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“Delicious Food Abysmal Service”

Damariscotta River Grill
Ranked #1 of 31 Restaurants in Damariscotta
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: American, Seafood
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Families with children, Bar scene, Business meetings, Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Full Bar, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff
Jefferson, Maine
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Delicious Food Abysmal Service”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 16, 2011

The food was absolutely wonderful however, the staff appeared to be annoyed with our presence. From the time we entered and said our name and reservation we were greeted as if we were pests. We sat at our table for 5 minutes before the waitress appeared, our water glasses were not filled until a good 10 minutes after we were seated. When our entrees were delivered they were place in front of us and the waitress whipped around to the table behind us and said, "Have you decided."

We received three separate bills, two were wrong, and a woman, perhaps the manager asked for the credit card again, but offered no apology or even 'how about a coffee for your troubles.'

I think the clientele suffers through this sort of customer service because they feel the joint is very chic and cool and crunchy - bad service isn't chic or cool people.

I won't go back and I really really loved the food. Sad.

  • Visited April 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank cheledoele
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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334 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
37 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 17, 2011

When we think of food and Maine, lobster is the first thing that comes to mind. However, we found ourselves in Maine in "deep winter" and figured the last thing we would find would be fresh Maine lobster, or any other fresh Maine seafood. Well, we were delighted to find out how wrong we were.

The Damariscotta River Grill was recommended to us by several locals during our 8 days in Edgecomb, Maine, and we found it to be a superb restaurant. The upstairs was cozy with a fireplace and a very charming bar at one end of the room, which was quite civilized with low noise level. The downstairs seemed more open and casual although in the summer months, both upstairs and downstairs might have a totally different feel. January in Maine had a much more local feel and tourists, like us, were scarce.

All of the wait staff were so friendly and so helpful in every way. From the first warm greeting at the door to the helpful tips for eating a whole lobster, we couldn't have been in better hands. In fact, for our second visit to the restaurant, we asked in advance if we could have fresh Maine lobster for dinner -- and they made it happen! We were told to call the morning of our reservation, after they went to the local fish market to see what was available, and it was a success! The staff could not have been more accommodating or helpful.

The food was excellent, but particularly the local seafood. On our two visits, we were able to try the local seafood caught right there in the Damariscotta River (shrimp and mussels) or in nearby waters (lobster). We had fresh, sweet Maine shrimp, which were on the smaller side, but oh-so-tasty! We were told that some of the seafood is even better in the winter, when the waters were icy cold. The shrimp was served with garlic and oil and perfectly cooked -- crisp and sweet. We also ordered the local mussels, steamed in herbs, and they were so fresh, plump, and juicy, it was hard to stop eating them once we started. And, the lobster! The steamed, bright red lobster, while again a little smaller but sweeter now than in the summer months, was delicately sweet, firm and tender -- there was a lot of ripping, tearing, and slurping going on at our table!

We highly recommend the Damariscotta River Grill for its ambiance, wonderful staff and chef, and superb food, particularly the local seafood.

  • Visited January 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank rhodes19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Medford, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
3 reviews
“Perfect from Start to Finish”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 6, 2011

We stayed at The Snow Squall Inn in Wiscasset for the weekend and asked the owner/innkeeper Melanie to recommend restaurants for dinner on both Friday and Saturday. We were thrilled with the restaurant she recommended for Friday night and wondered if meal at the Damariscotta River Grill would be as good. It definitely was.

When we arrived at the restaurant the hostess gave us a very warm greeting and welcomed us to the Grill. She asked if we had ever dined with them before and we told her we had not. She suggested that we might want to look at both the main level dining room and the upstairs dining room and bar to see if we had a preference. Both are very nice, but we did prefer the upstairs. We were given a very nice table upstairs near the fireplace. Our waitress Anne gave us a warm welcome and helped us with our wine selection, which we appreciated because we liked the wine very much. We had done yoga (at the fantastic Wicked Good Yoga studio in Wiscasset) and snow shoeing at Morris Farm (also in Wiscasset) and were very hungry. The bread was excellent and Anne replenished it a number of times without our having to ask. We enjoyed "The Plank" appetizer and though it was a great idea to serve such an interesting selection (roasted garlic humus, spiced nuts, fig chutney, Cabot Private Stock cheddar, pate de campagne, and olive oil torta). Anna could see that I was enjoying the pate on the bread and brought yet another basket! I asked Anna duck risotto was as good as it sounded, and she assured me it was. It was one of the best risotto dishes I have ever had. This is a perfect winter dish. The chef found the perfect balance of risotto, butternut squash, scallion, fontina, dried cranberries, toasted pumpkin seeds and roasted duck breast. And the roasted duck leg sitting on top of the risotto was cooked perfectly. Crispy on the outside, and "falling off the bone" underneath, just as the menu said it would be. My wife's Thai Fish Stew was excellent, too. Again, the balance of the flavors of the salmon, haddock, shrimp, scallops, mussels, coconut red curry broth and Thai noodles was perfect. And all of the fish/shellfish was cooked perfectly.Anna again made sure that we had bread and told us that we would want it to enjoy the broth. We certainly did! We were so full from the very generous "Plank" appetizer large dinner entrees that we didn't have room for dessert. But we will return soon and be sure to save room for what we are sure would have been an excellent third course. How do we know? The folks at the table next to us loved theirs!

Thanks again to the folks at the Damariscotta River Grill for a wonderful evening. And to Melanie at The Snow Squall Inn for recommending it!

  • Visited February 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Comaradity
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melton Mowbray, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
287 reviews
160 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 168 helpful votes
“Tasty food!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 1, 2011

This was a great place to eat, in comfortable and welcoming surroundings. The food was very good as was the service – highly recommend.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank ElizabethGClaxton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
18 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Some hits & some misses”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 17, 2010

My husband and I had a lukewarm meal here. We were seated in the back room, which was cozy, quiet and lovely, and we started with some great mussels. We had a wonderful quinoa salad, but then our main course failed to please. I had duck risotto, which was a few pieces of duck on risotto that was dripping with cheese. It was so cheesy that it would have been more fitting as a dip served with toast points. Not a classic take on risotto. My husband's tuna was fine, but not flavorful, and the coconut shrimp were literally too sweet to eat. So, some high points and some low points. The service was very good.

Thank traveler0406
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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