Tag Archives: Maine restaurant week

What is there to do on the Southern Maine Coast in winter?

5seaside-inn-winterWhat is there to do on the Southern Maine Coast in winter? Plenty – walk the beach, shop, eat, drink, ski, sled, skate, surf, cozy up to a fire at a romantic seaside inn, eat lobster, snowshoe, paint, read, write…

You can walk the beach all year round. In winter, Ogunquit, Wells Beach, Kennebunk Beach and Old Orchard are all beautiful. You can watch the surfers ride the winter waves, walk your dog, take pictures of the snow and sand, and just enjoy an entirely different season on the beach, read: not wearing your bikini.

Cross country skiing or snowshoeing at nearby Wells Reserve at Laudholm Farm on their 7 mile of beautiful trails or Harris Farm in Dayton makes for a great day, even an hour outside enjoying the snow and the scenery.

2dock-square-kbpt2For a more relaxing romantic endeavor, take a horse drawn carriage ride through Kennebunkport’s Docks Square, Ogunquit and Kennebunk both have beautiful outdoor ice skating rinks. Kennebunk’s Waterhouse Pavilion is a free public covered ice rink in downtown Kennebunk next to the Kennebunk Inn.

Sledding hills are peppered throughout the coast – Kennebunk’s Sea Road Dump, no longer a landfill, is very popular for sledding on the well-pitched hill. Munjoy Hill and the Eastern Prom in Portland have some good sledding spots too.

99love-kbpt-davidsAs for fun festivals, Kennebunkport celebrates Paint The Town Red and February is For Lovers with red and white lights, Ice Bar at David’s KPT, heart decorations and romantic specials on lodging at fabulous inns, happy hours, dining and shopping.  Ogunquit throws a Mardi Gras party in February 20 weekend with fir jugglers, a Masquerade Ball and a Hat and Mask Parade down Ogunquit’s Main Street. Let the good time roll in Ogunquit in winter.

4dock-square-kbpt7Shopping is a four season sport, and Maine is no exception, especially with LL Bean open 365 24/7. Winter shopping in Maine means deals and sales – whether you are at Kittery Outlets, Freeport’s Outlets, or the many boutiques and shops in Kennebunkport, Ogunquit and the Old Port of Portland. You can also find bargains at Mardens and Reny’s  -two classic Maine shopping experiences – buy it if you see it – these Maine shopping institutions are never the same twice. The local people watching is a hoot to.

davids-serverMaine restaurants host Maine Restaurant Week March 1-16, 2016 – so it’s actually two weeks of great Maine dining deals at the best restaurants in southern Maine. Maine’s foodie scene as rocketed to top chef status, in fact Portland recently topped Boston as the coziest city in America – with the great dining spots as a number 1 reason.

Per capita, Portland Maine has more restaurants than any other city in the United States, and many are walkable and wonderful! Winter is a better time to tackle the Top Restaurants in Portland – less lines and less waiting for a table and better dining deals than peak summer. Don’t worry, lobster is always on the menu, clams too.

6captain-lord-mansion-kennebunkportLastly, cozy romantic lodging along the Southern Maine Coast in winter is a great deal. You can score a beautiful suite or a fireplace room in a BNB for less than spring, summer or fall, and you have the place to yourself. Many lodging properties like Seaside Inn and Captain Lord Mansion in K’port, and Ogunquit Resort Motel offer packages including wine and flowers, or dining certificates to local restaurants during your stay, even late check outs. Family resorts like Rhumb Line in Kennebunkport and Village by the Sea and Misty Harbor in Wells have indoor heated pools perfect for a family vacation.

love-kbpt-davids6See our Southern Maine Coast lodging guide and plan a winter getaway today – bring the kids, the dog to a pet friendly place, or just your sweetheart to a romantic inn in Maine.

Photos by Greg Burke, see more at Southern Maine Coast Lodging Guide , Visit Maine Lodging Directory, and Kennebunkport Maine Lodging Guide.

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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.