Botto’s Bakery

September 15th, 2016

The Portland Phoenix has published an article on Botto’s Bakery,

“A lot of people know we do bread. They come in and say, ‘I didn’t know you made pastries,’” Jessica said. Their Washington Avenue location sees a lot of foot traffic from the neighborhood and the morning commute. The storefront business, with a quaint design and a couple of tables and chairs, has tripled since they expanded and upgraded their equipment in 2002, she added. They now bake everything in-house, switching from offering a few frozen items.

and a report on organic farming.

The general impression, from casual conversations with farmer’s market foodies, is that buying organic produce comes with certain expectations: the food will be safer, healthier, tastier and less of a strain on the environment. It’s the “you are what you eat,” kind of mentality and firm believers are willing to pay extra money to adhere to it.

New USM Food Studies Program

September 14th, 2016

The Press Herald has published an article on a new Food Studies program at USM,

The University of Southern Maine is launching a food studies program next spring to provide a broad, liberal arts-style education in food and offer at least 30 paid internships a year to students who want to try working in food-related businesses or anti-hunger organizations in Maine.

as has the Bangor Daily News.

The first of its kind in the state, USM’s Food Studies Program will launch as an undergraduate minor in the spring semester, and cover subjects such as the economics of Maine’s thriving microbreweries and how public policy might improve food insecurity in the state. The university plans to expand the program over the next two years to include graduate-level courses, a graduate certificate program in food studies and internship placements for students in the various food enterprises around Portland.

For more detail see the original proposal to establish the program (82 pages).

Mike Wiley Series

September 14th, 2016

Mike Wiley, co-chef/owner, of Hugo’s, Eventide, and The Honey Paw, has penned an article providing a behind the scenes look at staffing a restaurant. This is the first of a three-part series by Wiley.

When I try to be frank with our guests about where the ideas and food come from, I get the sense they think my explanations are false modesty. That’s not it at all: A lot of really talented and hardworking people work in our restaurants, and everything is a collaboration.

Scratch Reopened

September 13th, 2016


Scratch Baking Company reopened in Willard Square on Tuesday. Bagel production has been delayed due to an equipment malfunction.

Seed: The Untold Story

September 13th, 2016

PrintThe Nickelodeon will be screening the award winning movie Seed: The Untold Story starting this Friday, through Wednesday September 21st.

Few things on Earth are as miraculous and vital as seeds. Worshipped and treasured since the dawn of humankind. SEED: The Untold Story follows passionate seed keepers protecting our 12,000 year-old food legacy. In the last century, 94% of our seed varieties have disappeared. As biotech chemical companies control the majority of our seeds, farmers, scientists, lawyers, and indigenous seed keepers fight a David and Goliath battle to defend the future of our food. In a harrowing and heartening story, these reluctant heroes rekindle a lost connection to our most treasured resource and revive a culture connected to seeds. SEED features Vandana Shiva, Dr. Jane Goodall, Andrew Kimbrell, Winona Laduke and Raj Patel.

The screening of Seed at the Nickelodeon is in partnership with Rosemont Market, Cultivating Community, The Wild Seed Project and the Portland Pollinator Project.

Thurston’s Closed (Updated)

September 13th, 2016

Thurston’s Wicked Good Burgers has gone out of business. They served their last burger Sunday night.

Thank you all for visiting Thurstons Wicked Good Burgers and Frozen Custard over the last two years. I wanted to let you all know that at the End of business hours today; 9:00pm, we will be serving our last burger.
Thank you all for your support

Chef Schilly and Team.

Update: The Press Herald has published a report on the closing of Thurston’s.

This Week’s Events: Sandy Oliver, Belgian Beer Fest, S&M Cocktail Pop-up, Italian Wine Dinners

September 12th, 2016

belgianbeerfestTuesday — food historian Sandy Oliver will be delivering a lecture at the Tate House on “the Early American kitchen and its importance to the Colonial household”.

Wednesday — the Monument Square Farmers’ Market is taking place.

Thursday — in anticipation of the weekend’s Belgian Beer Fest, the Great Lost Bear will be featuring Maine produced Belgian inspired beers.

Saturday — there will be two sessions for the Belgian Beer Fest, Maine & Loire is holding a wine tasting, and the Saturday Farmers’ Market will take place. While not a food event, and not even in Portland, I also want to mention that Saturday is the opening of the Amy Stacey Curtis exhibit in Lewiston.

Sunday — Little Tap House is serving a post Belgian Beer Fest brunch, and Spencer Albee and Mark Hubbard are holding an S&M Cocktail Pop-up at the Blue Spoon.

