Purple House Series, Part 3

Chef/owner Krista Kern Desjarlais has authored a third installment in the Press Herald series about opening The Purple House.

“I can’t believe you’re out of bagels before 10:30 a.m.!!” These are words I never expected to hear on day two, ringing out like a gong and sending waves of anxiety through my body. I smiled – at that customer and everyone else who showed up over the next two hours – as I explained again and again that the 200 bagels we’d made had sold out in just two hours.

Best New Breweries: Foulmouthed Brewing

Beer Advocate has highlighted Foulmouthed Brewing in a list of “34 of the most promising newcomers” as selected by readers from among the 861 breweries that opened last year.

One standout is their take on a wheat Saison named Iron Goddess, brewed with honey and tea. For 2017, “we just started our barrel-aging and bottling program and are planning to set up a solera array for blending Brett Saisons,” Craig Dilger says. “But for now we are draft-only, serving the vast majority of our beer right over the bar in the brewpub.”


Under Construction: Island Creek Oysters

The Press Herald reports that Island Creek Oysters has leased space at 123 Washington Ave—in the same building as the new Maine Craft Distilling—where they plan to operate a retail shop and restaurant.

Island Creek Oysters, based in Duxbury, Massachusetts, plans to open a retail shop and restaurant at 123 Washington Ave., just a couple of doors away from Roustabout and Oxbow Brewing, the company announced Monday. The new business is expected to open sometime between April and June.

Under Construction: Bite Into Maine

Bite Into Maine (website, facebook, twitter, instagram) is in the process of converting a brick and mortar space in Scarborough to serve as a commissary kitchen and lobster shack.

The building is located at 185 US Route 1 #2. It will seat approximately 15 as well as serve take-out. The menu is still under development but will larger than that on offer at the original Fort Williams food truck. Owners Sarah and Karl Sutton hope to open the new retail space in time for summer when they also hope to launch a second food truck at Allagash Brewing.

Bite Into Maine will join fellow mobile food vendors Mami, Small Axe/East Ender, Love Kupcakes/Baristas+Bites, Hella Good Tacos, Mainely Burgers, Urban Sugar and CN Shawarma/Baharat in converting to or adding a brick and mortar capacity.

I think this is an indication that the vision for Portland food trucks as incubators of small businesses was a sound one.

Roustabout Has Closed

Roustabout (twitter, instagram, facebook, website) has decided to close.


The past fifteen months have been filled with challenges, excitement and reward. We consider ourselves fortunate to be part the vibrant restaurant community in Portland Maine.

However, it is with deep disappointment that after dinner service on Sunday January 8th, we have closed our doors for good.

We are immensely thankful for our staff, past and present. Thank you for your commitment and professionalism during your time here. We count ourselves lucky to have been able to work along side of each and every one of you.

A huge thank you to our guests for making us their go-to neighborhood spot, cocktail bar, and family restaurant.

We have been exceedingly fortunate to have such wonderful friends & neighbors on inner Washington and wish you all the best luck.

Thank you
– Roustabout

Founders Kit Paschal and Anders Tallberg announced plans for their Washington Avenue restaurant in May of 2015. The 75-seat Italian restaurant got off to a promising start in November of the same year.

Food Stories: Karl Deuben and Bill Leavy

Food Stories has posted an audio interview with Karl Deuben and Bill Leavy, owners of East Ender.

This is the 12th episode of Food Stories, a WMPG “radio show where we interview owners, creators, executives of food and beverage business in the evolving food scene in Portland”.

Prior episodes of Food Stories include interviews with:

This Week’s Events: Maine Ag Show, Tipo Opening, Winter Market

Tuesday – it’s the opening day of the 76th Annual Maine Agricultural Trades Show in Augusta.

WednesdayTipo is scheduled to open at 4 pm.

FridayMaine & Loire is holding a wine tasting to celebrate their 2nd anniversary.

SaturdayLeRoux Kitchen is holding a wine tasting, and the Winter 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.

Reviews: Owl & Elm, Salty Sally’s

The Maine Sunday Telegram has reviewed Owl & Elm,

The family-friendly pub serves a smart selection of mostly local beers, both on tap and by the bottle, as well as cocktails, like the Lulu ($9), a dealer’s choice drink that changes daily but always includes tequila. Food at Owl & Elm falls squarely under the rubric of classic pub fare, with some weak dishes, like an unbalanced seafood stew, as well as some very strong ones, like spicy buffalo cauliflower, and hearty, slow-braised steak served over crisp French fries. Owl & Elm might not be the place to come for a quiet meal, but it is a great spot for a burger and a beer with local patrons of all ages.

and The Bollard has reviewed Salty Sally’s Bar and Grille.

On the plus side, we really felt welcome at Salty Sally’s. The owner and our server were both happy to answer our questions and everyone seemed to be in a great mood. I’d definitely come back another time for a couple drinks or a late-night burger fix, but I’ll look elsewhere for breakfast. It’s a new year, friends. Let’s resolve not to settle for anything less than excellence in 2017. We owe David Bowie at least that much.

Under Construction: A and C Grocery

A and C Grocery (website, facebook), a “neighborhood one-stop grocery shop” is under construction at 131 Washington Ave.

Open seven days a week, we will offer the amenities of a super market at a scale that fits the neighborhood. Specializing in sustainably produced ingredients, we will provide Munjoy Hill and East Bayside with a welcoming place to find and enjoy prepared foods, hand-crafted bread, fresh produce, groceries, beer, wine, dairy, eggs and specialty food items.