Chopped Tournament of Champions

Sixteen past Chopped Champions including Evo’s chef Matt Ginn will be returning to the small screen to battle it out for a grand prize of $50,000 and a new car.

Ginn’s episode airs tonight and Evo is holding a Chopped viewing party starting at 8pm, the episode is on the Food Network at 9pm.

This Week’s Events: Stadler/Lopez, Business Succession, Oyster Jam

TuesdayCara Stadler and Ilma Lopez will be speaking at One Longfellow Square, and there will be a 6-course beer/wine pairing dinner at CellarDoor.

Wednesday – the Monument Square Farmers’ Market is taking place.

Thursday – There will be a workshop on Business Succession in Maine’s Food-Based Economy at USM.

Friday – Jules Dressner from wine importer Louis Dressner will be at Maine & Loire for a wine tasting, 5-7pm.

Saturday – 10 local oyster farms and companies will be competing in the Jumbo Oyster Jam at Oxbow, 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.

Apprenticeship Program

SMCC and HospitalityMaine are launching a kitchen apprenticeship program.

Apprentices would be required to work 2,000 hours in the industry and earn between 24 and 28 college credits toward an associate or bachelor’s degree. The program is designed so students can take online and classroom courses in late fall and winter and work full time in the summer, the busiest season for restaurants and hotels in southern Maine. While employed, workers concentrate on learning skills needed for careers in the industry.

Reviews: East Ender, Roots Cafe, Dunstan Tap & Table

The Maine Sunday Telegram has reviewed Dunstan Tap & Table,

Offerings at this stylish, modern restaurant echo familiar tropes – burgers, tacos, a few dozen beers and ciders by the can, bottle and on tap – but DT&T, as the Brenermans have nicknamed it, is different from its Scarborough peers. In no small part, that’s because Tenney prepares components for his eclectic menu largely from scratch, from fiery habanero sauce to pastrami. Worth a try are his take on pub classics like hand-cut fries, vibrantly herbal chicken tacos and Asian-esque Brussels sprouts

thePress Herald has reviewed Roots Cafe, and

I ate an excellent vegetable quiche – the filling was delicate, the homemade crust tender – and a pretty, seasonally apt salad with roasted butternut squash, apples, almonds, quinoa, dried cranberries and crumbled feta, all arranged atop a bed of baby spinach. My quiche, salad and complimentary cheese puffs, served on stylish white china, came to just $10.25, which felt like a deal. And the portions were so generous, I lacked the stomach space for the chocolate ganache and banana crepe I’d been coveting as I watched the staff make sweet and savory crepes to order.

Portland Magazine magazine has reviewed East Ender.

We order the pâté-like Chicken Leg Rillette ($7), served on lightly toasted Pain de Mie (a French pullman bread loaf featuring very little crust). The rich meat, graced with savory seasonings and a light-handed touch of house mustard with a very good pickle (neither sweet nor sour), enhances our bread. Not a crumb remains on our plates.

Mr. Tuna Now Open

Mr. Tuna (instagram, facebook) held a soft opening Friday, and I’m happy to announce that beginning today they will be serving their excellent sushi hand rolls in their sleek new space in the Public Market House, 11 am – 7 pm, 7 days a week.

Owner Jordan Rubin launched the business in 2017 as a food cart on Commercial Street. Mr. Tuna joins a long list of Portland food businesses that have gotten their start as a mobile operation before making the leap to brick and mortar.

Prior to Mr. Tuna, Rubin had worked at Uni Sashimi Bar in Boston and Solo Italiano in Portland.

Under Construction: Austin Street

The Portland Phoenix has published an update on the new Austin Street brewery under construction on Fox Street.

Now Austin Street is preparing to move production to a new space on Fox Street in East Bayside, and Austin is ready to get his hands dirty again. “We have 100 barrels’ worth of fermentation space right now, so we’re going to add in another 60 barrels, and also a 20-barrel lagering tank, which I’m really excited about,” he says.

Ela Market & Grill

Mainebiz has published an in-depth article on the new business taking over the former Nina’s Variety space in Falmouth.

The market will offer everyday items like coffee, fresh produce, local meats, breads and pastries, beer from domestic and local breweries, soft drinks, dairy products, dry goods, seasonal retail items, and a typical variety of candy, chips, lottery tickets and tobacco. The grill will prepare grab-and-go and a-la-carte items. The menu will consist of breakfast sandwiches, lunch sandwiches and wraps, freshly made salads, gyros and specialty Greek, Italian and American dishes in individual and family size portions.

Under Construction: The Garrison

Chef Christian Hayes is building out a new 35-45 seat restaurant in Yarmouth called The Garrison (website, facebook, instagram) with an anticipated launch in Summer 2019. The space is on the water side of the mill building his company Dandelion Catering currently occupies. The project (being done by Barrett Made) will also result in a new catering kitchen for Dandelion.

Hayes, a Chopped Champion, shared he’s aiming for a atmosphere that is approachable, refined and thoughtful with a long bar and tables aligned with mill windows that look out over the water. The Garrison will offer a varied menu with a “slight lean towards seafood”.