New Look Belfast

Belfast

This is Belfast, not in Ireland but on the midcoast of Maine, so named at the request of an Irish settler around 1770.  With names like Yarmouth, Moscow, Camden, Naples I think many towns in Maine are named for places of early settlers origins.

Not  too long ago Belfast was best known for its chicken packing plant.  That is closed now, and new restaurants, galleries, and shops line the main street making it a very fun place for an outing.

One of the most popular eateries, not only in Belfast but on Maine’s coast, is Chase’s Daily where tasty vegetarian dishes are prepared from produce grown at the family farm.  During the summer months, one can expect a lengthy wait for a table.

Chase's DailyWait time can pass pretty quickly if you venture to the rear of the restaurant where there is a stunning array of vegetables and flowers available for purchase.

 Chase’s is also a venue for local artists to display their work.   How many places do you go and see art and vegetables being complementary?

As good as all the healthy food is, my very favorite thing is this cookie oozing with chocolate and dried cherries.  I’ve been known to have one when I’m waiting in line for a table.

New this year in Belfast is an unbelievable farmers market.   I’d been told it was wonderful, but I wasn’t prepared for just how great it is.

Most Maine farmers markets are outdoors.  Not this one!  It’s in a huge enclosed building, and plans are for it to operate year round.  Hopefully, the full time population of the midcoast will support it as it is a great asset to the area.

In addition to produce and locally made cheeses and meats, there are all kinds of prepared edibles surprisingly representing a number of cultures.  It’s going to take more than one visit to try them all!

It was great to see a variety of handmade items  displayed and getting considerable interest.  It got me to thinking about whether or not some of my handwoven pieces might find a market there. Scarves and shawls just might fit right in.

cupcakesMost of the vendors did a great job displaying their wares.  I tried to pass by the egg carton full of mini cupcakes, but it was impossible to resist!  Not only were the cupcakes cute, they were very tasty.

That’s a quick look at some of what is in Belfast.  Next stop is Coastal Mountain Land Trust’s recently developed rail-trail which follows the route of the Belfast & Moosehead Lake Railroad, a passenger and freight line which operated from 1871 to 2007 between Belfast and Burnham Junction.  A hike is just the thing to walk off the extra calories ingested at the farmers market.  Let’s get going!

i so appreciate your visit and the comments you leave behind

The Last Boat Ride

It’s that time of year when one by one boats are pulled from the water and stored for the winter.  Pipe Dreams goes into hibernation this week so we must get in that last boat ride of the season. 

Indian IslandAs we leave Rockport Harbor, I take a long look at Indian Island wearing its coat of many colors.  This is an image that will be in my head through the winter, a reminder of what I will look forward to next year.

schoonerAs we cruise Penobscot Bay, we wave to folks on a schooner enjoying a sail under a perfect fall sky.  It won’t be long until these vessels are shrouded in plastic or headed south for warmer climes.

frieghterNow, here is a sight we don’t see too often in the bay, a big freighter heading who knows where.

CamdenIn the distance, we see the mainland that is Camden, Lincolnville and Northport

Maineand the islands that characterize the coast of Maine.

BelfastAs we tie up at the Belfast dock, we are welcomed by this familiar sign and notice that the patio is full today of people eating and basking in the warm sun.

BelfastBelfast, another of those cute little Maine towns with a charming main street, is one of our favorite destinations for lunch and browsing. 

BelfastIt is crowded today with visitors from a ship that takes passengers on leaf peeping cruises.

Chase's DailyNo way can we come to Belfast without having lunch at Chase’s Daily, always worth the wait.  The menu is vegetarian and most of the offerings are made with ingredients fresh from the Chase farm.

Chase's DailyChase's DailyChase's DailyChase's DailyThe rear of the restaurant,  appealing as the menu and  filled with seasonal produce and flowers, is also an exhibition space for art, so there is plenty on which to focus.

Eat More Cheese

Eat More Cheese

Coyote Moon

Coyote Moon

The Good Table

The Good Table

On the way back to the boat, I can’t resist a stop at a few of my favorite places where I am sure to find something I can’t live without!

Rockport HarborAfter a very satisfying visit to Belfast and a perfect day for this last cruise, we return to Rockport and the harbor that welcomes us home.

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