City Defines Sidewalk Dining Rules

April 25th, 2015

The City has detailed rules governing restaurant sidewalk dining spaces.

The permit application that restaurants must submit to apply for outdoor seating spells out clear measurements for how much sidewalk space their tables and chairs can take up, and how many feet of pedestrian space must be maintained.

For restaurants without sidewalks wide enough to support outdoor dining, businesses can request to use a parking space, or appeal to planners for an exemption.

Review of Sur Lie

April 25th, 2015

The Golden Dish has reviewed Sur Lie.

Everything was so good that I felt no need to end the meal with a final sweet, of which there are some tempting choices on the menu.  But one fact is certain.  Sur-Lie has hit its stride since it opened in October of last year.  Now it’s right up there with the best in town and should be indubitably on the top of your list to enjoy fine dining in Portland.

Bon Appétit: Tandem Bakery

April 24th, 2015

ba_briana2The May issue of Bon Appétit features Tandem Bakery in their article Will Fly for Food which highlights 29 locations worldwide “to get lost and fed”.

A cool coffee bar tucked inside a brilliantly restored old gas station? This is Tandem Coffee + Bakery in cozy Portland, Maine, where you’ll find some of the most impressive and innovative baked goods this country has seen in years. Here’s why we’re heading north for our sugar fix.

The article includes a sidebar which lists a few other venues in town: Bao Bao, Bissell Brothers, East Ender, Maine & Loire, Slab, The Danforth Inn, The Press Hotel.

The magazine should begin arriving in mailboxes and on newsstands in the next few days.

Review of East Ender

April 24th, 2015

The Portland Phoenix has reviewed the East Ender.

So the low-key remake of East Ender offers a boost to a block now packed with good restaurants. It is quite a change from last year when the bright orange Small Axe Truck stood loud, proud and alone in Bayside or Congress Square Park. The truck was named for the Bob Marley song about the power of small efforts to result in big change. Perhaps in abandoning the truck for the East Ender, the chefs hope to follow the path of their new neighborhood’s anchor — Hugo’s, which chef Rob Evans similarly bought and remade under its original name. It was a subtle change that gave birth to a food empire. The truck-magic often results in something significant and long lasting — teen-pregnancy and parenthood, for example, or a Clinton presidency, perhaps. The new East Ender should be around a long while, too.

More Yarmouth News

April 23rd, 2015

Urban Eye reports that Lolita/Hilltop Coffee owners Guy and Stella Hernandez will be opening  a cafe in Yarmouth in the same building as the new Otto.

Developer Sean Ireland purchased the corner market, which resembles Mr. Hooper’s Store (complete with awning). After interviewing 30 prospective coffee slingers, he tapped Guy and Stella Hernandez of Hilltop Coffee and Lolita to open a cafe.

Bar Review of JP’s

April 23rd, 2015

The Press Herald has published a bar review of JP’s Bistro.

JP’s Bistro is a small neighborhood restaurant specializing in Italian dishes and craft cocktails. Capacity is about 50, but the bistro doesn’t leave much room left over. Reservations are recommended, even at the bar on weekend nights. The bar is snug, but comfortable, and you’ll likely strike up a conversation with the friendly staff as you enjoy expertly made cocktails, craft beer on tap and a solid wine list.

Deering Castle RFP

April 22nd, 2015

The City has released an RFP to run a food concession in the Deering Oaks “Castle-in-the-Park”. The city is looking for a entrepreneur who is interested in turning the 435 sq ft building into a cafe that serves “to the public a variety of food products and beverages at a reasonable cost”. Interested parties are required to participate in a mandatory meeting at 10am at City Hall.

what do you think would be a good idea for a cafe in Deering Oaks?

Yankee’s Best of New England

April 21st, 2015

yankeeSeveral Portland area food enterprises have been recognized by Yankee magazine in their annual Best of New England list:

  • Maine Brew Bus for Best Brewery Tour
  • Vinland for Best Locavore Restaurant
  • Li’s Chinese Express in Freeport for Best Chinese Food Cart
  • Bresca and the Honey Bee in New Gloucester for Best Lakeside Snack Shack


MK Kitchen

April 21st, 2015

Urban Eye has posted a report on MK Kitchen in Gorham.

Finally a key corner space in this sleepy downtown became available and Kaldrovich and his wife Lisa, a Gorham native, pounced. “I have wanted to do this my whole life,” said Kaldrovich, an Argentinean with a pan-European background who grew up grilling meats and learning handmade gnocchi from his Italian grandmother. He made good on that dream last weekend when MK Kitchen opened on School and South streets.

This Week’s Events: Bartender Yearbook, 1st Deering Oaks Farmers’ Market, Chopped Challenge, BYOB Hot Dog Night

April 20th, 2015

Tuesday — chef Sam Richman will be collaborating with Tandem on a BYOB Hot Dog night at the Bakery,  a photo shoot for the 2015 Bartender Yearbook is taking place at Hunt and Alpine, and the local foods networking breakfast is being hosted by Local Sprouts.

Thursday — A lecture on Responsible Seafood Farming is taking place at GMRI, and there will be a beer and cheese tasting at the Public Market House.

