Reviews: Fore Street & Fishermen’s Grill

July 3rd, 2014

Diningsense has reviewed Fore Street,

As a veteran Fore Street customer, I thought I knew what to expect but this meal blew us away. The ingredients were well-sourced as always, but this meal displayed a level of precision that I’ve never seen and so this was my favorite meal of the year to this point. Past favorites were perfectly executed, while new plates confirmed that the kitchen’s creative faculties remain intact.

and Peter Peter Portland Eater has reviewed Fishermen’s Grill.

I finished my wife’s meal and after spending close to 80 bucks on lunch, we were pretty full. I was happy. The lobster roll wasn’t what I was looking for, but fortunately, that was the outlier of the meal. I really wonder what the issue was as their other food was so good. I loved the diveyness of the place and almost everything about the place was really enjoyable. I would definitely go back, but unless I found out there were some changes to it, I’d avoid the lobster and probably choose something fried.

Washington Ave: Oxbow Tasting Room & a New Restaurant

July 2nd, 2014

Two new under construction updates surfaced on Tuesday via an article in the Press Herald Real Estate section. The article (not available online) talked about the renovations to the old Nissen Bakery building at 75 Washington Ave.

New developments include:

  • An Oxbow Warehouse and Tasting Room – I talked with Oxbow co-owner Tim Adams and he confirmed that Oxbow is the “well-known local brewery” mentioned in the article. Oxbow has taken over 10,000 sq. ft. of space (instagram photo) in the building—a huge increase over the 800 sq. ft. they currently operate out of in Newcastle. In addition to tanks for conditioning, aging and equipment for bottling their beer, Oxbow also plans to open a Portland tasting room. The tasting room is being designed by local artist Will Sears and Sam Gilbert.
  • A New Restaurant – the article confirms the rumors around town about a restaurant going in on Washington Ave. It will be located in the retail spaces that are currently vacant. More details will no doubt emerge once they sign the lease.

Under Construction: Tandem Bakery

July 2nd, 2014

Alex Steed has interviewed co-owner Briana Holt about the upcoming Tandem Bakery in the West End.

What can folks expect from the new West End shop?
It is going to be the awesome. There will be Tandem Coffee, of course, which they already serve at the East Bayside location. What we kind of want is a neighborhood joint that is focused on yummy, comforting-but-cool,  American-style baking…

Hilltop Superette

July 2nd, 2014

The Blueberry Files has posted a report on the new Hilltop Superette which just opened on Monday.

Hilltop Superette has been remodeled, but the layout is very similar to Colucci’s. The ceilings seem higher and the deli and checkout counters are raised as well. It’s very clean and bright, with a modern retro feel. 
I was immediately impressed with the selection of dry goods on the shelves. I saw Kraft Velveeta shells and cheese next to Cascadian Farms organic cereal, Thai Kitchen curry pastes next to Shake’n’Bake. 

Reviews: El Tipico & East Ender

July 2nd, 2014

The Bollard has reviewed El Tipico,

All the main courses (platos principales) come with either the aforementioned yellow rice and black peas or white rice and pinto beans. I recommend the former. I also suggest you wash everything down with a cold beer (my friends and I drank Modelo), though Tipico also offers an enticing selection of natural fruit juices, including passion fruit and tamarindo (made with tamarind). Bring cash for a tip (the credit card machine isn’t set up to process tips), an empty belly and an open mind. You’ll leave a believer.

and the East Ender.

The other entrées, including a smoked brisket hash ($12) and a salmon gravlax plate ($13), were also good, though nothing topped the high bar set by the killer first course. We all left the East Ender happy and full. And really — can you put a price on that? Yes, of course you can. And it’s way less than dinner.

Portland & Rochester Closing

July 1st, 2014

Portland & Rochester has announced that they’re closing their doors.

Hello to all our friends out there. Thank you all for a wonderful year, it’s been amazing serving you and going through the growth of our beautiful restaurant with you.

