Shameless Animal Attraction

A Little Animal Attraction

When we travel, we often like to leave our fancy jewelry at home. That said, we still want to have a few basic, cool pieces to look sharp and accessorize with which is where SHAMELESS comes in. Undeniably eye catching, very reasonably priced, and sufficiently sassy (with rings that say ‘Angel’ on one side and ‘Devil’ on the other or ‘Sweetheart’ and ‘Bitch’), they’re the brainchild of Los Angeles based designer, Shea Curry, who unveiled a variety of pieces that compliment the already popular and witty “Naughty & Nice” line with the attention grabbing “Animal Attraction” collection.

Feeling like a Kitten or a Tiger today?

The best part? SHAMELESS jewelry is manufactured entirely in the United States using the finest Swarovski crystals, 22 carat gold and 100% rhodium (aka platinum), with retail price points under and around $75-$150.

We likey.

www.shamelessjewelry.com

Escape to Parrot Cay

In preparation for my own romantic trip to Turks & Caicos, I wanted to share the news about this great, fancy escape.

Parrot Cay - Turks & Caicos

Where: Parrot Cay

What: An Ayurvedic escape for the mind, body, and spirit

Why: With its crystal clear ocean and mile-long stretch of white sand, this private island resort is the ideal place to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the holiday season and treat yourself to a customized, Ayurvedic Program. Pay a visit to Parrot Cay’s own Ayurvedic doctor who will recommend a special holistic treatment plan designed to rejuvenate the mind and body. Whether it is with yoga, a specialized diet, body treatments, detox, or meditation, guests are sure to leave the resort feeling rested and revitalized. The program includes all meals.

Rates for a three-night program start at $3,140 based on single occupancy and $5,009 based on double occupancy

Britain’s Orient Express

Orient Express's British Pullman Train

We’re missing dear old Blightly so, when we offered a friend some tips on how to sight see around London and then travel around her Majesty’s great country in November, we had to fill them in on Orient-Express’s British Pullman train. One can’t find a better way to see Britain than by train. Take a train and add in a little Agatha Christie and… voila! You’re in for one super sweet ride.

Where: Orient-Express’s British Pullman

What: A murder mystery filled with tricks and treats at every turn

Why: Halloween can be spooky. Some say the misty countryside of Britain is the perfect setting for ghosts to come out and play. Yes, there’s witchcraft in the air. But, when you add mystery to the mix, all bets are off. Leave the trick-or-treaters at home for this thrilling and chilling journey aboard the Orient-Express’s day train, the British Pullman. Inspired by Agatha Christie’s famous novel Murder on the Orient Express, the Murder Mystery Lunch will keep you on the edge of your seat. Hop aboard and travel back to 1933 where love and intrigue set the mood. Piece together the clues during an exquisite five-course lunch, accompanied by a glass of champagne and a half-bottle of wine, as you watch the mystery unfold.

(This journey departs November 11, 2011, rates start at $460 per person)

Thanksgiving Nantucket-Style

The White Elephant - Nantucket

Looking for a last minute Thanksgiving vacation? Look no further than Nantucket. Celebrate Turkey Day in the same state as the Pilgrims (the Grey Lady isn’t so far from Plymouth Rock!). The island is full of charm in the fall; the summer crowds have dispersed, prices have dropped, and the middle moors are awash with vivid crimsons and purples. There’s no better setting for a tryptophan-induced food coma and a belly full of pie, we say.

Thanksgiving Turkey Dreams

Stay

With Nantucket Island Resorts’ Hot Dates, Cool Rates promotion, rates at White Elephant for Thanksgiving weekend (November 23-27) start at just $195 and rates at Jared Coffin House start at $125. Both come with a $25 dinner credit on $100 spent or $50 dinner credit on $150 spent at Brant Point Grill as well as two $25 spa treatment credits at the White Elephant Spa.

