The petite woman in the baseball cap is the executive chef and owner; her mantra is "fun dining", not "fine dining".

To her surprise, CBS - TV came calling to feature Marilou Ranta and her restaurant, The Quarry, on CBS Saturday Morning's "The Dish".

Marilou, or Lulu, as she prefers to be called, has a fascinating story in the small town of Monson, Maine.  Chef Lulu's stunning food creations put her in the heart of Monson, known as an artist colony.

The Quarry via Facebook
The Quarry via Facebook
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According to the story, reported by CBS's Jeff Glor, Lulu grew up in the Philippines, worked as a maid, and dreamed of owning a restaurant one day.

Her dream came true when she settled in Maine to raise her family, and found a business for rent.  She named the hot spot "The Quarry" due to old slate quarries found in the area, long since closed.

The Quarry via Facebook
The Quarry via Facebook
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The "reservation only" restaurant is known for its creative and delicious dishes, and the reviews are all five stars.  Look at these Facebook comments:

We were blown away.  It was by far the best meal we had in Maine.  Lulu, the owner/chef, is part culinary genious and part molecular scientist.

 

The nicest people from the chef on down.

 

This is THE place to dine! Outstanding service!   Outstanding atmosphere!  Outstanding food!

 

We were very impressed.  Rivals any Boston restaurant I've eaten at.  I can't wait to go back.

 

The Quarry via Facebook
The Quarry via Facebook
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Chef Lulu freely hands out hugs to her patrons and loves feeding people good food.

She hopes to buy the building soon, and plans to keep serving up joy in her cooking and personality.  Here is the full video from CBS Saturday Morning,  and you can find 'The Quarry" on Facebook.  Call for reservations at 207-997-3486, but don't wait too long.

Now, everyone knows about this not-so-hidden gem.

 

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