Archive for April, 2011

First Review of Petite Jacqueline

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

Portland Magazine has published a review of Petite Jacqueline.

Next to arrive is the terrine of foie gras ($13), graced with local honey, brioche rounds, and a compote of cherries and apricots, which plays silky and sweet on the palate. Following up is the roast pork belly with cabbage and herbs ($8). The buttery and salty belly is crisped on the outside, and the kraut lends well-balanced crunch and acidic tang.

Review of Fore Street

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

From Away has published a review of Fore Street.

…I think we chose safely and well, and on our next visit, I very much want to be more bold. Here is a place to try things you’ve never had before. Or revel in the best version of a dish you’ve had all your life. Fore Street feels like unadulterated pleasure, the experience of adulthood I always longed to have. It proffers respite from life’s harsher realities, a most pleasing place to dine well, when you can.

affordable food with sit-down atmosphere

Friday, April 29th, 2011

Broke 207 has posted some observations on local restaurants and bemoaned the lack of “affordable food with sit-down atmosphere (mall restaurants need not apply)” in the city.

If you’re reading this site then you’re probably someone who knows the Portland restaurant landscape fairly well. Are there some restaurants out there that fit what Broke 207 is looking for? What do you think the biggest gap in the Portland restaurant line-up is?

Review of Whaddapita

Friday, April 29th, 2011

From Away has published a review of WhaddaPita.

And that’s when the clouds parted, and I felt like I finally understood what Whaddapita was doing, with all of that fast-food styling, that green paint, and the army of cheery yellow tee shirt-clad employees. These are the same flavors that I have always associated with Greek food, the garlic, the parsley, the thyme, the rosemary, the feta, the olives, the yogurt, and the cucumber. Unlike some classic Greek dishes, however, Whaddapita manages to brighten all of these flavors up, and make them incredibly accessible.

Urban Chickens

Thursday, April 28th, 2011

The Portland Phoenix checks in on one family raising chickens in the city and gets some advice from Stacey Collins who teaches new chicken owners on how to do it right.

It’s been two years since Portland permitted city dwellers to raise a maximum of six egg-laying chickens. To date, 21 licenses have been issued for a $25 yearly fee. “I’m surprised more people don’t have chickens,” says Moger. “It’s been a fairly seamless integration into our lives and it’s not a huge amount of work.” The family built a coop against the back wall of their garage and cut a small hole leading to a fenced-in area in their backyard. The chickens come out of the coop in the morning, the family collects eggs, scoops out the coop, makes sure “the ladies” have enough water and grain, and puts them back in at night.

Falmouth Kitchen & Tasting Tour

Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

Today’s Press Herald includes a preview of the Falmouth Kitchen & Tasting Tour.

The kitchen proper is not so large that it is overwhelming, and it includes top-of-the-line appliances and interesting woodwork. There’s a custom-carved wood sunburst over the stove, and a wood arch hangs gracefully over the center of the room. The arch is perfect for hanging pots, but Preston decorated it with greenery and ornaments during the holidays.

The kitchen has four ovens, two dishwashers, two warming drawers, an island with a sink, and cherry cabinets.

The tour is taking place May 6 and 7. Tickets are available online.

The Cheese Iron in The Boston Globe

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

Vincent Maniaci and Jill Dutton, owners of The Cheese Iron, were interviewed for a Boston Globe article that profiled the top cheese shops in New England.

“We like to talk cheese and geek out about cheese,’’ says Vincent Maniaci, who with his wife, Jill Dutton, opened this pine-paneled gourmet food, wine, and cheese emporium in 2007, just an olive’s throw from downtown Portland. “We have about 130 cheeses at any given time, about 50 percent from New England and 50 percent international,’’ says Maniaci, who learned cheesemongering at Formaggio in Cambridge.

Review of Boda

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

From Away has published a review of Boda.

As it turns out, I am not yet finished with Boda. I want to dig into Boda the way so many others who’ve reviewed it have. That night, it missed the mark for me. Maybe in the future. For now, I feel neutral, and cautiously optimistic.

CDBG Grants for Restaurants

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

Today’s Portland Daily Sun reports on the Community Development Block Grant funding received by Hot Suppa and Local Sprouts.

“In our application we said it would produce five full-time jobs between two businesses, but Local Sprouts alone over the course of the last year since we opened in June has produced about 11 full-time jobs,” Fertig said Monday. “We have over 20 people employed right now with Local Sprouts, some of those people have an opportunity to become worker owners.”

