The Berry Manor Inn
of Rockland, Maine ... In a Class by Itself
By Brenda Hill and Maralyn Hill

While visiting the Berry Manor Inn, on of the Four Historic Inns of Rockland,
Maine, we feasted on freshly baked local Maine blueberry and apple pie. We
tried to split the generous slice of pie that Cheryl, co-owner and manager
extraordinaire, offered us. We could not do it, in fact we each devoured one of each

As a guest of these professional hosts, our team experienced a graciousness and
grandeur seldom found on our worldwide explorations.

A Place for Romance

The Berry Manor is a place for romance. If not with a spouse or partner, you can
romance the spirit of your solo soul in this stately old mansion. Although built in
1898 as a private residence, the innkeeper/owners, Cheryl Michaelsen and Mike
LaPosta, husband and wife team, have transformed the wine-colored Victorian
into state of the art elegance.

Yet, this 12 guest room gem is relaxed, eco- and user-friendly. Cheryl and Mike
offer two "raid the fridge" pie pantries for their guests. One is in the main house
and the other in the carriage house. Simply walk in, any time of day or night, and
raid the fridge. We loved this, despite our obvious lack of will power.

There was a story about The Berry Manor in a 2006 Yankee Magazine that we
both remembered. It is called "Pie in the Sky." The pies have literally put the
Berry Manor and "The Pie Ladies" on the map internationally. The Food Network
has already discovered them, and Rockland.

Fresh Homemade Pies

We love the Berry Manor story. Cheryl's mother and Mike's mother are in charge
of making fresh homemade pies daily to serve complimentary to their guests.
Cheryl's mom swears by Crisco while Mike's mom uses Crisco and butter. Both
methods proved sublime. Now, the famous moms are a part of a
pie tour of
Rockland's Historic Inn's, in honor of National Pie Day, January 23. The name of
the event is
Rockland's Pies on Parade. A close friend comprises the third in the
trio of "Pie Ladies."

Remember, this is mid-coast Maine. Even though it gets a tad cold in January,
thousands flock to the delightful town of Rockland, Maine to eat pie. I hope they
leave room for lobster, Maine shrimp and all of the other culinary delights of the

Rockland, Maine: Both Quaint & Hip

If you have never been there, or it has been awhile, as it was for us, Rockland is
an amazing place. Now 240 years old, it is enjoying a renaissance. Rockland's
Main Street is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Its architecture is
an eclectic mix of Greek, Italian, Colonial and Victorian.

We could not get enough of strolling down Main Street. Although it looked the
same as we remembered (the benefit of being on the Register), it is now a vibrant
modern town, with many museums, theaters, art galleries, wine shops and
culinary creations. We delighted in its award-winning fine dining as well as
Linda Bean's little lobster roll shack.

Main Street is a food lovers dream, filled with dining establishments directly on
or just off, one long and lovely street.

Rockland's harbor-front is home to lighthouses, windjammers, a wooden boat
museum, and lobster boats. Yankee Magazine said it best: "Rockland is both
quaint and hip."

We asked in the beginning, what could be better than a culinary tour of the Berry
Manor House? The answer would be two visits, two tours and more pies,
followed by a visit to the other three Historic Inns.

Although known for pies, it is not only the Berry Manor, that has put the town on
the map. The Four Historic Inns of Rockland are not competitive. Instead, they
are a model for other resort areas. All of the Inns, B&B's, and restaurants we know
are collaborative and cooperative. This is what makes Rockland especially
unique and successful, year round. We have already planned one of our return
visits to Rockland for June next year.

About the authors: Brenda Hill, along with her writing partner, Maralyn Hill (no relation),
write and publishes books about chefs, food and international travel. Brenda has been active
in the California Writer's Club, IFWTWA, and the Santa Barbara's Writers Conference.
Maralyn is President of the International Food, Wine & Travel Writers Association. She
has also been a broadcaster for Time Warner Cable. Learn more about
Brenda.  Learn more
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