Last week, via a post of their Facebook page, Bantam Cafe in Winterport announced they were closing their doors. It was a heartfelt post from owner Wesley Osterhout, outlining the ups and downs of the last year and a half of ownership.

They've had everything from amazing weekends where they sold out of food completely, to having to shut down for days at a time over the winter because of a nasty issue with a frozen pipe.

I was particularly sad to hear the news, because my wife and I just moved to a spot out in Hampden, that was only about a 5 minute drive from Bantam. I was especially fond of their Camp Eggs. Which was basically eggs served over crispy homefries, topped with cheese and a Sriracha Aioli. Soooooo good. Maybe a bit of a heart-attack on a plate, but I got it every gosh-darn time.

The restaurant business, under the best of circumstances, is insanely hard work. If you have a location that thrives mostly on weekends, in a small rural community, it's even tougher. Whether you're busy, or slow, you have to work the same hours. Obviously, busy is better. But if you work that much and it's slow, it crushes your soul into the dirt.

As much as it selfishly pains me, I agree with their decision 100%. Too many folks put themselves into massive debt trying to fix things. But sometimes you just gotta know when to call it a day. And for them, that day was this past weekend.

I wish Wesley nothing but the best in whatever she chooses to do. She's a rockstar chef who we haven't heard the last of. And since this area is pretty compact, I'm sure she'll make her force known, loud and clear.


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