Portland & Rochester Pub will be open Today, tomorrow and possibly Thursday this week and then we will be closing our doors. Tegan & I really wanted to be able to run the Pub as well as our Bar Harbor Lobster Pound, but it is proving to be a little too much to handle them both.

PFM Top Ten for June 2014

July 1st, 2014

The 10 eateries looked up most often on Portland Food Map in June were:

  1. Timber (-)
  2. The King’s Head Pub (-)
  3. Slab (-)
  4. Central Provisions (1)
  5. Blue Rooster (44)
  6. Thurston’s (-)
  7. Lolita (-)
  8. Back Bay Grill (8)
  9. Portland Lobster Co. (>50)
  10. DiMillo’s (>50)

The numbers in parentheses indicates their rank last month.

David Turin at the Beard House

July 1st, 2014

davidsopustenDavid Turin, chef/owner of Opus Ten, David’s and David’s 388, will be preparing a meal at the James Beard House this fall on October 21st.

Under Construction: Ten Ten Pié

July 1st, 2014

Ten Ten Pié has announced that Atsuko Fujimoto will be heading up the kitchen in the new eatery.

Ten Ten Pié is proud to announce Markos´ partner: Atsuko Fujimoto of Miyake. Atsuko will be the mastermind in the kitchen, blending traditional French pastry, Japanese culinary discipline, and multi-cultural flavors to offer unique morning pastries, freshly prepared snacks, and take-out lunches and dinners.

Fujimoto comes to Ten Ten Pié from Miyake but has also worked at Fore Street and Standard Baking. Fujimoto and partner Markos Miller hope to open in August.

Review of El Rayo

July 1st, 2014

Peter Peter Portland Eater has reviewed El Rayo.

El Rayo was great and always is. Their prices are reasonable, their food is delicious, and the service is where it should be. The outdoor area is really fun and with umbrellas at the tables you don’t have to worry about getting scorched by the sun. For added outdoor cooling, the drink menu lists a host of refreshing cocktails. The bands that play there add even more happiness to your Mexican merriment and they don’t play at ear-bleed levels so you can actually converse with others at your table. I recommend El Rayo year round, but if you really want to party, head there on a sunny summer day and enjoy all it has to offer.

Pocket Brunch Launches Pocket Cruise

June 30th, 2014

The Pocket Brunch crew is launching Pocket Cruise, a monthly sunset cruise aboard the Frances with food and drink.

The first Pocket Cruise is scheduled for July 10, 6-8 pm. Ticket are now on sale.

This Week’s Events: Hilltop, Year in Burgundy, CBD’s 20th, Dogfish Dinner

June 30th, 2014

MondayHilltop Superette is scheduled to open today. The Nickelodeon is screening A Year in Burgundy; a pre-screening party will take place at MJ’s Wine Bar and a post-screening party at Petite Jacqueline.

TuesdayCoffee by Design is celebrating their 20th Anniversary and there will be a Dogfish Head dinner at In’finiti.

Wednesday — the Monument Square Farmers Market is taking place.

ThursdayBlack Tie is holding a farm dinner, there will be a Baxter Brewing tasting at the Bier Cellar, and the Great Lost Bear is holding their Red, White and Blue showcase.

Friday — it’s the Fourth of July and First Friday Art Walk is taking place.

Saturday — there will be a wine tasting at LeRoux Kitchen, and the Deering Oaks Farmers Market 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.

Under Construction: Craft Beer Store (Updated)

June 30th, 2014

111commercialst111 Commercial Street, the space formerly occupied by Port Bean Cafe, has been leased. The new owners plan on opening a retail craft beer store.

Update: The new store will be part of the multi-state Craft Beer Cellar chain. For additional info see this report on Eater Maine.

Uncle Andy’s Before, During and After

June 30th, 2014

Peter Peter Portland Eater has published a first person account of his time as a volunteer on the Uncle Andy’s Restaurant Impossible construction crew and impressions of the South Portland diner from  before and after the renovations.

I made a return trip to Uncle Andy’s shortly after the renovation. I really wanted to see how the place was holding up. I wondered if it was possible that they would just magically turn everything around as there were so many changes made which I’m sure included lots of happenings that I never saw including training of the staff and the like.

