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Lost Kitchen, Freedom, Maine


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http://time.com/collection/worlds-greatest-places-2018/

 

Time Magazine makes official what I already knew:

 

The Lost Kitchen is out of this world!  My wife and I and two of our good friends dined here in June.... it was the single greatest culinary experience of my entire life!  We had to send in a postcard (over 20K were sent in from all around the world) and the chef/owner pulled postcards out of a barrel until she had filled up all of the reservations for the year.  I think that there were less than a thousand cards drawn all told.  We were VERY lucky!  Seven courses.... spread out leisurely over nearly three hours....   every single bite was mind bogglingly delicious.

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On 8/26/2018 at 10:50 AM, maineman said:

Seven courses.... spread out leisurely over nearly three hours....   

 

17 hours ago, bludog said:

To each his own.  For me it would be a form of torture.

 

The way it makes sense is if it is time spent with loved ones. The sublime meal becomes the canvas on which the memorable experience is painted.

 

If I had to have a 3 hour, 7 course meal alone, no matter how good the food, I agree it would be less than pleasant.

 

As you know, I've been away on business for a while, having meals alone. I find myself on WhatsApp texting my wife during those meals. The hotel I'm in has a full kitchen, and I've had a few meals there while on the phone to her. That makes it more tolerable. 

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5 hours ago, laripu said:

The way it makes sense is if it is time spent with loved ones. The sublime meal becomes the canvas on which the memorable experience is painted.

 

You have a point.  Sharing an eating experience is one way to renew social bonds ....  Or in some cases, damage them.  But there are lots of other ways of bringing people together:  Either participation in or viewing sports ...  religious or political meetings ....    And other numerous areas of mutual interest.   But the most genuine way for people to enjoy each other's company needs no other ulterior incentive than to get together and share common feelings and ideas;  No other social glue required.

 

Sharing a meal is a time-honored way of cementing friendships.  To me, it makes more sense to satisfy mutual hunger, over a fine meal, for maybe a half-hour or so and then, converse, sharing the well-being of hunger satisfied.

 

But "seven courses ...  spread out leisurely over nearly three hours"?   Sounds like a gluttonous endurance contest.  That much food would be hard for most people to consume in any less time !  Even if it was the only meal of the day, the massively excessive intake of calories does not justify it.  It would take supreme self-control for hungry people to limit themselves to just a seventh of a normal meal from each course.  Most people couldn't do it.

 

Of course the restaurant could force you to eat just a little at a time by serving tiny amounts for each course.  For me, that would be very frustrating and it would be difficult to know when I had enough.  But that's just me.  I guess there are horses for courses, but personally, I'll take one course.:)

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1 hour ago, bludog said:

 

You have a point.  Sharing an eating experience is one way to renew social bonds ....  Or in some cases, damage them.  But there are lots of other ways of bringing people together:  Either participation in or viewing sports ...  religious or political meetings ....    And other numerous areas of mutual interest.   But the most genuine way for people to enjoy each other's company needs no other ulterior incentive than to get together and share common feelings and ideas;  No other social glue required.

 

Sharing a meal is a time-honored way of cementing friendships.  To me, it makes more sense to satisfy mutual hunger, over a fine meal, for maybe a half-hour or so and then, converse, sharing the well-being of hunger satisfied.

 

But "seven courses ...  spread out leisurely over nearly three hours"?   Sounds like a gluttonous endurance contest.  That much food would be hard for most people to consume in any less time !  Even if it was the only meal of the day, the massively excessive intake of calories does not justify it.  It would take supreme self-control for hungry people to limit themselves to just a seventh of a normal meal from each course.  Most people couldn't do it.

 

Of course the restaurant could force you to eat just a little at a time by serving tiny amounts for each course.  For me, that would be very frustrating and it would be difficult to know when I had enough.  But that's just me.  I guess there are horses for courses, but personally, I'll take one course.:)

Actually...the portions were modest.  None of us felt stuffed when we were done.

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4 hours ago, maineman said:

Actually...the portions were modest.  None of us felt stuffed when we were done.

 

That's been my experience the few times I've had that kind of meal. I feel good when it's over ... and a tiny bit tipsy. :)

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  • 10 months later...

A remarkable update on this topic.... Last year we were lucky enough to be chosen, from over 20K submitted requests, for the chance to dine at the Lost Kitchen.... this year, we put in our post cards again, and waited by the phone in late April to see if we would be so lucky as to be chosen two years in a row.  April came and went, and we knew that we had not made the list this year.  That is, until the phone rang on this last Friday morning.  I looked down at the Caller ID and it said "lost kitchen".  I nearly fainted.  I answered the phone and the lady's voice asked if my wife was home.  She was sitting right next to me on the sofa so I just handed her the phone.  There was a cancellation.  We now have a table for four this Friday evening!  

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Menu last night.

 

four announced courses, preceded by three appetizer plates.

 

Appetizer #1:  Cheese plate with a bowl of toasted sour bread ... marrow/butter, smoked butter, three different local cheeses, homemade pickles, marcona almonds, olives, and sliced radishes.

 

Appetizer #2: raw oysters with a shallot/grated strawberry mignonette.

 

Appetizer #3:  Tempura fried squash blossoms stuffed with smoked ricotta

 

Course #1: fresh celery and leek soup with smoked ricotta, lobster bits, and tiny celery leaves

 

Course #2:  butterhead lettuce hearts with cherry tomatoes, blue velvet cheese, bacon bits & creme fraiche, tiny onion sprouts

 

Course #3:  Maine grass -fed tenderloin with whipped herb butter, creamy polenta, new potatoes, fennel, olive and cabbage, baby kale and spicy arugula

 

Course #4:  salted caramel custard with a burnt sugar crust, local raspberries and blackberries

 

 

Every bite was sheer heaven... every bit as good as last year.

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