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Friday, July 19, 2013

Weathervane Restaurant Review - South Portland, ME

Gabrian and I headed to Weathervane Restaurant located at 380 Gorham Rd, South Portland, ME this evening for dinner. I had a coupon for a free children's meal from the Portland Dine Around Club Book with the purchase of an adult entrée. I have fond memories of the Weathervane Restaurant when I was growing up. A couple of times every year we would head to the Kittery, Maine for the Outlet Shops. We would always have a fantastic seafood dinner to finish off the day of hard shopping. I was excited when we moved here to discover that we had our own Weathervane Restaurant located in our Mall Parking Lot.

We have been here almost 8 months but just have never gotten around to eating there. There are so many new restaurants that I have wanted to try. Even though I have been eager to here, in some ways I consider it a chain restaurant so it didn't make it to the top of the list. Tonight everything seemed to align just right. I really wanted seafood again this week, Gabrian was really hungry and wanted to eat right away, and it was almost 100 degrees (no joke) and I wanted somewhere with really great air conditioning.

I wish I could say this lived up to all my fond memories of Kittery, Maine but unfortunately I should have gone somewhere different and left these fond memories in the past.

It started off ok. We were there pretty early for a Friday night and no one else was at the Hostess Podium. She asked if we wanted a table or booth and we went with the booth. I am better able to control Gabrian in a booth. She brought us to the back of the restaurant to a semi-circle table. That was perfect for me because I could sit next to Gabrian which he prefers and we were not near anyone so he didn't bother anyone.

Our server took awhile to come and greet us which is always a pet peeve of mine. It wouldn't be so bad if it was busy and I could see he just couldn't get too us. I am pretty sure we were his only table at that time so there really was no excuse. We entertained ourselves taking pictures of the decorations inside.



Eventually our server made it to our table and took our drink orders. Nothing special here, I ordered the Diet Coke for $2.39 and this included unlimited refills. Gabrian went with Chocolate milk. This was included with his kids meal, however if he wanted a refill it would have cost $.99.

We started our meal with calamari for $7.29. This was served Rhode Island Style with a marinara sauce.


Sorry...I may or may not have forgotten to take a picture when we first go it (I am going to go with we forgot it). I wish I cold forget that I ate this calamari. Don't let the nearly empty bowl fool you, we were just really hungry. I read recently that when calamari is overcooked it becomes very rubbery. If that is true, then I think they overcooked it by a long shot. In addition to that, the batter was very thick. I despise that on seafood. I feel like the batter should be very light so you can appreciate the seafood. It felt very oily and heavy. I feel like I am still trying to wipe the oil off my fingers.

For dinner, Gabrian had the following choices.


I tried to talk him into the kid's claw meal. Mostly because I would have loved to get ahold of some of that lobster. I am not sure what the size is but it is a pretty good deal at $5.49. My son went with the obvious choice at a seafood restaurant...the cheese pizza with French fries.




The best part of this meal is that the fries were served in a lobster basket. Gabrian really enjoyed the basket. Since he really doesn't eat French fries, these were a complete waste on him. I had my own fries and didn't bother with any of his. To be fair, Gabrian liked his pizza and saw nothing wrong with it. It was enough for him to be able to take about half home for leftovers. I don't think that would work if you had an older child or even one that had decent appetite. I thought the pizza was moist in weird places and the crust looked very gummy. I did not actually try any so I could be completely wrong on this (but I don't think so).

I went with the Haddock Sandwich which was served with French fries, coleslaw, and a pickle for $8.25. I had fond memories of my awesome sandwich from last week but this was the complete opposite of that awesome meal. My favorite part of my meal was this:


I really got a kick out of my lobster toothpick that held my sandwich together. My sandwich came with lettuce and tomato. It was served on a sort of hoagie roll. It was topped with sesame and similar to a hamburger bun but longer. This is what my meal looked like:




I did like the coleslaw so it did have that going for it. The French fries were fine but since I can take it or leave it with fries I only ate a few. They were served hot and had the right amount of crispiness. When I have a fish sandwich I like it to be a whole piece of fish. Instead I got some type of nugget version. It was very disappointing.


I had to ask my server for the tartar sauce. I thought this was odd since they are serving fried seafood and why he wouldn't have automatically brought it. You can always tell it is a classy seafood place when your tartar sauce is served like this:


My fish was heavily battered like the calamari which like I mentioned before I just don't like. I felt like the actual fish was overpowered by the batter and was a weird combination of having no flavor and alternating occasionally with a very strong fishy taste.

At this point we were done and bypassed having any dessert. They didn't have much on the menu anyway and it did not seem worth the money based on the other food we had already had. The server took forever bringing us our bill. We amused ourselves by taking pictures of each other waiting.


 
 

When the waiter brought back the change he did one of the most obnoxious things a waiter can do. I only had large bills when it was time to pay the bill. I had enough to cover the check and also gave an extra $20 bill so I could get change. Our bill was not very expensive and even tipping on the full amount before the discount the most the tip should have been was $4. He brought me back 4 - $5 bills. I would have never have done this as a waitress. Yes, I would have hoped they chose to give me a $5 tip but I would have also provided $1 bills.

We then waited for another 10 minutes for the waiter hoping to catch his eye so we could break the $5 bill. He would not look in our direction. I couldn't get anyone's attention in the restaurant. I am not sure why he thought we were still in the restaurant. You would think at some point he would have checked with us to make sure we were all set. After 10 minutes I was beyond annoyed and scrounged the change I had in my purse and that became his tip. I was over waiting and wanted to go home.

My final thoughts on the Weathervane Restaurant is that it will not be getting my repeat business. There are plenty of fish in the sea (or seafood restaurants in the Portland area) and I will be spending my money elsewhere.