Jing Yan

Mainebiz has published an update on Jing Yan, the Asian fusion restaurant under construction in the former Lolita space on Munjoy Hill.

Getting the operation up and running mostly just involves some cosmetic work, including swapping in new light fixtures and paint; plus buying a new fryer and hood system. The couple is doing the painting themselves but hired sub-contractors for the rest of the work. They financed the purchase and installations through a loan with Gorham Savings Bank.

“There are not many people wanting to open a restaurant right now,” she said. “It’s one of the riskiest times to do it. But we’re young and we saw an opportunity and we just fell in love with the space.”

Maine Oyster Trail 2.0

The Maine Aquaculture Association (MAA) is working on an updated version of the Maine Oyster Trail (instagram). The original online oyster trail was published in 2017 using Google Maps. The new service will include an interactive trip planner, challenges, prizes and other features.

Funding for the project comes from a $10,000 grant from the Maine Office of Tourism and a second $10,000 grant from the Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center.

The MAA hopes to launch the new oyster trail in 2021.

Pie, Tacos and Tequila

Another two food businesses are under development:

Yardie Ting is Expanding

Yardie Ting (website, facebookinstagram) is planning to open a restaurant in Gray, Maine. In support of the project chef/owner Shanna-Kay Wright has launch a crowd funding campaign with the goal of raising $25k.

My name is Shanna-Kay Wright. I am a female entrepreneur, chef, and single mother of two children.  I am of Caribbean roots which inspire the cuisine on the menu of my own Caribbean restaurant called Yardie Tings…I would like to expand to another location that will allow for the growing demand and to include space for guess seating in a relaxed environment. The funds that are raised will be used for the renovation of the new location, which will begin next February of 2021. I have sourced a new location that requires layout changes and equipment purchases as I undertake renovations. Your donations will be used for the build-out of the restaurant because it is a blank canvas, the purchasing of appliances, and other fixtures for the restaurant. This will allow for a spacious, warm, and inviting environment for customers.

Wright plans to keep the original Yardie Ting in the Public Market House open, and hopes to open the new restaurant this spring.

For more info and to contribute to the campaign visit www.gofundme.com.

SoPo Seafood Coming to Ocean Street

SoPo Seafood (website, facebook, instagram) has leased the former Uncle Andy’s at 171 Ocean Street in South Portland where they plan to open a retail fish shop and raw bar.

The menu for the raw bar will include Maine oysters, lobster rolls, seafood crudo, chowder as well as wine by the glass and draft beer, and will be open for lunch and into the early evening. In addition to seafood, the shop will also offer a wine selection. Certified Sommelier Jen Lakari is advising SoPo on their wine program.

Sopo specializes in Maine seafood. They sell wholesale and early in the pandemic launched a retail seafood delivery service (order online). The location on Ocean Street will be their first retail storefront.

Co-owners Matt Brown, Lucas Myers and Joshua Edgcombe launched SoPo Seafood in March. They plan to start using the Ocean Street property as a curbside pick-up location in December and to open the retail shop and raw bar in May 2021. Once they open they also plan to use the store to host guest chefs for seafood preparation and cooking demonstrations.