Italian Wine Dinners — special guest Angela Maculan will be at Piccolo for a 5-course dinner featuring her family’s wine from the Veneto region on 9/22, and Micheal Falchini will be at Solo Italiano for a 6-couse dinner featuring his family’s wines from Tuscany on 9/19.

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.

Reviews: Bill’s Pizza, The Armory

September 11th, 2016

The Press Herald has published a bar review of the Armory Lounge,

The dark, cozy and classy hotel bar keeps locals coming back with its iconic décor, well-made martinis and free snack plate. Equally good for date night or for after-work drinks (particularly if you’ve been binge-watching Mad Men and want to enjoy some throwback thrills).

and a review of Bill’s Pizza.

But sometimes you want, as my daughter Sophie calls it, “pizza” pizza. We’re talking about good, basic, time-tested pizza. You know, the kind where the crust is not too thick and not too thin, the sauce is red and the cheese is abundant.

Bill’s Pizza, a venerable pizza place on Commercial Street in Portland, sells exactly that kind of pizza.

Restaurant Branding

September 9th, 2016

The September issue of Dispatch includes an interview with Sean Wilkinson, co-founder of Might & Main, about restaurant branding.

Might & Main have worked with a number of successful restaurants in Portland such as Eventide and Central Provisions, and are now building a client base elsewhere such as Alden & Harlow in Boston.

Under Construction: Second Point Brewing

September 9th, 2016

It’s been nearly a full year since news broke about Second Pint Brewing (website, facebook, twitter).

The owners have posted an update on facebook explaining that their original location in East Bayside has fallen through, and that while their opening has been delayed but they’re still working towards launching Second Pint.

Food Republic: Eating Incredibly Well in Portland

September 8th, 2016

Food Republic has posted their recommendation for the 7 Places to Eat and Drink Incredibly Well in Portland.

The spots they highlight are: Drifters Wife, Hunt and Alpine Club, Rhum, Roustabout, Scales, Tempo Dulu, The Honey Paw.


Voting Begun for the 2016 Indie Biz Awards

September 7th, 2016

indiebizThe ballot is now online for this year’s Indie Biz Awards. This is the 9th year that Buy Local has run the awards program which celebrates outstanding independent Portland businesses.

Many restaurants and food businesses are nominees: Local Sprouts, Vinland, Casco Bay Organics, Woodford F&B, Aurora Provisions, Asmara, Thanh Thanh 2, Treehouse, Lincolns, Rhum, Sister’s Gourmet Deli, The Holy Donut, Gritty’s, Bayside Bowl, Portland Food Coop, and the Farmers’ Market.

Visit the Buy Local website to vote for your favorites.

Certine Flatware

September 7th, 2016

The Food & Dining section in today’s Press Herald includes a feature article about Certine, a new ceramic flatware launched by former Opus Ten server David Muse with Bill Todd and Rachel Rodrigues in June.

“At this point,” he said, “this product is for the type of people who make dinner reservations before they make hotel reservations, because if you don’t get the dinner reservations you’re probably not going to that town. It’s for people who go to buy foodstuffs three or four times a week as opposed to one time a week. It’s for the kind of people who take more pictures of their food than they do their children or their pets. It’s ultimately for the kind of people who are thinking about genuine interaction with their food.”

2nd Annual Fabulous Femmes Dinner

September 6th, 2016

A group of some of Maine’s leading female chefs are coming together this fall for the 2nd annual Fabulous Femmes dinner at Flanagan’s Table, a benefit  for the Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital.

The dream team of culinary talent includes:

  • Krista Kern Desjarlais from The Purple House, and Bresca & the Honey Bee
  • Briana Holt from Tandem Coffee and Bakery
  • Melissa Kelly from Primo
  • Ilma Lopez from Piccolo and Caiola’s
  • Kim Rodgers from Hugo’s, Eventide and The Honey Paw
  • Cara Stadler from Tao Yuan and Bao Bao Dumpling House

Tickets go on sale on September 21st.

The Coffee Man

September 6th, 2016

TheCoffeeManArabica Coffee will be hosting a screening of The Coffee Man later this month at their location on Commercial Street.

The movie follows the story of Sasa Sestic on his road to winning the 2015 World Barista Championship.

From the birthplace of coffee in Ethiopia, through Honduras, Colombia, and on to Seattle where the specialty coffee movement originated, The Coffee Man traverses the globe, following Sasa on his journey to the 2015 World Barista Championships. After partnering up with Sasa in 2014, Roland and Jeff from Jeraff have been with Sasa every step of the way on his road to being crowned the World Champion.