Went to Blue Sky today for brunch. The setting is beautiful inside, but the promise that it is on the beach is only that it is on Beach Street. The menu was very unbrunch-like except for a few items.
Before we began to eat, we had to request that the table be cleaned. Two members of the party arrived earlier than the last pair. The waiter never noticed that there were only two table settings and had to be asked to bring the two additional ones.
We began with oyster shooters which were supposed to be a Bloody Mary with a raw oyster in it. Very innovative idea, but the glasses that came were very small and the vodka so overpowered anything else that you could not tell that there was tomato juice, no less spices in the liquid. At $4.50 per drink, the price was inexpensive.
We then shared the spicy lamb pizza. It was very good, but grease had accumulated on the dough rendering it so soggy that when you tried to pick it up with your fork, the dough collapsed due to its being wet from grease.
One person in the party order the Two Steaks in One. One steak was a piece of skirt steak that was about four inches by two inches. The second "steak" was a portobello mushroom cap. This was accompanied by a small portion of scrambled eggs and some pommes frites. At $18 for this, one would have expected that the steak would have been something more than merely grilled and needed to have salt and pepper added (which had to be requested for the table). The waiter didn't ask what degree of doneness was desired. The member of the party asked the waiter if he weren't going to ask how he wanted his steak prepared and the waiter than took the order for a medium rare steak which came out exactly as requested. The verdict on this was that it was excellent, but insufficient in size.
Another member of the party had a special of eggs benedict over a crab cake. What arrived was one poached egg on one crab cake on one-half an English Muffin with watercress on top with a hollandaise sauce. The verdict on this was that it was excellent.
The two remaining members of the party of four ordered the Caesar Salad. A small plate of Romaine lettuce (less than one head of Romaine that was not cut up and still attached to the root end). There were shreds of bacon, a very few half rings of red onion, some delicious croutons, and two white anchovies. Not much for $10 each. In my salad the end of the partial head of romaine lettuce had not been trimmed and still had the brown end on it. The dressing on the salad was next to tasteless and disappointing.
The four of us shared two desserts. One was a lemon cream cake with blueberry compote. It was excellent, but not very lemony. The second was a coconut tart with three blackberries. It was creamy and good, but unless you knew that it was a coconut tart, you would be hard pressed to discern the flavor.
In addition to the above food, there were two large bottles of Pelligrino water and a special request for a popover (which was served with honey and had been flavored with almond and was a show stopper), two espressos and two cappacinos.
All in all the meal was pleasant and good, but not outstanding considering that the bill was $145 without tip for a brunch for four. The service was uneven and the food arrived slowly with apologies for the delay, especially for the pizza. At nearly $40 a person with one small drink, one would have expected this Sunday brunch to be outstanding and certainly didn't live up to Lydia Shire's reputation for her other restaurants.
I posted this about a month ago--thought I'd copy it here...
Just wanted to say that recently we ate at Lydia Shire's new restaurant in York, Blue Sky, and took family foodies from the west coast. The food was mostly very good (a couple of exceptions). The cowboy steak was prepared very well, the lobster stew was delicious as were the salads, and I loved the pasta with sqash dish. The linguini with clams was just ok. We enjoyed it overall and the dishes are generously portioned. We even brought our middle school aged son, who is well behaved and loves food, and I felt very comfortable with him there. It is rather "out of place" though. Very New York, not York, ME. I like the no dress code policy--it feels like you could dress up if you wanted to or come in blue jeans and either would work well. White leather seats, mod details, nice big booth tables, fire places, interesting curved bar. I must say (and I hope Lydia sees this) that the music was HORRIFIC--it really affected our experience there. Its not that I'm out of touch with what's "hip and now" and I think I get the idea (whispy contemporary-sounding re-makes of things like classic rolling stones tunes), but it doesn't work there--perhaps in a hair salon on Newbury Street or something? Much better to play more classic jazz--like Ellington or others of that ilk, for instance. The music really colors the dining experience that is otherwise very pleasant.
I also ate at Blue Sky a month ago. We found the value relative to price is pretty low. Of the four dishes we ordered (salmon, fried lobster, skirt steak, and swordfish) only one, the steak, was great - the others fine but not stellar, Service was extremely disappointing - the waitress had clearly not been trained properly, which I think is negligent in a restaurant of the caliber it portrays itself to be. She could not walk us through the menu in any coherent way, was spotty answering questions. She also knew nothing about wine the sommolier did not deign to come to our table although we would have valued his or her advice.
In short, a restaurant that can not really deliver on what it is trying to be - not worth the trip from Boston.
We went on a dreary,rainy Monday night and it was the perfect spot to keep out of the storm. The restaurant is BEAUTIFUL. No doubt that some thought went into the decor. We sat at the bar and everyone was very friendly. The owner even sat next to us and chatted for quite a while and then bought us a pizza because he said we had to have it! Spicy lamb pizza - a winner. The rest of the meal was just as good. Lobster and finnan haddie chowder - not too smokey but luscious. We are glad we went off season because I bet in the summer it will be a zoo. For locals I would say go now while you still can enjoy it without the tourists. We can't wait to go back