I used to drive through Gorham Village often enough – and often enough want something to eat or drink – that I would have noticed a new food business.

But about eight months after Sullivan House Bakery opened in a strip mall on Main Street, its appearance in the results of a Google search for nearby lunch spots came as a surprise.

I blame the pandemic for keeping me from getting out as much, but because of that, I’ve also enjoyed becoming a more regular customer at my neighborhood restaurants and cafes and have treasured every new opening. Judging by the steady stream of takeout customers and the lively chatter among others eating inside on a recent rainy Tuesday, I imagine that’s how people who live and work in Gorham feel about Sullivan House.

Heading to the bakery, I was cautiously optimistic about what I’d find for lunch options. There is no menu on its website, but Facebook posts indicated a daily soup special and every one of them sounded good to me – broccoli cheddar, potato leek. Other posts mentioned egg-based breakfast items with a warning about them selling out, so while I couldn’t count on those, I took that as a sign I’d find more than just sweets.

Coconut curry soup with a savory muffin from Sullivan House Bakery.

The selection exceeded my expectations, and I had to let people who arrived after me order first, so I could weigh my options. I had to try the soup – a coconut curry ($7) that day. In addition to a couple egg biscuits still left from that morning were several savory baked goods. I chose the spinach and artichoke hand pie ($7).

I had told my coworkers I’d bring them back something to try, so I could get a more varied take on the bakery’s offerings. Despite the counter person patiently walking me through my best options among the danishes, sticky buns, muffins and biscuits, I went with the giant chocolate chip cookies ($4 each), thinking they’d be something to marvel at and easy to share.

Three chocolate chip cookies from Sullivan House Bakery take up most of a dinner-size paper plate and are great for sharing.

They proved both a conversation piece and a welcome treat, though the height of the cookie – what makes them so impressive-looking – probably also contributed to their being on the drier side.

I was glad I had a salt shaker in my desk for the soup, which helped bring out the sweetness of the creamy broth. Loaded with mushrooms, peppers and peas, it came with a deliciously moist, savory muffin, making it a filling vegetarian meal on its own. But I was still glad I got the hand pie, because it was the highlight for me, with its flavorful, creamy filling.

Now I that know Sullivan House makes a wide variety of sweet and savory baked goods every day, I think that not knowing exactly what will be there when you arrive is part of its appeal, along with the friendly service and cozy, quirky decor. Maybe next time I’ll sit down and enjoy whatever’s on offer that day with the regulars who figured all that out a while ago.


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.

filed under: