Archive for May, 2013

Eventide: Review and Beach Greens Foraging Expedition

Friday, May 31st, 2013

What’s the Soup has published a review of Eventide.

Eventide is a restaurant not to be missed whether it’s for a beer and oysters on a Saturday afternoon or a full dinner to experience all it has to offer. The owners are innovative and continually looking for new creations.

In an unrelated piece, The Root has written about a recent outing to forage for beach greens with Eventide chef Andrew Taylor.

Still, within a few minutes of searching the shore for wild edibles, we had found four different edible beach greens. I felt overjoyed, as if Robert Louis Stevenson himself had mapped out our expedition and more buried gold was further down the beach.

Another version of the beach foraging article appeared on the Huffington Post.

Local Sprouts…Coming Up With Solutions

Friday, May 31st, 2013

The Portland Daily Sun has published an article about Local Sprouts.

Took a while for me to disavow myself of my fondly-held notion that Local Sprouts is the reincarnation of The Gate, the long-haired hippie freak guitar strumming anti-establishment coffeehouse that I frequented in Longfellow Square in the 1960s. The Gate was almost directly across the street from where Local Sprouts is located today, and there are definitely similarities between the two, but there is an essential difference…We came up with a basket full of criticisms but were woefully short of solutions. Coming up with solutions, though, seems to be what Local Sprouts is all about.

Immigrant Kitchens: Congolese Mini-Waffles

Friday, May 31st, 2013

In the latest entry from Immigrant Kitchens, Lindsay Sterling learns how to make Congelese Mini-Waffles from Ariane Kambu Mbenza (read the story, get the recipe and see the photos).

Reviews of Union Bagel, Bite into Maine, David’s and Supreme Pita

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

Dispatch has published a review of the  new Union Bagel shop on Cumberland Ave,

Union Bagel offers a short menu of freshly made, organic bagels with a variety of cream cheeses to choose from. Choices included sesame, onion, salt and poppy but I went for the garlic bagel with olive cream cheese in hopes that nobody would want to talk closely with me for the remainder of the morning. Perfectly toasted with just the right amount of spread, the bagel was warm and soft inside with crispy garlic bits on the outside. Deeelish.

On a Roll has published a review of Bite into Maine,

Get to the roll!  Solid roll and great value. Currently we are eating hard shell offshore bugs fetching about 8 bucks a pound.  This should warrant a $16 dollar lobster roll in this beautiful setting.  My textbook roll was $13.95. We also had their grilled tomato, basil and fresh mozzarella sandwich for just south of 5 bucks- this was delicious and a bargain.

the Press Herald has published a bar review of David’s,

I have been to David’s for a couple of happy hours in my days working downtown. The restaurant, which has received many accolades, should also be applauded for its drink menu. The bar offers about a dozen specialty cocktails and martinis that go beyond the traditional drink.

and a review of Supreme Pita.

Bottom line: Supreme Pita is fine for what it is, especially for all those hungry college students. If you’re craving stellar Greek food, though, save your money for the Greek festival.

Projection Futility

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

For her weekly Portland Daily Sun column Natalie Ladd looks at the futility of trying to predict when a restaurant will be busy or not.

These things are in addition to the obvious method of comparing sales and head counts. I’ve seen many places with flow charts and graphs, all intended to make food and alcohol ordering, and doing the kitchen and front-of-the house schedule a snap. Contrary to all the “what ifs” and basic common sense, these things just don’t always hold true when predicting how busy it’s going to be. In other words, betting on the timing of the financial peaks and pitfalls of the restaurant business would be foolish for a gambler and chalk up a win for the house at Oxford Casino.

Food Trucks: Urban Sugar Mobile Cafe

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

A new food truck called urbansugarUrban Sugar Mobile Cafe is under development. Owners Valeri and Kevin Sandes will be serving a range of made to order sweet and savory mini gourmet donuts both traditional and more innovative flavors.

Their 70’s vintage ice cream truck (aka Rosie) is currently undergoing renovations. The Sandes plan to launch sometime in the beginning of July and operate on a year-round basis both on the streets of Portland and for catered private events.

Under Construction: Fizz & Compass Rose Restaurant

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

A new business called Fizz is under construction at 345 Fore Street. Owner Johanna Corman she plans on opening Fizz as a “mixology shop and natural soda/mocktail bar”. The small shop will include both a retail space selling bitters, syrups and cocktail making equipment, as well as a small bar that serves house made sodas. The store is likely to be open by mid-summer.

Corman is seeking out and stocking local products such as the Blueberry Bitters produced by Sweetgrass Farm in Maine and Royal Rose Cocktail Syrups as well as those from farther afield. Originally from Maine, she and her husband Steve moved back to the state in 2008 and run the general store on Cliff Island.

