Maine 10 Year Anniversary Trip Adventures: The Food

Matt and I got back on Monday from a really fun adventure: an anniversary trip up to Maine to enjoy some fall hiking in Acadia National Park! It was gorgeous up there and a much needed break to reset. 

I have a ton of pictures from all the cool hikes we did, so stay tuned for some recaps from those next week, but here is a sneak preview. The views up there were amazing – can’t beat the beautiful fall colors + ocean combo!

I’ll share all the hiking details in upcoming posts, but first up in terms of recaps today is the food! 

Read on to see what and where we ate while in Maine. 

Food Highlights from Maine

Matt and I stayed at the beautiful Claremont Hotel in Southwest Harbor, which is a small town about 20 minutes from Bar Harbor, and about an hour and a half from Bangor, Maine, where we flew in.

It was an interesting time to be in this part of Maine, as everything was about to shut down for the season (or in some cases, already had – unfortunately Beal’s Lobster Pier which many recommended to us had JUST closed for the season the weekend prior). 

Meals at The Claremont Southwest Harbor

Hotel food can be totally hit or miss, but luckily for us (especially since most of Southwest Harbor was already shut down), I’m happy to report that the food at our hotel was absolutely delicious – super fresh and creative, too. We had breakfast there every day, and dinner there twice. 

For breakfast, I had their avocado toast 3 times – it was THAT good – and two of the times I had it topped with lobster because… when in Maine, eat all the lobster, right?!

avocado toast topped with lobster

Isn’t that gorgeous? It was so fresh and delicious – the topping was balsamic and some peppers and tomato diced really small. It was so so good! Matt had their frittata that day and said it was also good, and quite hearty as it had potatoes in it.  

breakfast from the claremont hotel in southwest harbor

The other two mornings I had the omelette, which was also really delicious – it had goat cheese, spinach, basil, and tomato. I got a side of walnut raisin toast, plus some fruit!

omelette from the claremont in southwest harbor

Besides some really awesome hikes, sleeping in and having leisurely breakfasts was one of our favorite parts of the trip – it was soooo nice to have slow, relaxing mornings rather than the usual super early mad rush and shoveling food in our faces before getting the kids out the door, starting work, etc. 

It was too cold to eat outside most of the days, but the first morning it was perfect out on the patio. 

As for the two dinners we had at the hotel, they were really delicious as well! Both nights we started in “Harry’s Bar,” a little bar right on the property, and had some appetizers and drinks (always Prosecco, my fave, for me!) while playing board games and waiting for dinner. 

The hotel was really cozy and we had later dinner reservations each of the nights so it was fun to start the evenings there off like this! 

cheese, olives, and shrimp cocktail

As for dinner in the main restaurant (The Little Fern), both nights I started with their beet salad which was delicious – great dressing. 

beet salad from the little fern restaurant at the claremont

The first night for my entree I had the salmon with carrot curry, yellow split peas, bee pollen, maple mustard seed, and a “vegetable nest.” The salmon was tender and well cooked, had great flavor, and was very unique!

salmon entree from the little fern in the claremont

The second night I had the filet mignon with baked sweet potatoes, confit local onion, and a local blueberry BBQ sauce, which was also excellent, but I forgot to get a photo of it! 

Dinner at Sweet Pea’s Cafe on Sweet Pea’s Farm

This was one of our favorite meals of the trip!

We stopped at Sweet Pea’s Cafe, and adorable outdoor restaurant on site at Sweet Pea’s Farm outside of Bar Harbor, on the way from the airport to our hotel the first night at the recommendation of an Instagram follower, Grace, and we were so pleasantly surprised by both the ambiance and the food!

We started with beers (we love the “Lunch” beer from Maine Brewing Co.) by their cozy fire, which was nice because it was getting quite chilly out!

beers by the fire at sweet pea cafe farm

Once we were seated (at a long table with another couple, who we had fun chatting with a bit), I enjoyed some oysters that were probably the best oysters I’ve ever had – they were so big and flavorful and the vinegar and shallot sauce they came with was super good, too. 

Plus a big farm fresh salad that we shared, and some olives (that we got at the bar, hence the takeaway container).

oysters from sweet pea cafe in bar harbor

We got two big wood fired pizzas for dinner – a spicy one for Matt, and their roasted veggie pizza for me plus added pepperoni. 🙂 

wood fired pizza from sweet pea cafe in bar harbor

We figured we’d want the leftovers for a hiking lunch the next day, and we were right – it hit the spot out on the trails!

leftover pizza with a view of acadia national park

Dinner at Salt & Steel in Bar Harbor

One of the days after a big day of hiking in Acadia we decided to head to nearby Bar Harbor for dinner. The town was still bustling, although we heard in a couple weeks it will also be much slower with a lot of the restaurants closed! 

We decided on Salt & Steel, which was recommended to us by the couple we chatted with the previous night at Sweet Pea’s Cafe. We didn’t have a reservation, but we arrived right when they opened at 5 and were able to snag a seat at their bar table, which worked well! We got in just in time – our waiter told us they were closing up for the season the following week, and by 5:30, the whole place was packed!

We started with the tuna tartare and the truffled kale caesar salad. The tuna tartare was kind of bland, but the kale caesar was good – loved the truffle flavor. 

truffled kale caesar from salt & steel bar harbor

For my entree, I had the lobster bolognese, which was just okay – the sauce wasn’t super complex or interesting and it was SO MUCH pasta and only tiny pieces of lobster. Meh.

lobster bolognese from salt & steel in bar harbor

Matt had the ramen which was yummier – the broth was really rich and unique and super savory. Should’ve gotten that, too!

The ambiance at Salt & Steel was fun and the service was great, but the food was our least favorite of the trip. Especially considering how expensive that meal was, it was a bummer. Oh well! Can’t win ’em all. 

Dinner at Blaze Brewing in Camden, Maine

On our last day in Maine, we drove a couple hours south to Camden, Maine, to meet Lu, one of my best friends from college, and her husband, Connor!

They live near Portland so we figured meeting in the middle made sense – plus, there was actually a marathon happening that day in our area (Bar Harbor/Acadia) that would have made meeting there and trying to hike around kind of a pain. 

Camden is a really cute town right on the water, and we did a great hike in the state park there and even took a sunset boat ride – more on that in a later post! But after all that fun we had dinner together at a spot on the water called Blaze Brewing. I started with some oysters, because I’m obsessed:

oysters from Blaze brewing in camden, maine

And then I had a great lobster roll – couldn’t leave Maine without one of those, right?! It was awesome, and the fries were delicious, too. 🙂

lobster roll from blaze brewing in camden maine

It was a great way to cap off our trip! 

Thanks for all the deliciousness, Maine. 🙂 And next up, stay tuned for some recaps from all the hiking we did!

Source link: by Anne Mauney, MPH, RD at