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Foodies find Westbrook

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Posted: Wednesday, March 28, 2012 6:00 pm | Updated: 10:17 am, Fri Mar 30, 2012.

WESTBROOK – A Maine-based online food and travel program is beginning its second season next month with a show on various eateries in Westbrook.

Food Coma TV is a collection of short films released as a series online at, and hosted by Joe Ricchio, food editor at Maine magazine. The show is based on Ricchio’s blog, Portland Food Coma, and starts its second season on April 16.

“We’re excited to show off a city that too often gets overlooked because of its proximity to Portland,” Ricchio said in a release.

The show filmed in various places in Westbrook last weekend, including the Frog and Turtle, Don’s Lunch, and the newly opened Catbird Creamery on Main Street. Alex Steed, one of the show’s producers, said this week that they decided to use the segment in its season opener because the filming went so well.

“We had a great, and really unique time,” Steed said.

Catbird Creamery, a wholesale ice cream maker run by a former Portland-based pastry chef, opened its new ice cream parlor in Westbrook this month after moving out of a space its owners rented in a sandwich shop in Portland.

Steed said newcomers like the creamery, together with established businesses like Don’s Lunch, make up a diverse selection for those looking to venture out of Portland for something new.

“Westbrook’s a place that’s right next door, but often overlooked,” Steed said.

Food Coma TV is about food, Steed said, but it’s also about destinations, more of a travel-related channel that happens to focus on food. Its first season, which took viewers from Bangor to the Fryeburg Fair to Sanford, logged more than 30,000 views on its YouTube channel.

“It’s a travel show that centers on food and drink,” Steed said.

Steed said he has noticed Westbrook’s food culture changing dramatically, and for the better, through the past 10 years, led in part by the emergence of The Frog and Turtle, an upscale restaurant that bills itself as a “gastro pub.”

“The Westbrook I know now is so different,” he said.

Westbrook’s emergence as a travel and food destination, Steed said, has gone undernoticed and underappreciated, something he hopes the program will help to change.

“I think, for a while, it was a bit of a secret,” he said of Westbrook’s value.

For more on Food Coma TV, check and

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