NY Times: 36 Hours in Portland

July 29th, 2016

The New York Times has visited Portland for their 36 Hours in… travel series.

Portland’s reputation as a great dining town is well-deserved, but no one here rests on his or her laurels, least of all the chefs and restaurateurs behind renowned spots like Fore Street and Eventide Oyster Co.; both parties have recently opened new restaurants, adding to the quandary of travelers already stymied by an abundance of choices. Meanwhile, a new generation of Portlanders and newcomers is pushing the boundaries with a fresh take on everything from doughnuts to kombucha.

The restaurants highlighted in the article are: 3 Buoys Seafood Shanty, Becky’s, Central Provisions, Duckfat, Emilitsa, Eventide, Fore Street, Hugo’s, Liquid Riot, Portland Lobster Co, Scales, The Holy Donut, The Honey Paw, Two Fat Cats, Urban Farm Fermentory, Vena’s Fizz House.

Stroudwater Distillery Opening Today

July 28th, 2016

stroudwaterStroudwater Distillery (website, facebook, instagram) is scheduled to open today at noon. The distillery—Portland’s 4th after New England Distilling, Maine Craft Distilling and Liquid Riot—and its tasting room are located at Thompson’s Point in the same building as Bissell Brothers, Cellar Door and Big J’s Chicken Shack (set to debut later this summer).

Stroudwater is “currently rolling out distinctive bottles of Bourbon, Rye, Vodka and Gin”. A list of key staff on the Stroudwater website includes John Myers with the enigmatic title of Boss of the Sauce.

Under Construction: Mark’s Sports

July 28th, 2016

A new sports bar called Mark’s Sports is slated for the space on Wharf Street currently occupied by Buck’s Naked BBQ. The owner of the new business is Mark Deane, who also launched Mark’s Place on Fore Street.

According to an article in the Press Herald, Buck’s is slated to close on August 20th. Their other locations in Freeport and Windham will remain in operation.

Oral History of the Lobster Roll

July 26th, 2016

imageThe new issue of Down East magazine features an extensive “Oral History of the Lobster Roll”. The article talks with “dozens of chefs, food stand owners, magazine editors, historians, and big-city entrepreneurs who witnessed (and helped fuel) one of our favorite morsels”.

the path from its “relative obscurity” in the early 20th century to current stature makes for an interesting read.

The article isn’t online yet but the magazine should be appearing on newsstands shortly.

Tiqa Cafe & Food Trucks

July 26th, 2016

The new issue of Portland Magazine includes an article on some of the newer food trucks in town,

The mobile food craze that has spread like wildfire through every major city in the world hit Portland in 2012, or maybe we just finally ran out of building space for more restaurants. We meet the people behind the wheel of Portland’s most dynamic and diverse food scene.

and an article on rebirth of the Deering Oaks castle as Tiqa Cafe.

The fanciful stone Castle in Deering Oaks Park is being invaded by hungry marauding hordes this summer, after many years in the wilderness. Standing sentry by the pond in Portland’s crown jewel public park, TIQA Café houses seating for 20 indoors, with outdoor seating for over 80. Distractions such as bocce ball, horse shoes, bean-bag toss, chess tables, and live music adorn The Castle’s new reign.

40 Best Bars for Food: Hunt & Alpine

July 26th, 2016

The Food Network has included the Portland Hunt and Alpine Club in their list of the 40 Best Bars for Food Lovers.

Try the Norseman cocktail — an aquavit old fashioned that’s been fat-washed with brown butter and garnished with apple slices — alongside the bar’s signature Smörgåsbord, which overflows with meat, fish, local cheese, steamed clams and breads. Other must-try items from the small but mighty kitchen include gravlax sandwiches, popcorn spiked with green-chile powder and a butterscotch budino with whipped creme fraiche.

Mike Smith, Robyn Luongo at New CP Restaurant

July 25th, 2016

Chef Mike Smith and wife Robyn Luongo Smith are leaving their positions at Scales and The Honey Paw to lead the kitchen and front of house staff at the new off-peninsula restaurant Central Provisions has under construction in the Back Cove neighborhood.

Chris and Paige Gould, founders of Central Provisions, have purchased the former Borealis Bistro at 182 Ocean Ave where they plan to open a wood-fired Italian restaurant. The as-yet unnamed restaurant will seat 48 including a 9-seat bar and will serve Neapolitan-style pizza as well as pasta, salads and crudo and is slated to open in December or January.

For more information see this article in the Press Herald. It includes an interview with Smith.

Update: Chefs Fred Eliot and Travis Olson will co-leading the kitchen Scales. Eliot is the former chef de cuisine at Petite Jacqueline and Olson is the pastry chef at Scales.

