Under Construction: Roustabout

A new restaurant and bar named Roustabout is under development on Washington Ave in the old Nissen Bakery building. According to the press release, the 75-seat restaurant will be open 6 days a week serving a “well crafted, imaginative takes on Italian-American fare, and the full bar will serve from daylight to candlelight, featuring a small but respectable beer list; an attainable, mostly natural wine list; and a concise list of well executed cocktails.” Roustabout will be oppen for lunch, dinner and late night food as well as weekend brunch.

Owners Kit Paschal (Row 34, Hunt & Alpine, Eastern Standard) and Anders Tallberg (Hugo’s, Hungry Mother)

have a long history in the food and beverage industry, and look forward to bringing their considerable experience to a new concept together. Balancing care and thoughtfulness with a hearty, rugged New England sensibility, Roustabout will feature excellence in hospitality and a well considered bar program in a relaxed atmosphere. Culture comes first for Paschal and Tallberg, and they look forward to being a fun and vibrant hub in the community.

For those of you keeping count this makes 3 different restaurants currently under development on inner Washington Ave: Terlingua, A Lively Palate and now Roustabout. Maine & Loire opened on Washington Ave earlier this year.

In the release, Paschal and Tallberg share that they are “very excited to be a part of the growing neighborhoods of Munjoy Hill and East Bayside…[and] want to offer all the comforts of a place where you’re going to want to become a regular.”

2 Openings: Union, Crooners & Cocktails

unionTwo new venues are holding their official openings today:

  • Crooners & Cocktails(website, facebook, twitter) had a one night soft opening last Saturday and is holding their grand opening today at 4pm.
  • Union Restaurant(website) in The Press Hotel has been sporadically open this week with a limited menu. Today they’re holding a ribbon cutting for the hotel at 4pm. Full breakfast, lunch and dinner service with a full menu begins on Saturday.

Interview with Greg Mitchell & Chad Conley

Map & Menu has published an interview with chefs Chad Conley and Greg Mitchell, owners of the Palace Diner in Biddeford.

After an (always) outstanding meal at Palace, we spoke with them about their trips, their travel styles, and the community they’re building around the diner. The way that they both use food and cooking to get a better feeling for an area’s culture is something that Meredith and I can certainly appreciate, while their authentic, relaxed approach to exploring the places they visit will no doubt serve as inspiration on our own future trips.

This is interview is the first installment of a new series from Map & Menu.

Maine Food System Infrastructure

The Press Herald has a report on the critical need to invest in the state food processing infrastructure to support the continued growth of the local food system.

Cheerleaders for Maine’s food industry say a Renaissance is underway that ultimately could return the state to its former prominence as the food basket of the Northeast.

However, they cautioned that vital infrastructure must be built – or in some cases rebuilt – for that to happen.

Leaders in farming, food service, beer brewing, coffee making and other food-related businesses in Maine met with real estate developers Tuesday in Portland to sell them on the idea of investing in infrastructure …

Reviews: Sinful Kitchen, Hella Good, Mi Sen

The Press Herald has published a review of The Sinful Kitchen,

I tried the pulled pork version, since Mallari is known for his pork, and it came with fresh salsa and a jalapeno Hollandaise. The eggs were perfectly runny, and the pork was nice and tender. I ate so much of it – it was a huge plate – I couldn’t finish the home fries, which were seasoned well and browned just right. That dish was just $10.

and a bar review of Hella Good.

Hella Good Tacos transitioned from food truck to a 75-capacity restaurant last year, opening in the space that was occupied by Steve & Renee’s Diner for 30 years. Josh and Melissa Bankhead, both from California, eased Steve & Renee’s clientele into an authentic Mexican menu by including some original diner staples, like pancakes and French toast. Open until 9 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, Hella Good is also a place to find great craft beer, both local drafts and some of the Bankheads’ favorite California brews. The atmosphere is fun and funky, with quick service and a unique neighborhood feel.

And, Peter, Peter Portland Eater has reviewed Mi Sen.

I’ll definitely be back to Mi Sen. The food was good and the prices are very reasonable. Our meal came to just over $50 after tip. There’s still a lot I want to try there, so next time, I’ll definitely get something completely different. I must say too that the food I brought home was even better the next day when I wasn’t overly full. See for yourself. Go and order a bunch of items like me, so you can have some left over to enjoy later.

Under Construction: Lois’ Natural Market

The Forecaster has published an  article about the new Lois’ Natural Market on India Street which is scheduled to open on May 19.

The new space, at the corner of India and Middle streets, sandwiched between Two Fat Cats Bakery and Micucci’s Grocery Co., is approximately 2,300 square feet and is scheduled to open May 19.

It will boast the same offerings as the couple’s Route 1 store in Scarborough: grocery items, homemade soups and salads daily, lunch and breakfast sandwiches, baked goods, and dinners to go. The new space will also eventually incorporate an organic juice bar. 

4 Wine-centered Restaurant Ideas

In his wine column in today’s Press Herald, Joe Appel presents four models for restaurants he’d like to see open in Portland.

Yes, I enjoy the pleasures that a nice – or even excellent – glass of wine alongside a nice – or even excellent – plate of food can bring. But allow me, in the paragraphs that follow, to imagine the sort of transportive experience that is so much rarer. Allow me to describe a few restaurants, with suggested names sure to be improved upon, that teach us while they treat us.

Golden Banned from Honey Paw/Eventide/Hugo’s

Today’s Press Herald reports on the ban of food writer John Golden from The Honey Paw, Eventide and Hugo’s.

A longtime local food blogger has been banned from eating at three Portland restaurants because he reviewed one of them after the owners had asked him not to do so.

John Golden, who writes the blog The Golden Dish, on MaineToday.com, received an email last week from Arlin Smith, Andrew Taylor and Mike Wiley – who collectively own Hugo’s, Eventide and The Honey Paw – telling him that he is no longer welcome in any of their establishments.

The article goes on to report that the owners are banning Golden “because they find him and his writing unprofessional.”

This Week’s Events: Seaweed Dinner, Nepal Benefit, Baxter Lecture, Mosel Wine, Crooners Launch

MondayVinland is hosting a 5-course seaweed tasting dinner, there will be a tapas event at Lolita this afternoon, and Le Petite Boucher will be holding a pig butchering workshop.

TuesdayBrad Messier is the guest chef for a pop-up dinner at Vinland.

Wednesday — The Monument Square Farmers’ Market is taking place, and all David’s restaurants in Portland, South Portland and Kennebunkport will be donating 15% of all restaurant sales to relief efforts in Nepal. and Rabelais owner Don Lindgren will give a talk to The Baxter Society on The Apgar Collection of 19th Century Cookbooks “looking at highlights of the collection, and milestones in American cookbook history, as well as examining what a large collection can tell us about American culture that individual books cannot”.

ThursdayRosemont is holding a Mosel tasting event at Think Tank, and chef Shannon Bard is hosting a launch party for her book The Gourmet Mexican Kitchen.

FridayCrooners & Cocktails at 90 Exchange Street is holding their launch party.

SaturdayMaine & Loire is holding a wine tasting, and the Deering Oaks Farmers’ Market is taking place.

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.