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Susan Axelrod

Susan Axelrod's food writing career began in the kitchen; she owned a restaurant and catering business for 15 years before turning to journalism. By day, she is the social media editor for Portland Press Herald. To relax, she bakes, gardens and hikes with her husband and their two dogs, preferably followed by a cocktail or a Maine beer. Susan can be contacted at 791-6310 or saxelrod@mainetoday.com On Twitter: @susansaxelrod

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Posted: November 5, 2014

Dining Guide: 4 noteworthy restaurants in Lewiston-Auburn

Written by: Susan Axelrod

For full listings and more restaurants, see our searchable Restaurant & Bar Guide.

Fuel

Fuel restaurant owner Eric Agren with a menu and a wine list he offers at his restaurant in Lewiston. Press Herald file photo

Fuel restaurant owner Eric Agren with a menu and a wine list at his restaurant in Lewiston. Press Herald file photo

49 Lisbon St., Lewiston | 333-3835 | fuelmaine.com | $$$$
Housed in a swanky space in the historic Lyceum Building, Fuel’s bent is classic French cuisine, but the fare is more country than Paris. The house specialty is balsamic-braised pork shank — with the cheeky note, “think wicked fancy BBQ” — fondue, soupe a l’oignon and hangar steak frites. Yet owners Eric and Carrie Agren are not purists; the menu also includes three varieties of mac and cheese, including, yes, one with lobster. In addition to the Wine Spectator-awarded wine list, Fuel offers carafes of small-batch wine on tap.

Marche Kitchen & Wine Bar

49 Lisbon St., Lewiston | 333-3836 | marchmaine.com | $$$$
A popular lunch spot, Marche has new owners in Susan and Gary Hall, proprietors of The Vault wine and beer shop just up the street. They’ve changed the restaurant’s name to include “kitchen & wine bar,” added regular dinner service and hired chef Kevin Cunningham, formerly of The Brunswick hotel and restaurant in Brunswick. He has put his stamp on the small plates, adding contemporary American dishes to the line-up of French-inspired fare — but the signature crepes, both sweet and savory, are still served at lunch and dinner. Revamped wine, beer and cocktail lists are also a part of the transformation.

Gritty McDuff’s

Jenna-Rae Brown pours a draft at Gritty McDuff's in Auburn. Press Herald file photo

Jenna-Rae Brown pours a draft at Gritty McDuff’s in Auburn. Press Herald file photo

68 Main St., Auburn | 376-2739 | grittys.com | $$
The third location of this popular Maine brewpub is naturally popular with the Bates college crowd, but plenty of other locals flock here for Gritty’s signature brews, burgers, pizzas and more good pub grub. The setting, in an historic building overlooking the Androscoggin River, is another draw.

Fish Bones American Grill

70 Lincoln St., Lewiston | 333-3663 | fishbonesag.com | $$$$
In the renovated Bates Mill complex, Fish Bones gets high marks for both its design and food. The building’s industrial heritage remains visible in the brick walls and rustic beams that define the space, which is framed with large windows. The menu features standards such as lobster bisque and pan-seared haddock, while less-expected sauces and sides add interest. Theatre patrons can make reservations for special prix-fixe dinners: Two courses for $24 or three courses for $29.

Key to prices

The approximate cost of two dinner entrees (not including appetizers, drinks, tax and gratuity).
$ – $15 and under
$$ – $16 to $25
$$$ – $26 to $45
$$$$ – $46 and up

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