A Room at The White Elephant - Nantucket

Feast

White Elephant’s Brant Point Grill hosts a special Thanksgiving buffet with all of the comfort foods you’d expect at your grandmother’s house, without all of the cooking and dishes.

Play

While football may be the traditional Thanksgiving game, golfers will be thrilled to know that post-pie they can go play 18 at Nantucket’s top-notch Sankaty Head Golf Club. This members-only club with coveted ocean views and links-style holes is open (for a fee) to anyone from October to May.

The Cisco Brewery

Sip

Nantucket’s own Cisco Brewers, known for its Whale’s Tale Pale Ale and other beers as well as its wine and distilled liquors, is a great place to come in from the fall chill. Taste a flight of beer, wine, or liquor and catch a brewery tour every day at 4pm.

Plunge

Take part in a Nantucket tradition with the 10th Annual Cold Turkey Plunge! Every Thanksgiving morning, hundreds of brave souls gather on Children’s Beach and jump into the cold Nantucket Harbor. Prizes are awarded for best costumes, so be creative!

Cranberry Chocolate Chip Scones

Cook

If you don’t want the Thanksgiving fun to end once you’ve returned home, here’s a recipe from Chef Fred Bisaillon of Brant Point Grill to help you hold on to that autumnal spirit.

Thanksgiving Morning Scones (makes 20 scones)

Ingredients:

1lb +10oz Pastry flour

2tsp salt

1oz baking powder

3oz sugar

12oz cubed cold butter

2oz egg yolk

2oz egg

15oz heavy cream

6oz cranberries

6oz white chocolate chips

Zest of 1 orange

¼ tsp chopped fresh thyme

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking pan with parchment paper. Sift together flour, baking powder, and sugar. Add butter to dry ingredients, mixing on low speed with paddle attachment. In another bowl, combine the eggs, yolks, and cream, then add the egg mixture to the sifted ingredients and butter all at once, mix just to incorporate, then add zest, cranberry, chocolate, and thyme. Pat down dough onto the baking pan about 1” thick. Allow to rest in refrigerator for about 1.25 hours. Cut the dough into 4”rounds or any desired shape, brush with eggwash (one beaten egg, separate from the recipe above, plus 1 T cold water) and allow to sit for 5 minutes then repeat. Bake at until golden brown. About 15-18 minutes in a convection oven. Cool to room temp and Enjoy!

Top Ten Mexican Food Musts

Jesus Catalan Meneses - Jaunt Contributor

This week, Jesus Catalan Meneses, ex-journo turned blogger and very Mexican Taconnoiseur is back to give our readers the inside scoop on the Top 10 Quintessential Mexican Food Musts. Whether he’s writing, researching social media, travelling, cooking or finding the greatest places for tacos, quesadillas, and enchiladas, Jesus’s love for Mexico can only be matched by his love of Mexican food.

So you’ve think you’ve been to Mexico?

Then you know our country is one of those lands where gastronomy is one of the most delicious parts of the experience. It would be extremely daring to name the most representative (and appetizing) dishes of the country (so many!), but with this mouth-watering list I’ll be adventurous enough to say you haven’t been in Mexico unless you’ve tried:

Tacos

Tacos
Some say they come from the Mayans, some from the Aztecs. Taconnoiseurs know that the original name (in náhuatl, the Aztec dialect that is still alive) was quauhtaqualli, an unpronounceable word for the Spaniards, who just decided to call them tacos. Everywhere in Mexico you’ll find heavenly tortillas (rolled or folded) stuffed with just about anything delicious: meat, chicken, cheese, veggies…Seriously, tacos are basic and universal (the best thing that ever happened to the world, by the way). You really don’t know Mexico if you’ve never tried one.

