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Food and Drink

When we first came to Maine we were worried, expecting fried food, whoopie pies and not much else. Were we in for a surprise! Not only had we landed in the middle of shellfish paradise with the freshest, sweetest lobsters, oysters, crabmeat, clams and shrimp, but we are surrounded by organic farms, producing a veritable bounty of veggies, fruit and meats. Add to that some of the most passionate chefs in the country and the fact that Mainers love good food, and you end up with a list longer than Lin's arms. What follows is by no means complete; these are just some of the places we stumbled on ourselves or that were recommended by our friends and guests like you.


> Waldoboro

The Narrows Tavern
The Tavern is cool. It's our local hangout, just a hill or two a.k.a. a 5 minute walk from Le Vatout. It's a fun place to have a beer, play a game of cribbage and get to know the locals. For a pub, the food is actually rather good, and during the summer they feature live music almost every night.

Moody's Diner
There's nothing fancy about Moody's Diner - and that's quite intentional; it's a diner and they serve diner food. But the portions are plentiful, their prices reasonable and their desserts are out of this world. Since its inception 80 years ago, Moody's has become a national icon, serving more than a million happy folks. You can't come here without a taste of their famous walnut pie and if you get cream pie please bring us back a piece!

Village Bakery and Cafe
Okay, fine, we are a Bed & Breakfast and pride ourselves in feeding our guests well, but this special little place is too much fun to pass over. Their coffee is good (they also do cappuccinos, lattes and chai), their baked goods are unbelievably yummy, and it's just an all around comfy place to hang with your laptop and write, especially on a rainy afternoon. And their donuts... oh boy.

If you'd like to grab a bottle for that picnic on the rocks, this place is for you. Not only do they have a large selection of wines and specialty beers from around the world, but we've been told they also sell really good cigars.

Borealis is a fabulous bread baker (we serve their multi-grain and it can stand up to anything we've had in Germany) but they also make wonderful soups and sandwiches and delightful sweet treats. Wait 'til you taste their lemon bars!

Morse's Sauerkraut (and Krauthaus Restaurant)
Seven miles up the road, in North Waldoboro, Morse's dishes up all things German with a focus on their fabulous fresh, crunchy sauerkraut. The Krauthaus is a small, breakfast and lunch only restaurant, but be sure to also poke around in their European Deli, sample some of their unusual sausages and cheeses and, no matter what, you have to try one of their unbelievable Bavarian-style croissants!


> Warren (8 miles East – app. 12 minutes)

Silver Lane Bistro
We love this place! Well of the beaten path and located in a converted sheep shed, it's somewhat of an insider tip for both, its yummy food and the great company. Their ribs are fall-off-the-bone and their mussels... suffice it to say Doug finishes them off in his wood-burning oven, adding smokey to garlicky, herby and wine. Don't be surprised if you are greeted with a glass of wine and hug in the parking lot --- did I say, we love this place?

> Union (11 miles Northeast – app. 20 minutes)

Sweetgrass Farm - Winery & Distillery
What a sweet spot this is: 70 acres of woods and fields with frontage along the Medomak River, a hiking trail with picnic tables in the middle of beautiful, a view that's to die for, and... oh, yes! Award-winning wines and a gin that Wine Enthusiast magazine rates as one of the best two gins in the world.

The Badger
Great little place if you feel like venturing inland. We understand that Union's Common - where the Badger is a cornerstone - is the oldest Common in Maine. Good sandwiches and salads and an extraordinary selection of imports and micro-brews make it well worth a short detour.

> Thomaston (13 miles East – app. 20 minutes)

The Thomaston Cafe
Another excellent lunch stop, the Cafe also serves dinner on Friday and Saturday nights. Much beloved and widely reviewed, their kitchen is manned by yet another German - and he does lovely things with halibut and quail. I might as well admit it, I got the idea for Le Vatout's buckwheat pancakes here.

Dorman's Dairy Dream
Dorman's got its start in 1951 and we're not the only folks around here who'll swear that they simply have the best home-made ice cream on the coast. A traditional roadside shack studded with a traditional long line of customers and swarmed by a traditional cloud of mosquitoes, it's another mid-coast tradition. They still use their old recipes and the portions are gigantic. But remember, never on a Sunday - after all, this is Maine the way life should be...

