Each month Joe Ricchio gives local insight into his favorite places to eat and drink. He recommends that you pace yourself as you Eat Maine.
1 | Chase’s Daily
I’m told by some of the regulars that I have the distinct honor of being the only patron in history to be served several alcoholic beverages by the owner while waiting to be seated for breakfast. I’m not sure why this is such an uncommon occurrence, as a glass of sauvignon blanc from the Loire Valley tastes better than coffee any day. After any long evening (or morning) spent imbibing heavily, there’s nothing better than a fiddlehead omelet served alongside some of the best home fries you’ll ever have.
96 Main St. | Belfast | 207.338.0555
2 | Wasses Hot Dogs
If you don’t like the hot dogs at Wasses, then I’m fairly confident that I would have very little interest in being your friend. It’s fine by me if you have a problem with delightfully juicy franks cooked in peanut oil and slathered in chili and cheese, but please don’t force your joyless existence on those of us who have found the true meaning of the phrase “comfort food.”
1 Belmont Ave. | Belfast
3 | Rollie’s Bar + Grill
While slaughtering a bitingly cold George Killian’s Irish Red, I began to notice that no one at this legendary neighborhood sports bar is drinking water. Being a fervent believer in proper hydration to counteract excessive alcohol consumption, I begin toying with the notion of ordering an ice water for myself when, all of a sudden, the bartender rings a fire bell, strides into the center of the busy barroom, and shouts “Where do you go if you want an ice water?” to which the crowd responds, in unison, “DARBY’S!”
37 Main St. | Belfast | 207.338.4502
4 | Darby’s Restaurant + Pub
Home of the best ice water in town (according to the regulars over at Rollie’s), Darby’s is a true Belfast institution—the restaurant has been in operation for more than 140 years. The current owners purchased it in 1985, and ever since they have been offering a dizzying array of menu items encompassing Asian, American, and Latin cuisines. The old-school feel of the bar makes it a great perch to lurch through several glasses of scotch while admiring the prominently displayed portrait of the late Babe Ruth—which may also lead you to drunkenly ponder just how many Wasses hot dogs the Babe could put away on one of his epic binges.
155 High St. | Belfast | 207.338.2339
5 | Three Tides
A recent visit found me sitting on the deck enjoying several Marshall Wharf draughts, Pemaquid oysters, carrot cake, a few glasses of Torrontes, brandy, mescal, watermelon margaritas, absinthe, two bottles of red wine, and one of the best Cobb salads I’ve ever had the pleasure of sampling. Foolhardy behavior of this nature should be strictly reserved for professionals in peak physical condition, which would have been useful information to know before I ended up completely incapacitated and playing Angry Birds to take my mind off the splitting pain in my stomach.
2 Pinchy Ln. | Belfast | 207.338.1707
6 | Marshall Wharf Brewery Store
After having your fill of Marshall Wharf’s superlative beer selections at Three Tides, why not wander over and fill up a growler or two to go? While you shop around the Brewery Store you can continue to sample the wares, including Deep Purple, a German-style smoked ale. If that’s not smoky enough for you, they also sell cigarettes.
2 Pinchy Ln. | Belfast | 207.338.1707
7 | Belfast Farmers Market
Some people find it comforting to overpay for produce that has been nicely packaged and put on display in a sterile, air-conditioned environment. I prefer to let these types continue to live in their little bubble, completely unaware that you can pay half as much for a product that’s twice as fresh, mainly because I wouldn’t want them to find out their whole life has been a lie.
Front St. | Belfast
8 | The Good Table
After years of the reckless handling and ultimate ruination of all of your roommate’s highquality cookware, it’s comforting to know you have accumulated enough knowledge to properly care for these tools when you eventually purchase a set of your own. The Good Table has everything you’ll need, from All-Clad stock pots to Zojirushi rice cookers to a full selection of Stonewall Kitchen jams and jellies—which are perfect for telling your roommate “I’m sorry.”
68 Main St. | Belfast | 207.338.4880
9 | Laan-Xang Cafe
I could never live in a town without Vietnamese pho, and I’m not sure how the residents of Belfast have made it this long without the comforts of the clear, meaty, and aromatic broth that gives me a reason to live. Laan-Xang has arrived to change all of that, while also specializing in Laotian dishes such as yarng-kai noi—lemongrass-marinated Cornish hen that is grilled and served with housemade chili sauce.
19 Main St. | Belfast | 207.338.6338
10 | Belfast Co-op Store
Pretty much everything you would ever need is under one roof at Maine’s oldest and largest co-op, which offers an abundance of fresh local produce and meats and an extensive wine and beer selection. Becoming a member not only saves you money but it makes you a part of something important, while also serving to fill the gaping void left in your soul when you decided to become a vegan.
123 High St. | Belfast | 207.338.2532