Mole Poblano (c) Safi Royal Blog

Mole

The symbol of Mexican culinary tradition and passion, believed to have more than a thousand flavors and colors. It means ‘sauce’ in Aztec dialect, and it’s made out of a wide variety of ingredients: numerous differentchiles, tomatoes, garlic, almonds, raisins, sesame seeds, onions, bread, cinammon, lard, parsley, peanuts, chocolate…all together (and more) crushed by stone and mixed. Pour it on chicken or turkey, and feast on it.

Cochinta Pibil on Panucho

Cochinita Pibil
If cooked properly, it can make you scream. The legend says Yucatan was the first place in the continent where Mayans tasted pork and thus created this formula incorporating exotic spices, wrapping it in banana leaves and cooking it in a natural underground oven all night long. The extremely tender meat is served on top of a panucho (small tortillas with black beans inside) and sprinkled with minced purple onion. Yumm…

Tamales

Tamales

This ancient indigenous recipe consists of corn dough wrapped in corncobs or banana leaves and steamed. Served very warm, they are usually stuffed with salsas and meat. They can be either salty (green, red, beans…) or sweet (try the pink with raisins). For a wild experience ask for a “Guajolota”: tamales inside abolillo bun. 

Barbacoa

After around 15 hours of cooking inside a natural subterranean oven made of stones, the flavorful young lamb’s meat wrapped in maguey’s stalk will melt in your hands when you’re preparing your tacos and topping them with velvety salsa borracha (which contains a bit of alcohol, oftenly pulque).

Pozole Rojo

Pozole

More corn (this time, large grains), in form of a succulent soup with meat. Woof. Try it whether it’s green, white or red, for it is the heritage of the blend of America, Europe and Asia. Besides the chunks of pork and the big corn oats, experts add chile,  oregano,  lime juice,  fresh lettuce,  avocado,  sour cream,  chopped onion and radish.

Tostadas
Fried, crunchy tortillas with lots of wonderful ingredients on top. Typically, it’s mashed beans,  shredded chicken,  sour cream,  fresh cheese,  minced lettuce leaves,  avocado and salsa; but oftenly in markets around the country you’ll find them as mountains of seafood, pork, and beef…

Enchiladas

Think about a taco, bathed in sauce. Ask for the Suizas (Swiss), created in Puebla by a posh lady who dreamt all those green ‘mountains’ of Poblano chile sauce, topped with cream, onion and melted cheese as a snowy landscape from the Alps.

Enchiladas Suiza

Quesadillas
A favourite that can’t be out of the list, some confuse them with tacos as they are just folded tortillas. Some say if they are not filled with cheese (Queso means cheese) they are indeed tacos. I say just order lots, try and enjoy!

Carnitas & Chincharron

Carnitas & Chicharrón
Sizzling pork for tacos (add onion, cilantro, nopales (cactus), fresh cheese, avocado and salsa) at its best. The skin is deep-fried in lard until it’s crispy. Don’t die before you try chicharrón prensado: a softer, creamier version.

You can also say you’ve been to Mexico if you’ve tried: chilaquiles,  sopes,  flautas,  menudo,  gorditas,  pambazos, cabrito, molotes, tlayudas, aguachile, memelas, pancita, salbutes, discada, tinga, uchepos, chilorio, tlacoyos, migadas, burritos, chimichangas, rajas, tortas ahogadas, molletes, chalupas, papadzules, tetelas, tasajo, codzitos, polcanes, picadillo, huaraches, picaditas, ceviche, pelonas, mixiotes, chamorros, corundas, aporreadillo, churipos, guacamayas, quebraditas, pastes, manchamanteles, caldo tlalpeño, cemitas, chiles en nogada, sopa de lima, and so on.

Have I missed any? Absolutely, I’m sure.

Please tweet me up your favorites @jcmex!

Part III: The Maine Event

Cape Elizabeth, Maine

The conclusion to Part III of Saar Harel’s romantic road trip to Maine brings our readers a stopover in Boston, some badass clam chowdah, a few fancy eats and a Boston boutique hotel to die for. Just your standard run-of-the-mill escape up the east coast for a road trip from New York to Maine.

