Tu Casa Review

Portland Food Coma offers a point-by-point explanation of what makes Tu Casa specialfor him  in this review of the Salvadoran restaurant.

Sure, there are a few things that could use improvement, such as the speed in which you get your food…But you know what? The consistency of the food makes it all worth while…I might actually go so far as to say this is my favorite restaurant in Portland.

Beer, Wine, Mead and Spirits

The Maine Food and Drink Ambassadors program is now offering the second class of what will eventually be an 8-course program on Maine food. The first course addressed cheese. This second one will tackle beer, wine, mead and spirits and will be taught by “brewer Tom Bull, meadmaker Eli Cayer, winemakers from Cellar Door and Oyster River Winegrowers as well as distillers Keith Bodine [from Sweetgrass Winery] and Jonathan Forester.”
The course takes place over 2 night at the Bar of Chocolate Cafe on April 7 and 14th. There’s also a repeat of the 3-night cheese course taking place at K. Horton’s in the Public Market House on the 16th, 23rd and 30th of this month. For more information or to sign-up drop a line to Margo Mallar at info@maineambassadors.com.

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.

Under Construction: Luna Rossa

Here’s a look  at the building site for Luna Rossa, a new Italian restaurant under construction on Middle Street in the old Pavillion space. According to to liquor license application filed with the city, Ryan Byther, one of the former owners of Prost will be the manager and part owner of Luna Rossa. Seating is planned for both the first and second floors of the building. Luna Rossa’s menu is on display in a window at 188 Middle Street.

This Week’s Events

The Portland Symphony’s Wine Dinner and Auction take place tonight. There are two cooking classes scheduled this week: Piatto per Tutti on Monday and Black Tie Bistro on Wednesday. Food & Wine magazine is scheduled to announce the 2009 list of  Best New Chefs on Wednesday; Hugo’s Rob Evans was on the list in 2004 and 555’s Steve Corry in 2007. MOFGA is teaching a class on organic gardening Wednesday night in Cape Elizabeth. Wine tastings are on tap at the West End Deli on Friday and at Leroux Kitchen on Saturday. Novare Res is holding a vertical tasting of Ola Dubh 12, 16 and 30 on Thursday, while The Great Lost Bear is showcasing beeers from Boston Beer Co. For more information on these and other upcoming food happenings in the area, visit the event calendar.

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.