This Week’s Events: Drifters Cook-out, CN Shawarma Pop-up, Maker’s Mix, Evo Lobster Dinner

July 25th, 2016

Tuesday — there are two different Middle Eastern food events taking place, extra credit for anyone who makes it to both: Drifters Wife is holding a Middle-Eastern Chicken Cook-out at Oxbow and CN Shawarma is serving a pop-up dinner at Bao Bao.

Wednesday — the Monument Square Farmers’ Market is taking place, and the Maine Charitable Mechanics Association is hosting a Makers’ Mix to bring together “Artists, Artisans, Smiths, Wrights, Tailors, Cooks, masters & Amateurs, Inventors & Dubbers” for “an evening of conversation and camaraderie”.

ThursdayEvo is serving a 5-course lobster dinner.

FridayBiBo’s Madd Apple Cafe is holding a wine dinner.

Saturday — the Saturday Farmers’ Market will take place.

Sunday — the weekly Crofters & Artisan Market is taking place.

For more information on these and other upcoming food happenings in the area, visit the event calendar.

If you are holding a food event this week that’s not listed above, publicize it by adding it as a comment to this post.

 

Central Provisions Opening New Restaurant (Updated)

July 23rd, 2016

cp182oceanave_final

Chris and Paige Gould, founders of Central Provisions, have purchased the former Borealis Bistro at 182 Ocean Ave where they plan to open a wood-fired Italian restaurant. The as-yet unnamed restaurant will seat 48 including a 9-seat bar and will serve Neapolitan-style pizza as well as pasta, salads and crudo.

The Goulds are making minimal changes to the existing interior which will allow  for a speedy refit of the space—quite a different situation than the intensive and lengthy construction involved in launching Central Provisions in 2014. They hope to open this Back Cove neighborhood restaurant in December or January, serving dinner Wednesday through Sunday with plans to eventually open for weekend brunch.

The property has onsite parking, one space of which  will be reserved for people picking up takeout orders.

Updated: MaineBiz has published an article on the real estate transaction and the Gould’s new restaurant.

Mainely Burgers, Toroso, Stadler Bakery

July 22nd, 2016

Eater Boston reports that Mainely Burgers is planning  to open their first brick and mortar location in Cambridge on Massachusetts Ave.

Urban Eye reports that Toroso, the new Kennebunk restaurant from the owners of Zapoteca, is set to open next week.

The Forecaster reports that Bao Bao chef/owner Cara Stadler plans to open a bakery/cafe/greenhouse in Brunswick.

Food & Wine: The Maine Event

July 21st, 2016

The August issue of Food & Wine includes an article about Portland.

Portland’s reputation as the foodiest, friendliest small town in America is undeniable, but the restaurant scene is now officially in overdrive. From noodle bars to natural wines, fried chicken to cocktails, we’ve got 14 reasons to visit Maine this month.

The article highlights: Drifters Wife, Figgy’s, Rhum, Rossobianco, Roustabout, Scales, Solo Italiano, Tandem Coffee and Bakery, Terlingua, The Honey Paw, The Press Hotel, and Thompson’s Point as well as Custom Deluxe and The Velveteen Habit.

The article isn’t online yet.

Beer Advocate Profile of Bissell Brothers

July 21st, 2016

Beer Advocate magazine has published a profile of Bissell Brothers authored by Adam Callaghan.

In two and a half years, the Bissells have positioned themselves as pioneers pushing limits: their own, their customers’, the beer world’s. Their company’s design and mentality seem to appeal to fans as much as the actual product does. Theirs is a lifestyle brand, selling a signature triangular logo and the image of the carefree cool crowd, which happens to drink dank, hoppy beers that are hazy as hell.

Under Construction: Rossobianco

July 21st, 2016

imageRossobianco held a pop-up dinner Tuesday night to preview chef Scott London the Bramhall Square natural wine bar/Italian restaurant. The 4-course dinner comprised of

  • Fried bluefish paired with a prosecco spritz
  • Peas and risotto paired with a rose from Trentino
  • Roast pork loin paired with a Nebbiolo
  • Hazelnut cake paired with a Glera-based sparkling wine

Rossobianco is planning to open in early August, perhaps as early as Friday August 5th.

Changes to the SMCC Culinary Program

July 20th, 2016

Today’s Press Herald includes a report on big changes to the Culinary Arts program at SMCC to address falling enrollment and other issues.

Culinary students entering Southern Maine Community College this fall will choose from a different menu of coursework and lecturers as the school’s culinary arts and hospitality management departments undergo major restructuring. Those changes include a new and unusual arrangement in which the college will share resources with the University of Southern Maine’s tourism and hospitality program.

Crime Writers Guide to Portland

July 20th, 2016

Author Chris Holm has written a guide to what to eat, drink and do in Portland for the Maine Crime Writers website A Day In… series.

Dutch’s, Standard, Otto, Ten Ten Pie, Nosh, Woodford, Terlingua, Central Provisions, Miyake, Hunt &  Alpine and several brewers and distillers get mentioned.