|50 Local, Kennebunk, Maine|
|Local food sources|
So what about the food you ask? Aaah yes, the food. The menus, one for small plates and the other with traditional appetizers, entrees and sides, offered a nice selection of appealing possibilities.
Moules-frites, the quintessential (Belgian) bistro dish of mussels and French fries, arrived steaming in a deep bowl brimming with crispy potato wedges topping a generous pile of fat, juicy mussels. The rich winey broth tasted lightly of anise flavored Pernod and we sopped it up with 50 Local's lovely home made foccacia. I could have lifted that bowl to my mouth and drunk the broth like soup it was so good.
Our second choice was cassoulet. Usually a stew dense with garlic, beans and lots of pork, duck and mutton, this version showed a lighter hand and boasted bites of crisp-tender pheasant, luscious pork belly and plenty of the usual white beans. There was no shortage of flavor in 50 Local's cassoulet and more delicious foccacia again found itself sopping up juices and beans.
I applaud husband and wife team, Merilee Paul and Chef David Ross, who created and run 50 Local. Local, seasonal sourcing makes a wonderful difference in the quality and taste of food. And diners seated next to us assured me our experience was the usual as they'd been there several times before. I've got to say, when the locals come back again and again and the place is full on a Tuesday, something wonderful is going on.
Prices are moderate and there's a decent selection of wine by the bottle and wine by the glass.We enjoyed glasses of a nice Spanish white, Las Brisas Rueda, 2010. The decor stymied me a bit and I couldn't quite put my finger on the style. I can say it does all hang together in a pleasing way and the metal chairs that I initially frowned over were really quite comfortable. Our table for two was a bit small as were the plates we were given for our sharing. But neither one of those things seemed that important and certainly didn't dampen our enjoyment. Service is low key, friendly and professional.
Well done 50 Local. I can't wait to go back.