Maine

Nights end early up north and, for some reason, Mainiacs (yes, we were told that people from Maine call themselves Mainiacs) don’t stay up till the late morning hours like my wife and me. So, we headed home, well, our Inn by the Sea home. Morning came and so did breakfast. Note to travellers: make sure you wake up early as they do tend to close the Sea Glass Restaurant for breakfast at 10:30am.

Our room at the Inn by the Sea

My wife then headed to sample the spa and get a massage to get that vacation part well squared away, while I went running on the beach and nature paths. The scenery along the Maine coast really is remarkable as the seasons make a difference as the colors change from earthen brown and misty grey to burnt orange and sienna. Seeing the ocean, the sand dunes, forest and swamp while running makes for a much more interesting run than watching the news on your New York gym treadmill.

The Stunning Maine Coast

I even took the opportunity to try out the pool and since the spa was not fully booked they offered me the use of the premises. Among the amenities includes a pampering steam room that works like a steam room should – hot, and if you press the button, moist (unlike some NY gyms that seem to enjoy making you wait 30 minutes for a 5 minute burst of steam). But enough complaining and back to the room I am heading. The room is large and contemporary. The TV is huge – as it should be these days – and the view is lovely so you can read, watch TV, or just chat the day away with your special someone.

Do Not Disturb

At the end of the day, if you don’t feel like going out, the restaurant below is well known among the locals and even they will come to dine on special occasions or when their guests come to see them. When I came back to the room, my wife had arrived singing the praises of her Deep Tissue massage. She noted that her therapist, Cheyenne (a coincidence that it rhymes with Cayenne?) had terrific technique, along with a warm, friendly personality.

Boston

So, as our east coast road trip began to come to a close, we decided to add another might so that we could stay the night in Boston, the city of my father-in-law. Well, he ran away from Boston because it was too cold, but we are arriving during the early autumn so it was perfectly crisp and comfortable. Plus, after hearing multiple stories of the exquisite Clam Chowder, we headed straight for it.

Todd English

Before I get into how much we loved the cooking techniques of Todd English’s Kingfisher Hall, let’s talk traffic in Boston. It’s as bad as traffic in NY and the drivers are, well, not exactly the most patient. However, with a big Porsche Cayenne, nobody messes with you because the last thing anyone wants to do is pay to fix a Porsche fender. It was my first time visiting Boston and I was impressed with the charming surroundings. The hotel, XV Beacon, was smack in the middle next to Boston’s version of Central Park and a ten minute walk from the wharf. Parking is non existent so be prepared to shell out a daily stipend just to park it in parking garage.

Clam Chowder at Todd English

As usual, midday hunger set in so we headed out for the what we were told was some of the best clam chowder in Boston. Located in the touristy outdoor mall-type area called Faneuil Hall Marketplace – “as alive today as it was in 1742 when our nation’s fathers proclaimed it “The Cradle of Liberty.” It combines “the glories of Boston’s past with the urban sophistication of the city today”, just as the website states.

Inside this area, you’ll find Todd English’s Kingfisher Hall, a lovely restaurant with a brilliant – and very pragmatic decorative feature – fish spinning over charcoal (see above). The staff also had a sense of calm, assertive efficiency so we knew we were in good hands. A few oysters later, and we ordered our clam chowdah. To say it was tasty would be an understatement. Unlike most American food, there was no cheese, no excessive fat, and it had the perfect consistency. The best soup I’ve had in the USA (other than my own of, course).

Well, out you go and the port is in front of you. So, you can spend an hour or more just walking and taking in the sights; from spinning horse carousels and yachts to birds and people. At last, we headed back to the hotel to relax and sample it too.

Fifteen Beacon is one of the top boutique hotels in Boston. A Preferred Boutique hotel, this Boston hotel is part of the Preferred Hotel Group which represents more than 800 hotels worldwide. Needless to say, we were pleasantly surprised. It had some truly great features including faucets that look imported directly from 18th century England.

