Greg and I decided to be brave and try the new restaurant in Searsport last night. Its called The Old Mill Stream Eatery. Located where the Chocolate Grille used to be, the restaurant hasn't been changed too much, except that the new owners added their own "chaaam" to the place, meaning curtains and artwork that would make Holly Hobby proud. I used to think that the space was somewhat cool and had lots of potential when Chocolate Grill was there. Now, I just think the restaurant is sad...very sad. It almost has the charm of a hospital cafeteria, despite the too loud motown jamboree playing on the stereo.
Greg kept asking as we sat down whether I wanted to leave. We knew as we came through the door and smelled the food service food that the restaurant would not be one where we would return. But, we decided to stay and brave the bad food and poor service. As we looked around at the other tables we marveled that there was at least one person who weighed 250 lbs or more at each table. Not too many were engaged in conversation, and everyone had something fried.
The menu is the same as at most restaurants on the coast, fried fish and fries, a steak cut or two and some chowdahs. It appeared to be the medium priced entrees from one of the food services around. This is a higher priced version of what you can get at the Irving Station restaurant just a couple of miles north.
Greg had the fried clams and fries special and I had the New York strip with potato puffs which were tasteless except for the butter and salt that I had to put on them to make them palettable. Our meal came with "warm rolls' (read: microwaved white bread rolls) and salad, which was iceburg lettuce, some sad peppers, and raw red onion. Yuck! The steak was a nice cut of meat and I was suprised at that. Greg said his clams were actually fresh and very good. The bill was less than I thought it would be, but at $40.00 was still too expensive for the drive to Searsport and the type of food served.
But I still don't think I could go back to this restaurant because the atmosphere is sooooo bad. I used to think the Chocolate Grille had a good bar area, but the Eatery seems to have done away with that. The bar is still there, but there was no bartender and the drinks were made by the server. How odd is that? I would think with the bar already there, the owners would open it up and attract the drinking crowd, after all, its the best way to make a profit in the restaurant business.
Sadly, I cannot imagine that this place will last and so that space will be forever cursed as a restaurant and will remain empty.
Food: B (the rolls and salad kept the score down)