August 6, 2011

Dine Out Maine: Sunsets top off lovely seaside dining at Sebasco


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Rack of lamb joins seafood and other entrees on the Pilot House menu at the Sebasco Harbor Resort on the Phippsburg peninsula. The restaurant is open to non-resort guests.

Courtesy Sebasco Harbor Resort


PILOT HOUSE at the Sebasco Harbor Resort, 29 Kenyon Road, Sebasco Estates. 389-1161;


HOURS: 5:30 to 9 p.m. for dinner. Closed Sundays in summer; open daily the rest of season through October.


PRICE RANGE: Appetizers, $7 to $12; entrees, $18 to $38



KIDS: Welcome. High chairs and a separate menu.


BAR: Full. The international wine list has about 40 bottles, including four sparkling and some distinctive choices, $26 to $105. About 15 wines by the glass. Eight beers on tap, mostly Maine microbrews.


BOTTOM LINE: Pilot House, overlooking a picturesque harbor, is the fine dining option at the resort. The Ledges, downstairs, is a casual eatery and has outdoor seating. Both welcome non-resort guests. The scenery alone makes Pilot House a delightful spot for dining, and a draw for visitors and boaters. There are several delicious dishes on a menu that offers steak, fowl and many seafood choices. Adventurous eaters may be disappointed that preparations are fairly tame. A good spot for groups.

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.

When it comes to service, the restaurant uses a team approach. One server takes our order, assigns the silverware and checks in mid-meal and at the end. Others deliver food, fill water glasses, clear the table, offer coffee. All the staff are professional and cordial. A maitre d' in crisp business attire maintains a friendly presence.

The centerpiece items we try are cooked to just the right doneness, and are attractively presented. The options and preparations here will please a range of palates. Overall, I'd like to see a more spirited use of ingredients to add character to some of the main dishes.

A foursome from France sits two tables away from us, lingering over their meal. A young couple on the other side takes photographs. These guests remind our party of Mainers that to be dining on well-prepared seafood in calm surroundings with a killer view is indeed something special.

We conclude with a giant wedge of Bailey Irish Cream chocolate fudge cake. Most of the desserts are similarly family-friendly. The rich, retro dessert puts a metaphoric maraschino cherry on top of our classic American resort dinner.

Nancy Heiser is a freelance writer who lives near Portland. Her work has appeared in national and regional publications.


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