April 15, 2012

Dine Out Maine: The Fresh Batch: Good food, nice variety in a friendly space


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The furnishings at The Fresh Batch combine light wood with a rainbow of bright pastel paint, giving the place a cheerful whimsy. The toddler gym is a nice feature for children.

Gabe Souza/Staff Photographer



20 Bow St., Freeport

865-5511; thefreshbatch.com


HOURS: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday to Wednesday; until 8 p.m. Thursday; until 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Summer hours will be 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.


PRICE RANGE: $3.49 to $9.99

VEGETARIAN: Yes, and some vegan

GLUTEN-FREE: Yes, many options, including gluten-free baked goods from Wild Flours in Brunswick

KIDS: Welcome and encouraged. Separate menu and play area.


BAR: Serves wine, draft and bottled beers, hard cider and a few liquor-flavored gelati. Homemade lemonade. Pour-your-own tap water in reusable tumblers means there's no need to buy the bottled variety and add to the litter stream.


BOTTOM LINE: Spacious, locally owned and radiating a friendly spirit, The Fresh Batch is a casual dining option for locals and tourists. Find soups, salads, hot and cold sandwiches, burritos and egg dishes in a lively setting in downtown Freeport. Homemade gelato, espresso drinks and several vegetarian and gluten-free options make this a drop-in spot to please a lot of palates, but adventurous eaters may find it too tame.

Ratings follow this scale and take into consideration food, atmosphere, service and value: *Poor;  **Fair;  ***Good;  ****Excellent;  *****Extraordinary. The Maine Sunday Telegram visits an establishment twice if the first dining experience was unsatisfactory. The reviewer dines anonymously.

At The Fresh Batch, you order at the counter and take a number to a table of your choice. A server delivers the items to your table, with real silverware and plates. Nothing is disposable except paper napkins.

Table bussing is your job. The system is efficient, but know ahead that the food usually comes all at once.

This spot fills a niche -- a few niches, in fact -- in a section of Freeport busy with tourist traffic in summer. One can drop in seven days a week for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The Fresh Batch serves eggs, espresso drinks, salads, hot and cold sandwiches, soups, burritos, baked goods and homemade gelato, some of it booze-infused.

Yes, The Fresh Batch has a limited liquor license -- another plus. Harried parents can linger over wine or beer while junior crawls up the mini-slide or teens tuck into their gelato. The restaurant is also a good, quick option before a movie at the new Nordica Theater.

The potential is high for this spot, which opened last July, to be a very successful endeavor. It's already doing a good job offering fresh and healthy fare. Keep it on your Freeport radar.

Nancy Heiser is a freelance writer. She can be reached at: nancyheiser.com

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