick
Stage Neck Inn 207-646-8988, 8 Stage Neck Road, York

Reservations for dinner are recommended during this special week. See you out an about enjoying Coastal Maine Restaurant Week! Make it a mini vacation by staying a night or two midweek and get great lodging rates in Kennebunkport Hotels like Seaside Inn, Breakwater or Captain Lord Mansion, or Ogunquit Resort Motel or York Harbor Inn.

Where’s the Maine Lobster at Maine Restaurant Week?

Maine has arrived as a Foodie State, now hosting several Maine Restaurant Week events – in the fall and spring. Having caught the culinary attention of top food magazines and media of late, Bon Appetite, Gourmet, Saveur, Taste, Food and Wine, and The Food Network have all featured Maine’s best chefs, the Maine local food scene and of course – articles on Maine seafood with lobster as the king. But recent culinary competitions have me wondering where’s the Maine lobster – instead of “where’s the beef?”

davids-serverMarch 1-14 Maine Restaurant Week 2015 kicked off their Signature Tasting Event as Maine chefs paired a cocktail and signature dish – but the menus fell short of Maine ingredients and culinary classic that have made Maine’s seacoast famous. Here’s a sampling of Maine Restaurant Week tastes, with seafood and lobster sadly under-represented:

The new Portland restaurant, Timber Steakhouse, won Maine Restaurant Week Signature Judge’s Taste with a cucumber martini and bite-sized cucumber cup filled with smoked salmon-goat cheese mousse and topped with tobiko (Japanese fish roe). David’s Opus Ten in Portland won People’s Choice wit1kbpt-sign-hearth a Mexican chocolate martini and pulled pork beignet. Chef David Turin now has a very successful sister restaurant to his Portland original, David’s KPT in Kennebunkport at the Boathouse Waterfront Hotel near Dock Square on the Kennebunk River.

Other Kennebunk based chefs, chefs Brian and Shana O’Hea from Kennebunk Inn – served a meatball slider skewered with fried mozzarella with an Italian Sunday Tuxedo -a spicy style bloody Mary, made of pureed roasted vegetables, hopefully from Maine gardens.

Another other-worldly taste from Tiqa, the new Mediterranean restaurant on Commercial Street in Portland, served The Miss Muffet Cocktail combining Double Cross Vodka (Ok- a Maine potatoes based Vodka – finally), Vya dry vermouth and labne whey (the milky liquid from strained yogurt), garnished with a Palestinian olive, paired with chef Bryan Dame’s Berbere-spiced labne on crispy chicken skin. So much for the good old fashioned Maine lobster roll or Clam Chowder. Is anyone else hankering for some recipes representing Maine flavors and fresh seafood?

lobsterGood news, you can dine at Stripers at the Breakwater Inn in Kennebunkport on their 2 for $20 Lobster Lovers menu this month. Also from March 1-14, foodies can dine at participating Maine Restaurant Week restaurants on three course lunches and dinners – specially prepared by the Chefs at a prixe fixe of $15, $20 and $25 for lunch, $25, $35 and $45 for dinner. I hope the Chefs include local lobster.

Maine Restaurant Week is predominantly Portland Maine restaurants, but expands to Freeport, Boothbay and south to Kennebunkport, Ogunquit and York, where Maine’s best Chefs flaunt their flavors and local-sourced food turned into culinary delights.

lobster-ocean-bloodyNew this year to Maine’s food scene is Coastal Maine Restaurant Week – April 26 – May 2 Coastal Maine Restaurants will offer special dining menus, in Kittery York, Ogunquit, Wells, Kennebunkport and Kennebunk – organized by the York County Coast Star. During this week southern Maine chefs will prepare special three course gourmet menus –often with an ocean view at a prix fixe dinner of $25, $35, and $45 per person, before beverages, tax and gratuity. Ok, maybe not a deal, but a special tasting experience.

See our list of our favorite coastal restaurants in Ogunquit & York,  Wells Beach, The Kennebunks, and Portland’s best restaurants, and we will see you out and about celebrating good food and our good fortunate to be on the Southern Maine Coast.