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Bagaduce Lunch.
Bagaduce Lunch.
Edith Young

12 Restaurants for a Coastal Escape to Castine, Maine

12 delicious reasons to stop on your way to Acadia National Park.

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Bagaduce Lunch.
| Edith Young

You may know Castine as home to the Maine Maritime Academy, as a coastal literary mecca for writers like Robert Lowell, Elizabeth Hardwick, and Mary McCarthy, or as the site of the Revolutionary War’s Penobscot Expedition (America’s worst naval defeat until Pearl Harbor). But are you familiar with the town's diverse gastronomic offerings?

Most of Castine’s dining establishments line Main Street, and you can find anything on the spectrum from Hawaiian pancakes to barbecued lasagna in the span of a day. This hidden gem on Penobscot Bay is worth exploring, particularly in the summer and early fall, one haddock sandwich at a time.

Note: map points are in no particular order. All photos courtesy of the author.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Castine Variety Store

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3 Main St.
Castine, ME 04421
(207) 326-0690
Visit Website
A Main Street staple, the Castine Variety Store serves fast food, seafood, ice cream, and Hawaiian cuisine under one roof. Order a scoop of Gifford’s Maine Deer Tracks ice cream through the newly integrated Breeze take-out window, or grab a barstool inside and try out a teriyaki lamb lollipop.

2. Dudley's Refresher

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5 Sea St
Castine, ME 04421
(207) 812-3800
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Brought to you by the masterminds behind El El Frijoles, Dudley’s Refresher has reinvigorated Castine’s town dock scene with crispy fish tacos and a steady rotation of Morton’s Moo Homemade Ice Cream. Take in the view of the Maine Maritime Academy’s training ship with a side of poutine (french fries smothered in hot gravy and cheese curds). Dudley’s Refresher closes for the season on Labor Day Weekend.

3. Gingerella's Bar-B-Q

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14 Water St
Castine, ME 04421
(207) 326-2350
Visit Website
Gingerella’s offers a comprehensive spread of Maine barbecue, from meatloaf to smoked buffalo chicken pizza to pulled pork enchiladas, but the restaurant’s $8.09 lobster roll is the talk of the town these days. Eat inside the space decorated with tongue-in-cheek pig paraphernalia, or enjoy takeout under the town dock’s pavilion across the street.

4. Dennett's Wharf

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15 Sea St
Castine, ME 04421
(207) 326-9045
Visit Website
With seafood fare on a waterfront patio, Dennett’s is what Vacationland dreams are made of. The restaurant is the only place in town to order steamers, and you can influence the decor, too: give the owners a crisp dollar bill then with a thumb tack, a coin, and the flick of a wrist, they’ll secure your cash to the ceiling with past customers' Washingtons. The money has only been stripped from the ceiling twice: once in 2001 as a donation to the family of an elevator operator who died in the World Trade Center on 9/11, and later as a Hurricane Katrina relief fund.

5. Pentagoet Inn & Restaurant

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26 Main St
Castine, ME 04421
(207) 326-8616
Visit Website
If you’re dining with a party of three or four, ask to sit in a booth at this Victorian B&B’s Baron Pub and Wine Bar, a dimly lit, salon-style gallery showcasing portraits of world leaders, maniacal and otherwise. Drink a transfixing blueberry bellini at the small oak bar, and enjoy fried oysters and short ribs amidst the Castro cartoons and political figurines.

6. Castine Farmers' Market

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Court St.
Castine, ME 04421
Every Thursday morning, local farmers and restaurateurs set up stands on the town common. It’s a race to El El Frijoles’ table to buy breakfast burritos while supplies last, but late sleepers can still score guacamole and salsa. Blue Zee Farm and Horsepower Farm present a bounty of locally grown vegetables, and the fresh fish stand sells melt-in-your-mouth hake.

7. The Castine Inn

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33 Main St
Castine, ME 04421
The Castine Inn on Main Street serves breakfast open to the public in its mural room. A panoramic painting of Castine pairs nicely with warm French toast or eggs any style.

