Under Construction: Petite Jacqueline

Owners Steve and Michelle Corry have been seeking a new spot for Petite Jacqueline ever since this summer when they decided to relocate from 190 State Street in Longfellow Square.

They’ve decided to reconfigure the space at 46 Market Street, the location of Portland Patisserie, and merge the two businesses. The goal is to launch the new Petite Jacqueline sometime in May. More details on the plan will be forthcoming in the next few weeks.

190 State Street has been leased by Anthony Allen and Mike Keon who plan to open an expanded version of their burrito restaurant Ocho in that space.

Restaurant Design

Grace was recently highlighted by Tabelog on their list of America’s 10 Most Beautiful Restaurants.

Grace in Portland, ME. inhabits the old Chestnut Street Church and painstaking measures were taken to bring the building to its original glory. Most of the building is original, but any new work was meticulously done to match or tie in with the existing architecture.

On a related note, the James Beard Foundation awards committee is soliciting suggestions for the 2016 restaurant design awards. Visit the JBF website to submit your recommendations for best restaurant design of 2015. The deadline is this Friday.

This Week’s Events: Chocolate Workshop, Industrial Park Challenge, Portland On Tap, Cake Decorating

TuesdayVena’s is teaching a bitter’s workshop.

WednesdayBlack Dinah is teaching a chocolate workshop at Whole Foods.

Thursday — The Great Lost Bear is hosting the annual Industrial Park Challenge.

Saturday — the Portland On Tap beer festival is taking place as is the Winter Farmers’ Market.

Sunday — Aurora Provisions is holding a cake decorating class and Tiqa is leading a cooking class.

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 the Green Elephant

The Maine Sunday Telegram has reviewed the Green Elephant.

Green Elephant Vegetarian Bistro serves Asian-inspired cuisine “for vegetarians and carnivores alike.” Go early (the restaurant has 17 closely spaced tables plus two booths, but they fill up quickly) and start with the Brussels sprouts. One of the most popular appetizers on the menu, they’re fried until crispy then glazed with a mixture of tamari and brown sugar. Skip the Roti Canai Indian-style flatbread – it’s oily and bland – and move right to one of the house curries: The peanut curry is loaded with chickpeas and potatoes, and the milder Panang has Thai eggplant and zucchini along with a long list of other vegetables. Fried rice dishes are reliably good, as are noodle entrees.

Sunday Telegram restaurant critic James Schwartz is stepping done from the job. The paper has indicated that they will publish his last review next week and the column will be suspended while they search for his replacement.

Down East: Maine Breakfast & Vena’s

imageThe new issue of Down East includes a guide to the best breakfast dishes served by restaurants from all over the state (e.g. the Deluxe breakfast sandwich at Palace Diner, and the fried chicken and waffles at East Ender) as well as an article about Vena’s Fizz House.

The articles aren’t yet online but you can pickup a copy of the magazine at your local newsstand.

Review of Woodford F&B

The Golden Dish has posted a first look review of Woodford Food & Beverage.

The menu offers a good diversity of dishes.  In the two visits I’ve been able to get to know the kitchen’s abilities.  And prior to this posted write-up I paid a third visit to sample the WFB’s  Thursday plat du jour, quahog chowder.  And it was a marvelous brew, very bacony, creamy, a meal unto itself. I snacked on the onion dip and Kennebec chips to start, a glorious beginning.  A glass of Silvaner Halbtrocken paired quite well indeed.

Under Construction: Eliot/Loring Project

While we await final news on the new location for Petite Jacqueline, word has gotten out that former PJ chef Fred Eliot has joined the kitchen staff at Rhum working for chef de cuisine Frank Warren Anderson.

Eliot and Rhum co-owner Jason Loring are also exploring the idea of launching a French restaurant together in Portland. The project is still very much in the early stages so look for details to emerge later this year.

First Takes on Woodford F&B

The Blueberry Files and Urban Eye have posted their initial impressions of Woodford Food & Beverage,

Those who live in the surrounding neighborhood are sure to be thrilled with this comfortable restaurant that boasts good food, cocktails, and a family-friendly atmosphere. And those of us who are stuck in our peninsula bubbles will want to shake up the routine by heading out Forest Ave. to check out Woodford F&B.  [Blueberry Files]

Here’s a link to the full Woodford F&B menu.

Fore River & Bissell Brothers

The Portland Phoenix has published an article on the remarkable growth and success of Bissell Brothers since their launch 2 years ago,

So what’s the endgame? Is the new location the first stepping stone towards an even larger-scale brewery? Cool your jets. Both brothers made it clear that their first priority is to meet demand here at home. From the beginning the goal has been to focus on Portland first, and then push out into Maine. They’ve done the latter admirably, but even with the expansion and the increased capacity, they’re still a comparatively small brewery. Peter explains, “We certainly want to grow, but of equal value to us is the social currency of always being able to control our product, to be able to touch where it goes and the people it goes to, and do our best to be a hometown beer that people here are excited to drink.”

and the Press Herald has a report on Fore River Brewing, which recently  opened their doors in South Portland.

Standing in the brewery with LeGassey and Hansen, the only word to describe the new tasting room is “gorgeous.” Mainly the work of Alex Anastasoff, the room is industrial-rustic-chic: all warm woods and concrete floors. Wood beams abound. A wood stove burns next to a brick chimney. Handcrafted light fixtures blink on the walls. Custom wood boards line the ceiling. I know I write about beer, but the tasting room alone is worth the visit.