How Does Your Garden Grow?
Gardening is a big part of life here at The Inn at English Meadows. It has been our passion project, to make the grounds as beautiful as the inside of the inn. Our big plans are beginning to come together. Cedar raised beds are being assembled and filled with Coast of Maine Organic Soil, only the best for our plants and our guests. We love to use homegrown ingredients in our breakfasts. Today we served fresh lemon – peppery arugula, straight from the garden for our pita pizza. Soon zucchini for the frittata, chives and dill for our goat cheese scramble and blueberries and rhubarb for our breakfast cake.
Vegetables aren’t the only thing in our garden. Today, three new Viburnum will grace our grounds as well as an Alaskan Cedar. The bright yellow Tamarack Tree and Landscaping trucks’ arrival this morning was thrilling for our grandson Wren. Bob Palmer, a local arborist well known for saving the Elm Trees of Kennebunkport, has taken us on as a pet project. We have become fast friends while he worked with us to rejuvenate our 100 year old lilacs, and tame what will be our woodland garden.
We are so glad to see many indigenous birds and pollinators making our garden home, blue birds are nesting in our blue-bird box, and a family of wrens staked their claim on another. It’s a magical time of year, full of new growth, and new birth, and new gardens. We are creating a beautiful sanctuary for our guests, and on your next visit we hope you enjoy a game of bocci in the garden or a glass of Channing Daughters Rosato di Merlot on our patio. This summer we are saying yes to rosé!
Spring is here and we all know what that means, “ay-yuh”, it’s time to get out of the house – Waahoo!! Pack a bag, jump in your car and hit the road, don’t look back just get here. Let The Inn at English Meadows sooth away your winter woes with our complete spa package and begin the unwinding.
Then swing through the car wash to relieve your ride of the winter slush (while you do the same for your soul) and take a road trip. Cruise along the coast (the summer Rte. 1 traffic excluded), take in the sites you’ve been waiting all winter to see again. Then stop off to visit the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens and be among the first to see the early spring bulbs and ephemerals while strolling through their gardens which comprise 295 acres of tidal shoreland
Irish Soda Bread with a Maine Twist
3 ½ cups flour
½ cup sugar
1 tsp salt
½ tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1 pint Greek yogurt
1 cup of dried Maine blueberries
2 tsp caraway seeds
Mix dry ingredients, then fold in wet, then stir in berries
Very lightly knead and form 2 round loaves.
Place on a baking sheet and score a cross on the top of the loaves.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes until well browned.
*a more traditional soda bread could be made with currants or raisins
Try it toasted with butter, Yum!
The “S’s” of Winter: Clear skies, skates, sleds, skis and snow-shoes.
Clear Skies: Ay-yuh! The snow is here, the sky is clear and the air is crisp.
Skates: Lace up your skates and head over to the Waterhouse Center. An open sided ice rink with skating until 9 pm 7 days a week. Heat up your skate time on March 5th during the annual Chili cook off! Click here for details.
Sleds: Get your romance on and take a sleigh ride with “Rockin’ Horse Stables” or get the giggles going whilst sledding at the Consolidated School and the Sea Road Sledding Hill.
Skis (cross country) & Snow Shoes: 600 acres to explore at Harris Farm. They rent all equipment and offer hot chocolate and other refreshments in their cozy barn – the warm fire is free. Take an adventure, with your own equipment, at the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge or Laudholm Farm. Join Laudholm Farm on February 23rd for their Winter Wildlife Day & Snow Day. Click here for details.
Are you famished now? Add dinner, spirits and zzz’s
Maine’s “Restaurant Week” runs March 1st -12th. Take a bite out of one of the Kennebunk’s many fine restaurants. They will be offering 3+ course meals and special menus at discounted pricing for two. We suggest trying our neighbor “Toroso” who are proud participants of Maine’s restaurant week.
The moon is up, it’s getting chilly, come reside by our fire at The Inn at English Meadows, enjoy some spirits before you get your, well-deserved, long winters nap in one of our luxurious accommodations!
English Meadows Culinary Occasions!
Congratulations, you made it through January! For we New Englanders, it is the hardest winter month to plow through. Now it is time to think of having some fun before it all melts away to Spring. Meanwhile, enjoy something fresh, convenient, and mouthwatering to break the monotony. Time to look forward to the weekends again!
Hot Fresh Breakfast is Served!
This Saturday or Sunday, sleep in a little, clear the driveway and head over to The Inn at English Meadows for a tantalizing 3-course breakfast. Everything is homemade so go ahead and relax, have a Mimosa, Bellini or an Espresso. Settle in, meet someone new, hobnob with a local you haven’t seen since the cold and snow trapped you indoors or enjoy a long overdue date while pleasing your pallet. Had a fantastic time? Do it again, Breakfast is now available every weekend morning from 8:30-11:00 through April 30th. Don’t miss out, call and make a reservation as seating is limited!
