If you haven’t heard of it yet, let us be the first to inform you that tomorrow is the first day of Maine’s second annual Maine Restaurant Week. As of this writing there are 103 restaurants in 25 cities that have joined in the 10-day celebration. Originally started in NYC, Restaurant Week is now celebrated all over the country, offering people an opportunity to try out new restaurants featuring three-course meals at special prices.

There will be three appetizers, entrees and desserts at each establishment that you can choose from as part of the event. You’ll need to bring a healthy appetite with you when you visit these restaurants and try out their menus. A few are offering lunch specials also. You don’t need a reservation at the restaurants, but it is advised to call and make one just to ensure you get a table during Restaurant Week.

The offerings range from seafood to meat to vegan.

Like that last one? For a vegan meal you can try the Green Elephant Vegetarian Bistro on Congress St. in Portland (www.greenelephantmaine.com).

If you’re going to be up north in Bethel skiing, stop off at 22 Broad Street (http://gideonhastingshouse.com/) or the Sunday River Brew Club (sundayriverbrewpub.com).

If you love seafood there is Cook’s Lobster House on Bailey Island (www.cookslobster.com) or Fish Bones American Grill in Lewiston (www.fishbonesag.com).

Other restaurants in central Maine that are taking part include:

• Danny Boy’s Irish Pub & Restaurant, Auburn (777-1777)

• Gritty McDuff’s, Auburn (grittys.com)

There are too many to list them all on this page, so get your appetite revved and go out and try a few restaurants that you haven’t been to yet, or stick with your favorite and try something new. Don’t miss out on this gastronomic event. The “week” runs from March 1 to 10, so you have 10 days to try as many as your budget allows. For more information and a complete listing of the participating restaurants go to www.mainerestaurantweek.com.

Beale Street Barbeque

215 Water St.

Bath

442 9514

www.Mainebbq.com

This is a great restaurant in the heart of Bath, where you’ll find friendly staff and some wonderful meals. Who can resist the plate of ribs and chicken (pictured), followed by tempting Key lime pie? Go for it! This is in historic Bath and there is much to see, but you might want to check out the Chocolate Church to see what ‘s going on there for some entertainment. (www.chocolatechurcharts.org)

Farmers Table

205 Commercial St.

Portland

347-7479

farmerstablemaine.com

I highly recommend you visit the Farmers Table if you haven’t already. The pork shank was a dish that made my mouth water. This is a small and intimate establishment, so be sure to call ahead for reservations before you go. Shop the Old Port before you eat to work up an appetite. (www.portlandmaine.com)

Fuel

49 Lisbon St.

Lewiston

333-3835

www.fuelmaine.com

Visit this stylish restaurant in downtown Lewiston for a real treat. Try out the roasted scallops or either of the other two entrees being offered during Restaurant Week. And while you are there visit L/A Arts’ Gallery 5 right next door. (www.laarts.org)

Good Table

527 Ocean House Road

Cape Elizabeth

799 4663

thegoodtablerestaurant.net

This establishment has a wonderful homey atmosphere, as warm and welcoming as its staff. Try the Grilled Diver Scallops or either of the other two entrees offered. Then, when you leave, take the road across the street to Two Lights lighthouse and take in a beautiful ocean view. (www.lighthouse.cc/capeelizabeth/)

Great American Grill

5 Park St.

Freeport

865-1433

www.freeportdowntown.HGI.com

You’ll find the Great American Grill in the Hilton Garden Inn in Freeport. Try out the Mobley burger, which is served at all the Hilton Garden Inns, and be sure to ask them how it got its name. This is a famous burger. While in Freeport you can visit the shops in the downtown area and maybe catch some entertainment at a local pub. (www.freeportusa.com/)

Mac’s Grill

1052 Minot Ave.

Auburn

783 6885

macsgrill.com

This restaurant has a Western theme and serves up great food for healthy appetites. (Pictured is the Blue Bistro, a 6-ounce Angus sirloin sure to satisfy your hunger.) If you like to ski, visit Lost Valley Ski Area and then warm up at Mac’s Grill. (www.lostvalleyski.com)

Slate’s Restaurant & Bakery

163 Water St.

Hallowell

622-9575

slatesrestaurant.com

If you haven’t visited Slate’s since it was razed by a fire a few years ago, now is the time to go. Try their wonderful salmon fillet or either of the other two entrees offered. Slate’s is not only a gastronomic delight, but an artistic one as well with their decorating. While in Hallowell stop of at the Harlow Gallery to view a great art exhibit by high school students. www.harlowgallery.org


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