Sunday, August 30, 2009

Anneke Jans- Kittery, Maine

60 Wallingford Square-
Open all week from 5pm to close.
Downtown Kittery is often missed. Most people who travel into the area, scoot right up to the outlets and never really find themselves in the small, quaint heart of downtown Kittery. That's a shame really since perfectly placed on the corner, there is a wonderful little restaurant very well known to the locals called Anneke Jans. Owned by Donna Ryan and Andy Livingston this bistro style joint fills up fast and rightly so. Chef Charles Cicero offers ups some wonderfully creative dishes on the menu that change often and are full of flavor. The decor is simple with dark color schemes that give off a very seacoast New England vibe. The bar and dinning areas of the restaurant are both small so I highly suggest reservations or be prepared to wait a while for a seat.
I enjoy starting off my my meal with a glass of wine from their large and well rounded wine list while I eagerly wait for a dozen or so of the raw oysters (the last time I visited, it was the little Pemaquids) served with Bloody Mary & Preserved Lemon Mignonette (love, love, love the Preserved Lemon Mignonette!).
I will share with you my top 3 dishes here although it's a tough decision to blog only 3 and they will surely change as the menu does! The Seared Duck Breast with a blueberry glaze served with wild rice pancake and grilled asparagus for $27. the duck is moist, the glaze enhances the rich fatty flavor of the duck and the wild rice pancake I think is a nice change to have for a starch. The Roasted Half Chicken served with polenta and a mushroom ragoƻt for $19 is well worth it and delicious! I know, most will tell you when you dine out, don't be boring and get chicken, but this bird at Anneke Jans is worth being the "boring one". My favorite dish here hands down, so far is the sunflower seed encrusted Sea Scallops with a sunchoke puree, edamame cipollini and a light lemon cream for $27. The last time I dined here, I agreed to spilt my scallop dish with one of my dinning companions who had the sirloin strip and although the sirloin was very good, I was sad for having to agreed with the meal trade. ha ha ha.
Whether you find yourself around Kittery for the shopping or just by chance your cruising around the coastline, I definitely think that you should venture into Anneke Jans and see for yourself what the happy, full gathering of the locals is all about.