HOME > Chowhound > All New England Archive >


Restaurants Camden Maine Area

Visiting Camden ME area this weekend. Looking for suggestions for lunch & dinner. Have reservations at Harstone Inn for Sat.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. We enjoyed Cafe Miranda in Rockland. They had local fish and the place had a funky vibe.


    1 Reply
    1. re: Fritter

      Having lived and worked in the area for almost 20 years, as a purveyor and restaurant employee, I know that you will find no shortage of options, but there are some that stand out. Top of my list (and many peoples'), is Primo in Rockland. Francine in Camden would be second, and close to where you are staying. In Good Company is also in Rockland and offers fine food and a great selection of beer and wine. Also worth researching is Natalies. Where ever you go be aware that the local constabulary is like a swarm of angry bees on weekends, and there is a strictly enforced jaywalking law ($137fine) in Camden and Rockland, so use the crosswalks, where drivers are required to stop for you.

    2. Just a tourist, not a local -- but also a fan of Cafe Miranda for casual, eclectic food; and Lily Bistrro in Rockland for simple but delicious (and usually locally-sourced) fare.


      1. Thanks for all your suggestions! I'm getting hungry :)

        1 Reply
        1. re: Capebeach

          If it's where I think you're describing, it' is now a coffee shop called Zoots.

        2. I have wondering for a while...about three years ago we were in camden and found a great restaurant, it was on the main street, had a covered patio on the side of the building(where a band was playing) and was pretty small on the inside. We actually just got take out because we were starving and they were jammed! The food was fabulous...does anyone know the name or if it is still there?? We will be in Maine in a few weeks, and will make the drive to Camden if it is still there...

          5 Replies
          1. re: aareri

            There's a little Thai resto on the main drag with a patio- the Thai Kitchen. It's had many good reviews here- possibly what you're thinking?

            1. re: happybellynh

              Maybe, that is the spot but this rstaurant wasn't Thai, It was just a mix of everything lots of veg options/seafood/ kind of a mex vibe if I remember correctly and they served breakfast as well...I'm guessing it's not there anymore

            2. re: aareri

              Is it The Waterfront?

              Mariner's, The Village Restaurant and I think Camden Deli all have decks/outdoor seating.

              1. re: aareri

                It was definitely South by Southwest, which has unfortunately closed. Try Boynton McKay for yummy and affordable breakfast, the chef/owner at South By Southwest got started in the area working at Boynton.

                I am a HUGE fan of the Waterfront cocktail deck for drinks and mussels and Francine for dinner Camden circuit....in my opinion there's nothing finer on a gorgeous night.

                1. re: camdenkid

                  It WAS South by Southwest!! I am soo upset it's closed :( We just had takeout one night 4 yrs ago and still talk about it. They were so packed and it was our last night... I hate it when the good ones don't make it!

              2. Hartstone should be a pretty good start, actually! The cooking there is really fundamentally sound. The atmosphere is charming, too. If you get down to Rockland, The Brown Bag is great for lunch. I also have a soft spot in my head for the Rockland Diner.

                1. Try Mariner's Grill on Main st. Wonderful food, reasonably priced. Try the rear deck overlooking the bay and waterfall. Wonderful, friendly owners.

                  1. You may also want to check out Brevetto Kitchen and Wine Bar. Nice Italian bistro style food, great wine list, most by glass or quartino. Tell em Tom from Nobleboro sent ya!

                    1. Capebeach,

                      I will be staying at the Hartstone Inn towards the end of Sep't. I have never stayed there before and was wondering what your thoughts were of the Inn and if you ate at their restaurant how your meal was and what you ate. Thanks !!

                      7 Replies
                      1. re: hugo

                        We didn't stay at the Inn but we did have a wonderful dinner! Started with a nice green salad with strawberries and goat cheese. The entree was sauted halibut and delicious veggies. It was a set menu (no choices) and everything was delicious. When I called to reserve I was asked if there is any food I don't like. The chef helped to serve the meal which was quite cool. It was nice to be able to compliment him in person. Enjoy!

                        1. re: Capebeach

                          Thanks. Sounds good. I'll let you know how the inn is and how dinner was. Plus I'll report on the other places in Camden and surrounding towns where I hope to eat which were mentioned in this thread.

                          1. re: hugo

                            Don't miss Natalie's at the Camden Harbour Inn. Go for the lounge menu if you don't want to spring for dinner (although it's well worth it).

                        2. re: hugo

                          I have stayed at the Inn, and I thought the food was way to "frou-frou." I am pretty easy to please. We ended up going to Francine's on our second night in Camden and LOVED it!! EVERYTHING in this Inn is "for sale"....love to hear your experience. The "chef" actually asks guests to write internet reviews AND tries to sell everyone his "cookbook" which is self-published. The breakfast that we had was over the top on the sweet side. Strawberry-orange juice with half a a small waffle for breakfast and REALLY weak coffee. Personally, I thought it was super-lame.

                          1. re: morla

                            just came back from a week in camden. francine was amazing. boynton & mckay was great for snacks and baked goods. zoot's coffee is great. in rockland primo was super as always but francine equal. always hit up wasses hot dogs at any of their locations.

                            1. re: cubanat

                              We were in Camden last week as well. Francine was wonderful. Lobster mascarpone-stuffed squash blossoms perfectly fried and dressed, beautiful pan-seared halibut and little-necks over black-eyed peas and microgreens for me, and my husband loved his roast chicken with green beans and farro. I was so happy that I didn't even steal from his plate, which is unusual. Lovely blueberry crisp for dessert.

                              We also enjoyed Boynton & McKay for a quick breakfast, and slices of blueberry and strawberry/rhubarb pie at Mae's in Bath on the way up and good chowder at the Fish House Grill in Bar Harbor.

                              1. re: bear

                                I forgot to say that we also had a nice meal at Local 188 in Portland with some family members who live in the area. We enjoyed lots of small plates, particularly the short ribs (fabulous), cod cakes, paella, a special of clams if I'm recalling correctly, and the gnocchi. Olives and cheese plate were good, too, although I can't remember the specific cheeses (wine must have gotten to me!). Great for a group.