The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, April 7, 2006


Main Street's Market and Café
42 Main Street
Concord Center

"Your old-world meeting place" is the first line on the menu and, judging from the crowd on two occasions, that was true. The place was packed in the middle of the day and everyone from tourists to Concord and Carlisle folks seemed to be there for lunch or a snack.

The history of Main Street's is long and convoluted and somewhat personal for me. Originally a gristmill building dating back to the 1700s, the ammunition for the Revolutionary War was said to be hidden here in the basement. Contrary to how I feel some days, that was not part of my personal history. The Andersons have been here for four generations providing groceries or catering. Back in the late sixties, they sold flowers lined up in the alley next to the building, and I sold real estate in the office above. In those days, I was being courted by Alex and on Fridays, when the flowers were about to go, he carefully picked a bouquet for me and also told me what a great bargain they were.

The menu is extensive and they are willing to customize a little if necessary. My friend ordered salad instead of cole slaw, for example. Starting early for breakfast they serve eggs, omelets, or breakfast sandwiches with bacon, ham or a steak patty. ($4.95-$5.95, with sides extra) At lunch there is an extensive menu of sandwiches, wraps, soup, chowder or chili. Some of their wraps are delightfully unusual, such as the southwestern chicken wrap with chicken breast, guacamole, their own mango salsa and chopped romaine. They also serve a variety of soups and, of course, typical New England-style clam chowder. Salads range from $5.95-8.95 and grilled panini selections start at $6.95.

In the evening, there is another menu and though I haven't tried it, it sounds quite interesting. For instance, oysters on the half shell with cocktail sauce or grilled oysters with BBQ sauce at $12 as appetizers, dinners of Lobster Fettuccine at $22, "Naked Ravioli Hearts" (which excludes the pasta that encloses the mixture of cheese garlic, sage, spinach and prosciutto over marinara sauce) at $17, or roast duck at $19 are a few of the offerings. Desserts are all $6, ranging from a Rockslide Brownie Sundae to Passion Fruit Mousse Cake.

There is a full bar but I only found out about that on a second trip, as it was not well advertised. In spring, the ice cream parlor will open in the alley. It sounds like a nice place to stop for a refreshing rest, while you watch the tourists (very well dressed) and your neighbors walk by.

2006 The Carlisle Mosquito