News Feature

Blue Hill
Originally published in The Weekly Packet, April 19, 2018
Concept still evolving at new 66 Main Street eatery
Shooting for mid-June

Creek-side porch

Chef Matt Thurston and Kate Wentworth plan a mid-June opening for their restaurant at 66 Main Street in Blue Hill.

Photo by Anne Berleant Order prints of selected PBP photos.

by Anne Berleant

With a not-yet-final name of Mill Creek, a young couple are planning for a September wedding as they prepare to open a new restaurant at 66 Main Street.

Chef Matt Thurston and fiancée Kate Wentworth met at Stonington’s Aragosta, where Thurston spent two years in the kitchen before the couple decided to open their own venue.

They describe their new place as elegant casual, and it will seat 80 to 100.

Thurston is a Johnson & Wales-trained chef who grew up in Louisiana and also cooked at The Whale’s Rib. A few Southern influences may creep into the menu, he said, such as fried chicken with homemade gravy and biscuits, one item listed on a menu that, like the name, is still under construction.

And, because this is Maine, lobster will be served, maybe even Lobster Thermidor but boiled, for sure.

“I thought about not doing [lobster], but you have to,” Thurston said.

The lunch menu is circling around items like oyster po’boy, fish tacos, a lobster roll and pastrami Ruben while dinner covers steak, lamb, fish and pasta. Salads, soups, cheese and seafood appetizers and desserts round out the offerings. (One possible dessert, a bacon brownie, with salted caramel and pecan ice cream catches the eye.) Lunch prices range from $7-$13 for lunch appetizers and $13-$18 for entrées, while dinners are in the $16-$31 range.

While Thurston handles the kitchen, Wentworth is in charge of the front of the house. An Orland native who attended George Stevens Academy, she said she’s “honored and privileged to be a part of this.”

The couple plans to keep the restaurant open year-round, and maybe offer winter attractions such as Trivia Night.

The 66 Main Street building has stood empty for several years but Kate Wentworth remembers going there with friends when it was filled by First Table, and then 66. “It’s been sad for a lot of people to see it vacant,” she said.

The restaurant plans for a mid-June opening and will serve dinners and, if the staff is available, lunches, too. “We have a few committed staff,” Wentworth said, but they are definitely taking applications.

Both are happy to be one of the new eateries in Blue Hill.

“I’m really excited for all the restaurants to open up,” Wentworth said. “It’s what we’ve all wanted. Competition is great.”

For Thurston, the opening is also exciting but “scary, extremely scary,” he laughed. “I think the more stuff that’s in Blue Hill, the better it is for everyone.”