The Slipway
How excellent! Scott Yakovenko, the talent behind the original Dip Net in Port Clyde, is opening a place, right by the water, featuring fresh seafood, meats, vegetables, and of course....beer and cocktails. Casual attire, fun personality recommended.

Waterman's Beach Lobster
On a sunny day in August, after a beach day at Birch Point State Park, this place will make your vacation a 10. It's a family-owned seafood stand (and a James Beard award winner) serving lobster, clams, and crab rolls, homemade ice cream and delicious pies! But the best part has got to be the location, overlooking beautiful Muscle Ridge Channel, next to a picturesque meadow and the sea. Bring your binoculars and peer out at the islands, the lobstermen hauling their traps, the shorebirds and seals, let the wind tussle your hair and enjoy your meal.

> Rockland (15 miles East – app. 20 minutes)

Primo's is it. A world-class restaurant inside a restored Victorian home surrounded by gardens, greenhouses, bee hives and apple trees. But the true stars of the Primo garden are the pigs!  Each year, the restaurant raises Tamworth pigs, a heritage breed from England. They dine on restaurant scraps and cultivated cover crops until, in late fall, they provide the restaurant with a delicious variety of Italian cured meats. It doesn't get fresher than this! It doesn't get better than this! Do we have to mention that reservations are pretty much mandatory?

Café Miranda
Café Miranda is not for the timid or the indecisive. Big flavor dominates what's probably the biggest menu on the coast, a veritable cornucopia of ethnic tastes and bites. Don't worry, though, chef/owner Kerry Altiero knows what he's doing and the ingredients are fresh and local, including produce from their own farm. No wonder this place is packed, even in the winter. Funky, edgy and eclectic - and vaguely akin to Shopsin's – it's definitely not your white table cloth sort of place.

Rockland Cafe
Okay, let's get this out of the way: The Rockland Cafe is not gourmet. Down home, friendly, inexpensive, dishing up satisfying, solid food, it's the kind of place that serves breakfast until 4pm during the winter and has all-you-can eat spaghetti nights. And then, there are Mother Edna's famous fish cakes...

Lily Bistro
Need a break from seafood? Lobsters leave you cold? How does duck confit, home-made pate and cassoulet sound to you? How about steak tartare? How about REAL French fries? Lily Bistro has only been around for a couple of years, but their country French cuisine, served with a dash of Edith Piaf, has quickly garnered devoted fans, from Francophiles and fishermen alike.

This one's a tip from nature guide extraordinaire, Don Kleiner. After a long day on the water, helping our guests discover nature at its best, he and his wife Argy head to Amalfi for "steamed mussels with a view".

In Good Company
Another local favorite, In Good Company is essentially a one-woman show. Centered around an extensive wine list, this is the place to go at night if you're in the mood to hang back, have a delicious nibble or two or three, good conversation and an all around relaxing time.

Conte's 1894 Restaurant
No website, no phone, no plastic, no menu, no freezer, no microwave, no warming lights, no table cloth - just huge portions of pasta and seafood, cooked by a Maine maniac. GO!!! Click on the link for Mr. Meatball's description, photos and directions. Couldn't say it better ourselves.

> Camden (20 miles Northeast – app. 30 minutes)

Francine Bistro
We remember him from our life back in Cambridge and we're thrilled to find that Brian Hill came back to his roots in Maine and opened up Francine. We won't bore you reciting his credentials and all the accolades he's garnered for this place. Francine is not inexpensive and reservations are definitely recommended, but the food is divine and the setting is lovely - especially if you can get a table outside on the twinkle porch.

Paolina's Way
Don't ask how come Lin's brother who lives all the way in San Francisco send us an email recommending a new restaurant in Camden, Maine. We didn't - we just went and ate and loved everything about this place, from their deep passion for the perfect ingredients to their unwavering commitment to the environment. And the pizza tastes the way pizza should!

With a spectacular view of Camden Harbor and its windjammers Atlantica doesn't really have to do all that much in the food department to please. Oh, but they do! A cut above many, they pay particular attention to sustainable practices and that includes the fish, and we love their tapas-style small plate menu.

57 Bayview Bar & Bistro (formerly Ephemere)
A local favorite at the very end of the village and well worth the walk. The view of Mt. Battie from the second floor dining room is breathtaking, and we've heard nothing but good about the food (traditional French bistro with a touch of Maine) and the owner (a fellow European with a love for Maine)!

