Whether you’re 8 or 80, a breakfast of pancakes dripping with butter and soaked in real Maine maple syrup will help start your day with a smile.
Palace Diner | Biddeford
This unassuming, 15-seat diner car has racked up the accolades since chefs Chad Conley and Greg Mitchell took ownership in 2013. The secret to their light, luscious flapjacks? Buttermilk and lemon, according to Epicurious. If you’re especially ravenous after waiting in line, go for the Lumberjack Breakfast, which pairs the pancakes (pictured left) with eggs, Palace Potatoes, and breakfast meat.
Miss Portland Diner | Portland
The bright blue diner with the neon “Diner” sign is a Portland icon, and for good reason. The 1949 Worcester Lunch Car serves homestyle favorites such as hot dogs and beans, macaroni and cheese, and of course breakfast. The buttermilk pancakes—with Maine blueberries or chocolate chips—nearly dwarf the plate they’re served on.
Blue Moon Cafe | Boothbay Harbor
A cheerful seasonal spot for breakfast and lunch, Blue Moon offers a stun-ning view of the pretty harbor from coveted seats on the deck. It’s often busy, but owners Stephanie Conzelman and Fred Munro keep things moving with hospitality and good humor. In addition to Maine blueberry, the menu includes banana walnut and buttermilk pancakes.
Chutes Family Restaurant | Windham
Small flapjacks called T-cakes are a specialty at the charming Chutes, which offers a dizzying array of breakfast specials. Depending on the season and the whims of the kitchen, these pint-sized pancakes may be filled with lemon curd and drizzled with raspberry coulis, stuffed with pumpkin-spice cream cheese, or topped with blueberry-mango sauce.
The Runway Restaurant | Limington
Proprietors Jennifer Gambale and Lindsay Bradeen serve breakfast all day at this restaurant at Limington-Harmon Airport. And they do things their way, such as the Hippie Mom pancakes, made with oat flour, almond milk, and local zucchini and topped with strawberries, bananas, chocolate sauce, and roasted pistachios. Gluten-free diets are happily accommodated.
Jordan’s Restaurant | Bar Harbor
Founded in 1976 to feature wild Maine blueberry products, Jordan’s is a seasonal mainstay in Bar Harbor. Naturally, the wild Maine blueberry pancakes are available with wild blueberry syrup as well as with real Maine maple syrup, but you’ll also find pancakes with chocolate chips and with strawberry sauce.
A1 Diner | Gardiner
Perched over Cobbosseecontee Stream, this circa-1940s diner car has been featured on the Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives and was recently taken over by former employee Aaron Harris. The menu features top-notch comfort food, often with a twist, including apple-cinnamon pancakes and specials such as lemon-ricotta pancakes with blueberries.