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Thinking outside the bun: Lunch on Deer Isle, Maine

Where can I get lunch? That's a question we hear a lot and while there are several fine eateries on the island that serve lunch with table service, it's the smaller, counter-service, road side, and unusual lunch and snack spots both on and off the island that we'll be highlighting in this two-part series.

If you' re lucky enough to be looking for lunch on a Wednesday or a Friday, our first pick for something fresh, local and unique is a visit to the Deer Isle and Stonington Farmers Markets from late May/early June until late September/early October.  The Deer Isle Market takes place on Wednesdays from 9:30 - 11:30, just around the corner from the Inn at the old elementary school, just past 44 North coffee on the left.

The Stonington market takes place on Fridays from 10-12 at the Island Community Center off of route 15A, about a 10-15 minute drive from Pilgrim's Inn. Head on over early to these markets to pick up lunch and eat it later while you're hiking, relaxing on the lawn at Pilgrim's Inn, or exploring the area.  The Inn has plenty of backpacks for you to borrow to take your lunch on the trail.

At the farmer's markets you'll find several lunch options like Mia's sesame noodles and spring rolls, or pick up some seriously delicious smoked pork ribs from the Nostrano traveling BBQ pit.

One of our favorite things to do is to put together a picnic sourced from several different vendors, like bagels from Water's Edge Bagels & Breads, paired with goat cheese from Yellow Birch Farm, throw in some summer tomatoes from Blue Zee Farm, or smoked salmon from Nostrano and you've got yourself the freshest, most local and truly delicious lunch around.  End the meal with fresh local fruit or a sweet treat from Bread Box or Apple Blossom Bakery.  At the Stonington market you'll also find prepared Indian and Asian foods for something unique and tasty.

If a terrific sandwich, potato salad, a fruit pie and
fresh lemonade sparklers sounds good, then check out "Peas in a Pod" pop up lunch stand.  You'll find this group of enterprising high school students at the parking lot at the Congregational Church in Deer Isle Village on Tuesdays from 11 -2 (or whenever food runs out), the Deer Isle Farmers Market on Wednesdays from 9:30 - 11:30, and the parking lot of "Lily's House" on route 15 in Stonington on Thursdays starting at 11:00 am.  Peas in a Pod pop up lunch stand is a project of the "Ready for 21" program at the Deer Isle-Stonington High School.  The program teaches Island youth valuable entrepreneurial skills and lunch sales benefit the program.

Of course, one can't come to Maine without eating a lobster roll, and our island community is world famous for its lobster.  We love the lobster roll at Harbor Ice Cream in Deer Isle village, right across from the Inn.   Very well priced, and served the traditional no frills way in a grilled and buttered hot dog bun with just the right amount of mayo, there's nothing better.   Harbor Ice Cream serves up plenty of  hot and cold sandwiches, and offers Maine made Giffords Ice Cream with uniquely Maine flavors like Moose Tracks and Maine Black Bear.  You'll also find lobster rolls and ice cream down at the Stonington Ice Cream company shack next to the library in Stonington.

Got kids?  Then you won't find a more kid friendly outdoor eatery than Madelyn's Drive In and
Takeout on route 15 going north about a mile from the Inn.  Their well maintained roadside eatery features soft serve ice cream, plenty of sandwiches and lobster, plus tons of kid friendly food and play options.  You can enjoy your meal at their numerous picnic tables while your kids climb the jungle gyms or play in the sandbox. 

If a sweet treat is all you need.....
While not a lunch spot, you can't miss out on a cold or hot coffee beverage from 44 North Coffee.  Megan and Melissa are serving up fair trade coffee from their perch on top of the historic Deer Isle school house around the corner from the Inn on Church St.  They also serve up biscotti to pair with your coffee, along with occasional baked goods, and recently had a pop up pastries truck from "Sarahndipity Pies"in their parking lot.  Also in Deer Isle on Main St. is Sophie's Cup and Fibula Jewelry, where you can stop in for baked goods and cappuccino while perusing the gorgeous jewelry. The Mountainville Cafe at Nervous Nellie's Jams & Jellies in Sunshine is another fun stop where the whimsical sculptures of Peter Beerits are paired with jams and jellies you can try with a scone. 

Tune in next week for the second half of this blog: Off Island lunch spots featuring:

El El Frijoles
Bagaduce Lunch 
Sandy's Gourmet 
Bucks Harbor Market 
Perry's Lobster Shack 

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posted by Your Innkeepers @ 9:49 AM  


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