Don’t you find it a little strange that there are two restaurants in Sanford that once were homes to a newspaper publisher?
One of those restaurants is Two Blondes and a Shrimp, which once held the offices of the Sanford Herald. But the original home for that newspaper is just a stone’s throw away. Fittingly enough, that’s where you’ll find Stone’s Throw Bistro.
It isn’t hard to imagine that this structure is the oldest in town or that its initial purpose was other than as a restaurant. Its interior is rustic and rough, and some of the infrastructure appears jury-rigged. The tile floor is an obvious update, but the tin ceiling appears to be original.
My guest and I started our dinner with a bowl of the soup of the day ($4) , fashioned out of smoked yellow tomatoes with corn and crab, a thick and bisquey broth that had both smokey and spicy notes. Very nice.
I also had the shrimp and grits appetizer ($10, also available as an entree), which featured three good-sized shrimp floating on top of a thick tuffet of cheesy grits, decorated with grasslike shoots from a sunchoke.
My guest chose the “sportfish” selection of the day ($20), mahi mahi, which came slathered with a superfluous chipotle barbecue sauce, a side of mango salsa and banana and bacon polenta. The fish was wonderful, but I could have done without the sauce.
The seared ribeye ($22) was a beautiful steak, and a big one, too. It was cooked perfectly to the requested medium-rare and slathered with a spinach and bacon puree and accompanied by a garlic and bacon latke. (The chef here likes using bacon; I approve.)
There was a long list of available desserts, but it turns out the only one house-made is a custard. On the evening I visited it was a bananas Foster custard. It should be noted that there wasn’t a thing bananalike or Fosterly about it, which didn’t keep it from being a darn fine custard.
Service was kindly, if not entirely astute.
Sanford’s been getting more than its share of good restaurants lately. It’s just a shame there isn’t a hometown newspaper to tout them!
Stone’s Throw Bistro is at 107 Magnolia Ave., Sanford. It is open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Saturday. For more information, including a look at the menu, visit Stone’s Throw Bistro’s Web site.