Maine at Work: Coffee Blending

Monday, April 25th, 2011

In the latest installment of the Maine at Work series, Press Herald reported Ray Routhier spends the day at Coffee by Design with Paul Chiles to learn how to blend coffee beans.

SURPRISING FACTS: Coffee beans, before they are roasted, are green. Coffee beans from different countries have different textures — rough or smooth — depending on how they were extracted from the coffee “cherry” they grew in. Coffee By Design roasts about 400,000 pounds of coffee a year.

PERKS: Unlimited cups of coffee, any flavor or blend; for a coffee fan, the satisfaction of helping make a quality product other coffee fans will drink; the aroma of coffee beans and roasting coffee.

This week’s Events: Shindig Hootenanny, Bourbon Tasting, Sandy Oliver, Deering Oaks Farmers Market

Monday, April 25th, 2011

Monday — Deux Cochon is hosting an all-day Grand Opening Shindig Hootenanny Party.

TuesdayBlue is holding their monthly wine and cheese event.

WednesdayBlack Tie is teaching a cooking class and there will be a Bourbon Tasting at The Salt Exchange.

Thursday — Bard Coffee is hosting their monthly Latte Art Throwdown. Food Historian Sandy Oliver will be speaking at the Inventing Tradition: Good Maine Food wine dinner. The Great Lost Bear will feature beer from Marshall Wharf Brewery for their weekly Thursday night showcase. There will be a hard cider and cheese tasting at the Public Market House. LeRoux holding a baking demonstration.

Friday — Both BiBo’s Madd Apple Cafe and SMCC are holding wine dinners.

Saturday — the first Deering Oaks Farmers Market of the season 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.

Reviews of Bull Feeney’s and Seagrass Bistro

Monday, April 25th, 2011

The Seagrass Bistro in Yarmouth received 4 stars from a review in the Maine Sunday Telegram.

Eight pan-seared scallops, nicely crusted outside and tender inside, surround braised fennel, all placed atop a piquant tomato sauce ($24). It’s a simple dish that’s beautifully prepared.

Eat Here. Go There. has published a review of Bull Feeney’s.

Overall, we thought the food/atmosphere at Feeney’s was great! We escaped with a $40 tab. It would have been relatively cheap had it not been for our $6 beers, so I think it’s worth giving a try. Though it’s far from authentic Irish food, it can satisfy one’s banger craving. It’s a cool place to grab some pub grub, have a good beer (because life’s too short to drink crap beer), and people watch. So, sometime do yourself a favor, go to Bull Feeney’s order an O’hara’s and some bangers…I feel pretty confident you’ll be glad you did.

Profile of Pat’s Meat Market

Saturday, April 23rd, 2011

The Portland Daily Sun has published a profile of Pat’s Meat Market.

In the era of “Big Joe” Vacchiano, Jaime’s great-grandfather who immigrated to Portland from Italy and started a butcher’s shop at the base of Munjoy Hill, there was a meat market in every neighborhood. Over time, Pat’s Meat Market held on while others vanished. Jaime Vacchiano said the business pressures are demanding, yielding little in profit, which may explain the scarcity of private butcher shops today. He also theorized that a 24/7 world is inhospitable to an old-fashioned family business built on quality over expediency.

Under Construction: Zapoteca, Willard Square, Nina’s

Saturday, April 23rd, 2011

Here’s a set of under construction updates:

  • Zapoteca has provided a draft menu (see page 67) as part of their liquor license application.
  • The American Journal and The Forecaster have both published reports on the reopening the Bathras Market in Willard Square. The market operated in the square from 1954 to 1989 and the family is hoping to have it back in operation in next month.
  • The Forecaster has also published an article about Ian Hayward and Glenn Perry’s plans for their own market in Willard Square.
  • A new store named Nina’s is “coming soon” to 1700 Forest Ave, the former location of Papa’s Place.

Review of Bar Lola

Saturday, April 23rd, 2011

The Golden Dish has published a review of Bar Lola.

Why I never cottoned to the place in the past is a mystery. I think I felt the ambiance too dull and the room uncomfortable. This time the experience worked on all levels. The service is thoughtful and the kitchen keeps up to speed. I’m glad to add it to my list of five or six Portland restaurants that I go to regularly for pure gustatory indulgence.