Sunday, June 29, 2014

Great Lost Bear - Portland, ME

It has been a long time since I've blogged about food.  Much of the reason is because while we were in Georgia we mostly went to the same places and didn't go anywhere new and  exciting.  Now we've move to Scarborough, Maine and are going many places that are new and exciting.

The Great Lost Bear - Portland Maine


Photo by Craige Moore
via Flickr  (CC BY-ND 2.0)
This interesting pub was a place my wife went to several times some 30 plus years ago.  She remembers when it was newly opened and thought it would be fun to stop in again after all these years. We were in the city for some other business and figured that stopping by would be a great thing.

The parking was horrendous.  We thought we found a really great space on the street. No signs were posted.  After parking and getting out I saw a no parking sign, not like most places with the sign on a pole along the street, rather the sign was on the wall of the building and said no parking here to corner. Sigh... Next a look at their postage-stamp sized lot.  No luck there. Luckily there weren't any spaces there.  I say "luckily" because it would have been extremely difficult to park the big F-150 truck in there.  We finally found a place up the street.  I got about 95% of the truck into a legal parking area. Only the front foot or so extended into the no parking area.  I feel sorry for the guy parked behind me.  He didn't have much space to get out.  Well, people could still get out of the driveway in front of me, so I guess my parking was close enough.

The menu

had so many choices it took a while to decide what we wanted.  My wife and I both settled on the "Food From Maine & Away" section of the menu.  She on the Spanakopita and me on the Monte Cristo.  A couple Angry Orchards on a hot day as well as our regular "water with lemon" and we were good to go.

The spanakopita had a delicious crust, however, it could have been called a "feta cheese surprise."  It was a surprise when you found some feta cheese in it.  It was also very bland.  If they used garlic it wasn't very noticeable.  The pastry was very good, better than most, for sure.  My wife ordered the side salad to go with her lunch.  Very uninspiring, however, she was very pleased with the delicious cucumber/wasabi dressing.

The Monte Cristo was a disappointment. The menu said "batter, crumbled, & grilled," I didn't see a batter.  It did have a dusting of some kind of "crumble," however, to say "grilled" was an overstatement. Yes, it probably had been put on the grill but not long enough to make it toasted.  Now, don't get me wrong, it was still a good sandwich just not what I would expect of a Monte Cristo.   I had ordered cheese sauce on the fries but they arrived without the cheese sauce. The waiter was gone before I had a chance to mention it.  However, the fries were quite good.  Not traditional but good.

Overall, the restaurant was okay.  Tough parking, okay service, great atmosphere, okay food. Will I go back? Maybe, if I am in the neighborhood and hungry.  But it is not a place I'd go out of my way to eat at.

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