If you haven’t already heard, Portland was voted by Bon Appétit as the best restaurant city of the year in 2018. This alone is all the reason you should need to visit Maine, and while Portland certainly does have its share of amazing food, you shouldn’t stop there. Get out and explore all the delicious food found across the state.

Head south of Portland to Old Orchard Beach and swing by Joseph’s By The Sea. The waterfront restaurant features an open-air rooftop deck, providing customers with an unfettered view of the breaking waves while they enjoy their meals.

The MidCoast & Islands region is gaining national recognition for their abundance of oysters. The pristine tidal waters in the region are perfect for harvesting these tasty bivalves. A great place to try a fresh oyster is in Port Clyde at the Dip Net restaurant. The restaurant is a causal affair — picnic tables spread across a dock overhanging the water. The restaurant serves up fresh lobster, oysters, and plenty of other local seafood. Stop by and enjoy an afternoon beer and a lobster roll while watching the fishing boats return to the harbor after a long day at sea.

There’s no experience more quintessentially Maine than eating a boiled lobster dockside while watching the seagulls soar overhead. Lobster pounds dot the coastline, with their brightly colored signs, stacked lobster traps and picnic table décor. One such lobster pound is Cook’s Lobster & Ale House on Bailey Island. The restaurant features over 20 craft beers on tap, a large deck, and of course, plenty of freshly caught lobster to enjoy. 

Further up the coast in the DownEast Acadia region after spending a day hiking around Acadia National Park, stop by the Asticou Inn for their renowned flakey and buttery popovers. If a light snack won’t satisfy your appetite, don’t worry, the inn’s restaurant specializes in far more than just popovers, offering up plenty of exquisitely prepared appetizers and entrees.

Even though there are so many amazing restaurants throughout Maine, Portland still stands as the epicenter of outstanding eateries. The city’s culinary landscape has seen a dizzying number of new restaurants crop up in recent years, but Ribollita, a stalwart in the Portland restaurant scene, has been serving up tasty Italian dishes for over a decade. The chef uses local ingredients to create a brilliant classic Italian menu with touches of Maine’s unique culinary landscape.

As summer approaches and the days get warmer, restaurants across the state are preparing to welcome another year of visitors. When you are in Maine this year, be sure to eat at as many of the state’s wonderful restaurants as you can. The food promises to be fresh, lovingly prepared, and delicious.