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More Camden Me dinners

k
kbear Jul 10, 2007 02:45 PM

Ok, so we have really hit the town now, stopping eating only to sleep. I love Maine!!! So many surprises here.

4th night- Francine in Camden. This is a very small, intimate restaurant with some credible ambiance and the best bathroom in town. Service was casual and friendly. We had the BEST OYSTERS EVER by table acclaim - on the half-shell with a migionette/cuke/lovage topping. So fresh, so exciting. I had the steak frites, which were huge and everyone else had haddock with freshly shelled peas. Yum! Wine was reasonably priced and a nice selection.

5th night - Ephereme, the wine bar. We kept going here for pre-dinner cocktails over the past week and were happy to discover that there was dinner available because we all loved the space and the art and the servers. For appetizers we had already stopped at Peter Ott's for a little snack of bacon-wrapped scallops and wings which were very tasty. The salads at the wine bar were very fresh and well but not over-dressed. I had the Lobster with gingerbread, which sounds bizarre but was just phenomenal - can't explain how on earth gingerbread, of which I am not fond, and lobster meld to be the most tastiest thing that exists, but it is. Mmm. Salivating thinking of it. One of us got the Thermidor, which disappeared quickly, and another the Lobster Ravioli (NO offers to share that) and the other had the crown lamb, which she professed to be a great thing. For dessert we had a wine-cooked pear. This restaurant was one of the big surprises - really really really good food.

6th day - went to Young's Lobster pound just up from Belfast. Really cool to see the lobsters in their captivity. Big, cavernous feel to the restaurant. Lobster rolls were on hamburger buns instead of hotdog buns, but no problem. Good, but I prefer the Lincolnville lobster rolls and atmosphere. Fun driving thru Northport.

For dinner we had PRIMO, which I consider to be one of the best restaurants in North America. Great to be able to see the gardens so you know from whence your food came. There were six of us for dinner and NO ONE was disappointed by anything we ordered! i think that is unheardof in this group. Appetizers were preceded by a lobster beignet and lobster bisque, which was the amuse bouche for the evening. Then we had oysters 5 ways (too long to explain here), duck sausage and carmelized onion pizza and a chicken ravioli for the table. We each had a salad - one of them was fried green tomato salad with greens and a buttermilk dressing, another was a chopped salad from the gardens with manchego, it just went on and on.

Entrees were complex and engendered total contemplative silence by the table. I had the flounder, which I would never order anywhere but here and which was served with Maine shrimp and a heavenly beurre blanc sauce. Others had the tuna, which was sliced off a 135 lb beast from Monhegan. There was steak, there was more fish. My wonderful stepson, who had never been to Maine before, had the lamb and has now pronounced himself a Primo fanatic. Then we all had dessert, which was probably not the best idea, since we were all stuffed. But that sealed the deal. I ordered the chocolate tartlet, with a thick pure chocolate crust, gooey carmel on the inside and topped with glazed bananas. One of us had hot chocolate in a bowl the size of Texas, another had the espresso icecream, another had the creme brulee -unbelievable. The thing about primo is that you can go, choose what YOU want to eat and you won't be disappointed by it. Everything is safely delicious!! This was our 5th year here and it just keeps getting better.

Sunday we went to the Edge for pizza night. Great fun! Every 5 minutes, the pizza boy comes out with a new pizza and you can elect to have it or not - things like lox and capers on a marscapone cheese, proscuitto and pineapple, mushroom and pesto, and my favorite, the broccoli, ham cheese on mashed potato. All come on these fabulous wood-grilled crusts. MMMMMM. We don't have anything like this at home but if we did, I sure would go there every week.

After dinner we went to Camden Cone on the way home for a little ice cream. Ha ha. This place really serves it up great and everyone just eats on the street. Waaay fun.

We have also been pleased with the grocery selection in making our own meals. There are great stores here from the ultra-foo foo delicacies to the most basic orange juice.

Tonight we return to Ephereme. Can't wait.

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  1. c
    ctbrit Jul 10, 2007 06:19 PM

    Thanks so much for your detailed reviews - we love that area of Maine & Primo in particular. I'm wishing I could be up there right now!

    Thanks & keep them coming - I can't wait to get there again!

    1. Harp00n Jul 10, 2007 06:44 PM

      Wonderfully cinematic & evocative report kbear, simply wonderful. One comment you made, however, kinda jumped off the page; "I got the flounder, which I would never order anywhere but here." How so, why so, aka huh?

      Harp00n

      1 Reply
      1. re: Harp00n
        Passadumkeg Jul 11, 2007 12:25 AM

        Obviously, she has previously lobstered and then floundered!

      2. g
        GG Mora Jul 11, 2007 09:16 AM

        Just a minor correction: the restaurant you like so well is “Ephemere” not “Ephereme”. I'm looking forward to trying it when we visit family in Rockport later in the summer.

        I enjoyed Francine very much and look forward to going back.

        2 Replies
        1. re: GG Mora
          k
          kbear Jul 16, 2007 12:34 PM

          I am positively groaning at the bad puns above! I really don't like flounder. But I find even the most dreaded dish is magic at Primo, so i thought I'd check it out again. Worth every bite. I feel it is important to expand my culinary horizons whenever possible.

          We went back to Ephemere (sorry about the spelling - can't pronounce it either!) again and it was even better the second night. My mom had a to-die-for lobster spring roll and my dad had the lobster ravioli. I MUST ask for their gazpacho recipe. Mmmmmmmmm. Also went back to the Edge for a non-pizza night meal - we all had the rock-roasted lobster (so sweet, so tender, like a fragile minuet) and the oysters from Cushing, which were stellar in form but the sauce was not as good as Francine's.

          Am now back home and brought with me a lobster roll - around my middle! Maine, not so good for the weight. My scale says "error"!!!

          The only thing I didn't get to try that I was really wanting to was 3 Tides - wish they were open for lunch - hard to get to during the evening hours with a little tyke in tow.

          1. re: kbear
            Harp00n Jul 16, 2007 06:21 PM

            Well kbear, we all have our likes & dislikes. To me, flounder is such a mild and subtly sweet fish and is so uniform in texture, unlike swordfish, It lends itself to so many preparations. I'd almost call it the North Atlantic saltwater Tilapia. There's not a-dimes-worth-of-difference between it and Dove Sole which I've eaten in Dover, Kent several times.

            Regarding Pass the Punster all I can say is; better a flopping flounder than a limpid lobster (ouch!)

        2. f
          freddybirdy Sep 13, 2007 11:11 PM

          kbear, u write like a dream....keep wishing your posts never ends!

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