Claire Z. Cramer, 64

Claire Z. Cramer passed away unexpectedly earlier this month.

Claire was well known in the restaurant industry for the years she served (2001 – 2004) as the restaurant critic for the Maine Sunday Telegram, and, more recently, for her work over the last several years while she’s been an editor at Portland Magazine writing numerous articles about the Portland food scene.

Her loss will be deeply heartfelt by her many friends.

This Week’s Events: Eaux/Mr. Tuna, Little Hunter Release, Beer Cocktails, Suga Suga, Thirsty Thirty

Wednesday – A Eaux/Mr. Tuna collaboration dinner is being held at Eaux, and the Monument Square Farmers’ Market is taking place.

ThursdayLittle Giant is celebration their 1-year anniversary with a 4-course Oxbow beer dinner, and the release of a collaboration beer with Oxbow called Little Hunter (blueberries, raspberries and strawberries; and aged 6 months in single-barrel selects from Four Roses and Buffalo Trace), and 10 to midnight Hunt & Alpine bartenders will be mixing beer cocktails at Oxbow on Washington Ave.  The Great Lost Bear is showcasing beers from Baxter Brewing.

Saturday – the Suga Suga food cart is scheduled to launch, Gritty’s is celebrating their 30th Anniversary with the Thirsty Thirty event, 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.

Reviews: Drifters, Highroller, Clam Digger, Eaux, Vantage Point

Down East has reviewed Drifters Wife,

Any seafood dish is a smart order. On any given night, Jackson might be working with hake, butterfish, or monk, but no matter the fish, he has a gift for hitting just the right temperature for perfect flavor and feel. The luxuriousness of the textures he creates ought to win over even the most devoted carnivore.

the Portland Phoenix has reviewed Highroller Lobster,

Lobster is undoubtedly the main attraction, showing up in grilled cheese, “pop,” and taco forms among other items. The lobster cheese crisp taco that has accumulated over 16 million views in a one-minute Thrillist video is one of Highroller’s most popular choices. Essentially a giant parm crisp brimming with lobster meat, it’s certainly over the top, if not a bit conflicting in taste due to the sharp and assertive flavors the cheese brings to the table. A fried lobby pop is the most decadent corndog analog I’ve come across in my day; the perfect match for a side of charred pineapple mayo.

the Portland Press Herald had reviewed Vantage Point Provisions,

When I got back to the office and tried the chowder, I was even gladder to have finally found him. It’s just the kind of chowder I like. He’d described his spin as “traditional but different,” and that was accurate, with fresh herbs floating in the broth but not taking away from the essential clam character.

As the Lobster Rolls had reviewed Clam Digger, and

While I was eating this roll, I noticed that the mayo was applied directly to the roll and not mixed in with the lobster – something I’d never experienced but kinda liked. I also noticed that because of the amount of lobster in this thing, the beefier brioche roll was welcomed to hold it all together. Overall, I was quite pleased with the experience. The fries and cole slaw were tasty too… just too much!

the Portland Press Herald had reviewed Eaux.

By this point, we knew we had to try the signature fried chicken and waffles ($14). The skillfully-seasoned chicken was crispy, the waffles had the perfect amount of syrup, and the dish was served with thinly sliced apple, an addition which transformed each bite into a mini-vacation to New Orleans.

Canopy Farms Kickstarter

Cara Stadler has launched a $25,000 Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for Canopy Farms, the aquaponics greenhouse she’s building in Brunswick. The funds will be used to buy:

  • Monitoring and control systems so we can learn what’s working, and share our learning $6000
  • Water filtration and supplements to fill our system and support its cycle into production $5500
  • Additional grow beds and equipment for experimental and educational projects $9000
  • Consumable materials to support student projects, including water test kits, additional safety gear, and more $4500

Stadler Aquaponics Greenhouse

Today’s Press Herald includes a very interesting article about chef Cara Stadler’s project to build an aquaponics greenhouse in Brunswick that will supply vegetables and rainbow trout to her three restaurants.

Now, drivers passing by Tao Yuan in Brunswick are watching the busy chef’s next project come to life before their eyes. Five years in the making, it’s an aquaponic greenhouse in a 55-by-60-foot, two-story building that will also house a new café and a commercial kitchen to supply Stadler’s restaurants. Both Stadler and Kate Holcomb, the 31-year-old project director, say they hope the facility will open this fall.