America’s Most Livable City

Portland was ranked #1 on’s list of the Most Livable cities in America. The article looked at income growth, cost of living, culture, crime and unemployment gleaned from Moody’s, Sperling’s Best Places and the Bureau of Labor Statistics to tabulate the rankings.

The beer at Gritty McDuff’s might be enough to lure people to Portland…Tasty microbrews aren’t the only reason to like Portland. Thanks to high marks in five key quality of life metrics, Portland tops this year’s list of America’s Most Livable Cities.

The 4-pack Explained

Avery Yale Kamila at The Maine Switch has researched the drivers behind the increasing prevalence of beer 4-packs.

While I push a cart around the grocery store stocking up on things like organic kale and whole oat groats, my husband spends the bulk of his supermarket time contemplating the contents of the beer cooler. These sessions always end with the selection of new beverages to try and often some interesting observations. For instance, he recently remarked about the growing number of local craft brewers selling beer in four-packs.

Which got me thinking: Why four-packs? And why now? So I went straight to the experts to find out what is behind this growing trend.

Press Herald Readership Poll Results

The results of the Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram Readers’ Poll are out. Fore Street got the nod for Best Restaurant ahead of DiMillo’s—thankfully Olive Garden didn’t make the cut this year. But national chains McDonalds and Dunkin Donuts beat out local favorites Becky’s and Coffee by Design in the Cheap Eats and Coffee categories. See the article for the full set of results.

Portland Food Co-op

Yesterday’s Portland Daily Sun published a trio of articles on local food, locavorism and the market factors that resulted in the close of the Whole Grocer and the birth of the Portland Food Co-op. According to the Sun, “Last month’s purchase [by the Co-op] from the Crown of Maine, the statewide distributor of organic Maine goods and products, exceeded the amount purchased by Whole Foods.”

Bottled Water Op-Ed

The Bollard has published an op-ed against bottled water.

This water is systematically and relentlessly pumped from land that belongs to Maine communities. Poland Spring, which began bottling water generations ago in the town of that name, is now an arm of the global conglomerate Nestlé. Poland Spring is trying to strong-arm Maine so Nestlé can continue to extract our water, for free, and sell it back to us.

Food Laws

There are numerous proposed changes/additions to Maine food law being considered by the Maine Legislature. Here’s some highlights:

Wine & Liquor Tastings—as Chow Maine‘s Bob Rossi recently explained there are two bills before the Legislature regarding wine tastings. The first would “repeal the provision in the wine tasting statute which limits wine shops to one tasting per calendar month.” The second is more far reaching and would allow tastings for liquor as well as change rules regarding wine tastings. There are also proposals regarding Maine wineries, hotel minibars, agency liquor stores, etc.

Force Feeding—LD 9 “makes force-feeding birds in order to produce the food product known as foie gras a civil
violation”. Hugo’s Chef Rob Evans was on site in Augusta back in February and spoke up in defense of the agricultural practices of his supplier Hudson Valley Foie Gras in this story on MPBN radio.

Nutrition—lawmakers are discussing a requirement for restaurants with more than 15 locations to post calorie counts on their menus. There’s also a bill that seeks to “defines ‘food containing artificial trans fat’ and prohibits the storage, distribution or use of these foods in an eating establishment”


Both the Portland Daily Sun and Portland Press Herald have run stories about RestaurantWeekME.
Also in today’s Press Herald is a news short on a pair of robberies at The Stadium and Five Fifty-Five.

Portland police are investigating the theft of $1,500 in fine wine from a downtown restaurant this week.

The owners of the 555 restaurant at 555 Congress St. reported Thursday that someone forced their way into the restaurant during the previous night and stole 30 bottles of wine, police said.

Details about the type of wine and vintage were not available.