Friends & Family (instagram) is slated to open on Thursday. The new bar/cafe and specialty market is located in the former Vinland space at 593 Congress Street.
The 30-seat counter service eatery will serve wine, beer, and aperitivos along with menu items such as cheese and chacuterie boards and small plates like chicory salad and pork rillettes on toast. A range of sandwiches will be added to the menu in the coming weeks.
Owners Cecily Upton and Michael Malyniwsky situated their restaurant near the Portland Museum of Art, Portland Stage, Space Gallery, and State Theater to be a casual space to gather pre/post a show or visit to a gallery.
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.
Hours to start will be 11:30 am to 8 pm Thursday through Sunday. Monday night will be pizza night open for evening service, 4 to 8 pm.