Arrows Restaurant, Oqunquit, ME

Arrows Restaurant 41 Berwick Road, Oqunquit, Maine 02907, 207-361-1100

A few weeks ago my husband and I spent a summer weekend in Maine where I was teaching at the Stonewall Kitchen Cooking School. On one of our free nights I booked a table at Arrows in Ogunquit, an original restaurant set in an old, unpretentious farmhouse surrounded by gorgeous grounds. Approaching the house, you are struck by the finely manicured flower and vegetable gardens and an orchard of apple trees. The talented team of Mark Gaier and Clark Frasier (tapped James Beard Best Chefs of the Northeast in 2010) prepare creative menus that include the fresh produce from these fields. They also cure their own hams and smoke the fish offered at Arrows.

Seated in a wood paneled room that overlooked a landscape of flowers and trees trimmed with mini-lights, we felt like we had found a small piece of paradise. I ordered the $76 menu of three dishes. One of my selections called The Garden of Good and Evil included a roasted garlic fondue, an herb flan, and three different greens dressed in three different vinaigrettes. Glorious smoked squab with grits and chanterelles followed. My spouse opted for the chef’s multi-course menu at $106. He savored an opener that included three preparations of oysters, then a prosciutto and greens salad. Mains included lamb shank and belly served with fennel puree, duck confit, and much more.

Arrows is definitely in the “splurge” category, but the lovely setting, the meticulously prepared and inventive fare, and the warm and engaging staff make it worth a trip!

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