By Lianne McCluskey
CAMDEN — An old bed and breakfast on Elm Street in Camden has transformed into The Drouthy Bear Pub, which officially opens Sept. 12.
Owners Andrew and Shannon Stewart have been restoring and creating the pub since May.
There are 40 seats available in the pub, with nine seats across the bar that face 45 Scottish single malts that are representatives from all regions of Scotland. Thirty bottled beers, which have both a British and Maine emphasis, also line the mirrored wall. The pub also carries Irn-Bru, a Scottish carbonated soft drink, often described as "Scotland's other national drink" (after Scotch whiskey). Stewart says it is the top-selling soft drink in Scotland.
"Irn-Bru is as Moxie is to Maine," said Stewart. Stewart also is including his own blend of whiskey, which he named Angel's Share.
The Drouthy Bear will be open for lunch and dinner 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., and the bar will be open until 10 p.m. Afternoon tea will take place daily from 2 to 4 p.m., offering British tapas from tea sandwiches to British biscuits, cookies and cakes.
Stewart said the backbone of the menu will be the Scottish savory pies. A pie machine from Scotland will become a part of the pub's kitchen, creating the specific pie mold.
"[The machine] shapes them, it will speed up the process," said Stewart, who said there is only one other machine like it in North America, the other one located in Alberta, Canada.
Other items on the menu which are more familiar include bangers and mash, fish and chips in a tempura-like batter, other "comfort foods" and salads.
Stewart and his wife traveled throughout Scotland taking pictures and viewing menus from pubs, distilleries and bakeries to get a feel for the atmosphere they wanted to create at their own traditional pub. They also obtained their pie recipe from a Scottish pie champion.
"He said 'I'm only giving you this recipe because you are from America,'" said Stewart, who added the man threatened to burn down his pub if Stewart opened one up in Scotland.
Menu items will also include homemade recipes, from his Aunt's sticky toffee pudding to a shortbread recipe from a friend, Betty, who is 92 years old. There will be a special pie, main course meal, and appetizer each week.
Stewart says he is lucky to have had so much kindness and support from everyone. He also is excited about the outdoor seating and play area for children that will be behind the pub, which includes a play set from Cedar Works.
"This is a family place," said Stewart. "It's not just a bar; a pub is a place where everyone is welcome."
Courier Publications reporter Lianne McCluskey can be reached at 236-8511 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.