David Buchanan & Portersfield Cider

September 24th, 2017

The Maine Sunday Telegram has published an article about David Buchanan and Portersfield Cider.

Reviews: Mami, Roma Cafe, Island Creek, El Rayo, Congress Squared

September 24th, 2017

The Maine Sunday Telegram has reviewed the Mami, and

The new, exposed-brick space shares much in common with the truck, including many of its street food dishes, like crisp, golden okonomiyaki – decadent “pancakes” of cabbage, onion and pork belly, topped with a spiced soy sauce and lashings of sweet Kewpie mayonnaise. You’ll also find Mami’s signature grilled onigiri, rounded triangles of sticky sushi rice seared dark and crunchy on a flat, iron teppanyaki grill. If it’s on the menu, don’t miss the lobster nikuman, a dish Miller calls “a bastardized lobster roll” that, with a sophisticated balance of yeasty steamed bun, salty tobiko and flowering dill, could hold its own against any lobster roll in the state.

The Blueberry Files has reviewed the Island Creek Oyster Shop, and

I love the simplicity of The Shop and its menu. While many restaurant and bars opt to attract customers with complex concepts and elaborate dishes, The Shop goes stripped down with a sunny patio and cheap oysters. Works for me.

the Portland Phoenix has reviewed the Roma Cafe, and

Unfortunately, entrées of Bucatini Amatriciana and Chicken Marsala also failed to impress, the former characterized by a thin, watery sauce and saved only by the inclusion of smoky guanciale. While unoffensive enough, the Marsala — flanked by a sauté of summer squash and side of pasta that felt like afterthoughts — somehow lacked flavor despite also being seasoned with a heavy hand. Though a saving grace could be found in a side of meatballs (plump, yielding and unctuous), my dining partner and I both agreed it was too little, too late.

Peter Peter Portland Eater has reviewed El Rayo,

I’ve always enjoyed El Rayo and I’m glad I finally returned. Their food is good, and while I wanted more salsa in the tacos, they were so big that I think it might be just the salsa to other stuff ratio that caused the issue. I recommend you go there and try the nachos, tacos, pinapple, and whatever else you like. And don’t forget some tequila, because they’ve got plenty and it’s sure to make you smile, even if you’re not there at happy hour.

the Press Herald has published a bar review of Congress Squared.

Quiet, upscale cocktails and a contemporary setting makes for a refined, upscale evening. Congress Squared isn’t breaking any molds but is putting its own spin on some classics in a memorable and well-crafted way.

Night Moves Bread + Pie Expanding

September 23rd, 2017

Night Moves Bread +Pie (website, facebook, instagram) has launched a $35,000 Go Fund Me campaign.

Owner Kerry Hanney currently produces her breads and pies overnight in the kitchen at Maples. She plans to use the funds to set-up her own bakery and to buy a grain mill, bread oven and other equipment needed to ramp up production. With her own bakery Hanney will begin selling direct to the public and will use the space to teach workshops in collaboration with the Maine Grain Alliance.

Night Moves is a bakery in Portland, Maine, founded on naturally leavened bread and the abundant possibilities of stone-ground sustainable regional grain. Each product captures Maine’s unique terroir and the many hands in our community of craft. Demand has grown exponentially over the last year, and now it is time for more efficient equipment in a bakery you can visit for your daily bread. More efficient equipment means More Bread!

Night Moves bread is sold at A&C Grocery and The Farm Stand, and is used by Drifter’s Wife, Duckfat, Little Giant, Portland Hunt + Alpine, among others.

Visit the Night Moves Go Fund Me page to make a contribution to her campaign.

Maine Gleaning Week

September 22nd, 2017

The Gleaning Network has announced Maine Gleaning WeekA collaborative of farm surplus rescue efforts gathering crops from Maine’s fields—for October 7 – 16.

As part of MGW, there will be a lecture and panel discussion on October 16th at the Portland Public Library, as well as a screening of the movie Wasted: the story of food waste.

Madeira Dinner at Chaval

September 22nd, 2017

Chaval is holding a Madeira Dinner on Wednesday featuring wines from Henriques & Henriques. Pairings for the 6-course dinner will include “15 & 20 year old madeira, as well as vintage dated bottles and even a 60-year vintage. The range of styles of madeira will cover Boal, Tarrentez, Verdelho & Malvasia.” Importer Jake Parrott from Haus Alpenz will be on-hand to talk about the wines.

