Maine Restaurant and Dining Guide

Lighthouses guarding rocky shores, tall pines, and the tangy scent of salty sea breeze. Yep, that’s Maine for ya. But did you know, amidst this scenic backdrop, lies a culinary world that’s straight-up fire? Back in the day, Maine was a prime fishing spot for Native American tribes. Fast forward to today, and that seafood legacy is more alive than ever, just jazzed up with modern flair.

Now, if you're hankering for some no-frills seafood, Portland’s Lobster Company is where it's at. Thinking of getting a bit fancy? Swing by Side Street Cafe in Bar Harbor. And hey, ever heard of a joint with killer lobster, a dash of rum punch, and a sprinkle of celeb glamour? Yup, that’s Barnacle Billy's in Ogunquit. But Maine isn’t just about seafood. Augusta’s got this BBQ spot, Riverfront Barbeque & Grille, that’ll make you rethink everything you knew about ribs. And for my brunch lovers, Erica's in Waterville is legit the dream wake-up call.

Portland Plates: Lobster and Donuts

With cobblestone streets and waterfront parks giving those postcard-perfect views, it's no wonder this city has become the go-to for many. But let's cut to the chase – Portland's real game-changer? Its food. I mean, what's more iconic than biting into a fresh lobster roll while soaking in that Casco Bay view? And if that's the kind of scene you're craving, you've got to check out Bite Into Maine. Their lobster rolls? Straight-up legit. Choose from six styles, all featuring that fresh Maine lobster, cozied up in a buttery bun. Wash it down with some Allagash beer, and you're golden.

Now, for the times you're vibing with the classic New England seafood experience, the Portland Lobster Company is where you'll wanna be. Their Fried Haddock Sandwich? A thing of beauty. And if you're feeling adventurous, get your hands on those Prince Edward Island Mussels, drenched in white wine and a symphony of lemon, herbs, garlic, and butter. I mean, come on, who can resist?

Speaking of irresistible, have you heard of potato donuts? Yeah, you read that right. The Holy Donut is serving up these bad boys, and let me tell ya, they're the talk of the town. From the Dark Chocolate Coconut Donut to the Apple Cider Donut (with real apples, mind you), your sweet tooth will thank you.

But hey, between mouthfuls, take a breather and steep in some culture. Swing by the Victoria Mansion for a taste of 19th-century glam, or mosey over to the Eastern Promenade for a view that'll knock your socks off.

Bar Harbor Bites: Pancakes, Peaks, and Popovers

Known for its breathtaking granite peaks and historic charm, Bar Harbor's true MVP might just be its food scene. Case in point, Jordan's Restaurant. Their wild Maine blueberry pancakes are totally on point. And if you've got a hankering for something a bit more savory, their Cheesesteak Sub – think grilled peppers, onions, and a side of homemade goodness – will do the trick.

Want to mix it up a bit? Hit up Side Street Cafe. Whether you're munching on their Cadillac Fries loaded with the works (queso, buffalo, bacon – need I say more?) or dipping into the Garden Variety with roasted red pepper hummus, you're in for a treat.

Now, no trip to Bar Harbor is complete without diving into some local specialties. Over at The Stadium, they're whipping up a dreamy Lobster mac & cheese. But let's chat about their Popover, shall we? Light, airy, and downright delicious, especially when paired with that house-made blueberry jam. Talk about nailing it.

Between all that indulging, why not soak in some scenic views at Acadia National Park? Or immerse yourself in the rich culture of the Wabanaki people at the Abbe Museum.

Ogunquit: Lobster Rolls, Art, and Coastal Strolls

Once a humble fishing village, this spot soon found itself as the go-to haven for artists, inspired by its picturesque surroundings. Isn't it cool to think that the very paths they walked, like the scenic Marginal Way, could lead you straight to a plate of drool-worthy grub?

Now, if you've got a craving for something truly American with a splash of pizzazz, swing by The Front Porch. With tunes floating from the festive piano bar upstairs, your taste buds will jam to the rhythm of their Sesame Seared Ahi Tuna - a blend of Thai spice and red jasmine rice, finished off with that kick of wasabi aioli and sriracha.

