Thursday, August 07, 2008

The Worst Place To Be a Vegetarian

Rising Tide Restaurant - 1 star
96 King St., Scarborough, Maine

Portland Lobster Company - 1 star
180 Commercial St., Portland, Maine

Omaha, Nebraska? Paris, France? No, it's the Maine coast in the summertime, when the only thing anyone wants to sell you is lobster. I was at Higgins Beach with my family and my nephew, who was visiting us for a few weeks. Higgins Beach is relatively undeveloped, which is good and bad - good because there is no congestion and the beach itself is beautiful, bad because there are few hotels or restaurants in the immediate vicinity. We stayed at the Higgins Beach Inn, which is basically a dump - tiny rooms, soft beds, showers that don't work properly, not enough beach towels, few electrical outlets, etc.; there was one other hotel near the beach, and it was full.

But we did eat at two restaurants that I think were good, at least according to the animal eaters. The first was Rising Tide, a seafood place with the ambiance of a shack, behind a fisherman's cooperative and right on the docks. I had a salad and onion rings (which came out of the freezer), but apparently the lobster roll was good. That night we ate at the Portland Lobster Company, on the docks in Portland, at a bright red picnic table under a large tent in the midst of a driving rainstorm. They at least had a couple of vegetarian options - I had an avocado and cheese wrap, which was heavy on the lettuce but otherwise good, and a Greek salad with too much dressing - and I hear the lobster roll was even better (the fried haddock sandwich was also said to be good). What's more, I drank local draught beer in a plastic cup, perhaps for the first time since college, and it was not bad at all.

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