8. MarKel's Bakehouse

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26 Water St
Castine, ME 04421
(207) 326-9510
Visit Website
Markel’s Bakehouse is Castine’s pastry destination, formerly known as Bah's Bakehouse. Open for breakfast and lunch, the porch attracts locals and visitors alike to enjoy a breakfast sandwich or a Mexican BLT while overlooking the harbor. Be sure to grab an outstanding chocolate chip cookie (or four) for the road.

9. Manor Inn

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76 Battle Ave
Castine, ME 04421
(207) 326-4861
Visit Website
The player piano at The Manor, a 19th century inn perched atop Castine’s hill, sets the mood for an upscale dinner on a foggy night downeast. The innkeepers combine a love for local ingredients with their roots in Tennessee and Maryland and their interest in distant lands like India, evident in their spectacular shrimp curry. Don’t miss the hanger steak or lobster risotto, either. On your way out, peruse the cabinet of curiosities, complete with vintage cameras, model sailboats, and a grinning ventriloquist’s dummy.

10. Danny Murphy's Pub

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5 Sea St
Castine, ME 04421
(207) 326-1004
Danny Murphy’s operates in what used to be The Reef, Castine’s dive bar famous for its legendary karaoke night. Now a sports bar that offers sit-down dinner, Danny Murphy’s carries on The Reef’s Taco Tuesday tradition: $1.50 per taco, get ‘em while they’re hot! For a casual evening, enjoy a pizza before sinking shots at the pool table.

11. Eve's Cafe

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200 Battle Ave
Castine, ME 04421
(207) 326-8844
Open seasonally at the town's Golf Club, Eve's Cafe is run by a college-aged summer resident with an emphasis on locally sourced ingredients. Perfect after nine holes or a heated tennis match, Eve's serves tartines of every stripe: smashed avocado, prosciutto and parmesan, and curry chicken to name a few. Swing by the porch for the best (and only) coconut chia pudding in town.

12. Bagaduce Lunch

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19 Bridge Rd
Brooksville, ME 04617
(207) 326-4197
Visit Website
Dock up by the Bagaduce Lunch, a roadside favorite for an overflowing basket of fried clams. Getting your soft serve fix here is only a quick boat trip or car ride away from Castine Harbor.

1. Castine Variety Store

3 Main St., Castine, ME 04421
A Main Street staple, the Castine Variety Store serves fast food, seafood, ice cream, and Hawaiian cuisine under one roof. Order a scoop of Gifford’s Maine Deer Tracks ice cream through the newly integrated Breeze take-out window, or grab a barstool inside and try out a teriyaki lamb lollipop.
3 Main St.
Castine, ME 04421

2. Dudley's Refresher

5 Sea St, Castine, ME 04421
Brought to you by the masterminds behind El El Frijoles, Dudley’s Refresher has reinvigorated Castine’s town dock scene with crispy fish tacos and a steady rotation of Morton’s Moo Homemade Ice Cream. Take in the view of the Maine Maritime Academy’s training ship with a side of poutine (french fries smothered in hot gravy and cheese curds). Dudley’s Refresher closes for the season on Labor Day Weekend.
5 Sea St
Castine, ME 04421

3. Gingerella's Bar-B-Q

14 Water St, Castine, ME 04421
Gingerella’s offers a comprehensive spread of Maine barbecue, from meatloaf to smoked buffalo chicken pizza to pulled pork enchiladas, but the restaurant’s $8.09 lobster roll is the talk of the town these days. Eat inside the space decorated with tongue-in-cheek pig paraphernalia, or enjoy takeout under the town dock’s pavilion across the street.
14 Water St
Castine, ME 04421

