Archive for the ‘General News’ Category

Best of Portland Readership Poll

Saturday, April 2nd, 2016

The Portland Phoenix has selected the nominees and voting has begun for the 2016 Best of Portland readership poll.

There are 50+ Food and Drink categories ranging from bagels and barbecue to wine tastings and wings for you to  vote in plus categories for City Life, Arts & Entertainment, Shopping and Services.

Portland Food Map is a nominee for Best Food Blog/Column (along with 207 Foodie and Eat & Run) and for Best Blog (along with Active Beer Geek, Black Girl in Maine, Eating Portland Alive and Hot Trash Portland).

2 Perspectives on Minimum Wage Referendum

Wednesday, March 30th, 2016

The Press Herald has provided space on their op/ed page for both Five Fifty-Five co-owner, Michelle Corry, and a server at the restaurant, Heather McIntosh, to share their perspectives on the referendum to increase the state’s minimum wage.

The paper also followed up yesterday to interview them others about the opposing views on the issue,

The debate over the tipped minimum wage has restaurant workers and their employers – in some restaurants, anyway – talking about more than plating sauces and table turnover, especially when they are at odds with one another. The initiative would gradually increase the minimum wage paid to tip earners from $3.75 to $5 per hour in 2017, then add a dollar a year until tipped employees make the same minimum wage as other workers. That means by 2024, they would be earning $12 an hour.

Maine Restaurant Week Participation

Wednesday, March 16th, 2016

An article in the Bangor Daily News explores why fewer restaurants outside the immediate area of Portland participate in Maine Restaurant Week.

With only two Bangor restaurants participating versus 40 in Portland, it begs the question: if this really is Maine Restaurant Week, why weren’t more restaurants north of Portland involved this year?

 

 

What Not to Do

Wednesday, March 9th, 2016

Dispatch magazine has published on What Not to Do When Opening a Restaurant,

The restaurant business is one of the riskiest ventures around, especially in a city like Portland that has reached the saturation point. I’ve worked in them my whole life, and have seen a lot of failures as well as success stories. But don’t rely on my advice alone — I’ve rounded up local food scene veterans to add their two cents.

2016 Best of Portland Readership Poll

Thursday, March 3rd, 2016

The Portland Phoenix has kicked-off their 2016 Best of Portland readership poll. The Phoenix uses a 2 step process:

  • Step 1, nominate the entries that you feel are the strongest candidate for each category.
  • Step 2, in April the Phoenix will publish a ballot with the top 5 nominees in each category and the final voting takes place.

There are 50+ food and drink categories ranging from bagels and barbecue to wine tastings and wings—there’s even one for Best Food Blog/Column.

Harvest on the Harbor Sold

Thursday, February 25th, 2016

The Press Herald reports the Harvest on the Harbor conference has been sold.

The buyers are Stefanie Manning and Gabrielle Garofalo, partners in Portland-based S&G LLC.

Manning is the vice president of marketing and circulation at MaineToday Media and Garofalo owns Gabrielle Garofalo Inc. Consulting & Creative Energy in New York City, where she has worked on the 2012 Billboard Music Awards and New York Magazine’s annual Taste of New York culinary event.

Brew Bus Expands to Boston

Saturday, February 20th, 2016

The Maine Brew Bus has announced plans to expand into the Boston market.

In the Greater Boston area there are dozens of small and medium breweries, distilleries, and wineries. Many of these businesses are brand new or not even open yet, and they do not currently have visits from any tour operators.

Over the past three years we have been refining our business with an eye towards offering our popular style of tours in other areas. And Boston is a logical next market for us.

James Beard Awards Process

Thursday, February 11th, 2016

JBF_AWARDS_MEDALLION-BLOGThe Beard Foundation will release the list of semi-finalists for this year’s awards program next week. While we wait to find out what Maine chefs and restaurants made the cut, I thought it would be good time to research how the Foundation selects nominees and pick the winners.

Here’s what the process looks like:

October 2015 The Beard Foundation put out an open call for the public to submit their suggestions. In 2014 35,000 entries were received.

Late 2015 250 regional panelists (25 for each of the 10 regions) submit their recommendations.

Early 2016 the Restaurant and Chefs Awards Committee review submissions from panelists and the public to select the strongest contenders in each category.

February 17 The “long list” of semi-final nominees is released.

February/March regional panelists, former award winners and committee members—about 600 people in all—vote. The top 5 entries in each category are become nominees. Ballots are sent out and votes are tabulated by the independent accounting firm Lutz & Carr.

March 15 the “short list” of nominees is released.

March/April A final ballot is conducted with the same group (panelists, winners, and committee members) to determine the winner in each of the categories.

May 2 the winners are announced at the Beard Awards Gala in Chicago.

There are a total of 21 restaurant and chef awards in 12 categories. Maine chefs and restaurants have been in the running every year for at least the past decade.

  • Outstanding Restaurateur
  • Outstanding Chef
  • Outstanding Restaurant
  • Rising Star Chef of the Year
  • Best New Restaurant
  • Outstanding Pastry Chef
  • Outstanding Baker
  • Outstanding Service
  • Outstanding Wines, Beer, or Spirits Professional
  • Outstanding Wine Program
  • Outstanding Bar Program
  • Best Chefs for each of the 10 Regions

For more information visit the Policies and Procedures page on the JBF website.

