Best of Maine

Here's a Toast to Geaghan's Pub and the Fireside Inn

Submitted By George Smith on Mon, 12/05/2011 - 18:27

Bangor is an impressive and vibrant city, with a gorgeous riverfront, many good restaurants, and lots to do. This year we expanded beyond our traditional “go-to” eatery, the Sea Dog Tavern, to try other restaurants, including Geaghan’s Pub.

And when we travel in Maine, we always look for lodging from Bangor’s Lafayette family. They offer a range of accommodations featuring great service, plenty of amenities, and real comfort.

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Treat Yourself to a Shaker Village Christmas

Submitted By George Smith on Mon, 11/28/2011 - 21:03

What do people from Georgia, Rhode Island, Iowa, Colorado, Wisconsin, California, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey know that you don’t?

They know that Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village in New Gloucester is an amazing place. There were people at Shaker Village from each of those states, as well as England, on the October morning we visited.

Shaker Village includes a store with many interesting products, a fascinating museum, a craft store with locally made crafts from lamps to baskets to cheese balls, a farm with sheep and goats, and several historical buildings.

The village...

Experience Natalie's At Least Once in Your Life

Submitted By George Smith on Sat, 11/26/2011 - 18:02

Natalie’s restaurant in the elegant Camden Harbour Inn offers a dining experience that is amazing. Unique. Best we’ve had since beginning this column in January. Can’t wait to return. Been dreaming about it.

 Well, you get the idea. This is a high-end splurge that delivers an unforgettable dining experience.

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Camden Harbour Inn

Camden Splurge Is Amazing Experience

Submitted By George Smith on Wed, 11/16/2011 - 10:31

Our online dictionary defines “splurge” this way: “to indulge oneself in some luxury or pleasure, especially a costly one.” The dictionary’s example is perfect for this review: “They splurged on a trip to Europe.”

The Camden Harbour Inn and its restaurant, Natalie’s, is a luxurious splurge with many amenities that remind us of Europe, but it’s a whole lot cheaper than traveling to Europe!


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View from our roomBonair Room

on the...

Bangor's Fiddlehead Restaurant Always in Season

Submitted By George Smith on Thu, 11/03/2011 - 12:29

Warning: this column may make you hungry. You may feel a sudden urge to jump in your vehicle and drive to Bangor. This could result in severe depression – if you arrive when The Fiddlehead Restaurant is closed or packed.

The antidote: take two whoopie pies and call for a reservation.

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Dining at DiVinci's is Definitely Delicious

Submitted By George Smith on Sun, 10/30/2011 - 13:31

We’ve been eating at and enjoying Lewiston’s Davinci’s Eatery for many years – usually before or after another great performance at the city’s Public Theatre.

Usually we were there for lunch, so a special October visit for dinner proved to be very special.

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Bethel's 22 Broad Street An Instant Favorite

Submitted By George Smith on Sun, 10/30/2011 - 13:15

It was a big surprise. Headed to Bethel to stay at the Bethel Inn and Resort and write a preview of the town’s fall Harvest Fest, we wanted to try at least one new restaurant.

We’d read an interesting Down East magazine review of John and Amy Amann’s restaurant, 22 Broad Street, at their Gideon Hastings House inn. Down East’s Ginny Wright described the food as “down-to-earth Italian.”

Fools for all things Italian, we asked Wende Gray, a marketing consultant who was putting our Bethel trip together, to schedule us for dinner at 22 Broad Street.

Wow! We were absolutely stunned by the high quality of our meal and experience,...

Fishing for Maine Seafood at Harvest on the Harbor

Submitted By George Smith on Thu, 10/20/2011 - 16:57

Mix a room full of Italian wines, savory seafood dishes, fabulous chefs, commercial fishermen and members of Maine’s growing aquaculture industry, lots of media, a good band, and the paying public, and you get a seafood stew worthy of Maine’s food and foodie capitol: Portland.


Down East is a “presenting sponsor” of Harvest on the Harbor, a major food and wine experience spread over three days, October 20 – 22, at Ocean Gateway in Portland.


I attended the opening event on Thursday, The Ultimate Seafood Splash, as a member...

Frank's Dockside Restaurant is Lubec's Best

Submitted By George Smith on Mon, 10/17/2011 - 13:26

The prosperous Lubec of our childhood has vanished along with the sardine packing plants and Unobsky’s Department Store.

But an August visit encouraged us by the level of tourist activity witnessed on the town’s very busy Main Street, now dotted with good restaurants, interesting shops, and comfortable accommodations.

We’ve known for a long time that there is no prettier Maine town from a distance than Lubec. It sits on a hill, jutting into the ocean, with church steeples rising above white houses. 

Now, Lubec is pretty up close as well. Buildings are being...

The Gems of Route 26

Submitted By George Smith on Tue, 10/11/2011 - 10:31

There are too many gems. That’s the only problem with the Gems of 26, a clever collaborative promotion of food, lodging, and attractions on a 24-mile scenic stretch of Maine’s Route 26 from Gray to South Paris.

We had hoped to see all of the seven gems on a recent Saturday but fell short by three.    For the record, the gems are: Maine Wildlife Park, Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village, Poland Spring Resort, Poland Spring Preservation Society, Poland Spring Preservation Park, Harvest Hill Farms & Pumpkin Land, and McLaughlin Garden.

Now is the time to schedule your visit because the gems...

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