You Want a Special Place to Eat … Well …

Walk down the alley. It will be worth it.

You have to know it’s there, but when you do, you will never forget where to go.

Tucked down a little alley in the middle of Damariscotta, Maine is the place ornamented by a modest, beautifully crafted, ceramic sign. Negotiate three slight, slender stairs and you’re in; the hideaway, Osteria Bucci.

Seven footers need to duck their heads a bit. The hunkered ceiling adds to the charm. Once in, you’re hooked. The smells of Bernie’s wonderful cooking from the kitchen just a touch away will snare you.

It’s small and modest. That’s the point. There is only one table, a “family” table that seats up to ten — perfect — for a book club, a social get together, or just a place to meet friends. Along the walls and around the edges are mementos of Bernie’s mother’s family, the Bucci and Matteo side … mostly pictures, one or two eye-catching objects, an old chair, some posters and a few magazines.

And … a small display of pearl rings (for sale) … made by Bernie.

You can eat in or take your food to go with your one dollar cup of coffee.

Oh yes … the food. Spinach pies to die for, homemade soup like stracciatella (egg drop soup), escarole pie, eggplant parmigiana, sausage bread, pizza slices, lasagna, lemon squares, fig squares, biscotti. cannoli or whatever the whim of the chef. I had the stracciatella, a spinach pie and a lemon square (my favorite dessert).

Plenty. Just enough to make me want to return just to see what his caprice of the day is.

Oh, the cannoli… goodness! Diane shared a taste. So good.

Get there early. Things seem to go fast. And it closes when the food is gone.

No surprise. The place has abundant character, delicious food and, Bernie.

© 2018

By | 2018-01-01T22:10:34+00:00 January 1st, 2018|Food, Restaurants|16 Comments


  1. Andree Wells January 1, 2018 at 3:26 pm - Reply

    We live a town away in Wiscasset! Our New Year’s Resolution is to find this alley(there are several) and enjoy the italian food so easily found in Federal Hill!
    Thank you so much! …and a Happy, Healthy New Year to You ! (Class of ’54)

    • Ed January 1, 2018 at 3:40 pm - Reply

      You will love it, Andrea. I must declare a conflict of interest as I am fortunate to be married to Bernie’s sister Diane which, by definition, makes his food even better.
      Trust me though. I promise you will not be disappointed

    • Ed January 1, 2018 at 3:43 pm - Reply

      And, I am so pleased that you are subscribed to my blog.

  2. peter voccio jr January 1, 2018 at 8:47 pm - Reply

    DR. ED ,

    Only the Romans did it better , and now you know why your mother named you Edward.
    A Prince , indeed-Happy New Year to you and Diane.

    • Ed January 1, 2018 at 9:09 pm - Reply

      Wait, wait, Peter! Are you telling me the Romans did it better than the Italians. Well, if so, try L’Osteria Bucci.

  3. peter voccio jr January 1, 2018 at 9:54 pm - Reply

    DR. ED ,
    Only until 610 A.D. ,Since then it’s been all Italian with L’Osteria Bucci NUMERO UNO!
    Save me a lemon square.

    • Ed January 1, 2018 at 10:07 pm - Reply

      Hysterical, Peter. You got your lemon square and then some!

  4. suzi thayer January 2, 2018 at 1:36 am - Reply

    Love your blog. i write for boothbay register, wiscasset newspaper and penbay pilot (camden) Heard about this restaurant a while ago and will now make a point to go see bernie. Thanks for your wonderful writing

    • Ed January 2, 2018 at 1:48 am - Reply

      Thank you. Yes, go see Bernie, but get there before he sells out

      • suzi thayer January 2, 2018 at 2:57 pm - Reply

        will you please send me bernie’s #or email address.Want to do a story. Thanks!

  5. Natalie McKenna January 2, 2018 at 1:41 am - Reply

    Wishing you and yours a Very Happy, Healthy New Year. May 2018 be filled with all good things!

    • Ed January 2, 2018 at 1:49 am - Reply

      Thank you, Natalie. And Happy Healthy New Year to You and Yours

  6. suzi thayer January 2, 2018 at 2:02 pm - Reply

    will you please email me with bernie’s phone #/email address

    • Ed January 2, 2018 at 3:06 pm - Reply

      OK. Will send to your e-mail

  7. Karen Carella Tatum January 5, 2018 at 3:06 pm - Reply

    Ed, just signed up on your site. My son bought me your book, Growing Up Italian. I just loved it! I could relate to so many of your experiences growing up in an Italian family. Looking forward to reading your blog!

    • Ed January 5, 2018 at 4:18 pm - Reply

      Thank you for your kind comments, Karen. So pleased that you have signed for my blog.
      I’ll be speaking in Westerly next Wednesday night if you are anywhere in the area. I would love to meet you.

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