Popovers hot from the oven at this historic restaurant are light, airy, fluffy, and oh so good with butter and jam.
story & photos by Bakery Boy
For weeks before going to coastal Maine, I’d been looking forward to eating warm popovers at Jordan Pond House on Mount Desert Island. You might say I’d been looking forward to it for years, ever since I first went there three decades ago and came to appreciate the restaurant’s signature item.
Popovers, for the uninitiated, are uniquely light, airy, fluffy, melt-in-your-mouth rolls that, on a bread-and-pastry scale, lie somewhere between egg bread and cream puffs. The key ingredients are eggs, milk, flour and, well, air. (I’ll include a recipe in a separate post). Whatever they are, I always want more, no matter how many I eat.
Jordan Pond House is ground zero in the world of popovers, the place that sets the high mark by which all other popovers are measured.
Located in a rambling old summer home along the 20-mile scenic route that loops south of Bar Harbor, it’s the only restaurant in Acadia National Park. That twisting, two-lane, slow-speed-limit road links plenty of inviting stops for exploring rocky beaches, steep cliffs, ocean views, and historic sites. All of which help build a good appetite for what lies ahead.
Jordan Pond House serves lunch, afternoon tea, and dinner inside and on a broad porch. When the weather is really fine, people eat at wooden tables on the grassy lawn, typically in a steady sea breeze that can blow away the napkins of inattentive diners.
The restaurant’s menu includes all the popular Maine mainstays — steamed lobster, baked flounder, fresh crab cakes, and so on — but for me (and for this bakery blog) the focus is on the baked goods, especially the popovers.
An order of popovers includes two bulging and usually still warm popovers, served with butter and local strawberry jam and your choice of hot or iced tea, cappuccino, or organic coffee. For afternoon tea, a pair of popovers will suffice nicely. For a more extensive lunch or dinner, treat popovers like an appetizer course. Whatever you do, don’t skip them.
When I was there most recently, the dessert menu included something else I just couldn’t pass up: Maine blueberry cobbler with blueberry ice cream (see photo). I don’t know if this will still be offered when I go again or when you go. As of this summer, Jordan Pond House is under new management after 80 years of being run by the previous concessionaire, so no doubt some changes are in store.
My suggestion is that you order anything on the menu that involves local blueberries, because then you can’t go wrong.
Or you might just stick with popovers followed by more popovers, the undisputed signature house specialty, because you can’t go wrong with those either!
Click here to see a recipe for Popovers Like At Jordan Pond House
Acadia National Park Loop Road
Seal Harbor, ME 04675
For more information about:
Acadia National Park: www.nps.gov/acad
Bar Harbor, Maine: www.barharborinfo.com
Maine Tourism: www.visitmaine.com or 888-624-6345