Category Archives: Eats


Joey often uses the expression “God’s Country” when describing East Gloucester, not only because of the beauty that surrounds but because of the wonderful community of East Gloucester friends. I came home to find in my mail basket three jars of Dan Allen’s amazingly delicious ‘Peace, Love, and Honey,’ made by honey bees gathering nectar in his rambling and rambunctiously gloious garden. At Dan’s garden, you’ll find an exquisite array of Massachusetts native flowering trees and shrubs, as well as cultivated herbs, fruit trees, vegetables, flowers, and vines, all of which have made his golden yellow honey rich with a unique complexity of flavors and fragrance. At our home, we eat honey nearly everyday, on toast, in tea, and I love to cook with it. Dan’s is simply the best I have ever tasted.

Michelle, Dan’s thirteen year old daughter, designed the new labels – Peace, Love, and Honey

Dan is currently selling honey directly to friends and will hand deliver to your doorstep. To order your honey, email Dan at


With rainy weather predicted for Saturday and Father’s Day celebrations Sunday, this weekend would be the perfect time to try the wonderfully delicious weekend brunch fare at Feather and Wedge. My girlfriend Claudia and I went last Saturday and it was delightful in every way. The decor is exquisite (I think I mentioned that in a previous post) and now with Chef Doug Papows at the helm, the food, and welcoming wait staff, make for a dining trifecta of fabulousness.

I regret to say that the photos that I took of our lovely brunch went the way of my faulty memory card. Memory cards occasionally wear out, and usually at the worst times. Dear reader, you don’t need photos of the food, just go, you’ll have a wonderful dining experience, we sure did!

The menus change everyday. Brunch is not posted on the Feather and Wedge website, but you can imagine how delicious are the brunch offerings by checking out tonight’s dinner menu.

Feather and Wedge Dinner Menu June 16, 2017

Pemaquid oysters | cucumber mignonette   2.75 ea.

Tomato fennel soup | gruyère crostini   10

Ahi tuna tartare | white miso citrus vinaigrette, chives   14

Smoked bluefish pâté | arugula, lemon, crostini   10

Halibut crudo | radish, bronze fennel, ginger scallion sauce   17

Pâté de campagne | cornichons, whole grain mustard, crostini   10

Cheese plate | daily selection with accompaniments   14

Charcuterie plate | daily selection with accompaniments   15

*  *  *

Simple salad | field greens, turnip, tomato, red onion, house vinaigrette   8

First Light Farm greens | cucumber, hakurei turnips, radish, green goddess dressing   13

Beet salad | arugula, feta, orange vinaigrette  

                                                                           *  *  *

Clams and pork belly | tomato, beer braised chickpeas, lime, cilantro   26

Lobster and asparagus | prosciutto, poached egg, turnips, soy hollandaise, spicy bread crumbs   29

Sea Scallops | Japanese eggplant, mushroom trio, yuzu and Thai basil aioli, Oolong rice   29

Organic Faroe Islands salmon | scallion, quinoa, bok choy, togarashi aioli   26

Chicken under a brick | bulgur, mirepoix, lemon rosemary pan sauce     24

Bone-in pork chop | maple mustard brined, new potatoes, rainbow chard, marrow butter   25

Prime ribeye | salsa verde, new potatoes, rainbow chard   35

Housemade cavatelli puttanesca | crispy pancetta, pesto, sunflower seeds, mozzarella   23

add halibut |   32

Seared eggplant | quinoa, arugula, cucumber, peas, feta, pistachios   16

*  *  *

Sauteed spinach   6

Roasted beets   6

*  *  *

Plum blackberry crumble | buckwheat crust, vanilla ice cream   10

Fresh strawberry tart | sweet shortbread crust, sweet cultured cream,  apricot glaze   10

Vanilla bean panna cotta | mango coulis   10

Warm chocolate budino | sweet cultured cream, fresh blackberries   10

Affogato | vanilla ice cream, hot espresso, amaretto, toasted almonds   10


Feather and Wedge is located at 5 Main Street, Rockport. They are open Wednesday through Sunday for dinner and Saturday and Sunday for brunch. For reservations call 978-999-5917.

Feathers and wedges photo by Reiner Flassig

 All the beautiful images you see on the walls of Feather and Wedge are from the archives of the Cape Ann Museum and Sandy Bay Historical Society.

Congratulations Topside Grill & Pub! Now serving great food, drinks and fun year round

Topside Grill & Pub, 50 Rogers Street, Gloucester, MA (978) 281-1399

Topside Grill shut down January through April, but no longer! I asked restauranteur Doug Silva what it means to Topside Grill to have a year round liquor license awarded by the licensing board?

“First of all, we are very excited and feel pretty lucky to have been selected with all the choices.” Other businesses vying for the license included: Captain Carlo’s; Jasmine Garden Restaurant; Dennis Senecal for the former Espresso location; Simon Prudenzi for the former Dog Bar space; and Karma Liquors. You can read more about the process and see a map of all MA licenses on my earlier GMG post. 

