Nearby points of interest
Nearby points of interest
About The Chef & The Gardener
The Chef & the Gardener is a restaurant that believes dining out should be an enjoyable & exciting experience for everyone…no matter how they choose to eat. We make all of our menu items from scratch. In so doing we can assure those with allergies or dietary restrictions that they are not consuming any problem foods. Through our restaurant and our " healthy cuisine to go" We can even work with you to develop dishes that are specific to your needs.
Saco, ME 04072
Contemporary American, Vegetarian / Vegan
Hours of Operation:
Sun 9:00 am–2:00 pm
Tue–Thu, Sun 5:00 pm–8:00 pm
Fri, Sat 5:00 pm–9:00 pm
$30 and under
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Full service, from back yard BBQ"s to Dream Tent Weddings.
Roughly 80 spaces available.
Beer, Cocktails, Gluten-free Menu, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
Special Events & Promotions:
wine dinners offered throughout the winter months
cooking classes also available, small hands-on, paired with wines.
The Chef & The Gardener Ratings and Reviews
I have been to the restaurant several times and I have recommended it to others. Menu is very interesting. I had a hard time in choosing my appetizer and entree. Choose grilled shrimp served over cream kielbasa grits-very tasty. The entree was Osso Bucco. It was quite simply the best Osso Bucco that I have ever had. My only regret was that I could not finish the large portion.
Service was excellent. I appreciated my server's knowledge of the items on the menu.
I'm looking forward to future meals at the Chef and the Gardener.
We were very excited to try this dining experience, made our reservations and when we got there we felt rushed. We were offered no water, the bread came out and immediately after the food. As soon as are plates were to the side the waitress brought our bill with out even offering dessert, which we like to share on date nights. Just felt really rushed, the food was ok.
Saw the good ratings and thought we would try it. Food was fine but both dishes were not prepared for what we expected. Chicken Saltimbocca was prepared with a like what I would describe is an alfredo sauce which was good but not expected. The Pork Loin special tasted more like a trimmed pork chop and was a bit over seasoned.
I think the kitchen needs to stop overreaching and keep it simpler.
Food was good but my date and I switched plates to make it work. Server disappeared and we were hungry.
The lobster bisque last night was excellent as was the duck. The portobello stew could have been more flavorful, but was good.
This is our second time eating at the Chef & The Gardener and we've enjoyed both evenings. We will be back. The food is creative and the setting conducive to talking and enjoying dinner.
Terrible reservation system and rude owner. This was not our first visit to the Chef and the Gardener-we had been there several times previously and enjoyed the local food. On one prior occasion there was a mess-up with our reservations, but I thought that could be a one time event. I booked through Open Table and when we arrived with our party of 4, including a very elderly woman the owner told us we did not have a reservation. She seemed agitated and told me I must have made a mistake in the day. I looked up the reservation on my phone and showed her, which made her more angry. We had driven some distance with my 89 year old mother so I did not want to have to go to another restaurant, otherwise I would have left at that point. They cleared a table for our party four, I had to sit in the doorway to the kitchen. Following that, at one of the other empty tables with much more space for a party of four a couple was seated. I suppose they had a reservation too, but I am not sure why our larger party had to sit at a table that would have been much more comfortable for two people. The owner's rudeness and the seating ruined what was supposed to be a very special evening.
It was our first time eating here and it was terrific. Everyone loved their meals and the table side Caesar salad was so special! Desserts were amazing. Great selection of cocktails and beer and wine. Everything was fresh and well prepared. Servers were so nice and explained everything. Highly recommend and we will be back!
There are a selection of specials to complement the already good menu. Food was tasty, good value and served in good time. The service is attentive and friendly. We will go again. If I was to criticise it would be that the décor/furniture/ambiance is a bit underwhelming. Overall I would say that The Chef & Gardener is well worth a visit.
Even though the seating is "in a basement" and a bit sparse, the ambience is ok. The food on the other hand was very good across the board. We had 3 of us and we tried 6 different items, and all were excellent. Was also impressed with the specialty cocktail list and the wide variety of beers and wines by the glass. An out of the way gem where you're not likely to run into people you know. A good thing?!?
My mom took me here for my birthday since they have a ton of vegan and vegetarian options as well as gluten free options. We had to drive about an hour to get there but it was well worth it! I had the portabella steak with avocado chimichurri, it was incredible. We will definitely be returning to this restaurant in the future!
