As the snow slowly melts and body parts begin to emerge from beneath fleecy winter garb, it is the season of blossoming romance here at Bowdoin. Those looking for a charming way to display their burgeoning affection this spring should consider dinner at Clementine, a new restaurant on Maine Street.
Owned by Nancy and Dana Robicheaw, an experienced server and sous chef, respectively, Clementine is the perfect combination of relaxed atmosphere, attentive service, and superb cuisine. The casual diner beware, however, as the tab is a bit pricey but well worth it if you are trying to impress someone special.
From the outside, Clementine appears a bit shabby, so the inner décor is an unexpected yet enjoyable surprise. Simple wood floors, clean white linens, and daffodils surrounded by votive candles give the establishment an understated yet inviting grace. The walls bear beautiful woodcut prints and pastels by local Maine artist Janice Wright. Smooth jazz plays softly in the background, completing the ambiance. The proprietors have done a marvelous job of making the maximum use of a small space. Each table feels intimate and private despite the openness of the room.
Guests can expect to be greeted by a member of the extremely friendly wait-staff. Attentive, prompt, and polite, the servers make daily specials sound wonderful, and your water glass is always filled.
The high price tag of Clementine does not go unwarranted as the well-proportioned entrees are both beautifully presented and delicious.
"I felt like the food was blended really well. It all worked very well together" said my fellow diner Matt Seward '11.
"There is nothing not to like here," he added
A particular favorite is the sautéed salmon, served with spiced sticky rice, and cabbage with a drizzle of ginger sauce. A delectable and filling meal can also be found in the sage marinated chicken breast, which is served with sweet potatoes and green beans.
For those over 21, Clementine also has a full bar and a large variety of fine wines, cocktails, and draft beers. The dessert menu boasts an impressive list of cakes, pies, and sorbet, along with after-dinner coffee, tea, and espresso. Perhaps the most charming touch is the presentation of two lemon custard tarts with the check in place of the traditional after-dinner mints.
There is little to dislike about the appealing new installment to Brunswick's already rich restaurant collection. Although you may have to save up in order to spend an evening at Clementine, you will not regret the dollars spent.
Clementine is located at 44 Maine Street. Dinner is served Tuesday through Saturday from 5 p.m. until 9 p.m. and brunch is served Sundays from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.