XV Beacon - Boston, Mass

They call the style “Jeffersonian” which also translates to: swanky and classic boutique hotel décor in the rooms and public spaces. The view left a bit to be desired as ours looked out at an office (with a nice young girl talking on her blackberry for hours and an employee surfing Facebook unaware. Oh, if I were their employer!!)

Fifteen Beacon

My wife was a huge fan of the property as the amenities looked like they came from Armani – complete with the hotel’s chic XV branding – and they even give you a small vanilla lip gloss. She loves those fancy little touches (and really, what woman doesn’t?). They, too, had a great Flatscreen TV and a fireplace. We also appreciated the unique artwork on the walls – particularly because Layla is a connoisseur of mixed media.

For a city, Boston is well set. Its city center is quaint, clean, and historic. It has a lovely waterfront, old buildings, the people were friendly, and they even dress up in cufflinks – a rarity in America, the Land of T-Shirts and Bored Shorts. Yes, Bored.

The Ames Hotel Lobby

The restaurant scene does it justice too. As we headed over to Woodward, the restaurant at the Ames Hotel, part of the Morgans Hotel Group (Mondrian, Hudson Hotel, St. Martin’s Lane, etc.), we encountered a beautifully designed boite bathed in amber light with a fireplace for guests to complete the warmth. We sat and ordered our last round of vacation restaurant meals and the food was worth its weight in calories. Executive Chef Mark Goldberg delivers a New England-centric ingredient driven menu of composed plates with dishes like Island Creek oysters with ginger mignonette, short rib tortellini with Madeira and truffle butter, and a crispy poached egg, bitter greens, romesco and almonds salad that my wife couldn’t stop praising as ‘the perfect combination of light and hearty’.

We sat right next to the fireplace. Perfectly cozy and excellent service at Woodward - Ames Hotel

As I’m from the Middle East and cook a mean chicken, I was anxious to try the pistachio stuffed chicken breast with duck fat roasted cauliflower and swiss chard. My wife and I, ever the picky palates – especially when it comes to chicken, both gave it a thumbs up. It was delicious and, surprisingly, not dry. I think she would have preferred more pistachios, but I thought it was perfect. As long as restaurants don’t add unnecessary oil or butter, I tend to have an open mind. I’m a purist and Chef Goldberg has created a solid menu that leaves you satisfied. Next time, I’ll have to try their lobster roll. Our hostess even gave us directions to the ‘till the morning hours’ drinking establishment that the inner circles frequent. We thanked her and headed straight for the hotel (since we’re officially in our thirties – a tad too old for raging).

Ah, the open east coast roads....

As we left in the morning our Porsche was waiting ready to take us back, a quick 20 minutes and the lovely Lady of the Dashboard navigated us from the shark infested Bostonian drivers straight onto the Land of Freeways. The three hour drive went quickly and the sight of NY from afar did not fail to excite us. Well, back to the apple jam. An hour of traffic later, we made it home, parked our ride, and the gas bill for about 600 miles and 10 hours of freeway driving? A mere $100.

All I could think was… my frugal dad would be proud! Meanwhile, the list below is a round up of some of the best lobster shacks and seafood from New York City to Southern Maine. As we only had five days, we didn’t have time to taste all of the delicacies offered at the establishments below, but with a week or two, it’s a definite possibility and we strongly recommend ‘em.

