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Saturday, August 19, 2006 

On the Marsh - A Kennebunkport Restaurant Review

Attention to every detail. When you pull into the parking lot at On the Marsh and exit your vehicle, it begins. Even those less inclined to observe details will be impressed with the manicured grounds. The creativity of the landscaping and the placement of the fashioned ornaments complement the magnificent collection of plantings.

Enter the restored farmhouse and barn and be equally impressed with the eclectic collection of art and antiques. The European and American decor is ever changing and all the furnishings are available for purchase.

The ambiance is elegant, yet comforting.

We were escorted to our window side seats, overlooking the tidal salt marsh. When the hostess noticed my black slacks, she quickly replaced my white linen napkin with a black napkin. I was spared the need to pick lint off my slacks later in the evening. A simple, but a very classy touch.

Once again, Janice and I were enjoying the company of our friends from Nottingham, John and Hazel. On the Marsh certainly added to their favorable impression of Kennebunkport, as they pledged to return next year with their daughter and her family.

Hazel started with a selection of fruit which included strawberries and frozen Champagne grapes. Janice started with the On the Marsh house salad. The salad was made up of arugula fresh mozzarella, heirloom tomatoes and a balsamic vinaigrette dressing. What are heirloom tomatoes?? They are pure yellow, but otherwise look and taste exactly like delicious tomatoes.
Hazel appeared to enjoy her fruit and Janice and I both enjoyed the On the Marsh salad.

John tried the Crunchy Gulf Shrimp and Leeks with lemon saffron aioli and fresh herbs. Lucky for me, John gave me one, it was delicious. I started with the Demi Salad. Mixed greens, Champagne vinaigrette and house-made croutons. It was very good but, next time I'll choose the On the Marsh salad. Usually the item named for the restaurant is the best choice and I should have considered that.

For entrees...Hazel had the Oven-Roasted Fresh Maine Halibut Filet. It came served over a sweet summer corn and baby green salad with lemon vinaigrette. She thoroughly enjoyed her choice. Janice had the Seared Hokkaido Sea Scallops and Lobster Risotto with brandied lobster stock, watercress, rice wine vinegar and truffle oil. A wonderful collection of flavors.

John and I both chose the same entree...the On the Marsh Lobster Steak. Wow! The tails and claws of two 1.5 pound lobsters on a bed of roasted garlic wild rice, green beans and lemon buerre blanc (hey, there's that buerre blanc again). I learned from my salad selection. This time I ordered the entree that is named for the restaurant and, was I glad. Lobster lovers listen up...you really need to have the On the Marsh Lobster Steak. It was scrumptious.

Dessert, of course. Janice had the decadent chocolate (it was both). Hazel and I had the Apple Tart with home-made vanilla ice cream. Both the tart and the ice cream were spectacular.

Winner of the 2003, Wine Spectator Award of Excellence, On the Marsh is an excellent choice for small weddings and private functions.

We have had many guests at the Maine Stay Inn, that have attended weddings at On the Marsh. They have had wonderful comments about this superb gem.



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