A combination bar/cafe and specialty market called Friends & Family (instagram) is under development at 593 Congress Street in the space formerly occupied by Vinland. The 30-seat counter service eatery will serve small plates, cheese and charcuterie as well as wine, beer, and aperitivos. During warmer months Friends & Family is also planning additional seating in Congress Square Park.
Friends & Family situated in the center of the Arts District with the Portland Museum of Art, Portland Stage, Space Gallery, and State Theater all within easy walking distance. Being a go to casual space to gather pre/post a show or visit to a gallery is a key part of the vision for Friends & Family.
Founders Cecily Upton and Michael Malyniwsky hope to open Friends & Family in July.
Upton grew up in Maine. Early in her career she worked at former Portland restaurants Natasha’s and Pepperclub, as well as Space Gallery and the PMA. In New York she was part of the front of house staff at Gabrielle Hamilton’s restaurant Prune. She worked as the youth programs director at Slow Food USA before co-founding FoodCorps. Upton returned to Maine in 2015.
Malyniwsky grew up in Ottawa and moved to the US in 2001. The last 7 years he’s worked in California where most recently he was the founding chef of Cellarmaker House of Pizza in San Francisco. Malyniwsky was on the opening teams of Birch & Barley in DC, and was the sous chef at CityZen working with Michelin-starred chef Eric Ziebold.
Follow Friends & Family on instagram to stay in the loop as they work towards an opening day this summer.