New York to Maine Road Trip Itinerary

Sept. 12th/13th – Kennebunkport, Maine – Captain Lord Mansion (Harvest Room)

Sept. 13th – Academe – Kennebunk Inn – Dinner

Sept.14th/Sept. 15th – Cape Elizabeth, Maine – Inn by the Sea

Sept. 16th – XV Beacon – Boston, Ames Hotel (Woodward) – Dinner

Top Food Picks

Westport, Connecticut

Dressing Room

Le Farm

Boston Restaurants

Kingfish Hall

Kelly’s Revere Beach

Clam Box

Fine Dining

No. 9 Park

Craigie on Main

Rendezvous

Market by Jean George

Woodward – Ames Hotel

New Hampshire

Markey’s Lobster Pool

Maine Seafood Shacks and Restaurants

Academe – Kennebunk Inn

Bob Clam’s Hut

Fosters Downeast Clambake

Barnacle Billy’s

Gran’s Chowder House

The Clam Shack

Cape Porpoise Lobster House

On the Marsh

Mabel’s Lobster Claw

The Lobster Shack

Part II: The Maine Event

Saar Harel - Contributor/Husband Extraordinaire

Part II of Saar Harel’s three part East Coast Road Trip series takes us from New York City to the great state of Maine where he’s sampling some of the best seafood shacks, lobster rolls, and savory clam chowders along the way. Romantic B&B’s, seaside inns, fireplaces, and a metallic blue 2012 Porsche Cayenne Hybrid… what more does a fun, married couple need?

Before we left Kennebunkport to head further up the Maine coast, we had to stop to eat at The Clam Shack, a local favorite. Great for fried clams, they were also featured on the Travel Channel’s show, Food Wars, last year, winning for their Lobster Roll (which is no frills, but very fresh). We didn’t have a chance to try Nunan’s Lobster Hut in Cape Porpoise, but that, too, came recommended as another old school lobster house, only open for dinner and seasonal.

The Clam Shack's Lobster Roll

Back on the road, we headed further north. As an avid outdoorsman, we decided to take a break and stretch our legs to check out the “Costco of the Outdoorsman World” – Cabela’s. Now, for most people in the world, an outdoor/camping store is around the size of 3-4 rooms. Cabela’s, like any red-blooded American, believes that bigger is MUCH better. From the huge elk statue at the entrance to the multiple displays of old trucks, deer, lion, gazelle, and anything else you can legally hunt, you have to pay attention and try keep your mouth closed. It’s a veritable cornucopia of taxidermy bliss.

Cabela's Gun's 'n Deer Heads

After seeing gun racks with well more than two thousand guns, my wife whipped out her camera to take photos (no doubt struck by the image of so many guns in one place). Then, we headed straight for target practice where we spent 30 minutes shooting at targets with a laser shotgun as we watched them pretend to be shot. The locals were amused. I purchased a gallon of the buck scent to bring back to my friend (since he needs all the help he can get with the young does).

Layla at the Shootin' Range

Back on the road and two quick hours later, we reached the Inn by the Seaa romantic luxury seaside resort in Cape Elizabeth, Maine. The name itself is a great description because, well… it’s an inn and it’s by the sea. It’s exactly what you want it to be – comfortable and cozy with tasteful modern rooms and fireplaces set in rustic “historic” seaside architecture. All of this, of course, comes with sweeping views of Maine’s rugged coastline. Hungry from the drive, we dropped our bags before rushing off again to another seafood shack.

Inn by the Sea - Cape Elizabeth, Maine

The Lobster Shack was a bit touristy, but with a lovely view of the sea, a lighthouse, and their own foghorn to warn ships. I guess not all ships have Porsche GPS. I had the illustrious clam bellies and Layla had the crab roll. Although we weren’t blown away (and we were already getting tired of fried seafood and bread rolls), we had to try the local delicacies, of course.

The Lobster Shack - Cape Elizabeth, Maine

The lobster is said to be some of the best in the area and I don’t doubt that it is, but you can’t go wrong with lobster anywhere in Maine. That all said, the view was certainly worth it as you can grab your food and sit inside this cute little rustic area or outside on park bench tables overlooking the Cape.