A business card in the window at 339 Fore Street indicates that the space is the future home of Compass Rose Restaurant. The owners are Tony and Rose Kratovil.

Under Construction: Black Cat Coffee

Monday, May 27th, 2013

BlackCatCoffee

I stopped by The Honey Exchange Friday to pick-up some equipment and spotted the brown paper and signage for Black Cat Coffee at 463 Stevens Avenue in the space formerly occupied by Good Eats Boutique.

I talked with co-owner Jenny Siler who along with her husband Keith James Dunlap are launching the new coffee shop. Their plan is to create a neighborhood coffee shop for that part of town. They’re talking with a number of local roasters but haven’t made a final decision about whose coffee they’ll use.

The pair just signed the lease last week and are working their way through a very long task list to convert the space. They hope to be open by early August.

Food Trucks: Portside Picnic

Monday, May 27th, 2013

portsidepicnic

The Portside Picnic (facebook, twitter, website) food truck opened for business a couple weeks ago. They’re located in the Back Cove parking lot across the street from Hannaford in space leased from the City of Portland.

Portside Picnic is open 7 days a week, 11 – 4. They source a wide variety of ingredients from local farms and food producers.

This Week’s Events: Donut Showdown, Latte Art Throwdown, In’finiti Rum Riot

Monday, May 27th, 2013

Tuesday — The Holy Donut is holding a viewing party at Brian Boru to watch a screening of Donut Showdown Food Network Canada TV show which features The Holy Donut.

Wednesday — the Monument Square Farmers Market is taking place.

Thursday — there will be a Greek wine tasting at the Public Market House and a rose tasting at the Bier Cellar, Bite into Maine will be the featured food truck at Rising Tide Brewing, the monthly Latte Art Throwdown is taking place at Bard Coffee, and The Great Lost Bear will be showcasing beers from Uinta Brewery.

Saturday — there will be wine tastings at Browne Trading and LeRoux Kitchen, the Deering Oaks Farmers Market of 2013 is taking place, El Corazon will be at Rising Tide as part of the brewery’s weekly food truck series.

SundayIn’finiti is marking the 162nd anniversary of the Portland Rum Riot by launching the rum produced by their own distillery.

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.

Under Construction: Salvage BBQ

Sunday, May 26th, 2013

The folks at Salvage BBQ & Smokehouse have posted some photos of the progress they’re making in renovating 919 Congress Street.

Under Construction: MJ’s, The Bar at One City Wines

Sunday, May 26th, 2013

markoMark Ohlson, the owner of MJ’s, the new wine bar under construction at One City Center has shared some of his plans for the business.

The bar will serve “30 wines by the glass and half glass from around the world focusing on traditional varieties from prominent regions”. He’ll also have a smaller set of local and international beers available. The food menu will consist of a “selection of cheese, nuts, olives and chocolate and appropriate accompaniments”.

Ohlson is a Certified Sommelier. In addition to the wine bar, MJ’s will have an educational program. Starting in September he will be offering “drop in tastings as well as a ten-week course for a simple certification level via The One City Wine Academy (OCWA). A five-week beer course will also be available.”

MJ’s will have “a ‘Wall of Wine’ with maps, books and 40 fragrance jars to help suggest classic wine flavors. And a ‘Wall of Vinyl’ where guest can pick out and play from a selection of classic records or they can bring in their own.”

Mark has worked at a number of restaurants in Portland including Perfetto’s, Bull Feeney’s, Walters, and Hugo’s. He’s currently a bartender at Little Tap House. I first met him when he tended bar at Uffa and then at Frog and Turtle in Westbrook during its first couple years in operation.

Review of Enio’s

Sunday, May 26th, 2013

The Maine Sunday Telegram has published a review of Enio’s.

Delicious Italian-influenced entrees, salads, pastas and snacks that are uncomplicated, updated, nicely portioned and reasonably priced for the quality. Enio’s calls itself a small eatery, and it is. Due to the set-up of the dining area and the no-reservations policy, on busy nights, this restaurant is best for small parties, such as a couple dropping in from the neighborhood or a party of three or four who get the timing right.

Outliers Finalist in Design Competition

Saturday, May 25th, 2013

Remi Designs is a finalists in the American Institute of Architects restaurant design competition for their work on Outliers Eatery. It’s a people’s choice award and voting is open to the public.

Union Bagel’s Opening

Saturday, May 25th, 2013

The Munjoy Hill News has published a report on yesterday’s opening of Union Bagel.

It was almost closing time this afternoon at the brand new Union Bagel Co. and the bagel baskets were all but empty – only about 6 baked-on-site bagels remained unsold.  In other words, THIRTY-FIVE dozen bagles were sold on the opening day of the company.