Not a morning person? Many of us aren’t, no worries, we get it and have something for you too! A “Pop-Up Dinner” February 11th starting at 7 p.m. Take a pause with the ones you enjoy and romance your food senses together! Allow yourselves to be pampered with a freshly prepared with local ingredients – 4-course dinner – after sipping on your welcome cocktail fireside. Make this Valentine’s Day date truly special, the nearby restaurants will be there every other day… Seriously, let Chef Chris Groman and The Inn at English Meadows warm your senses and ease your winter tension with a well-deserved scrumptious meal! Didn’t make your reservation in time? No worries, subscribe to our newsletter, follow us on Facebook or visit our website to learn when our next “Pop-Up Dinner” will be. Yes, there will be more!
Stay up, Sleep Inn & Brunch with us this New Years’!
New Year’s is all about clean slates so this year get out of town, ring in the New Year in a new place, The Inn at English Meadows, Sleep in and join us for brunch and take your time with a 1:00pm check out. You’ll have plenty of time to rush in the New Year so start off on the right, rested, well-fed foot with us.
Let’s Paint the Town Red!
Celebrate all things love in The Kennebunks this February with an array of events, romance-centric hotel packages, and lovely offerings from shops and restaurants. The month long event kicks off January 28th with “Frosted”, a festive party featuring ice bar, sculptures and creative nosh and cocktails! Each weekend in February, The Kennebunks offer cooking and mixology classes, activities and engaging events that center on love and romance. The towns also adorn themselves with beautiful red lights, giant hearts and red, red, red! Check lovethekennebunks.com for a full schedule and more information!
New Year, New Traditions!
That’s right just steps from our front door is the brand new and highly anticipated Toroso Kitchen & Cocktails. Owned by the famed Shannon Bard, Toroso is a local Neighborhood Restaurant Serving Small Plates Inspired By The Flavors of Spain.
A highlight of Culinary communities Kennebunkport is your New Years Eve’ destination. Leave the car and take a stroll to over 25 superb eateries in and around Dock Square or skip the walk altogether and sample local offerings from all new Toroso (right next door)
Go Outside & Play!
Never underestimate the romance of a Sleigh Ride.
Take a walk on the snow: Snow Shoeing
Explore Nature: Kennebunk Land Trust
Once again it’s the most wonderful time of year! Kennebunkport Christmas Prelude is in its’ 35th year and shows no sign of slowing down. Known for its beautiful seaside setting, winter is a highly anticipated time of year for Kennebunkport residents and visitors alike. Christmas Prelude has been a “must do” holiday experience for thousands over the years and it’s clear why. Like something out of a story book, Kennebunkport is a picturesque backdrop for such an occasion. Steeped in small town charm and an unparalleled commitment to community Kennebunkport Christmas Prelude was a recipe destined for the history books. Since its inception in 1981, the tradition of Christmas Prelude has been the signature event celebrating the holidays in the Kennebunks for the past three and a half decades.
With such signature events as the tree lighting in Dock Square, to Sants arriving in what else, but a Lobster boat, Kennebunkport Christmas Prelude has something for everyone.
Still not convinced? Just ask yourself; “when was the last time I went to a really good Hat Parade”? That’s right, a Hat Parade. Now in it’s 11th year this unique parade of holiday hats for children and adults led by the Patriot Fife and Drum Duo is one of a kind. Show off your handmade or store bought creations. All hat wearers welcome! We know we know, you only have one question; “where can you get more information?” Have no fear, click here
So come wander the streets, join in the festivities, discover new flavors and make some new memories with us at this years’ 35th annual Christmas Prelude. Just once, and you’ll be hooked.
Once you’ve satisfied your need for Holiday cheer, kick back, relax, and stare at the fire… We hope to see you soon.
When Sarah and I decided to move to Maine, a family friend told us that Mainers eat lobster more often than they eat ground beef. While I’m still not convinced that this is entirely accurate, does anyone have time to not eat a lobster when they’re in Maine? Not I. Not here. Not now. So buckle up, we’re going on a Lobster Expedition!
Note: this list is not exhaustive, apologies to the other wonderful chefs and restaurants who prepare delicious crustaceans for the people of Kennebunk and Kennebunkport.
1. Our very first stop is David’s KPT. If you’re looking for dinner with a view, this is your place. It’s right on the water, with a lovely view of all the neighboring ships and river traffic.
They serve a lovely lobster roll with an option for DOUBLE LOBSTER, as well as David’s Lobster Dinner, which include a chowder, blackened shrimp cocktail, and a steamed Maine lobster.
2. Next up, we’re heading to Mabel’s Lobster Claw! They’ve got every kind of lobster on the menu: a Lobster roll, Lobster Scampi pasta, Lobster Salad, as well as an entire section of Every Lobster Thing. Lobster stew, baked and stuffed, steamed, and Mabel’s Famous Lobster! YEAHHHH
3. Alright lobster friends. Our third Lobster destination is Stripers at the Breakwater Inn and Spa. They have a lovely restaurant, with outdoor seating looking over the river and lawn. They serve whole steamed lobsters and lobster raviolo with oyster mushrooms and portobellos. But the star of the show is their outdoor Lobster bake on Monday evenings, complete with Lobster, Steamers, Corn on the Cob, Potatoes, and Blueberry Cobbler! You couldn’t ask for a more Maine-ish evening!
