Scratch Reopening Thursday

Staff at Scratch Baking Company (instagram) are busy putting the finishing touches on their newly renovated bakery. They are scheduled to reopen their landmark Willard Square location Thursday May 26th. Going forward their new hours will be Wednesday through Sunday, 7 am – 2 pm.

The new space features a roundtangle shaped space with a center island. Customers will enter through the left set of doors. First up on the trip around the bakery will be breads and bagels, followed by pastries along the long back counter, and then refrigerated and packaged goods on the final side. Coffee will be available—drip and espresso drinks—from the central island.

Little Tandem Reopening


The long awaited reopening of Tandem’s Anderson Street location is taking place Tuesday May 24th. Little Tandem will be open Tuesday through Saturday 8 am – 1 pm to start.

The newly renovated space features additional counter and table seating including a spot that the architect has labeled “Kathleen’s Cozy Corner”. As you can see from the photo, the coffee bar has moved from the left side of the building to the section of the building where the original roastery was located.

The Little Tandem building in East Bayside is where Kathleen and Will Pratt first opened their coffee roastery and coffee bar back in 2012. Tandem’s Congress Street coffee shop and bakery opened in 2014.

Browne Trading Lunch

Browne Trading has launched a takeout lunch menu which includes offerings such as: a smoked salmon BLT, BBQ hamachi collar and tuna tartar.

You can find the full menu on instagram. Lunch is available Tuesday through Friday, and outdoor seating will soon be available.

Roll Call Opens Today

After a soft opening on Thursday, Roll Call (website, instagram) is scheduled to open their new lunch counter today in the Public Market House.

The new Roll Call features an expanded menu which includes their wonderful roast beef sandwich as well a braised lamb quesadilla, a breakfast sandwich, a buffalo soy sandwich, and other offerings.

Roll Call will initially be open Wednesday through Friday, 10:30 – 2:30

Maine Community Cookbook On Sale

The second volume of the Maine Community Cookbook is now available for pre-order on Kickstarter.

The overwhelmingly positive reception of the Maine Bicentennial Community Cookbook inspired us to continue our project, and to expand it. In 2021, we began to solicit recipes for this second volume. Though our country’s divisions are increasingly on display, these community cookbooks focus on what connects us: food, family, and a love for the state of Maine. The book’s contributors are all united by one thing: they are generous enough to invite us into their kitchens and share their family’s food traditions with us. We are grateful to them, and excited to share more Maine family recipes and stories with you.

A $24 pledge on Kickstarter will get you a copy of the book shipped to you “hot off the press” when it’s released in July. Other pledge amounts include incentives like cooking with the editors, a guest appearance on the Maine Community Cookbook podcast, and even a private tour of the collections at Rabelais for you and 12 friends.

Casa Novello to Reopen

Casa Novello has announced plans to reopen their Westbrook restaurant on May 3rd.

We are excited to announce that we are reopening on Tuesday 5/3. We still have our two original BOH staff and they are excited to train our new Chef and new team members so there are no changes in any of the recipes!! I cannot thank all of you for the overwhelming support and Love we received! We are so looking forward to celebrating with all of you!! Kimmy, Karen, Leah, Sarah, Nick, Brandon, Derek and Hannah can’t wait to get back to work… And we are excited for all of our new staff to join our Casa family!! PLEASE SHARE!!! Call for reservations. We are also going to be open on Mother’s Day 4-8…

Casa Novello had closed indefinitely in early April due to a lack of staff and at the time it seemed likely they were likely to close permanently.

Onggi to Open April 30th

Onggi (website, instagram) will be opening their fermentation-focused shop at their new location at 131 Washington Ave (the former A&C Grocery) on Saturday April 30th. The move will more than quadruple their space—from 300 sq ft to 1,300 sq ft.

The store will feature a new pastry and lunch service that will be available to go or to enjoy at the counter, window seats or outdoor tables. In addition to some popular items from the Onggi 1.0 menu (e.g. sourdough chocolate chip cookies) the offerings will include options like miso scallion scones, kimchi pork handpies, and matcha black sesame butter mochi. The lunch menu will specialize in fermentation-focused dishes including their own take on the Korean classic Bibimbap.

The retail shop is also set to expand with the introduction of house-made fermented products, equipment, and “fermenty alcoholic beverages”. In the future the second floor of the building will be used to hold classes, workshops, and events.

“Ferments have fascinated – and fed – us our entire lives and we believe wholeheartedly in the benefits of fermentation: richer flavors, improved health, and cultured community,” says Marcus Im, one of Onggi’s three co-founders. “There is so much we can do to educate others and build excitement around all that fermentation can offer, and we hope whoever visits Onggi will share some of our enthusiasm and fall in love with our expanded in-store experience.”

Onggi was founded by Amy Ng, Erin Zobitz, and Marcus Im in April 2021. Onggi was originally located in one of The Black Box retail spaces on the corner of Marion Street and Washington Ave.

Onggi will be open on April 30th, and then starting May 4th will be open Wednesday through Saturday, 10 am – 6 pm, and on Sunday 10 am – 4 pm.

Photo Credit: Onggi.

Stars & Stripes Now Open

After a few days of soft openings the new Stars and Stripes Brewing Co. (websitefacebookinstagram) tasting room at 3 Spring Street will open today at 2 pm. The tasting room is located in the space formerly occupied by Lio.

The “Mess Hall” food menu includes pizza, fries, chicken tenders, chicken wings, a charcuterie box and a kid’s “cuterie snack box”.

Stars & Stripes opened their original location in Freeport in November 2018. Today’s hours at the Portland location will be 2 – 10 pm.

Casita Corazon

Casita Corazon, the South Portland second location of El Corazon (facebookinstagram) restaurant in Longfellow Square, opened for business last week. The restaurant is located in the former 158 Pickett Street Cafe location. The building has undergone renovations since 158 Pickett Street Cafe closed at the end of last summer. Casita Corazon will be open Tuesday through Saturday, 11 – 8.

El Corazon initially launched as a food truck in 2013 before taking over the former Petite Jacqueline space in Longfellow Square in 2017.