Under Construction: Old Port Spirits

The Urban Eye has posted an update on Old Port Spirits.

So much so that two weeks ago he purchased Downeast Beverage Co. from Doug Webber. Five blocks away, the store at 79 Commercial is transforming to Old Port Spirits and Cigars by the end of the month. After eight years running a wine shop downtown, he is ready for more.

“My goal is to have the best selection of bourbon, whiskey and craft beer,” said deVillier, who dropped $150,000 to improve the store, which had seen better days.

Bakery Reviews: Standard, Rosemont, Katie, Union Bagel

A new BDN blog called Out of the Oven has been posting a series of bakery reviews. Their most recent review is of Union Bagel Co,

As we lingered for a few minutes at their counter space and enjoyed our bagels, we noticed that nearly every customer that came in was addressed by name. That familiarity from the staff speaks volumes to me. That tells me that their customers come often enough to have built a relationship with the people working there. That’s good food and good feelings under one roof!

Earlier reviews were of Standard Baking, Rosemont and Katie Made.

Piccolo’s Star Wars Dinner

Eating Portland Alive has published a report from the May 4th Star Wars dinner at Piccolo,

This was one of the most fun, creative, and delicious dining experiences I’ve ever had. It was truly as memorable as the beloved trilogy it was paying tribute to and I cannot wait to see what they have in store for next year’s celebration. The Force is strong with this pair of culinary Jedi, so get your butts in hyperdrive and pay them a visit!

This Week’s Events: Bearded Bar Night, UFF Dinner, Phoenix Awards, Symphony of Soil

TuesdayThe Bearded Lady’s Jewel Box will be the featured guest at this month’s Tandem/Rosemont Bar Night.

Wednesday — Vinland will be preparing an 8-course UFF Dinner, Allagash is holding an event to benefit the Preble Street Resource Center, the 15th Annual Best of Portland Awards Show is taking place, and the Monument Square Farmers Market is taking place.

Thursday — the Great Lost Bear is showcasing beer from Baxter Brewing, and there will be an Austin Street tasting at the Bier Cellar.

Saturday — the Deering Oaks Farmers Market is taking place.

Sunday — there will be a screening of Symphony of the Soil followed by a panel discussion including author Eliot Coleman at the Museum of Art.

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.

Review of Rosie’s

The Maine Sunday Telegram has reviewed Rosie’s.

Over the years, Rosie’s has won several best burger in Portland awards, and their burgers still rank high. This casual eatery and bar remains a congenial hangout for regulars seeking pub food and good cocktails and beer in a Cheers-style atmosphere. Stick with the array of hamburger platters, the fried chicken and the generous sandwich baskets, such as the BLT with pastrami. Pizzas, calzones and chili are also popular. There are 15 draft beers, draft cider and nightly specials. Parking is available on the street or at nearby garages.

Today’s paper also includes a farmers market/super market comparison and the first of a two part farmers markets history series.

Dobra in Korea/Japan


Dobra Tea owners Ray Marcotte and Ellen Kanner are on a research trip to Korea and Japan. You can follow their travels online at dobrateame.tumblr.com. According to a press release,

[They are] seeking to strengthen tea culture in Portland by traveling to meet their tea producers and farmers in Asia and bring their knowledge back home to share. The tea plant – Camelia sinensis – is the focus of this journey. There are six classes of tea including green, white, yellow, oolong, black and pu-er, but the focus of this year’s journey is Korean and Japanese green.

Interview with Nathaniel Meiklejohn

Eater Maine has published an interview with Nathaniel Meiklejohn on his upcoming cocktail bar, The Jewel Box (website, kickstarter).

What are you hoping to bring to the crowded Portland bar scene that we’re missing, or that hasn’t been fully fleshed out yet?
There are millions of mixed drink recipes out there and thousands more [created] every day. There are forever new distilleries, hundreds of new mixing products, and constantly evolving techniques for making drinks. What we are going to do is honor the ever-changing landscape of mixed drinks by changing our drink menu every week. We will base the week’s menu on a theme, an ingredient we love, our current mixing fixations, and/or seasonal ingredients.

The Jewel Box will be located at 644 Congress Street. Meiklejohn hopes to have it open by the end of June.

Reviews: Fore Street & Mi Sen

The Portland Phoenix has reviewed Mi Sen,

Asian noodle soup has unrivaled capacity to efficiently deliver richness, complexity of flavor, variety of texture, and satisfying infusions of umami. At Mi Sen they deliver it in deep white bowls of a dignified size. The best was the num sai — a chicken broth soup, which we ordered with flat rice noodles. The broth had a light, bright quality, and the fat little wontons were not too heavy. Ground chicken clung to the tender noodles, while green beans, sprouts, and crispy wonton added some crunch.

and The Golden Dish has reviewed Fore Street.

While the greater world of fine dining gets more complex, where chefs are like mad scientists reinventing a universal culinaryscape, Portland’s inimitable Fore Street restaurant works within a scope it created years ago and refines it daily.