“What does it mean to us? It means many things. We can stay open year round. We can hold on to our staff which will really help out with turnover. It’s great for our customers who come on a regular basis and won’t need to shift plans in the winter anymore. A year round schedule will stamp out any lingering seasonal perception that we cater solely to tourists. We’re all about local. We live downtown. We help downtown. We’re here for Gloucester and part of the community.” 


“It’s been super nice to hear congratulations and feedback from everyone, and so so so nice to hear from the professional community, too.”

Anything else?

“We get to play with a year round cocktail menu, too.”

If you hadn’t heard, Doug is a master mixologist. What’s popular now? Topside Grill makes a delicious homemade artisan ginger beer–fresh ginger!— refreshing on its own or shoring up a signature Moscow Mule or Dark & Stormy.

Topside Grill serves a great menu selection of seafood and steak entrees, and creative daily specials. My kids love the appetizers and delicious homemade lasagna and chicken-eggplant Parmesan which are family recipes. They think Doug is so lucky because his mom could cook these, you know, probably after school. Anytime. Just like that.

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Topside Grill is part of the downtown cultural district and the Chamber. Doug serves on Gloucester’s Tourism Commission

In case you missed this sign in the background.




Yummy scallop jambalaya! Awesome eats | Cape Ann Fresh Catch is open

Cape Ann Fresh Catch, 46 Commercial Street, Gloucester, at St. Peter’s square.

Whatever’s caught on the dayboats is what they have that day, plus prepared eats like Chef Trina’s awesome jambalaya. They are expanding rapidly.

Look for the OPEN sign by again and again Thursday–Sunday 12-5



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Aces in the hole @HappyBelly Melissa Hays and Danny Diamond

Happy Belly is chock full of talent. Bakery? Check. Happy Belly will have hand crafted foodie heaven pastries, cookies, and all manner of can’t wait to see what’s made daily baked goods. How do I know since it’s not open? Trust me they have it covered.

Master pastry chef extraordinaire, Melissa Hays, is in the house


Sticky Fingers is sticking around. And I can’t wait to look up! Artist Danny Diamond will be tackling that chalkboard wrap around. Diamond painted a showstopper for Happy Belly sister restaurant, Minglewood Tavern at Latitude.

Happy Belly, 3 Duncan Street, Gloucester, MA, a Serenitee Restaurant Group property.

Another Door Opens sneak peek inside Happy Belly ‘before’ buildout in process April 2017

Danny Diamond post

Massachusetts Candy Trail


Just because it’s a happy stop and local flavor.

Putnam Pantry fans

Danvers Putnam Pantry, established in 1951, is hosting an employee reunion this month:

“Did you work at Putnam Pantry for your first job? Did you work in the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, 90’s and beyond? Please join us June 17, 2017 @ 12:30pm for food, drinks and to catch up with some old friends!”

brief background on history of candy in New England  see New England Historical Society When New England Candy was King: 15 Sweet Facts 

Salty Frank’s Dogs

Have you been lately?  You should.     6 Roger’s Street, Gloucester.

After an afternoon baseball game the other day we wanted a quick, buy yummy, fix for dinner.  We didn’t want to cook….but didn’t have the stamina to head out for a sit-down dinner.  I also had my hopes set on sitting outside by the water and enjoying more of the nice day we’d been gifted.

We quickly made the decision to head to Salty Frank’s Dogs.  We hadn’t been there since we grabbed some dogs and fries to take to Pavilion Beach to watch the Parade of Lights during last September’s Schooner Festival.

Definitely the right choice for that night….and again for this past Saturday.  While Salty Frank’s has a picnic table out front for a quick meal, we wanted to head to the sun on the other side of the street and look at the boats.  They had no problem at all with us taking their tray…and even a box of napkins…with us to enjoy from our perch in St. Peter’s Square.

My husband had inquired about their new Lobster Salads, but didn’t order one.  The owner (Frank, I’m assuming?) threw in a container of salad with a generous chunk of lobster meat as well!

We sat, watched a bigger fish chase the minnows, checked out some of the fishing fleet, enjoyed the warmth of the sun, and chatted about Finn’s game and the week ahead.

A big thanks to Salty Frank’s for being so kind and accommodating.  Sometimes totally simple nights like the one we shared are the best.

CHECK OUT SALTY FRANK’S HERE   and don’t forget that they have ice cream too!

They’re a pretty great option en route to the beach or out for a day on the boat.  Their “Beach Box” consists of 12 hot dogs, 4 bags of chips, and 4 drinks for $32…or substitute fries for the chips for $37.  They have lots of other menu items as well.