Remember; these are only a few of the amazing restaurants in the area, and if you have any questions we’d be happy to offer recommendations and make reservations for you at any time! If you need us, we’ll be out researching more restaurants. It’s a tough life.
The summer is going fast, so don’t forget to book your stay at the Inn at English Meadows! You can call us at (207) 967-5766, or check our availability online right here! We can’t wait to meet you!
The Inn at English Meadows
We’re deep into rhubarb season here in Maine! We’ve been using it in our cocktails, on our bread, and now in our rhubarb scones! We used Kate’s recipe for Dreamy Blueberry Cream Scones, and adapted it to make use of our abundance of fresh produce! And now you can make them yourself! Here’s how:
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
3 tablespoons sugar
½ teaspoon fine sea salt or table salt
5 tablespoons chilled, unsalted butter, cut into ¼ inch cubes.
½ cup finely chopped rhubarb
1 cup heavy cream
Heat oven to 425 degrees
Slice your rhubarb stalks into narrow lengthwise strips. Chop into 1/4 inch cubes.
Place flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt in large bowl or work bowl of food processor fitted with steel blade. Pulse six times.
Chop butter into 1/4 inch cubes. Using food processor, remove cover and distribute butter evenly over dry ingredients.
Cover and pulse 12 times, each pulse lasting 1 second. Add rhubarb and pulse one more time.
Transfer dough to large bowl.
Use your hands to shape a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Pour the cream into the center of the well. Stir in cream with a rubber spatula or fork until dough begins to form, about 30 seconds.
Knead dough by hand until it comes together.
On a lightly floured surface press into a 8 inch circle, smoothing the edges. Cut into 10 to 11 wedges.
Place wedges on a parchment covered baking sheet. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with brown sugar, (optional) and bake until very light brown, 12 to 15 minutes.
Cool 10 minutes and enjoy warm, or at room temperature.
Yumm!!! Now invite all your friends over for tea and scones, and discuss literature and flower gardens, and feel very fancy. Tra la la.
If you get these into the oven and your kitchen looks rather worse for wear, do not fear your mess: our kitchen looks appalling after baking, too. And we’re pretty much professionals, so you can definitely feel better about yourself about that one.
America’s Test Kitchen Cookbook
We’d love to see how your Dreamy Rhubarb Scones turn out, and what other interesting variations you can think of! You can tag us in your photos on Instagram or share them on our Facebook Page– We can’t wait to see what you dream up!
The Inn at English Meadows
It’s been such a whirlwind at the Inn recently! Kennebunk celebrated its first ever LAUNCH! Maritime Festival last weekend, and English Meadows took part in the town-wide Historic Inns of Kennebunkport Garden Party! Guests visited several parties, ferried between events by the lovely Hydi Drive, and were greeted with a wonderful rhubarb cocktail and delicious hors d’oeuvres to complement the tours around our lovely grounds.
Alex of Curate Maine, a lifestyle designer and personal concierge, brought us the most amazing strawberries from the farmer’s market, and we used them to make party bread for our party guests!
The star of the show, however, was definitely Kate’s homemade Rhubarb Shrub cocktail! Our guests loved it so much that Kate made them for scavenger hunt participants at the LAUNCH! festival last weekend! If you ever have the occasion to try it, it is absolutely impossible not to love. And it’s so easy to make! Here’s what you do:
Kate’s Rhubarb Shrub Cocktail
6 c. Rhubarb
1 c. Fresh or Frozen Strawberries
1.5 c. Brown Sugar, or to taste.
1.5 c. Water
1 medium piece fresh ginger root
For the Cocktail:
Prosecco or Champagne
Apple Cider Vinegar
Pick the reddest stalks of rhubarb- these are the tastiest!
Wash and roughly chop the stalks. If they are very large, slice lengthwise down the center before chopping. Cut the ginger into large pieces for easy removal after cooking. Throw together into a large stock pot and stir in the sugar and water, and place on medium heat.
About halfway through the cooking, add the strawberries. These help to add a little more natural sweetness to the rhubarb, as well as enhance the red color! Because pretty food is the goal of cooking, obviously.
When the rhubarb has cooked all the way down, taste and add more sugar if desired. Place a large, fine sieve over a bowl or pitcher, and strain the liquid out of the sauce. It may be reluctant to drain out, in which case you can add more water to the mixture, or help it along with a spatula. Pour the Shrub syrup into an airtight container, and keep in the fridge up to a week!
To make the Shrub cocktail: pour one part syrup, a splash of apple cider vinegar, one part ginger beer, one part Prosecco. Adjust to taste.
The leftover purée can be used for a ton of things! Some of our favourites include, on a baguette with ricotta cream and strawberries, a rhubarb version of banana bread, and added to margaritas! Seriously, try the margarita thing. It’s killer.
Time to party!
We hope you have a wonderful time making our favourite cocktails, and don’t forget to book your relaxing getaway at the Inn! We’re even running a special for the summer- you can book a night in a gap in our calendar and receive 20% off your stay! How awesome is that? You can call us at (207) 967-5766, or check our availability here!
See you soon!
The Inn at English Meadows