Reviews: Corner Room, Thurston’s & Blue Rooster

June 30th, 2014

Drink-up and Get Happy has published a bar review of The Corner Room,

Overall happy hour at The Corner Room was a great deal. Excellent prices on drinks and delicious, plentiful free food make it a great place to go for any occasion, though if you are going to be a larger group make sure to get there early or you may not have space for you. You’ll leave having enjoyed a great evening without shelling out much cash at all.

Chubby Werewolf has reviewed the latest chef series hot dog at the Blue Rooster,

The baked white beans (you can see a glimpse of them on the right-hand side of the hot dog in the masthead image) was almost like a bean mash. With the mustard, radicchio and the red onions delivering much more assertive flavors, I think that the idea behind the beans was to offer something texturally distinctive. For me, it worked. And, much like last week’s Mac & Cheese dog, the combination of “franks & beans” brought back childhood memories of summertime picnics and family gatherings.

and The Golden Dish has reviewed Thurston’s Wicked Good Burgers.

Ultimately fast-food burgers have a distinctive taste no matter what’s in them. Thurston’s offers a decent burger, great ice cream and a comfortable place in which to have a quick, inexpensive meal.

In’finiti Oat Whiskey

June 28th, 2014

In’finiti has announced they’ll be launching an oat-based whiskey next week.

For those of you keeping track, this will make the 4th craft whiskey from Maine. The other three are:

  • Gunpowder Rye from New England Distilling
  • Fifty Stone from Maine Craft Distilling
  • Baby Bourbon from Wiggly Bridge

BFC: Blind Lobster Roll Tasting

June 28th, 2014

For the latest episode of Booze, Fish & Coffee hosts Bo Bigelow and Brian Ericson conduct a blind lobster roll tasting.

Film Crew at Fort Williams: Pressure Cooker

June 27th, 2014

A film crew from the Jane Street production company is scheduled to be at Fort Williams Park today shooting for an episode of a new show called Pressure Cooker.

From what I’ve heard it’s a cook-off style show with Portland being the second of three stops (Philadelphia is next). The crew will be setting up a kitchen in Fort Williams for the filming today.

Jane Street owners have produced Chopped among other shows for the Food Network.

Bon Appétit & Condé Nast Traveler Visit Maine

June 27th, 2014

ba201407Bon Appétit & Condé Nast Traveler magazines have both published articles in their July issues about Maine.

According to Bon Appétit’s Genevieve Morgan, “Maine…has finally managed to become, well, cool.” She goes on to write,

For decades, visiting Maine meant a predictable diet of lobster and lighthouses. What’s happening today up and down the coast goes way beyond that. Artisans and farmers have taken the local-everything model and run with it, resulting in a place like nowhere else. It’s a mix of new, native and “from away”. It’s about seafood that makes chefs giddy. It’s a Portland restaurant scene that crushes tasting menus and Japanese bar food. It’s roadside markets piled with candy-sweet strawberries and foraged black trumpet mushrooms. It’s island inns that nail the perfect mix of rustic and sophisticated. Add in some of the best brewers on the planet, and the state’s ubiquitous slogan, “The way life should be,” starts to sound pretty legit.

Bon Appétit highlights Eventide, Palace Diner, Oxbow, Rising Tide, Central Provisions, Primo, Tao, Tandem, Bunker, UFF, Hunt & Alpine and more. The article isn’t online yet but should be on newsstands shortly.

Condé Nast Traveler highlights Chebeague Island Inn, Eventide, Fore Street, Standard Baking, Rabelais and others. You can see the full article online.

Interview with Maine-ly Meatballs

June 27th, 2014

The American Journal has published an interview with Maine-ly Meatballs.

Q: Do you have any long-term goals for Maine-ly Meatballs? Are there ways to expand?
A: We are hoping to franchise Maine-ly Meatballs. You never know, you may be on vacation in Florida and see a Maine-ly Meatballs truck roll on by.