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  • Writer's pictureKirk

Cabbage Island - A Real Maine Clambake


This is an age old New England tradition, the clambake. If you ever saw the Roger’s and Hammerstein musical, “Carousel”, you’ll have an idea what it is like. In fact, part of that movie was shot on location in Bootybay Harbor, Maine. This is the same location you will find Cabbage Island, a long clambake tradition location.


The trip includes a boat ride to the island, a traditional clambake meal, and island activities such as volleyball or hiking. The cost has inflated as most things do, and now cost $92,50 for this 4 hour experience. Although that sounds high (to me anyway), it really is a good price for the experience.


The boat ride is maybe 45 minutes to the island which is a unique Maine coastal experience in itself. You can think of it as a free Maine harbor tour as it is narrated as you pass historic sites and islands. Including a famous Catholic Church that JFK attended.


After arrival at the island and disembarking, it is a mad rush to secure a favored picnic table. If you want a private and a good view of the ocean, you better be first off the boat as there are many peoole who return here every year and know the best spots. I know I have mine.



Up until a few years ago, there was an older lady in her late 90’s who owned the place. She would come out to greet you at your table to make sure you were enjoying yourself. As I knew the prime picnic spot I mostly seemed to secure it. She would compliment me each year for finding her favorite spot. Unfortunately, (or inevitably) she has passed now.



The clambake is done on open fire in true traditional style. There are two clambakes per day so they are quite busy all day in preparation.


When the food is ready they ring a bell and everyone lines up to get their meal. They place the food on your plate and you return to your picnic table to enjoy with family. Most of the seating is outside, but there is some inside, covered seating as well.





The meal consists of two soft-shell lobsters, a dozen or so clams, a baked potato, corn on the cob, a steamed onion (Maine thing), a hard boiled egg, and melted butter for the lobster and clams. It really is quite delicious!







Oh yeah, and the blueberry cake for desert. Blueberries are ubiquitous in Maine during part of the summer and are used in the baking of many goods.



After the meal you are free to roam about the island for about 45 minutes to explore. It’s a very small island so there is plenty of time to do so. But it gives you a good flavor what life is like living on these coatal Maine rocks they call islands.






Then the bell is sounded and time to board for the cruise back to the mainland. On the return cruise most people are tired and just relax. There is no narrated tour on the return trip.


This is Maine at its best! The traditional coastal event is still alive and preserved for all who have an extra C note per person to splurge.


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Mike Wells
Mike Wells
07 de jun.
Avaliado com 5 de 5 estrelas.

I used to take my mom and now it would be difficult to do with the sun and travel to get there. I have not been for about 4 years.

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Mike Wells
Mike Wells
06 de jun.
Avaliado com 5 de 5 estrelas.

I have been at least 6 times . It's great food and the boat ride is well narrated. It is not a bad price for all that's included. It does seem expensive if you are paying for 4 people. I think everyone should go on this trip. A Maine tradition eating seafood cooked outside.

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Kirk
Kirk
06 de jun.
Respondendo a

I’m glad you got to enjoy this so many times. I haven’t been for maybe 5 years or so

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