Lists: Tacos & Late Night

The Bollard has gone on a Tour de Taco,

I recently moved back to Maine after living for a time in Tuscon, and if there’s one thing I miss about that sun-baked city, it’s the tacos. It seems like there’s a taqueria on every block. Maine’s about as far from Mexico as you can get in the continental U.S., but Portland’s robust food scene gave me hope I could assuage my nostalgia as Cinco de Mayo approached.

and Portland Magazine has assembled a list of late night drinking and dining options.

It’s getting late. You’ve just emerged from a paranoid dystopian thriller at the Nickelodeon, or Anna Lombard’s set at One Longfellow Square. You’re hungry.

Under Construction: Riverside Grill, Duckfat, Timber, Foodworks, El Rayo

riversidegrillHere are a few updates on what’s going on around town:

  • Duckfat is temporarily closed while the restaurant under goes some renovation
  • Timber (facebook) is reportedly planning on opening May 15
  • Foodworks is temporarily closed while they move to their new space at 61 India Street. Word on the street is that their old space is already leased.
  • Riverside Grill (facebook, website) manager Steve Quatrucci reports they’re making good progress on construction (see photo) and hopes to open later this month.
  • El Rayo has closed the Cantina. Despite the rumors floating around, the El Rayo Taqueria will remain in business. El Rayo’s also continues to work on launching a 2nd location in Scarborough on Route 1.

This Week’s Events: Ana’s Mobile, Oregon Wine Dinner, Speckled Axe, Portland Kitchen Tour, Bearded Lady, Roberto Damonte

MondayAna’s Mobile Cafe will be back on the road.

Wednesdayall drinks at Speckled Axe will be just $2 in celebration of their 2nd anniversary, the Blue Spoon will be hosting Rob Stuart for a Oregon Wine dinner, the Bier Cellar is holding a Banded Horn tasting, Black Tie is teaching a cooking class,  and the Monument Square Farmers Market is taking place.

Thursday — there will be a UFF Kombucha tasting at the Brighton Rosemont, and a beer and cheese tasting at the Public Market House.

Friday — it’s the first day of the Portland Kitchen Tour.

SaturdayThe Bearded Lady’s Jewel Box will be holding a cocktail party at Space, winemaker Roberto Damonte is leading a tasting event at Rosemont on Commercial, it’s the second day of the Portland Kitchen Tour, and the Deering Oaks Farmers Market is taking place.

Sunday — Black Birch is the featured restaurant for a dinner at Flanagan’s Table.

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.

Immigrant Kitchens: Pakistani Chicken and Rice

In the latest entry from Immigrant Kitchens, Lindsay Sterling learns how to make jalfrezi from Savita Nooreen (read the story, get the recipe and see the photos).

As we cooked, we talked. “Someone on the school bus asked me if we have houses or we live in caves,” she said in disbelief. “It [Pakistan] is the same as here,” she asserted. “It is a developing country,” she clarified, “Fifty to sixty years ago there was no connection with the rest of the world. The northern part had no schools. But now it’s just like Freeport [Maine]. We have schools, colleges, universities…”

Kickstarter: The Jewel Box

Nathaniel Meiklejohn has launched a $21,000 Kickstarter campaign to complete the funding needed for his his new West End craft cocktail bar, The Bearded Lady’s Jewel Box. As you can see in the video the build-out of the space he’s leased at 644 Congress is already well under way:

We have a great team working hard on the Jewel Box already. With the help of Petra Simmons’ architectural designs and layout, North By East Building Company’s build-out of those designs, More & Company’s brand/identity expertise, my industry experience, and your contributions, we will be able to take what was already going to be a cool place and make it sparkle brighter.

To learn more about the project and make a contribution to the campaign visit The Jewel Box Kickstarter page.

Profile of Oscar’s

Eat Maine has posted a profile of Oscar’s New American.

Often the elements of each dish are classic combinations that Krunkkala reimagines in his own way. The lamb belly, for example, is served with a delicate carrot puree, grilled asparagus, and fresh lion’s mane mushrooms. The meat is rubbed with garlic and rosemary then slowly braised for several hours in champagne vinegar and white wine, and finally is topped with pea shoots that are dressed in a lemon and mint vinaigrette. Plenty of familiar combinations, appropriate to the season, but still with a unique flavor and texture.