> Lincolnville (25 miles Northeast – app. 40 minutes)

Cellardoor Winery
We don't drink, but this place is so beautiful it makes us wonder what we're missing. Plus, they offer complimentary wine tastings daily and a selection of sandwiches, salads, and cheese plates to savor while you take in the surroundings. Well worth it for a change in pace.



> Round Pond (13 miles South – app. 20 minutes)

Muscongus Bay Lobster Company
We love Round Pond. And we love lobster. During the summer, this is how it should be eaten: outside, on a picnic table right at the water and with your hands. Some clams, an ear of corn... How could we not love the Muscongus Bay Lobster Company!

Anchor Inn
The kind of restaurant we all have in mind when we think Maine, the Anchor Inn is overlooking a picturesque harbor with lobster boats bobbing in the water, an outdoor deck and inside dining room with windows all around. A menu that features lobster and fried goodies from the ocean, but also includes broiled, grilled and other preparations of fish and shellfish ... and they're really fine! Throw in some not-so-run-of-the-mill salads and a peace offering to the god of red meat and the vision is complete. Just remember to make a reservation and be patient while you wait for your table. This is your vacation, enjoy a drink and the view.

Granite Hall Candy Store
For us, Round Pond begins and ends here. This has got to be the best penny candy store in the country, plus icecream, really decent gifts, books upstairs... and, and, and a sweet collection of handcarved boat models in the backroom!

> New Harbor (19 miles South – app. 30 minutes)

Shaw's Fish & Lobster Wharf
Every year, no matter how busy we are, we try to eke out a visit to Shaw's. It's not that the food is spectacular or the prices rock bottom or the service superb. It's essentially take out, and that's the point at Shaw's. Take your tray out on the deck, sit at one of the picnic tables, munch on your lobster roll, watch the boats come in, the fishermen load and unload their traps, have an encounter with a seagull, watch the sun set on the scenery...

> Pemaquid Point (22 miles South – app. 35 minutes)

Seagull Shop and Restaurant
You cannot come to the Midcoast without visiting Pemaquid Point... the rocks, the lighthouse, the view!!! This sweet little restaurant is right next door. For over seventy years they have provided sustenance to the weary traveller, that is if you can take your eyes off the ocean long enough to read their menu. The best part is that they let you take your food outside. BYOB (they'll give you glasses, garnish, ice and a bucket), plop yourself down in one of their Adirondack chairs and revel.

> Damariscotta (10 miles Southwest – app. 15 minutes)

Round Top Icecream
Okay, so we're partial to Dorman's, but boy, this one comes close! All ice cream and gelato is homemade, a humungous selection of flavors, a fabulous view of rolling meadows and hills... you might just have to judge for yourself. Ice cream taste-off, what a problem to have!

Damariscotta Farmers' Market
Every friday morning from the middle of May until late October a handful or two of local farmers, bakers and foragers pitch their tents on a knoll overlooking the Great Salt Bay. We go there as much for the view, the fresh breezes and the soft grass underfoot as the food - which is equally spectacular.

Damariscotta River Grill
Fine, fine food, simple but creative and original, this is the kind of restaurant those of us who are a little jaded by the same old, same old love to stumble upon. Pair that with a great, yet fairly inexpensive wine selection and you'll understand the accolades heaped upon this place.

Rising Tide
Most of the food we serve comes to our house or from our garden. The rest we buy at Rising Tide. What once started as a tiny coop is now a beautiful, well-lit space offering an abundance of organic, mostly local food stuffs AND a daily menu of prepared dishes for take out or immediate gratification in a cozy dining nook.

King Eider's Pub
Damariscotta is famous for their oysters and, boy, do these folks know how to treat oysters! Tucked away from the main drag, right around the corner from Reny's, King Eider's is both, a really cool pub downstairs, and a cozy restaurant upstairs. Fabulous crabcakes, really good steaks, yummy appetizers, great beer and wine selection... did I mention oysters?

Salt Bay Cafe
We have yet to eat there, but every one of our vegetarian guests we sent to the Cafe came back satisfied. Not only do they have an extensive list of dishes prepared sans animal protein, but they also have a solid selection for us carnivores, making for very happy "mixed" couples. Even the vegans had a smile!

