all images, art, travel, photography and Maine


A nice, dry French Viognier with a view…

I had a glass of Gerard Bertrand Viognier Reserve Speciale – Pays D’Oc, France 2010 today on the deck at the Chart Room at the Black Point Inn. It’s a very reasonable $15-$18 buy. Highly recommended…the wine and the outdoor dining!


Dramatic wine photography…

Random Wine Photo: A deep red Zin

Working over a dry Rosè…

A Maine picnic, “Dana Style”

One part Seawall coast – Acadia National Park

One part Maine Mussels

One part Cabernet

One part sun and 75 degrees…


One of my mottoes: wine and cheese daily!

Just uncorked a fabulous aged red…

What does this have to do with Maine? A very close friend of mine gave me a bottle of Duckhorn Napa Valley 2000 Merlot right before I left Maryland and moved to Maine. I just today decided to open it. The combination of the gorgeous weather and a nice wedge of St. Agur blue cheese and I headed straight to the wine fridge.

Probably hard to tell from this lighting but the wine had a gorgeous tawny maroon hue to it (less purple, more brown) – often the sign of a nicely aged wine. And I’m not a big fan of a Merlot just off the shelf…but this one? Incredible. I keep sniffing it, the bouquet is that good! Still a little tannic so it might have held out a few more years. But I’m happy with it today. Thanks, Steve. 🙂

Wine Photograph Wednesday…

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Sangria with a Citrus Twist


For this light and refreshing “Sangria” I used a Grenache Rose and Club Soda (ratio of 3 to 1), the juice of half of a lime and a hefty splash (who measures?) of Limoncello Liquor. Shake, pour over ice and enjoy!

MAINE FOODIES READ ON…2009 James Beard Nominees are in…Maine has quite a presence…

Maine offers some of the most spectacular dining in the country. The 2009 James Beard Foundation nominations are in and we’re proud to have such talent right here in the Pine Tree State. Here are this year’s Semi-Finalists:

  • Outstanding Chef: Sam Hayward, Fore Street, Portland, Maine
  • Outstanding Restaurant: Fore Street, Portland, Maine
  • Best New Restaurant: Emilista, Portland, Maine
  • Best Chef, Northeast:Penelle Chase, Phoebe Chase, Megan Chase, and Ted Lafage, Chase’s Daily, Belfast, Maine
  • Rob Evans, Hugo’s, Portland, Maine
  • Clark Frasier and Mark Gaier, Arrows Restaurant, Ogunquit, Maine
  • Rich Hanson, Cleonice Bistro, Ellsworth, Maine
  • Brian Hill, Francine Bistro, Camden, Maine

The five final nominees will be announced March 23rd. Stay tuned…

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Creative Labeling…

I came across this recently in a World Market store. As a foodie with only moderate wine knowledge (some refer to us as “Wineaux“), the bottling caught my attention as a fun, casual and inexpensive wine for any occasion! They offer several varietals for a tasty conversation piece…which, by the way, is a great thing when you are in the hospitality industry. Any time you can offer guests a little something extra to remember their experience, it shows that you have gone one step beyond cookie cutter and offered something a bit more personal…and at very little expense. Or share a favorite wine with your guests, and it doesn’t have to be all the time. Your guests will appreciate your sharing what pleases you.


This is Craignair’s view from their shorefront.

This is one of the two buildings that make up Craignair Inn.

Offered at $1,150,000, Craignair Inn is a mid-coast waterfront inn built in 1928 and was given a 2008 “FODOR’S CHOICE” rating.

The room revenue is very solid with a nice supplemental revenue stream from the inn’s restaurant and the chef has expressed interest in staying with the inn and new owners. This could be an ideal property for the creative type – there are many options not often found in a property with so many redeeming qualities: it’s situated in mid-coast Maine (making it very accessible to many travelers whether coming into Boston, Portland or Bangor); mid-coast Maine is also seeing an increased volume of off-season visitors making this a wonderful spot to market to those looking for a quiet getaway in the winter, particularly for the Boston weekend getaway traveler and with the bar/restaurant license); new owners could offer a weekend classic country-inn-style champagne brunch open to the public as well as to guests; the inn’s spot at the end of a granite causeway with no thru-traffic is a wonderfully secluded spot, yet just 15 minutes to Thomaston. The inn enjoys water frontage with a beautiful view with many areas to relax and unwind on a deck to absorb it all in. And for those who are looking for fewer rooms than 21? The setup is such that many of the rooms could be combined to create small suites, therefore limiting your number of rooms but increasing the ADR. This is really a wonderful place and worth taking a look at! I’ll be posting new photos later this week and will be very excited to share them.