First Bite & Graziano Exhibit

Wednesday, February 10th, 2016

Today’s Press Herald examined how people’s first date food choices sometimes signal the fate of a relationship,

Carolyn is the sort of person with several small mason jars of excellent and varied loose leaves in her cupboard at any time. She knows how to brew a cup. The prospect of a lifetime of meals and hot beverages with a man who would serve Lipton’s tea (and on a first date, yet, the time one is most striving to impress) – well, suffice it to say, there was no second date.

and an article on the Graziano restaurant exhibit and Roux & Cyr Gallery.

Over Thanksgiving, Graziano and Poland photographer Michael McAllister spent two days in a half-dozen Portland restaurants, taking photos in the kitchen and on the floor. They capped their research with a meal at the Grill Room. Using the photos as source material, Graziano made two dozen oil paintings from his experience. They hang this month at Roux & Cyr International Fine Art Gallery on Free Street in Portland. In March, the gallery will show McAllister’s photos.

Restaurant Design

Wednesday, February 3rd, 2016

An article in the Bangor Daily News explores the role design plays in the success of a restaurant,

In a booming dining city such as Portland, where new restaurants open monthly, restaurateurs need more than a hot chef to keep their rooms full. Intrigue created through lighting, tone, decor — all the elements of design create a subtle theater that seduces diners as they indulge and quaff.

“These days, if everyone is Instagramming their meals and the restaurant space, you know you’re doing something right,” Jim Brady, developer and co-owner of UNION at The Press Hotel, said.

Roustabout, Union, Evo, Grace are all cited in the article.

Pine Pitch Press: Narrative Cookbook

Sunday, January 31st, 2016

pinepitchPine Pitch Press has put out an open call for submissions for their newest book, a Maine narrative cookbook.

If you want to test the limits of your gluten allergy, or figure out how your mom made that birthday cake, or recreate the first meal you made in college that wasn’t in a hot pot, here’s your chance. We don’t want to just hear your golden-hued memories of Nana’s Thanksgiving stuffing (though we do want that). We want the recipe for the lasagna you can only make, for whatever reason, when you’re sad. We want the special sauce for your third straight loss in the town BBQ championship. We want, above all, to hear not just how you make something but how you make it yours.

The narrative part? Well, that’s up to you. Basically, it’s anything that’s not pure instruction.Tell us how you found the ingredients. Or cut and paste a poem from the back of the Barilla box. Or shoot a photo essay of all the people that pass by your door while you’re waiting on the beef bourguignon. There has to be a recipe that is somewhat make-able and then…something else. We’re ready to be surprised and confused.

Pine Pitch Press is based in Portland. They specialize in “publishing the written, drawn or otherwise printable in small-batch anthologies”.

Portland Restaurant Staff Meals

Wednesday, January 27th, 2016

Today’s Press Herald features a behind the scenes look at restaurant staff meals.

Staff meal, or family meal, is a longstanding restaurant tradition of serving the staff lunch or dinner. Restaurant workers can’t leave their jobs during a shift to grab a sandwich if they get hungry like office workers sometimes do. They are either prepping furiously for service or serving customers. The practice of staff meal varies widely, from elaborate meals where staff gather together around a communal table, to a big discount on anything ordered off the regular menu, to nothing at all. The food is often leftovers, combined with what’s available in the walk-in, and is prepared by the kitchen staff.

Good Shepherd Food Bank

Sunday, January 24th, 2016

Today’s Sunday Telegram includes a feature article on extensive infrastructure built and good works done by the Good Shepherd Food Bank.

A multimillion-dollar food distribution network is expanding in Maine to meet the needs of more than 200,000 residents who otherwise would be hungry, a condition that’s worsening despite an overall improving economy.

Eater Maine Discontinued

Tuesday, January 19th, 2016

Eater Maine announced earlier today that, effective immediately, they plan discontinue their coverage of Maine food news on the site. Editor Adam Callaghan is moving to Washington State take on responsibility for Eater Seattle.

As of today, Eater Maine will discontinue the food and restaurant world coverage that’s been our modus operandi since 2012. As editor, I’m sad to see the site go. It’s been a distinct pleasure for me to play a role in Maine’s growing food scene, which changed so drastically from when I was growing up here to when I returned as an adult five years ago. Come Monday, the site will deliver periodic updates to important maps, but no daily food news. Eater.com and Eater Boston will continue on as news resources for northeastern food culture.

Zoning Blocks Brewery Snack Sales

Thursday, January 7th, 2016

The Press Herald reports that Portland zoning on Industrial Way currently blocks breweries from selling pretzels and other packaged snacks with their beer.

A city zoning administrator has denied the Allagash Brewing Co.’s request to sell prepackaged snacks – such as chips, popcorn and trail mix – to beer tasters at the company’s brewery on Industrial Way, an area that has become a hotbed for beer enthusiasts who flock to its cluster of breweries to sample and buy fresh beer and ale. An Allagash representative will appear Thursday before the city’s Zoning Board of Appeals to try to have the ruling overturned.

“We’re not trying to expand our business,” said Jill Perry, Allagash’s retail manager. “We’re just trying to be responsible purveyors of alcohol.”