Under Construction: White Cap Coffee Brewery and Tasting Room

September 21st, 2017

Ben Graffius and Tom Marlow from White Cap Cold Brew Coffee Company (website, facebook, instagram) have leased 135 Washington Ave, the former Sahara Club, where they plan to open the White Cap Coffee Brewery and Tasting Room.

The concept of the coffee brewery on Washington Ave takes its inspiration from brewery tasting room rather than the traditional coffee shop. Graffius and Marlow along with coffee roasting partner John Walsh from Arabica plan to serve a range of White Cap cold brew coffees, french press coffee, local beers and a menu of smaller bites created by chef Stephanie Shershow that will compliment the beverage program. Espresso-based drinks, part of the standard program at other coffee shops won’t be on the menu.

The business got their start last year and were one of the original start-ups at Fork Food Lab. They produce cold brew coffee in volume and supply it to kegs and growlers to their customers. As their business grows, White Cap is working to develop methods to produce larger batches of cold brew. They’ve applied for an MTI grant to support their R&D work.

The hope to have the new White Cap Coffee Brewery open early next year.

Update: White Cap has decided not to move into 135 Washington Ave, and is looking at other locations.

Under Construction: Rosemont in Cape Elizabeth

September 21st, 2017

Mainebiz reports that Rosemont is expanding to Cape Elizabeth where they plan to open in a store at 537 Shore Rd.

Rosemont Market will open a sixth store and the Portland-based grocer plans to double its local food processing and sales and consolidate most processing and production operations under one much-larger roof.

Rosemont General Manager Dan Roche said the new store will open in November at [537] Shore Road in Cape Elizabeth. Rosemont bought the three-story building for $400,000 last spring.

Update: The Press Herald has also published an article about the new Rosemont.

Fork Food Lab, Apple Sleuthing

September 20th, 2017

The Food & Dining section of today’s Press Herald includes:

Fork Food Lab – A feature article on Fork Food Lab with profiles of three of the member businesses

A year after the food lab opened, Spillane has developed an eye for who will make it, and who will remain in hobby business limbo. He quizzes entrepreneurs in initial meetings to see how prepared they are: Do they have a business plan? Have they raised enough capital to keep them going for six months to a year? Have they chosen a distinctive name for their business, and is it trademark-able? Have they already reserved their handles for social media?

Apple Sleuthing – how to seek out and identify older trees that are one of Maine’s lost apples

What most excites me is the possibility that any tree could turn out to be one of the dozens of “lost” apple varieties that have vanished from the farms, yards and orchards of Maine. The need to find these varieties before the trees die – or the people who know where they are do – is urgent. Apple geeks, like me, like to play detective. We’re willing to invest the time and effort to track down every clue. But this is a team effort, and the apple historians of Maine need your help.

4th Annual Heirloom Apple Tasting

September 19th, 2017

Portland Food Map is working with the good folks over at The Righteous Russet headquarters to organize the 4th Annual Heirloom Apple Tasting.

The tasting is taking place on October 9th, 2-5 pm at the Fork Food Lab. You’ll be able to try dozens of heritage and rare apple varieties gleaned from orchards in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont as well as tap into a cash bar stocked with several hard ciders from across the region that are well worth drinking.

Have you ever tasted a Hudson Golden Gem, Fameuse, or Thomas Jefferson’s favorite apple, the Esopus Spitzenburg? From the tiny Chestnut Crab to the appropriately named Twenty Ounce, apples offer a wide assortment of tastes, textures, shapes and sizes that are too often underrepresented at the local supermarket or pick-your-own orchard.

Tickets: $10 tickets are on sale at Eventbrite.

Adweek: Might & Main

September 19th, 2017

Adweek has published an article about Might & Main and how they “Helped Make Portland, Maine, the Hippest Foodie Town in New England”.

