NYT: Elda in Biddeford

The New York Times has published an article about Elda in Biddeford.

Many of the markers of modern American restaurants are there: a drinks list featuring natural wines and creative cocktails, dishes with influences from Japanese and new Nordic cuisine. But where else are you likely to find a doughnut filled with crab, chiles and fudgy egg yolk? (Verdict: surprisingly spicy, with a tinge of sweetness from the powdered sugar and malt vinegar powder dusting.)

Reviews: Eaux, Maine Craft Distilling

The Peter Peter Portland Eater has reviewed Eaux, and

We were done and I simultaneously regretted everything and nothing, noting that while I would be required to roll out of the restaurant, I had just basked in exquisite flavors and extraordinary dishes. From our hill of beans and seasonal squash, to the bird and baked batter platter, our food took us to New Orleans and back. And it was a wonderful journey.

the Portland Phoenix has reviewed Maine Craft Distilling.

There is also good food beyond snacking. The MCD salad is filled with soft veggies, chickpea cracker and a tangy-spicy dressing with lemon and sumac. Mexican corn was cool and crisp and spicy with thick mayo. A fried chicken sandwich, with thick slices of bacon and a dense pimento cheese sauce pillowing out one side, was hard to eat but worth the effort.

2 New Openings: Hero’s, Cheese

Two new businesses opened this week:

  • Hero’s Subs (facebookinstagramtwitter) opened on Tuesday. This Portland extension of a Lewiston sandwich shop is located at the corner of Wharf and Union Streets.
  • The Cheese Shop of Portland (instagramfacebook) opened on Friday. Owners Mary and Will Sissle met when working at Cowgirl Creamery in San Francisco. Will Sissle is an ACS Certified Cheese Professional. In addition to cheese the shop sells sandwiches and a wide range of specialty food items. The shop is located at 93 Washington Ave.

With these two openings, the Under Construction List is now barely breaking past 20 businesses. It had consistently been at over 40 for the last few years but fewer new ventures got underway this year.

This Week’s Events: Tail Up Goat Dinner, Spencer Brewing, Cantillon Zwanze Day, Pigs & Pink

WednesdayDrifters Wife is collaborating with Tail Up Goat from DC on a 5-course wine dinner, and the Monument Square Farmers’ Market is taking place.

Thursday – The Great Lost Bear is showcasing beer from Cushnoc Brewing.

Friday – monks from America’s only Trappist brewery, Spencer Brewing, will be at the Bier Cellar (3-5) for a tasting, and at Novare Res (5-7) for a tap takeover.

Saturday – Novare Res is celebrating Cantillon Zwanze Day, and the Deering Oaks Farmers’ Market is taking place.

Sunday – 20+ restaurants (Evo, Chaval, Little Giant, Woodford F&B, Purple House, etc), caterers, food producers and wine distributors are collaborating on Pigs & Pink – “Chef-Driven, Pig-Inspired Goodness paired with a Rosé round-up from Maine’s finest wine distributors” –aka a pig roast with a lot of rosé and good food taking place at Broadturn Farm. The event is organized by and a benefit for Full Plates Full Potential, an innovative organization dedicated to eliminating child hunger in Maine.

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: Lio, Pizzarino, Po’ Boys

The Maine Sunday Telegram has reviewed Lio,

Most are inspired by modern European cooking, like a gorgeous lamb loin plated alongside a smoky, creamy Spanish eggplant escalivada; or buttery apple tarte tatin, knocked sideways into funkiness with an almost savory goat cheese ice cream. If the tarte is on the menu when you go, don’t miss it. Other dishes nearly hit their marks, if not for composition problems that make them difficult to eat (intact husk cherries on the otherwise fantastic duck breast) or were tricky to combine together on the fork so that all the flavors work as they should, as in the Melons and Cucumbers, a fragrant, umami-forward vegetable dish made with onions, papalo and garum. Despite the occasional wobble, Stadler and co-head chef Rachel Reynolds’ menu feels like a fresh, exciting take on small plates, one that might just need a little more time to find its perfect equilibrium.

the Portland Phoenix has reviewed Pizzarino, and

Simplicity reigns supreme at Pizzarino, where a Margherita pizza (mozzarella, tomato sauce, extra virgin olive oil, basil) stole the show during a recent visit. Bright and pleasantly acidic with a gentle sweetness, the sauce used as a base for each pizza on the menu is lively and inviting — a welcomed shift away from the deeply caramelized, almost ketchup-like product found on so many pies in southern Maine. The sauce provides much-needed contrast on the almost-too-salty Capricciosa pizza, which layers mushrooms, artichokes and prosciutto cotto ham on the same framework as the Margherita. It is divine and worth the price of admission on its own.

the Press Herald has reviewed Po’ Boys & Pickles.

I was expecting it to arrive on a pita, but instead “The Uptown” was on one of the hefty and delicious po’ boy rolls that the rest of the truly New Orleans-style menu items come on. There were a few thin slices of cucumber and tomato, as well as a red pepper mayonnaise and some shredded lettuce. My friendly server offered me a side of hot sauce, which I happily took.

84 Commercial Street

Plans are have been submitted for review detailing a renovation and addition to 84 Commercial Street, the former home of the Dry Dock Restaurant and Tavern. The owners hope to add a new kitchen, a retail space off the East side of the building, move the entrance and renovate/expand the back deck. You can read the full details in this document prepared for a recent meeting of the Historic Preservation Board.

Babylon Closed

Babylon, the restaurant in Morrill’s Corner, has closed and the owners are seeking a new location, according to the restaurant’s Facebook page,

Babylon has been a family-run business since 2012, and along all those years we have had an amazing support from our loyal customers. It is truly a heartache for us to announce that Babylon is officially closed. Words cannot convey the tremendous support we recieved from Mainers, and if it is one thing we learned from all those years, it is that Maine truly flourish when people come together to support local businesses. We thank each one of you for your support and patience with us. Food brings people from all cultures together, and that is evident through the many relationships we have established through the years. It has been an honor to serve all of you, and thank you all for giving us this opportunity.

We hope that you continue to support us after we establish Babylon at another location. We are continuously working on finding a new location, and will inform you as soon as we know. Know that this cannot happen without your deeply appreciated support.