Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

T. Edward: Hugo’s Central, Vinland

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

NYC wine importer T. Edward was recently in Portland. He’s posted impressions of his meals at Hugo’s, Central Provisions and Vinland.

With an urban appetite and a farmer’s flair, Portland’s dining scene has come of age and is ready for courting. From Hugo’s on Middle Street that first opened in 1999, to Central Provisions and Vinland, both opened just this year, Portland has become a destination for everything local on the plate from umami to briny, to supple creams and tart berries.

Review of Blue Spoon

Friday, September 5th, 2014

The Golden Dish has reviewed Blue Spoon.

A main course of pan-fried flounder was perfectly cooked–flakey, fresh and well-seasoned.  What drew me to the dish, however, was the accompanying side of caramelized green beans. These, however, were merely sautéed and remained al dente but not glazed whatsoever.  The fish had a further garnish of crispy fingerlings and olive oil poached sun gold tomatoes with basil—a pleasing Mediterranean touch, though overall too much oil on the dish.

Review of Lolita

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

The Portland Phoenix has reviewed Lolita.

The medium dishes are the most intriguing on the page, and they deliver on it. In one dish, black trumpets brought out the earthy side of mackerel filet. Lentils, served with just pickled beets, could not have been more perfectly tender or expertly seasoned. Torchino pasta enlivens a simple creamy tomato sauce with the spice and texture of crumbled nduja sausage and the pop of fresh peas.

Review of Slab

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

Portland Magazine has reviewed Slab.

Craving more of that insanely delicious bread–which is nothing like pizza dough–we’re captivated by the Sausage Raab Shoe Bianca ($9) served with a side of “slab gravy.” Crumbled, tender sausage meat is mixed with lots of quality cheeses and tasty, bright green broccoli raab, all tucked into that dreamy pillow of luna lusciousness.

Review of El Corazon, Taco Trio, Hella Good

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

The Portland Phoenix has reviewed El Corazon/Taco Trio/Hella Good.

With relief I instead got the Corazon burrito (on Spring St. near downtown) for half the price. It was great—the tortilla grilled but still spongy, the carne ground up, juicy and infused with spices. The tacos ($2.50) are also quite good. The pork is almost bellyish in its fatty tenderness. The fish has a great tart sauce and just-bitter cabbage crunch. The pulled chicken was tender and herbaceous. The truck itself is a red beauty.

Review of Tandem Bakery

Monday, September 1st, 2014

The Golden Dish has reviewed the new Tandem Bakery.

The custard of the chess pie was flawless, thick and rich with the tang of citrus and buttermilk.  The bottom crust wasn’t soggy, either, though the overall shell was a bit unusual.  It’s an all butter crust, but I’d like to know what Holt is doing to it?  It’s not flakey but crisp instead.

The blueberry crumble-topped pie was another perfect piece of pie.  The filling wasn’t overly sweet but just right and I loved the crunchy, candylike topping.

Reviews: Ruski’s, Buck’s

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

The Press Herald has posted a bar review of Ruski’s,

And this ease-of-attitude – there’s absolutely no pretention or bar brawl disorder – seems to be a vibe everyone catches when they step through the door at Ruski’s. There’s a sense of respect whether you’ve been coming here for decades or just stumbled upon the corner bar for the first time.

While not a place to find a craft cocktail, Ruski’s is a fully stocked bar with 12 taps and a number of nightly cheap beer specials that are available until 1 a.m.

and a review of Buck’s Naked BBQ.

The brisket was served on a soft brioche bun, and I added a healthy dose of the house barbecue sauce. I don’t need a lot of heat with my meat, but I enjoy a mild kick. The meat was tender and came apart easily in sandwich-sized bites. A knife and fork were not necessary.

Reviews: Central Provisions & Boone’s

Tuesday, August 26th, 2014

Tufts Now has reviewed Central Provisions,

Duck liver crostini have been finding their way onto a number of menus. This version, complemented with kumquats, fried shallot and fresh oregano, set the bar for elevated expectations. Our follow-up of caramelized Miticana sheep cheese from Spain with peaches and 15-year aged balsamic nearly prompted an immediate encore.

and Drink-up and Get Happy has reviewed Boone’s.

Overall it was a great evening enjoying some of the best that Portland has to offer.  While the specials at Boone’s sister restaurants may be a little better, you can’t beat Boone’s for ample patio space, good drinks, and great views!

Review of Duckfat

Sunday, August 24th, 2014

The Maine Sunday Telegram has reviewed Duckfat.

I find the fried onions, pork belly and ham (which Ben recently delivered here), delectable eaten straight up with my fingers, while Ben cuts the Sorella’s Bakehouse brioche rolls in half to fill with various combos of ham and fried onions or duck terrine and pickles. His works of art look like the perfect highbrow sandwich, though still providing lowbrow delight.

Review of J’s Oyster Bar

Saturday, August 23rd, 2014

Peter Peter Portland Eater has reviewed J’s Oyster Bar.

J’s has the distinction of being one of the finest dives in Portland – a place where moderately low class and culinary arts class intersect to make a burping, bubbling cauldron of absolute awesome that is as entertaining as it is delicious. Everything about the restaurant says “party like is 1983 and feel free to drink like it’s the prohibition.”

Zagat: 10 Hottest Restaurants in Portland

Thursday, August 21st, 2014

Zagat has published their list (and the above video) of the 10 Hottest Restaurants in Portland.