The restaurant is off the tourist trail. Your GPS will get you to the right location--but it is hard to find the entrance (toward the back of buildings.)
The patio is a funky little area --quiet and no mosquitos at 6pm.
Now the food. Frankly so much better than I expected from location. The soup of day--home made and tasty-- panko crusted haddock was fresh and delicious.
The staff was efficient and attentive. Owner was there and could not have been nicer.
While we did not eat in the dining room-it was attractively set and we could imagine a fall dinner there.
We like the vegetarian options, but each time we go the food we eat is a bit less good than the time before.
They seem to have just missed the boat on balance and flavor each time.
Case in point, spaghetti squash dish has an unreal number of olives, I love olives, but not as the main ingredient in a meal.
Hopefully they will improve in this area because I've recommended them often.
Our anniversary fell on father's day and we hadn't visited this wonderful restaurant in a while. The food was AMAZING from the cocktails and deconstructed scallops with bacon through the Caesar salad, entrees (we went with a lobster topped haddock special and salmon), and a lemon cheesecake dessert. The service was very good, the cocktails and wine perfect, the meal memorable. We would happily have paid 50% more than we did for this exquisite meal. We will not stay away anywhere near as long before our next visit.
Nicely decorated space. Servers were very kind and accommodating to our needs. The ambiance was much more formal than I expected; this wasn't bad, just surprising (we were bringing a little one and probably wouldn't have if we'd known). Meals were good but did not feel particularly innovative or inspired by what was local or in season, which I think I expected, given the name. Most mains came "rounded out" with steamed broccoli and mashed potatoes. Both were good, just nothing particularly exciting. Overall we enjoyed our experience and would be happy to eat there again, but probably would not go out of our way to return.
Disappointed by our expectations - set by reviews here and other places. The caesar was excellent, crab & lobster cake special appetizer nothing special, fish entrees were extremely overcooked. The service was attentive. If you've not been fair warning, inside feels like you are in the basement of someones home that has been kind of made to look like a restaurant. We will try it again at some point because of the reviews.
We selected Chef & Gardener based on the recommendation of someone at Saco River Theater.
It was indeed a good choice for pre-theater dinner, with delicious food, prompt and friendly service, and quick and easy travel to the theater (15 minutes). The menu is varied with more than expected vegetarian and even vegan options, thoughtfully created (not just vegetable "sides"). We'll definitely go again.
Our party of 4 was pleasantly surprised. The server was professional and knowledgeable. 3 out of 4 meals were great! The osso bucco was tougher than expected. I like the true fall off the bone. Flavor was good and the mushroom risotto was very good. The table side cesar salad was good also. Would have liked the actual anchovie on top! Finally a resaturant that we could hear ourselves talk!
During our first time busting the Kennebunkport area, we chose the Chef and the Gardener based on the reviews we read and their vegan options. The food was excellent, not the usual vegan "substitution" fare. The service was superb and we never felt rushed. We highly recommend this restaurant and will be sure to visit again the next time we are in the area.
Excellent service! Colleen our server was friendly, attentive, and recommended great entrees that were beautifully presented and prepared! Just delicious! Priced right and are meals came quickly. Their desserts looked wonderful. We were pleasantly surprised and you will be too😊
While C&G has been around for 6 or so years we didn't discover the restaurant until this year. The menu selection is quite fine with each dish having its own styling and appetizing presentation. The space is small but it works as a pleasant atmosphere unless some individual projects their conversation loudly. Couples or a small party would enjoy a very fine meal. Wine selections are given. The menu most likely would not enthrall children unless they had a discerning palette and would be comfortable sitting for a leisurely paced meal.
This was our third trip to Chef and Gardener and then never fail to please. We went for our wedding anniversary and I had roses delivered via Open Tables' service and they had unboxed them and had them presented nicely on our table prior to our arrival. We were greeted, seated immediately and wished "Happy Anniversary" by the waitress.
I am Gluten Free and they have a lot of GF items on the menu. They also have delicious desserts including cake and pies that are all GF. The food is locally sourced and professionally prepared. After our dinner we both ordered the cheese cake (which was delicious) and the chef himself brought them to our table, wished us a "Happy Anniversary" and said "The dessert is on me".
Great food, excellent service.. We have been very impressed.