Photos by Mark Fleming
On June 28, 2013, Down East held its first-ever Best of Maine celebration, honoring our Editors’ and Readers’ Choice award winners. The Portland Club was bustling as the honorees arrived from across the state. Some, like the folks from Portland’s North Point (Editors’ Choice: Best Cocktail Bar), traveled by foot. Others, like the owners of Dolly’s Restaurant (Editors’ Choice: Best Acadian Fare), and Libby Camps (Editors’ Choice: Best Sporting Camp for Foodies), had a much longer haul — from Frenchville and Oxbow, respectively.“The crowd of award winners was made up of innkeepers, bloggers, fishmongers, chocolatiers, retailers, journalists, media personalities, and purveyors of the best the state has to offer, whether coffee, food, home and garden, or culture,” wrote Margaret Logan, reporting for the Portland Press Herald (Readers’ Choice: Best Newspaper).
The diverse crowd enjoyed a menu of classic Maine foods, including lobster rolls, a raw bar, and a four-tiered display of whoopie pies, because, as blogger Liz Pride (Editors’ Choice: Best Tumblr, Your L.L.Bean Boyfriend), wrote about the event, “No Maine-themed party would be complete without a tower of whoopie pies.”
The evening’s mellow elegance won favor among the group of more than two hundred winners and Down East staffers. “We had a marvelous time!” said Cindy Gagnon of Wiscasset’s Red’s Eats (Readers’ Choice: Best Lobster Roll). “I am very honored and humbled that we received the award.” Representatives from Wheels N Waves (Editors’ Choice: Best Surf Shop) echoed that sentiment, saying, “We truly feel honored to be associated with so many great Maine businesses.”
Pineland Farms (Readers’ Choice: Best Cheese) hailed “the food, the staff, and the location” as “spot on.” “Great venue, amazing food, and attention to every detail was greatly appreciated,” Erica Beck Spencer of Every Day Outside (Readers’ Choice: Best Blog) agreed. But it was Gelato Fiasco (Readers’ Choice: Best Ice Cream) who perhaps said it best: “So swanky!” they posted on Twitter. “You party in style.”
Video and Edit by David Lovejoy