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$2400 Gloucester liquor license up in the air “feels like the lottery” and suggestions by Brian Hamilton

Another Gloucester Licensing Board meeting is scheduled for Tuesday May 9, 6PM at the City Hall Annex on Pond Road. Once issued, will it be flipped or will it be held?
Here are some scenes from last week’s liquor license meeting at City Hall. Setting local caps on liquor licenses is outlined here Massachusetts laws. Those in favor of caps feel the policy laws help residents weigh in on whether additional local licenses are desirable, and prevents favoring new business at the expense of established businesses including some that spent tens of thousands on permits. Those against it maintain that it’s arcane, random and a hindrance to economic development. There are year round and seasonal licenses issued. For example, Gloucester Cinema & Stage, the Cave and Topside Grill have seasonal liquor ones. It’s a rarity here. Holyoke added 13 additional licenses in 2015. This interactive Google map of MA liquor licenses dates from that time. You can use  +-  keys on the map to zoom in to Gloucester as in screenshot below.

Brian Hamilton’s thoughtful input at the Licensing board meeting last week:


When one door closes another door opens …peek inside the new Serenitee Restaurant Happy Belly opening summer 2017!


Reclaimed doors and wood everywhere

are just some of the featured and fitting design details coming into focus at Happy Belly, 3 Duncan Street, Gloucester, MA. The everyday casual restaurant will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner. And small craft brew. And coffee. They’re roasting their own beans! What else? The floor’s been raised. A lengthy drink rail and counter stools gives one section a warm and chic soda-shop vibe. Nearby a massive antique metal lathe will be re-purposed into a showstopper pedestal table. The former Alchemy space is in its BEFORE stage as it undergoes a transformation by master builders, P Bevan Builders. They built Maggies Farm and other Serenitee Restaurant Group properties plus the  recent renovation of the former Empire store.



photo caption (above): Peter Bevan, P. Bevan Builders, 617 356 7107


Happy Belly along with Minglewood Tavern and Latitude 43 brings the Serenitee restaurant count back  up to  3 happy and popular eateries in Gloucester, MA, each with its own lively aesthetic and yummy grub.

Happy to see Happy Belly coming soon!



Congratulations to Danielle for the terrific article in the Boston Globe. We’re so fortunate to have Danielle and her amazing pasta (and other deliciousness) shop!!

Danielle Glantz makes pasta in 10 to 12 shapes each day at her shop, Pastaio Via Corta, in Gloucester. PHOTO BY JINTARA NUTPRASAS


Cedar Rock Gardens is an 18-acre farm located at 229 Concord Street in West Gloucester. The flower and veggie farm is owned and operated by Tucker Smith and Elise Jillson. Last year was their first in business with hours open to the public and it’s so exciting to see Tucker and Elise developing their growing enterprise. This year they have expanded seedling offerings (see the “read more” at the end of this post for a complete list of plants offered) and have devoted even more fields to pick-your-own flowers .

We’re looking forward to having Elise and Tucker on our podcast this weekend. When you see the two, wish them congratulations. Elise and Tucker became engaged this winter! 

Fields of pick-your-own tulips in a lovely array of hues. This color opens to pure carmine. See photo below.

You run into the nicest people at Cedar Rock Gardens. Captain Stefan Edick of the Schooner Adventure surveying early season offerings.

Black-capped Chickadees nesting in a hole in the old Crabapple tree.

Cedar Rock Garden’s fabulous pick-your-own tulips are the perfect anecdote to April’s rainy days. This bouquet has become more beautiful with each passing moment. Only $4.50. for a bunch of gorgeousness!

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For a complete list of flower and veggie seedlings see below. Cedar Rock Gardens is open everyday from 8am to 5pm. For more information, visit Cedar Rock Gardens website here.

Cedar Rock Gardens writes, “We are committed to providing a healthy and beautiful choice to our community in both the floral and food industry and invite you to experience the local difference. Only environmentally-sound and organic growing techniques are used at Cedar Rock Gardens. You can always rest assured that our farm produce and flowers are safe and wholesome, with a freshness that guarantees good nutrition (and the best vase life for our bouquets). We use organic fertilizers and pesticides; We are currently not certified as ‘USDA Organic’ but our practices follow organic guidelines.”

Read more


Italiano’s dinner menu- 

Italiano’s lunch menu –


Italiano is located at 64 Main Street. For more information, call 978-559-7638.




Congratulations to Deo and Paula Braga, and their son Dominick, for the grand opening of the Braga’s newest venture, the restaurant Italiano. Today’s joyful ribbon cutting ceremony was attended by Mayor Sefatia, Ken and Kerry from the Chamber, family, friends, and Barry Pett, who was representing Senator Bruce Tarr. Located at 64 Main Street, Italiano is serving lunch and dinner daily in an elegant yet child friendly atmosphere. The menu looks delicious and the staff are simply terrific. For information about hours and seating call 978-559-7638.

Snapshots from this morning’s ribbon cutting ceremony.

Mayor Sefatia sharing history about Gloucester’s Militello family photo, circa 1952

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