Lunch at Grand Central Cafe and a movie make a great afternoon

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             It’s a great combination: Enjoying a tasty meal at Grand Central Café in Waterville, then strolling across the parking lot to see a movie at Railroad Square Cinema.

            We did just that after reading JP Devine’s review of La La Land, and the movie was everything JP said it was. Simply put: fabulous. Railroad Square is our favorite movie theater, and after visiting the café for the first time, we’ll plan more eat and treat afternoons now.

            Elise Rich-Coltan’s café is a real family enterprise. Her nephew Jaden joins her at the cooking station. It takes special talent to cook in a wood fired oven, and Elise and Jaden have mastered it.

            Elise’s Mom does the baking and her aunt does the books. Elise worked here when she was in high school, and after graduating from culinary school she returned and took over the café, 8 ½ years ago.

            The café is a comfortable cozy place with beautiful wooden walls, photos and art work, books and magazines for kids and adults, and table tops painted by local artists. We were delighted to sit at a gorgeous table painted by our friend Iver Lofving, a Skowhegan teacher. We got to know Iver and his wife Maili Bailey, who manages Waterville’s soup kitchen, during our visits to Swan’s Island where they spend their summers.

            After glancing at the menu provided by our very friendly server Julia, I told Elise that her prices are very low. I like their focus on fast food for those who seek that at lunch. You could pop in here, on Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday, grab a few pieces of pizza, and eat lunch in just minutes. Forget Burger King! This is much better and just as fast.

            Linda and I lingered, both to make sure we got a good sampling of the food, and also because we enjoyed visiting with Elise. I loved everything we tried, starting with a delicious cup of vegetarian chili with beans, corn, and lots of cheese. It tasted Tex-Mex to me.


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