Friday — an Austrian wine event is taking place at Grace featuring 7 wineries and 40+ wines.

Saturday — the first Deering Oaks Farmers’ Market of the season is taking place, and Novare Res is holding the 4th Annual Farmhouse Funkadelic.

Sunday — Grace is hosting the 2015 Chopped Challenge, Larry Matthews is the featured chef at this month’s Flanagan’s Table dinner, and Maine & Loire is holding a wine tasting.

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.

Otto in Yarmouth

April 19th, 2015

The Press Herald report that Otto Pizza will be opening a new location in Yarmouth.

Yarmouth’s quaint Main Street is poised to become ground zero for a pizza war. Otto Pizza will be one of three businesses sharing space in Andy’s Handy Store in Yarmouth when the building’s renovation is completed later this year.

The arrival of Otto Pizza will leave the town of 8,400 residents with four pizzerias within one mile of one another.

MK Kitchen Opening Sunday

April 17th, 2015

MK Kitchen(website, facebook) have announced they’ll be opening this coming Sunday. MK is the creation of Mitchell Kaldrovich, former chef at the Inn by the Sea, and his wife Lisa who has worked the past 8 years at Fore Street. MK Kitchen will serve a menu of contemporary American cuisine which Kaldrovich described earlier this year as “simple handmade food, all from scratch from desserts to pastas”.

Under Construction: South Portland Brewpub

April 17th, 2015

The Press Herald, The Forecaster, and Eater Maine all report that a new brepub is under development in South Portland at 15 Ocean Street.

Julia and Craig Dilger have purchased an abandoned repair shop at 15 Ocean Street in South Portland and plan to turn it into a new neighborhood brewpub.

The couple, who live in Portland, say their as-yet-unnamed pub will “offer an unpretentious yet modern and comfortable aesthetic in terms of food, drink and experience.” They plan to offer family brunch on the weekends, “Pints and Purls” knit nights, and bicycle racks for folks riding the nearby Eastern Trail who want to stop in for some refreshment.

Zimmern’s Top BBQ

April 16th, 2015

Bizarre Foods host Andrew Zimmern has included Salvage BBQ in his list of the top barbecue spots in the country.

I ate here a few months ago and demolished a platter of pork ribs and a pile of some of the best sliced brisket in recent memory, and I still managed to roll over to the counter and eat a quarter chicken because I couldn’t leave without ingesting more smoke and sauce. Food geeks will be inspired and—dare I say it?—barbecue freaks will travel here and be made happy, despite their contrarian, contemptuous hang-ups about geographic authenticity.

Bar Review of Vena’s Fizz House

April 16th, 2015

The Press Herald has reviewed the bar at Vena’s.

Vena’s Fizz House is the cutest soda bar in existence, and it just got a lot cuter with its recent addition of alcoholic beverages. Owners Johanna and Steve are incredibly welcoming, creative and seem to genuinely love what they do. The cocktails and mocktails are nothing you’ve ever tasted before and are served in vintage glassware found by Johanna. Vena’s is a must-visit.

The Honey Paw Opening Today (Updated)

April 15th, 2015


The Honey Paw(instagram, twitter, facebook) is scheduled to open today at noon. The “non-denominational noodle restaurant” has been launched the owners of Hugo’s and Eventide: Arlin Smith, Andrew Taylor and Mike Wiley.

The Honey Paw menu is organized into 5 unnamed, numerically designated sections: 001 – 005. Essentially breaking down into: bar snacks, appetizers, noodle-based dishes, entrees and dessert.

When you go be sure to try the Wok Fried Wide Rice Noodles with squid, mussels, Chinese sausage and scallions.

Update: The Blueberry Files has posted some photos from her first meal at The Honey Paw.

Under Construction: Joy’s Crepe Cafe

April 15th, 2015

Former Merry Table customers may soon have a new way to get their crepe fix. Joy’s Crepe Cafe is currently under construction at 849 Forest Ave in the space that had been home to Haggarty’s.

The Farm Stand Wins Source Award

April 14th, 2015

The Press Herald announced the winners of the inaugural Source Awards over the weekend. Among the recipients was The Farm Stand in the Newcomer category.

“Indispensable,” one nominator gushed of our winner for the Source Newcomer Award, for a business or entity established in the last 18 months. Another credited The Farm Stand, the brainchild of Penny Jordan and Ben Slayton of Farmers’ Gate butchery in Wales, with allowing them to “effortlessly integrate” the mission of eating local into their lives.

Bar Review of El Rayo

April 14th, 2015

Drink Up and Get Happy has posted a happy hour review of El Rayo.

El Rayo Scarborough is definitely a stand-out on Route One and is a great spot to catch a delicious drink without having to venture in town. Give it a chance if you live or work nearby, it’s worth the visit. They also have daily specials Sunday – Wednesday if you can’t make their happy hours or need something more substantial to accompany your drinks.

Under Construction: Rosen’s Deli (Updated)

April 13th, 2015

Contrary to earlier reports, Rosen’s Full Belly Deli will be located in Westbrook rather than the Old Port. A hand written sign in the window of the former Blue Burrito space at 652 Main Street indicates that “Rosen’s Deli” will be opening at that location in May.

Update: for additional information see this report by the Press Herald.