The Lobster Shack - Interior

As the weather was getting colder we headed back to the Inn and headed straight for the paths. The luck of the draw is that the resort is surrounded by two national parks, so, instead of paying Smokey the Park Ranger for parking, you can just walk into the parks after a few hours of amazing Atlantic scenery mixed with changing weather. Alas… after a few hours of walking along Cape Elizabeth’s craggy coast, hunger again reared its head. So, after enjoying a refreshing rainforest shower – which drenches you as it revives you – we headed over to the Cayenne which was parked at the entrance. Yes, the Inn by the Sea has been awarded a Silver LEED certification and part of that means there’s special parking for hybrid or eco-friendly autos at the entrance.

The Inn by the Sea's Beautiful Garden Flowers

They’re the only hotel in Maine to heat with biofuel, waste food is sent to a local pig farm, they use high efficiency CFLs, recycled rubber makes up the cardio room floor, all paint is low VOC, wall coverings are made of recycled sheet rock, they have recycled key cards, and… they safeguard the area by planting different flowers and plants like milkweed for the Monarch butterfly. They also have Green Weddings with sustainable choices for gifts and organic menu options. Pretty impressive. And, for all of you pet lovers… Fido’s invited too – complete with a special doggy menu of goodies like Doggy Gumbo with Angus beef trips, steamed rice and dog biscuits or Meat “Roaff”.

HoneyMaker Mead Wine - For the Homo Sapiens

For a pre-dusk drink, I recommend trying their Maine HoneyMaker Meads. Mead is honey wine and this one right here is made with 100% Maine wildflower honey. Flavors like Cranberry, Blueberry, or Apple Cyser aren’t as sweet as they sound and it’s delicious, different, and smooth on the palate.

David's 388 - South Portland, Maine

Next up, we punched the address of David’s 388 into the Porsche Cayenne’s trusty GPS and were on our way. David’s is another restaurant you would never find if you didn’t know who to ask. We were lucky that my girl has the gift of gab because she’s always able to find the sweet spots. This little gem in the city of South Portland was fantastic. The décor was modern, the live band the perfect touch, the lighting ideal, the service both friendly and superb, and, although the place was full, the crowd was not nearly as noisy as New Yorkers – who often seem like they’re yelling at each other instead of talking. David’s 388 is your comfortable, casual neighborhood nook where diners can enjoy a range of bold flavors in an intimate space. The menu changes frequently and is separated into five categories: salads, starters, mains, neighborhood classics and desserts.

Ricotta Stuffed Shrimp

The food was incredibly good and, although the head chef was off at an event for one of his kids, judging from the apprentice’s cooking, the master is truly an expert. To start, we had a selection of delicacies. Blackened shrimp with honey Cajun sauce, shrimp stuffed with ricotta and wrapped in prosciutto (seen above), Pacific Rim tuna tartar with coconut chili truffle oil and sweet potato pommes goufret (our favorite) and crispy vegetable pot stickers with grilled Asian marinated beef in Peking sauce (okay, maybe tied with this). As a salad, the Peeky Toe crab and avocado salad with fresh mozzarella and tomato and avocado vinaigrette is stellar. For our main courses, we sampled the pork tenderloin with caramelized onion and grilled apple barbeque, mashed potato and crispy onions – something that my wife normally isn’t fond of, but, in this case, was all over. Slurp, slurp.

Peeky Toe Crab Salad

We also tried the beef tenderloin wrapped in double smoked bacon and, let’s just say, it’s a wonder they didn’t have to roll us out of there. It’s also a wonder we had room for dessert… a chocolate brownie napoleon with vanilla ice cream and, my wife’s favorite part, rum flambéed bananas. The plates were practically licked clean. And, of course, for the conclusion?

Mine! All mine!

A flight of three Taylor-Flagate Tawny Port!

Stay tuned for Part III of Saar Harel’s drive up the Maine coast in the brand new 2012 Porsche Cayenne. He’ll be weighing in on Boston’s Clam Chowder, as well as a few fine dining options courtesy of the Morgans Hotel Group.