Posted by: carolyn / through a widow's eyes | December 31, 2011

Top Ten Food & Drink 2011:

A challenge to narrow it down to ten, this list of this year’s great food and drink with accompanying remembrance of things past is just one more reminder: Life is good. (Life. Can be good…)
I highly recommend this as an exercise in gratitude. And I would love to see your top ten list: if you do it please share with me.

10.) Any given fried haddock sandwich @ Jordans Snack Bar, Ellsworth, Maine. Crackly light crumb crust outside, freshest possible white flaky fish steaming inside. Served on soft bun with tartar sauce, cheese, lettuce, tomato. And onion rings. Best on the planet. I swear.

9) Ellen’s impromptu feast after winter beach walk: big bowls of split pea/ hambone soup, thick with slow-cooked ham, topped with Morse’s silken sauerkraut and Maine-made thick, sour, plain yogurt. Soul food for cold white girls. You could just feel your body absorbing that perfect trifecta of nutrients on that blustery day.

8) Thai Chili gelato from Mt. Desert Ice Cream: intense flavors of coconut, fresh ginger, peanut sauce, bright orange flecks of HOT pepper cooled by sweet cream. Must be eaten on park bench outside tiny storefront while people-watching in Bar Harbor grassy town square on hot hot summer day.

7) Tender toothsome house-made linguini w/ a creamy sauce chunky with butternut squash, pancetta, broccoli, toasted pumpkin seeds: I conveniently showed up for a visit just in time to crash staff meal @ Good Table restaurant one afternoon this fall.

6) Earth mother of Pepperclub & new/old Good Egg Cafe Mary Ledue Paine’s bite-size risotto cakes on bed of roughly pureed earthy romesco sauce of roasted red peppers and almonds that she brought to last winter’s 2nd annual birthday party potluck chez moi. Lookin’ forward to the 3rd annual feast coming soon to a weekend near you.

5) The Front Room’s BLT: focaccia w/ thick apple smoked bacon, arugula, roasted tomato, aioli. They make an awesome eggy mustardy potato salad as a side, too.

4) Prosecco, ginger liqueur, and pear vodka martini: leisurely dockside birdwatch brunch with Mom, Royal River Grill. Thanks Mom! For everything, as always.

3) from Hot Suppa’s dinner menu: crispy polenta triangles drenched in a spicy, salty cream sauce tossed with tiny cubes of tasso ham and the tenderest possible tiny Maine shrimp cooked juicy and just translucent. Have it with a Porch Swing: fragrant Hendricks gin, Pimm’s Cup, lemonade, and cucumber. Pretty much anything at Hot Suppa is the best you ever had. One of those places I still haven’t tried all the good stuff because I have to keep ordering whatever I had last time.

2) Prosciutto-wrapped halibut slapped on backyard grill. Hot July night complete with fireflies, far-flung family gathered to observe Jeff’s 2 year anniversary.

1) Banh mi: Vietnamese sandwiches of baguette smeared with meaty pate, topped with pickled carrot / radish salad, cooling fresh cilantro, hot pepper slivers, with icy flutes of Moet & Chandon. Best. Thing. Ever.
First night at Scot’s house: late flight, candlelight, midnight. Austin time. Yeah, maybe that *does* have a little something to do with it.

Looking forward to 2012. Love and gratitude, my people.

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