Of course, when in Ogunquit, seafood's the name of the game. And no one serves it up quite like The Lobster Shack. Their Pounder Sandwich is, no joke, stacked with a full pound of lobster meat. It's LEGENDARY. For something a tad simpler but equally satisfying, Barnacle Billy's hits the spot. Amidst its lobster and rum punch, the Barbecue Chicken Plate is a definite sleeper hit.

Don’t forget about the culture. Dive deep into the heart of American art at the Ogunquit Museum, where canvases echo tales of the historic Ogunquit arts colony.

Augusta: BBQ Ribs, Parks, and Politics

The heart of Maine, Augusta, steeped in political hustle and history, surprisingly packs a flavorful culinary punch. Originally a trading post back in the 1600s, who'd have thought Augusta would evolve into a treat for taste seekers? Dotted with lush parks and, of course, the iconic Capitol Building, there's a little extra zing in the air. Ever felt that?

Right by the scenic Viles Arboretum, a place of tranquility with its array of trees and native plants, you'll find the aroma of Riverfront Barbeque & Grille tough to resist. Their Memphis-style, dry-rub ribs? Pure magic! And if you fancy a tangy twist, dive into the Key West Chicken Salad. With that lime-marinated chicken and Mandarin oranges, it’s a refreshing pit stop for sure.

But if you’re craving something different after a serene walk through Capitol Park, the Cloud 9 Restaurant & Lounge has got the goods. Their brick-oven pizzas are fire, but don't sleep on the Cloud 9 Alfredo – a killer combo of fettuccine, grilled chicken, and prosciutto. Oh, and for those who roll the veggie way? Their Black Bean Burger is no joke, with a smoky chipotle aioli that's the real MVP.

Waterville Whims: Art, Opera, and Edibles

Stepping into Waterville feels like flipping through the pages of a vibrant history book. And as you're about to discover, it's more than just Colby College and the Waterville Opera House. Yet, who can resist the pull of the Opera House's enchanting performances or the Colby College Museum of Art with its rich tapestry of contemporary marvels? But hey, what's a day of art and drama without a plateful of grub?

Got the morning blues? Slide into Erica's for that caffeine fix and a hearty breakfast. Their Jambalaya? A spicy, zesty dance of flavors with prawns and andouille leading the waltz. Or, if you're feeling a tad fancy, the Macadamia Nut Crusted Chicken is an absolute winner - trust me, the mixed berry coulis brings the party.

For those with a soft spot for the ocean's bounty, 18 Below Raw Bar is your jam. Those Savory Roasted Pork & Cheddar Stuffed Mushrooms? Total game-changer. But the star? Maine Crab Stuffed Fresh Local Haddock Filet, paired perfectly with a zesty lemon-butter sauce. Dive in, why don’t ya?

So, whether you're here for the culture or the food (or a delightful mix of both), Waterville has the vibes, the views, and the victuals to keep you coming back.

Maine Moments: Sips, Bites, and Coastal Sights

As we’ve cruised from Portland’s bustling wharves to Bar Harbor’s quiet shores, then down to Ogunquit’s sandy beaches and through the heart of Augusta and Waterville, one thing’s clear: Maine isn’t just about lobster rolls, though they're seriously delish. It’s a full-on sensory delight, blending vibrant history with every mouthful. Remember that macadamia nut chicken in Waterville or the dry-rub ribs in Augusta? Yeah, still dreaming about those.

This isn't just about food, though. It’s also about those postcard-perfect views you munch alongside. Imagine savoring fresh seafood as the sun sets over Bar Harbor? Pure magic, right? And Portland? That city's a mix of old-school charm and modern mojo.

So, you're into tasty bites and dreamy sights? Why aren’t you in Maine yet? The table’s set, the coast is beckoning, and trust me, you won't want to miss out. Ready to dig in and drink it all in? Because Maine, with its charming towns and killer grub, is waiting to wow you. It’s a whole world of flavor and fun rolled into one sweet, scenic state. Let's eat!

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