Maritime Cafe, Stonington, Maine

bac_junkfood.jpgThis is a public service announcement.

Ahhh, It’s that time of year again where we hit the beach, the beach hits back and we need to sit down and enjoy some half-decent food to get over it all.

Almost exactly one year ago I spent a wonderful week on the coast of Maine with my family — fabulous food, great views, friendly people, fresh air ā€” all that jazz. Blue Hill & Brooklin are nice, but Stonington ā€” ah, not so much.

Specifically, the waterfront eatery “The Maritime Cafe” has to be the singlemost disappointing excuse for a restaurant on the entire eastern seaboard. Uninspired, over-priced, in a word: crappy. I mean, when your vehicle of choice for everything from a grilled cheese sandwich to a crab roll is a bland hot dog bun of the over-inflated Wonder Bread variety, it really is hard to achieve much in the way of haute cuisine. But when you continue to insist on charging as if you had used a freshly baked organic whole wheat baguette for your offering, then it starts to border on the insulting. I think I paid something like six bucks for a kids’ meal cheese sandwich that literally consisted of a stale hot dog bun with a slice of melted cheese-like product draped on top and fries. At Hard Rock Cafe I’d consider it par for the course, but in a quaint little Maine town it’s plain old ridiculous.

Nope, The Maritime Cafe of Stonington, Maine, does not have anything in the way of decor or ambience that remotely justifies the prices it charges for its dismal fare. As a matter of fact, The Maritime Cafe of Stonington, Maine will hopefully have a sufficiently pathetic summer this year that new ownership will swoop in and save the tradition of fine waterfront dining that is currently suffering under the hands of the hacks and amateurs that run the place. If you’re visiting Stonington, you can do better than the Maritime Cafe. Heck, bring a granola bar to eat along the dock, and you’ll already be ahead by a mile and a bit.

(Once this gets sucked into the great Google index, there’s hope it’ll help convince web-savvy tourists to go elsewhere ā€” anywhere but The Maritime Cafe in Stonington, ME).