Review of Vena’s and Omi’s

The Portland Phoenix has published a review of Omi’s Coffee Shop and Vena’s Fizz House.

The Italian was rich, dark, and roasty without any of the bitterness dark roast often brings. It was smooth and a touch chocolaty. A cappuccino had the same virtues but intensified. [Omi’s]

The results are pretty fantastic, and what initially seems like it will be a bit of a hoot ends up as a revelation. The sodas look gorgeous and taste like nothing else in town. For a ginger julep, fresh ginger and spearmint are muddled and mixed with a root soda. The first sip sends an explosion of ginger through your head, filling your sinuses and tickling the front of your brain, while the spearmint spice lingers on your tongue. A cider bite also gets a head-filling heat from ginger, but mellows it with apple and clove rather than an intensifying minty spice. [Vena’s]

Holy Donut Delayed

The Holy Donut had been slated to open their Exchange Street store this morning. Unfortunately they’ve had an equipment malfunction and will have to delay. They’re currently aiming for Thursday.

Dine, Feed, Wolf, Nosh (and Sip)

de_oct2013The October issue of Down East features an article entitle Dine, Feed, Wolf, Gorge, Much, Nosh about the “62 places to eat your way through Maine’s hottest dining trends”.

Elsemere BBQ, Miyake Farm, the Portland Hunt & Alpine Club (shown right, click to enlarge), Flanagan’s Table, Gorgeous Gelato, Maple’s Organics, MDI Ice Cream, Beal’s, Gelato Fiasco and food trucks Love Cupcakes, Mainely Treats, Bite into Maine, Small Axe, Mainely Burgers and Wicked Good were all included.

The article isn’t yet online but you can find a copy of the October issue at your local newsstand.

Salvage BBQ Now Open (Updated)

salvage_logoSalvage BBQ & Smokehouse (facebook, twitter, website) is now open for business. Portland’s newest restaurant is located at 919 Congress Street near the intersection of Congress and Saint John Streets. Salvage is being launched by chef/owner Jay Villani and the Local 188/Sonny’s crew.

Villani also is working on launching Ideal Bakery further up Congress Street near Rite Aid.

Update: For more info on the menu at Salvage see this blog post from The Golden Dish.

Salvage, Hunt & Alpine and Omi’s Plan Openings

Salvage BBQ, the Portland Hunt & Alpine Club and Omi’s Coffee Shop all plan on opening in the next week:

  • Salvage is first out of the gate. They sent out a press release yesterday to announce they’re opening day will be this Sunday.
  • Omi’s plans on opening their Harbor View Park neighborhood coffee shop on Tuesday, September 3.
  • The Hunt & Alpine Club has announced their ‘official’ grand opening will take place Thursday September 5 at 4 pm. They’ve published some photos of the furnishings and elements of the space on Facebook.

For those of you keeping score that means in one week there will have been 2 tv crews filming restaurants in Portland, 2 national press articles about Portland restaurants and the chance to try 3 new venues. Yes, restaurant life is good in Portland.

Review of Duckfat

The Associated Press has published a review of Duckfat.

Your best bet is to treat the fries as the main course, then share a few other dishes as sides. The charred broccoli and goat cheese salad is terrific. And the roasted pork belly panini with manchego and saffron-Tabasco mayo will make your eyes roll back. And despite appearances, Duckfat is family friendly. The little ones will love their handcrafted sodas (try the Roots, Bark, Sticks and Leaves — also known as root beer).