> Newcastle (11 miles Southwest – app. 15 minutes)

Newcastle Publick House
Great food, great beer, great music = great pub. They're fairly new on the scene, located in a beautiful, historic building just on the other side of the river where Damariscotta ends and Newcastle begins, and they have already begun to make a name for themselves. Just imagine: they even stock gluten-free beer!

Glidden Point Oyster Sea Farm
"You have never seen the sea, but in an oyster on the shell." - Cyrano De Bergerac. Grown in pristine Maine waters using no machinery or processing equipment, these oysters are known around the world for their uniform size and shape, deep shell cup, and superb freshness. The flavor is distinct and complex - briny yet sweet, and the meat is plump and firm, a benefit of slow cold water growth. Drive up River road, grab a couple of dozen and come back to Le Vatout for a feast by the fire pit. We can provide a glove and a shucking knife.

> Wiscasset (18 miles Southwest – app. 20 minutes)

Wiscasset is antique heaven, but browsing for beauty is more fun with Treats. Essentially a cheese and wine store, this little gem also serves up really good soups and baked goods at their big communal table. We make a point of going there each time we visit "the prettiest village in Maine".

Red's Eats
Yes, this place is a major reason for the famous Wiscasset traffic jam and yes, you have to stand in line forever, but this little lobster shack on the shore of the Sheepscott River serves a lobster roll that's so huge and so fresh it's been lauded in foodie blogs all over the world.

Le Garage
Like Red's Eats, another institution. It really was a garage up until the early part of the 20th century, used for automotive repair and by a blacksmith. In the hands of the same family since the mid-seventies, Le Garage serves the old, beloved standards and a view of the water that's to die for.

> Boothbay Harbor (28 miles Southwest – app. 35 minutes)

Baker's Way
Doughnuts and Pho? Ayup. This little bakery is run by two Vietnamese sisters who not only turn out delightful donuts, croissants and cinnamon buns but also cook up authentic curries, egg rolls, pad thai and, yes, pho. Inexpensive, flavorful and huge portions, no wonder this is a favorite among locals.

The Boathouse Bistro Tapas Lounge and Restaurant
What a mouthful of a name! And how apropos: with dozens of delectables on the menu, the Boathouse is the perfect place to go after you come back from a whale watch or a day of sightseeing. Head for the top deck, order some sangria and nibble away. It gets a little crazy on busy summer weekends and they only accept reservations for the first floor diningroom, but if you come with the right 'tude you'll find it well worth the wait.

The Lobster Dock
With it's famous, 1,000 feet long footbridge connecting east and west, "the boating capital of New England" is one of the prettiest harbors on the midcoast. And the Lobster Dock has "the view". Their food is pretty much standard Maine fare, but there's nothing wrong with standard as long as it's well done and served up with a pitcher of beer on the deck, while watching a windjammer glide by in the setting sun.

Midcoast Maine... explore it from Le Vatout

Scenic Attractions

Things to Do

Coastal Culture

Food and Drink



donuts maine diner

(Moody's Diner)

s and other goodies

(Village Bakery and Cafe)

chef in his kitchen

(Silver Lane Bistro)

winery and gin

(Sweetgrass Farm)

cozy cafe

(Thomaston Cafe)

maine delights: lobster, corn and pie

(Waterman's Beach Lobster)

the finest restaurant in town


meaty fare

(Lily Bistro)

menu blackboard

(Conte's 1894 Restaurant)

wood oven pizza

(Paolina's Way)

maine vineyard

(Cellardoor Winery)

new harbor view

(Anchor Inn)

candy store

(Granite Hall Candy Store)

twin lobsters

(Seagull Shop and Restaurant)

farmers' market

(Damariscotta Farmers' Market)

oysters on the halfshell

(King Eider's Pub)

beer an tap

(Newcastle Publick House)

yummy pies


lobster roll

(Red's Eats)

lobsters and schooners

(The Lobster Dock)

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Le Vatout | 218 Kaler's Corner | Waldoboro, ME 04572 | (207) 832-5150 | info@levatout.com

Member of the Waldoboro Business Association, the Penobscot Bay Chamber of Commerce, the Maine Tourism Association,
the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association and proud recipient of Maine's Environmental Leader Certificate

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