Mitr Ping Yang Thai Kitchen

Earlier this week when Cheevitdee announced they would be permanently closing their Old Port restaurant the message ended on a hopeful note with, “The spirit of Cheevitdee lives on. Details in the near future.”

That “near future” has arrived and it’s a pleasure to share the news that some of the same team involved in Cheevitdee and its sister restaurant Mi Sen are launching a new Portland restaurant named Mitr (facebook, instagram).

When it opens later this year Mitr will serve a menu of Ping Yang style Thai food. According to Mitr, “Ping Yang style typically means grilled or charbroiled. In Thailand, these techniques are very popular for street food and you can find them just about any corner of the street of every part of Thailand. Sometimes on skewers, sometime it’s a grill meat as a whole. Marinaded and grilled to perfection presenting you with rich aromas. Oftentimes, the meals will be enjoy with various sauces you can choose.”

Follow Mitr on instagram to learn about the restaurant’s future location and on an upcoming pop-up.

Arcadia’s Big Move

The Press Herald has publisihed a report on Arcadia’s move to Congress Street.

Pinball machines and classic arcade games, like Skee Ball and Centipede, are being transported from Arcadia National Bar’s current location on Preble Street in Portland to the former home of Port City Music Hall on Congress Street – a move that Arcadia co-owner David Aceto said he felt he had to make to save the business.

Bravo Maine Crowdfunding Campaign

Bravo Maine, the cooking education company located in the former Aurora Provisions space in the West End, has launched a crowd funding campaign on Go Fund Me. Owner Justine Corbi is hoping to raise $6,000 which “will be used for repair bills, a new fridge, and save money for future needs or in case of a new shutdown”.

For more information or to contribute visit the Bravo Maine page on GoFundMe.com.

Openings & Closings: Cheevitdee, Crispy Gai, The Holy Donut

Several changes to the Portland food scene were announced today:

Bill’s Pizza Closing in the Old Port

Bill’s Pizza, a longtime fixture in Portland, has announced they will be closing their Old Port location on February 28th.

Bill’s pizza is closing on commercial st. Come down and get your last pizza from Portland. Make sure you come say bye to Jess as she is not going to be going to Old Orchard with us. She is however looking for a new position if you have one to offer! Just about everything is up for sale if you are looking for restaurant equipment. We will miss all of you and hope to see all our regular faces before February 28th.

The Bill’s Pizza in Old Orchard Beach will remain in business.

This Week’s Events: Pop-ups, Events, Re-Openings

TuesdayEaux will be serving be serving a menu of po’boys, gumbo, cornbread and more at a Mardi Gras pop-up in Oxbow Alley. Chaval will be participating in the BBQ collaboration series at Terlingua.

FridayFred Eliot will be participating in the Small Axe guest chef series at East Ender (continues on Saturday).

Saturday – Terlingua is participating the guest chef series at Ramona’s (continues on Sunday), and the Winter Farmers’ Market is taking place.

March – The new pop-up series from Chaval called Con Todo will begin taking pre-orders on Monday March 1st, Fore Street, Street and Co, and Scales are re-opening after a long winter break on March 4th, as is Gather on March 10th.

Maine Restaurant Week 2021

Maine Restaurant Week is set to take place March 1 – 12. The Press Herald has published an article about how this annual event has adjusted to the pandemic and highlights some of the restaurants taking part in 2021.

Maine Restaurant Week organizer Gillian Britt, of gBritt PR, said the usual $495 participation fee for restaurants has been waived this year, with help from several sponsors. Maybe because that, there is a wider variety of eateries participating this year representing a wider geographic area, spreading a little more inland and little farther from Portland in all directions, Britt said, including Doolin’s Pub in Litchfield and Jonathan’s in Ogunquit.

For information on all the restaurants taking part visit the MRW website.

The Shuck Wagon

A food cart called The Shuck Wagon (instagram) is planning to expand their mobile oyster shucking business this summer.

In 2020 The Shuck Wagon was onsite at some Portland area breweries including Fore River, Austin Street and Bunker Brewing. This year they’re building a second food cart that they hope to locate along the Portland waterfront and use for catering.

The Shuck Wagon is run by Spartan Sea Farms, an aquaculture operation in Freeport that farms oysters, scallops, quahogs, and kelp.

Outdoor Dining in Winter

The Food & Dining section in today’s Maine Sunday Telegram includes a feature on outdoor dining in February.

Actually, every diner but one interviewed for this story was ready to repeat the experience, in some cases surprising even themselves. “A year ago if someone had said, ‘Do you want to sit outside in the middle of winter and eat?’ I’d have said, ‘That’s what inside is for,’ ” Brewer said. ” ‘That’s what fireplaces are for.’ ” But now, weekly, he sits around fire pits in the yards of friends and eats outside at restaurants, too. He’s come up with a term to describe the phenomena: “fire-pit culture.”

Covid-19 Protocols and Guidance

The Maine Sunday Telegram talked to restaurants about the steps they’re taking and the guidance they have on how to operate safely and what to do when they have a potential Covid exposure.

Similarly, every one of the five food businesses I called to learn more about COVID-19 closures was eager to talk about their plans and procedures. “It’s an issue every restaurant has to think about,” Zak Taillon, general manager of Boda, said. “We did lots of pre-preparation and have always been a few steps ahead, all the way back to March of last year, when we closed for indoor dining way before we were even required to be. We’re doing our best and have successfully avoided spreading it in our tiny kitchen two times so far. We are really proud and don’t want to keep that hush-hush.”