4. Dennett's Wharf

15 Sea St, Castine, ME 04421
With seafood fare on a waterfront patio, Dennett’s is what Vacationland dreams are made of. The restaurant is the only place in town to order steamers, and you can influence the decor, too: give the owners a crisp dollar bill then with a thumb tack, a coin, and the flick of a wrist, they’ll secure your cash to the ceiling with past customers' Washingtons. The money has only been stripped from the ceiling twice: once in 2001 as a donation to the family of an elevator operator who died in the World Trade Center on 9/11, and later as a Hurricane Katrina relief fund.
15 Sea St
Castine, ME 04421

5. Pentagoet Inn & Restaurant

26 Main St, Castine, ME 04421
If you’re dining with a party of three or four, ask to sit in a booth at this Victorian B&B’s Baron Pub and Wine Bar, a dimly lit, salon-style gallery showcasing portraits of world leaders, maniacal and otherwise. Drink a transfixing blueberry bellini at the small oak bar, and enjoy fried oysters and short ribs amidst the Castro cartoons and political figurines.
26 Main St
Castine, ME 04421

6. Castine Farmers' Market

Court St., Castine, ME 04421
Every Thursday morning, local farmers and restaurateurs set up stands on the town common. It’s a race to El El Frijoles’ table to buy breakfast burritos while supplies last, but late sleepers can still score guacamole and salsa. Blue Zee Farm and Horsepower Farm present a bounty of locally grown vegetables, and the fresh fish stand sells melt-in-your-mouth hake.
Court St.
Castine, ME 04421

7. The Castine Inn

33 Main St, Castine, ME 04421
The Castine Inn on Main Street serves breakfast open to the public in its mural room. A panoramic painting of Castine pairs nicely with warm French toast or eggs any style.
33 Main St
Castine, ME 04421

8. MarKel's Bakehouse

26 Water St, Castine, ME 04421
Markel’s Bakehouse is Castine’s pastry destination, formerly known as Bah's Bakehouse. Open for breakfast and lunch, the porch attracts locals and visitors alike to enjoy a breakfast sandwich or a Mexican BLT while overlooking the harbor. Be sure to grab an outstanding chocolate chip cookie (or four) for the road.
26 Water St
Castine, ME 04421

9. Manor Inn

76 Battle Ave, Castine, ME 04421
The player piano at The Manor, a 19th century inn perched atop Castine’s hill, sets the mood for an upscale dinner on a foggy night downeast. The innkeepers combine a love for local ingredients with their roots in Tennessee and Maryland and their interest in distant lands like India, evident in their spectacular shrimp curry. Don’t miss the hanger steak or lobster risotto, either. On your way out, peruse the cabinet of curiosities, complete with vintage cameras, model sailboats, and a grinning ventriloquist’s dummy.
76 Battle Ave
Castine, ME 04421

10. Danny Murphy's Pub

5 Sea St, Castine, ME 04421
Danny Murphy’s operates in what used to be The Reef, Castine’s dive bar famous for its legendary karaoke night. Now a sports bar that offers sit-down dinner, Danny Murphy’s carries on The Reef’s Taco Tuesday tradition: $1.50 per taco, get ‘em while they’re hot! For a casual evening, enjoy a pizza before sinking shots at the pool table.
5 Sea St
Castine, ME 04421

11. Eve's Cafe

200 Battle Ave, Castine, ME 04421
Open seasonally at the town's Golf Club, Eve's Cafe is run by a college-aged summer resident with an emphasis on locally sourced ingredients. Perfect after nine holes or a heated tennis match, Eve's serves tartines of every stripe: smashed avocado, prosciutto and parmesan, and curry chicken to name a few. Swing by the porch for the best (and only) coconut chia pudding in town.
200 Battle Ave
Castine, ME 04421

12. Bagaduce Lunch

19 Bridge Rd, Brooksville, ME 04617
Dock up by the Bagaduce Lunch, a roadside favorite for an overflowing basket of fried clams. Getting your soft serve fix here is only a quick boat trip or car ride away from Castine Harbor.
19 Bridge Rd
Brooksville, ME 04617

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