On the list: Blue Rooster, Central Provisions, Duckfat, Eventide, Fore Street, Hunt & Alpine, Lolita, Piccolo, Slab, Timber, Vinland

BA Best New Lists: Central Provisions & Hunt & Alpine

Tuesday, August 19th, 2014

BA201409Bon Appetit recognized a pair of Portland hot spots as two of the best new venues in the country.

Review of The King’s Head

Sunday, August 17th, 2014

Peter Peter Portland Eater has review The King’s Head.

After drinking my Rob Roy, I smeared some after shave on my face, donned my vintage fedora, built a massive bonfire, and started a fight. Then I asked for the bill. It came to just under 70 bucks after tip. What a great place The King’s Head is.  I actually really loved it. The food was very good, the drinks were great, and the atmosphere had me fired up. As masculine as I felt The King’s Head was, there were plenty of women there who seemed to be enjoying themselves. This is a place for everyone. Get down there now and down some whiskey and a beer so you too can experience The King’s Head.

Reviews: The Good Table, Slab

Saturday, August 16th, 2014

The Press Herald has published a bar review of Slab,

The cocktail menu is a compact list of six rotating drinks — given how new Slab is, the bartenders are still collaborating on drink specials and house cocktails. Recently, the Fly Right was served as a special. Made with Luxardo, lemon juice, Art in the Age Sage (a sage liqueur), shaken with blueberries and then topped off with Kellerweis from Sierra Nevada, this “beer cocktail” is a bargain at $9.

and The Golden Dish has reviewed The Good Table.

That pie alone made the whole dinner worthwhile.  I may have had some quibbles with the food, but it was tasty enough, served in an absolutely gracious and friendly atmosphere.  And sometimes that’s just enough to deem dinner satisfying.

Review of 2DineIn

Thursday, August 14th, 2014

Chubby Werewolf has reviewed 2DineIn.

Overall, I’ve found ordering from 2 Dine In to be a very positive experience…There is, without question, a lot to be said for the dining-out experience, and you certainly miss a lot of it—ambiance, presentation, etc.—when ordering delivery food. That said, the ability to enjoy the occasional restaurant meal—in your underwear, while watching “Shark Week”—without having to endure some of the headaches of downtown dining, can be quite a nice thing…I’m a fan overall, and would love to see more Portland restaurants (are you listening, Silly’s?) get involved with the 2 Dine In in the future.

Review of Clark Street

Thursday, August 14th, 2014

The Press Herald has reviewed Clark Street Deli.

The roll was more like a small loaf of bread in size, and also in its combination of chewy crust and a fluffy inside. The white meat chicken was very tender, in a batter that while not light, was not greasy either. The chicken was still hot from the fryer when I got my sandwich. The ham and Swiss cheese were of a better-than-average quality.

Review of East Ender

Wednesday, August 13th, 2014

Eating Portland Alive has reviewed East Ender.

I chose two ‘du jour’ items from the board, a poptart and donut.  The poptart was a savory one, which I think is a killer idea. The lamb meat could have used a touch more seasoning as it had a lot of dough (which was a perfect consistency) to compete with. The double-stacked donuts were extremely tasty, though when I cut through some parts it was a bit custard-like and not as fluffy. Any textural issues were completely overshadowed by the amazing combination of the blood orange &  blueberry topping.

Blue Rooster Chef Series: Eventide Dog

Monday, August 11th, 2014

Chubby Werewolf has reviewed the Eventide Dog at Blue Rooster.

That said, the reason you absolutely must try the Eventide dog is the impossibly soft, delightfully chewy bun, which is the same one used in Eventide’s lobster rolls. (I seriously want to buy this stuff in 50 pound bags and take a nap in it.) The ratio of bun-to-meat was perfect, and the textural contrast of the spongy bun against the grilled hot dog made this thing a joy to eat…

Telling Room Project: Vena’s Fizz House

Sunday, August 10th, 2014

The Portland Phoenix has published a set of food, music and art reviews produced by students taking a summer workshop with The Telling Room. Four student reviews of Vena’s Fizz House by Sierra Aponte Clark, Elinor Hilton, Cori Green and Otto Wolyniec were included in the Phoenix article.

Two weeks ago, the organization hosted Review Camp, a week-long forum where greater Portland students (aged 10-14) learned to write critically about arts and cultural activities in the area, training their sights on a music video by indie-pop singer-songwriter Sara Hallie Richardson, the newish soda parlor Vena’s Fizz House in the Old Port, and art shows at SPACE Gallery and the Portland Museum of Art.

Reviews: Grace, Maria’s

Sunday, August 10th, 2014

The Maine Sunday Telegram has reviewed Grace,

Dining in a former church is a one-of-a-kind experience that can only be had at a handful of establishments across the country, Grace being a notable example. While the restored 1850s historical landmark is stunning and awe-inspiring, the menu holds its own with local and exotic ingredients, steaks, seafood, whimsical touches and a nice selection of cheeses and sweetbreads, as well as cleverly named cocktails. It’s also a great space for events and weddings.

and The Golden Dish has reviewed Maria’s Ristorante.

In the final analysis, is Maria’s just a memento of the past?  No, it’s more than that – a primeval forest that Portlanders are not ready to give up, a dining shibboleth that still struts along without the help of a striving chef or plates of vertical food and foam.  Instead go for the rivers of saltimbocca and scaloppini and other comfy relics from a kitchen that we secretly adore.