“Eventide set things into motion for us,” adds Wilkinson. “By fate of timing, and being in the right place at the right time, and stumbling into what was going to be the most exciting restaurant for Portland for a while, we ended really being at the front of a lot of what has made Portland’s food scene what it is today. We’ve continued to try to put that effort into every other restaurant that’s come along, and it came at a time when every other restaurant opening up was better than the last. It built a really cool, robust scene that keeps getting better. Our work with restaurants is beginning to taper off, so we got to own a really nice moment in time in Portland.”


Under Construction: Mainely Wraps

September 18th, 2017

Mainely Wraps has leased the former Moveable Feast/Vieux Port Creole space at 431 Congress Street. This will be a return to Portland for Mainely Wraps which operated a shop on Fore Street from 2013 until November 2016.

Under Construction: Elsmere BBQ

September 18th, 2017

Elsmere BBQ is reported to be in the processing of purchasing Siano’s in Deering Center where they will open a Portland location. From Nextdoor via  the Love Deering Center page on Facebook:

Elsmere is closing on the former Siano’s bldg in early October with construction and renovating to be done and a projected opening time frame in January. Went to their location in SoPo for dinner last night and got the inside scoop. Am now very excited for this addition to our neighborhood!

This Week’s Events: Beer Meets Woods, Forkiversary, Zwanze Day, Common Ground Fair

September 18th, 2017

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

ThursdayFork Food Lab is celebrating their 1-year anniversary, Novare Res is holding a Beer Meets Woods pre-party, and The Great Lost Bear is featuring beer from Yes Brewing.

Friday – it’s the opening day of the Common Ground Fair, and The Harraseeket Inn is serving a Maine Harvest Dinner.

Saturday –it’s Cantillon Zwanze Day, the Beer Meets Woods Festival is being held at the Portland Company Complex, and the Deering Oaks Farmers’ Market is taking place.

Sunday – it’s the last day of the Common Ground Fair.

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, please provide details as a comment to this post.

Under Construction: Gross Confection Bar

September 17th, 2017

Pastry chef Brant Dadaleares has launched a Kickstarter campaign to help fund the launch of his dessert-only restaurant Gross Confection Bar (instagram) The $35,000 raised by the campaign will be used to pay for the build-out of the restaurant and for refrigeration equipment.

Gross Confection Bar will be a dessert-focused restaurant and bar to be located in the heart of the Old Port district in Portland, Maine. Gross will provide a unique and consistent restaurant experience featuring an ever changing selection of high-quality artfully-plated desserts, cocktails, dessert wines, digestifs, and exceptional service. Gross will also provide a consistent selection of enrobed ganaches, fruit pates, bon-bon, entremets, late night savory snacks and desserts to go. Gross will create a new niche for a “just for dessert” destination experience in Portland.

I’ve been seeking out and happily consuming Dadaleares’ desserts for many years at Fore Street, Eventide/Honey/Paw, Central Provisions/Tipo and at his dessert pop-ups. Portland Food Map is a contributor to the Gross Confection Bar Kickstarter campaign.

Reviews: Eventide, Pai Men, Big Fin Poke

September 17th, 2017

Peter Peter Portland Eater has reviewed Big Fin Poke,

If you go to Big Fin Poke – and you should – feel free to get creative with your bowl. I went a little light on the add-ons this time, but you’re able to get as crazy as you want. Load on the goodies and enjoy your work in creating a masterpiece. That’s half the fun of going. Of course, the food itself is also awesome. Stay tuned for more awesomeness as a new Big Fin comes to South Portland soon too.

As the Lobster Roll has reviewed Eventide, and

And did I mention those miniature steamed buns are stuffed full of lobster which has been skillfully sauteed in the brown butter? I have no idea what else they add to the mixture and honestly, I don’t care… because it’s so decadent and delicious! The price is $15 for one lobster roll (no accoutrements included) and whoever can go there and just eat one is a bigger person than me.

the Press Herald has published a bar review of Pai Men Miyake.

The food is what truly shines at Pai Men Miyake. If you’re a fan of sour flavors or drinks with heavy lime/lemon flavorings, then this is the cocktail list for you. Otherwise, sticking to their beers (a large, exciting selection of both local and Japanese brews), wine or sake is likely the way to go. A loud, casual and hip atmosphere make this a fun place to grab some food and a drink with friends or a date.