Hallowell, nesting just south of Augusta along the Kennebunk has proven to be one of our favorite towns in Maine. It is home to the Liberal Cup, a a brewery and pub who's owners decided to protest the establishment of the Republic Planning Committee across the street. Mainer's have a sense of humor. Scott and I (though if you know my husband you know its really just Scott) have dreamed up half a dozen business plans for Hallowell -- including a bookstore, martini bar, and kayak rental/packed lunch spot.
Hallowell is also home to my favorite brunch spot -- Slates. Its menu, two full pages, is handwritten every day and resembles the notebook of a middle school girls. Its packed full of local ingreedients and yummy but uncovential combinations. Lobster and peapod omelettes with gouda cheese. Garlic, brocolli, and brie scrambled eggs. Bloddy Marys mistaken for horseradish with a touch of tomato juice. But the best part is the Brunch Bread -- freshly cooked bread with fruits and nuts. Slate's bakes the bread for each order, always fresh, alwasy warm, and always good.
Last Sunday was a normal Sunday at Slates, the wait time was a good 40 minutes and the food was as always worth it. Molly, Joe, Scott, and I were there -- it was part of Molly and Joe's culinary introduction to Maine (essential step in our 5 step migration strategy). We had just finished a delicious meal and were gaining enough strength to pay the bill and leave, when we were evacuated. What started out as plumes of smoke escaping from a poorly insulated building, turned into a wild blaze. The fire was officially extinguished more than 24 hours later. They were unable to save the building.
The future of Slates is yet unknown, but I am sure that hardiness will persevere and it will reopen. It is touching however given how quickly restaurants come and go in the world, how one restaurant can mean so much.