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“Excellent dining experience!”
Review of Francine Bistro

Francine Bistro
Ranked #10 of 50 Restaurants in Camden
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$10 - US$29
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Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Local cuisine
Dining options: Dinner, After-hours, Reservations
Reviewed 11 July 2014

From the first contact of making a reservation for that night to the last sip of coffee after dinner - the experience at Francine's was positive. The wait staff is friendly and attentive but not hovering. The food ... Well, the food is just the best. My husband, who is not effusive about food, was still talking about the best pork chops he's ever had the next day. Each meal was creative combinations of flavors. I cannot recommend this hidden nugget highly enough!

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    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank Walkers44
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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251 - 255 of 486 reviews

Reviewed 8 July 2014

We have been to Francine three times in the last year. Each visit was a memorable, delicious experience. First--great waitstaff. Unpretentious, warm, knowledgeable, well trained--always a big help with daunting selection process. Fantastic breads. Imaginative menu featuring predominantly local ingredients. (I enjoyed a spectacular line-caught halibut dish, as good as any I can recall.) Wonderful dishes for meat-eaters, vegetarians, seafood lovers--everyone who loves food prepared with lots of flavorful ingredients. $5 vegetable side dishes are not to be missed. Buy several and share. (Brussels sprouts as God intended them.) Rich, intriguing desserts. (A few too many are goats milk-based for my personal liking.) Great locally roasted coffees and espresso. Nice, long, relaxed meal. Ahh.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank CaribbeanFred
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 July 2014

This was our third dining experience. Francine is absolutely our favorite Maine restaurant. We have always been nicely greeted. The waitstaff are professional and friendly. My husband started with roast Rhode Island calamari and raved about it. Very substantial starter. I always order the wild pemaquid oysters. A taste sensation - salty, slightly spicy, creamy, smoky. We each had the herb roast lobster. The lobster was so sweet and tender. Accompaniments were plentiful and flavorful. Particularly enjoyed the vegetable "salad." We hope to return each time we're in Maine!

Thank Reader17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 June 2014

My wife and I were in Camden, ME on our anniversary and wanted a special place for dinner. A lovely lady at the front desk of our motel recommended Francine's. It happened to be her anniversary as well and she insisted in calling ahead for reservations. When we arrived we were escorted to our table and presented with a menu with the date and "Happy Anniversary" printed at the top.

It only got better. The food was spectacular and the service exceptional. A special that evening was braised short ribs (a personal favorite dish) and they were OMG good. The exotic rub and meticulous preparation resulted in a butter tender meat with a deep savory braise. The flavor, the presentation and the ample portions made it a great dining value and overall experience.

As noted in other reviews this is a tiny restaurant with small closely set tables. But it was warm, cozy and charming. A completely wonderful dining experience. We could not have wished for a more wonderful anniversary dinner.

A special Thank You to Rosemary at the Cedar Crest for the recommendation and the personalized reservation.

1  Thank Peter M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 June 2014 via mobile

4 of us went here on advice of a local. Very disappointing.
A superb chef can take multiple ingredients, in the right amounts, and create masterpieces. Here, the lobster, steak and tuna entrees included multiple vegetables, sauces and spices. In the right hands, the results could have been excellent. Whoever was in the kitchen this night literally dumped on the toppings, totally masking the taste of the fish and meat. Awful!! The next day one of our friends said it was one of the worst meals she's had.
No, none of us is a meat-and-potatoes-stripped-bare fan. We're used to entrees that are expertly prepared...not those where the chef takes good ingredients and smothers the dish, apparently trying to be creative. Has he/she ever eaten at *really* good restaurants in other cities? Seemed like there was no culinary training at all!
(The chef does get an A for the fiddlehead salad. )
We will not go back and we are now here locally every summer, all summer.

2  Thank Connie S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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