BELFAST — The name of a new Midcoast eatery sounds like what you’d say in the middle of a good story, but it’s not one you’ll forget. Meanwhile in Belfast is the name of a wood-fired pizza place and bar that opened March 19, on the back side of the Brambles building at 2 Cross St.
While the food is upscale pizza with the farm-to-table vibe, the space is warm (from the pizza oven ) and cozy with plenty of light and views of the harbor. The tiny bar area, with multi-colored stools, lends to the casual ambiance. The dining room was packed Friday afternoon. The buzz about this upscale pizza place has been a loosely kept secret around Belfast for awhile with repeat customers coming in on its second day of being open.
The building, recently renovated, used to be called The Ocean House, which at one time in 1897 served hot lunches and daily specials.
Owners Clementina Senatore and Alessandro Scelsi, are both from Italy, born and raised. Before landing in Maine, they traveled extensively, working and studying all over Europe. Scelsi is a certified Neapolitan Master Pizza Chef by Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana in Napoli, Italy. The way their pizzas and other baked goods are prepared come after years of researching and perfecting the recipes and the process.
Their extensive menu serves wood-fired oven sourdough Neapolitan pizza . Dinner menu pizzas range from $10-$16, with two VPN-certified pizzas, The Fisherman (marinara) and The Visionary (Margherita). The most exotic pizza on the menu (and reasonably priced at $24) is The Harbor Master, a complex pizza using local fresh seafood (partially raw), cherry tomatoes, Taggiasche olives, fresh parsley, fresh squeezed lemon juice, ginger and lemongrass dressing.
Lunch menu items and small plates are in the $6 -$10 range and offer a small one-person 9-inch Margherita pizza, as well as salads and Puccia (Puglia style sandwiches).
Their unbleached "00" flour, tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil, prosciutto, and Parmiggiano Reggiano all come from Italy. All other ingredients are locally, organically and seasonally sourced. Everything is made from scratch, including the homemade sourdough and fresh "Fior di Latte" mozzarella made the southern Italian traditional way.
Along with pizzas, they offer an impressive list of local and craft beers, ciders, world wide wines, proseccos, cavas and Champagne as well as homemade desserts. The menu also offers gluten free and vegan options.
For more information including their hours, visit: meanwhile-in-belfast.com
Kay Stephens can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org