A sparsely populated north-eastern state, Maine has a number of small and beautiful cities that punctuate the pristine wilderness. Bangor is a relatively compact city in the highlands region of Maine, but despite its small size the city’s cultural facilities rival many other much bigger metropolises. The restaurant scene is thriving, with classic American cuisine sitting side by side with foods from Asia and Europe, making Bangor a true foodie city.
The Fiddlehead Restaurant in downtown Bangor takes diners through a new concept of fine dining, using the very best in fresh and local ingredients. The cuisine aims to take apart traditional comfort foods. Menu items include chicken dumplings and potato gnocchi to start, and main meals such as marinated pork ribs, crab cakes, and lobster rolls. There is a wide selection of wines available, from a number of more unusual vintners. Almost all are served by the glass as part of the Fiddlehead’s ethos is to encourage greater experimentation with unknown (but quality) producers.
Many restaurants focus on just one cuisine, but Thistles Restaurant has been opening up the possibilities of a truly global dining experience for over a decade. Chef Alejandro uses his culinary talents to bring the best recipes from Latin America and Europe to the table in Maine. Dishes include Gaucho style rack of lamb, French lamb marinated with Argentinian chimichuri and Malbec wine, and tri-color grilled salmon featuring a prime fillet topped with a pepper and sesame vinaigrette. The dessert section is all about comfort food with chocolate torte, crème brûlée and cheesecake all standing by to put the perfect finish on a meal.
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Massimo’s Cucina Italiana is a truly special Italian dining experience that has been thrilling Bangor for many years. A family-owned restaurant run by Massimo and Anne Marie Ranni. The restaurant has done away with the traditional hallmarks of checked tablecloths and oversized pepper mills, favoring an elegant chic decor. The food retains a traditional edge, however, with top-notch pasta dishes and Italian inspired salads. The grilled section includes white fish, such as tilapia, and prime cuts of meat such as rib-eye steaks. Massimo’s is a great experience for those seeking great Italian fare.
The Kobe Ninja House is unlike many other Japanese restaurants. The menu features sushi and noodles alongside some of the very best steak and meat side dishes. Kobe beef, where available, is some of the very best meat in the world. Other items include maki rolls, featuring spiced yellowfin tuna, and a selection of tempura dishes.
Moe’s Original BBQ in Bangor is part of a small group of Alabama inspired barbecue food, boasting a revival of Southern food, they have even been voted into the top 10 of all barbecue joints in the USA. As this is a celebration of all things Southern, the most popular dishes on the menu are pork based. Pulled pork with succulent sauces comes in sandwiches and on platters with a selection of sides. The restaurant also presents fantastic fried chicken, a Wednesday speciality, that consistently goes down well. Moe’s is truly a great place to experience the best in ‘low and slow’ barbecue cooking.
Only a short drive away from the city of Bangor, Brewster’s Fine Food and Drink offers great food in a peaceful and quiet Maine location. The menu features great snacks and sandwiches, as well as specialist beers and cocktails. Buffalo chicken wings, a classic spicy marinade coating succulent wings with a side of blue cheese dip and celery sticks, are incredibly good value. The buffalo and blue cheese sauces can also appear on the fully customizable burger: there are no limits to the size (and innovation) that customers can exercise on their meals.
Taste of India showcases a relaxed yet elegant approach to fantastic Indian food, and as a specialist in cuisine from the sub-continent, the restaurant also boasts a fine selection of vegetarian options. Three days a week, the restaurant invites diners to enjoy a buffet that allows them to experience all of the best items on the menu. Dishes include chicken saag, featuring spiced breast meat cooked with spinach and the many vegetarian options, such as dal makhani, make use of lentils and more for delicious and satisfying meals.
Although many might be put off by the idea of dining at a sports bar, potential guests would be foolish to write off Ground Round Grill and Bar. Portions are generous and all diners can be confident of leaving full to the brim. One of the bar’s specialties is its selection of Tex-Mex food, sizzling fajitas, chimichanga and baja tacos are just some of the options available. The tacos are filled with hand-breaded fish or shrimp, stuffed with cabbage and a tangy dressing and served with Spanish rice, a delicious take on food south of the USA border.
No list of restaurants in Maine would be complete without at least a cursory nod the state’s famous lobster. At McLaughlin Seafood, Inc, however, they do more than just nod. Steamed, grilled or baked, guests can choose to have their lobster however they wish. While not the most comfortable of dining locations, seats and tables are limited to a few outside arrangements, the fresh quality of the seafood on offer more than makes up for the sparse decoration. Lobster, and crabmeat rolls make for easy snacking, while sweet treats such as ice cream are great for a quick follow-up choice.
With a country built across great plains on huge roads, truck stops are practically American institutions. Dysarts is a family restaurant that caters for everyone, themed along the lines of a truck-stop spot. It’s open seven days a week, 24 hours a day. The menu is vast, filled with the very best in comfort food and American classics. Huge burgers, American style pancakes and pot roasts and pies are just small examples of the dishes available to hungry diners. Dessert options include fruit or cream pies, ice cream sundaes and chocolate brownies.