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Lunch at Mad Martha's Cafe-Plum Island

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Lunch at Mad Martha's Cafe-Plum Island

Linda W. | Jun 8, 2004 03:35 PM

Had never been to Plum Island's Mad Martha's, despite having worked in Newburyport for 2 years. They're open for breakfast/lunch M-F and on Sunday from 7am-1pm and dinner on Friday/Saturday only, served between 6-8:30pm.

Mom and I headed there for lunch today. I noted a chalkboard menu and I was busy salivating over the wonderful meals I thought were available, not thinking they were a BIT fancy for a local beach joint, but was then told that was the upcoming weekend dinner choices. Darn it. (I vaguely remember lobster and brie-stuffed something and an Asian ginger duck that caught my eye.) They are BYOB for dinner, although we both appreciated the small liquid "gift" the owner/chef offered to us after I asked why the chalkboard says "BYOB on Saturday 6/12 only" (they're closed on Friday the 11th for a private party). Reservations are definitely needed.

Also there was no iced tea for my Mom (no one seems to drink iced tea when they make it, and he refuses to get the bottles/cans of the premade stuff.)

Each of us chose the Mad Martha's special wrap - chicken, caramelized onion, roasted red peppers, and I think one other thing in a plain wrap. Can't remember because we were too busy chatting with the incredibly friendly owner/chef and waitstaff and other patrons - tiny little place, and the kitchen area takes up half the space. You feel like you're in someone's kitchen in their home chatting while they're cooking.

Wraps were preceded by a small plate of tomatoes dressed with a sample light creamy dressing the chef is using this weekend (menu changes weekly) that included chive blossoms. Tomatoes were so-so, dressing was excellent.

Wrap was good - good-sized chunks of chicken in a lightly glazed sauce - maybe teriyaki? - mixed in with the caramelized onions and roasted red peppers. Side choices were chips or home fried red-skin potatoes; we both chose home fries. Well herbed and crispy, they could have been slightly more "done" to get that crisp outside with tender potatoey inside. But still good.

As I said, the conversation was lively amongst the staff and patrons. Definitely a local joint, and several co-workers said they've wanted to go for breakfast, but there's always a long, long line out the door every morning since they opened 4 years ago. Considering they probably seat only 25 or so, no surprise.

Definitely want to go back for dinner.

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