Vena’s Fizz House has announced plans to move to a new location. They’ll be wrapping up business at the corner of Silver and Fore Street in January. Owners Steve and Johanna Corman are in the process of locating a new larger location to expand both their retail shop and bar.
We will be closing our brick and mortar venue in January. After seven years in our quaint little corner in the heart of the Old Port we are bitter, sweetly letting go to move Vena’s on to a larger space to enable the next phase of our business to scale & grow in Portland.
We are excited to share our plans and will do so in the next couple of months – so stay tuned! In the meantime, please find all your beverage needs at our brimmed to the rim online shop. If you need a recipe, want to talk bitters or host a virtual mixology class, just give us a shout.
The current Vena’s space at 345 Fore Street is now for lease for $3,750/month.
A new Munjoy Hill Asian-inspired restaurant Jing Yan (facebook, instagram) is slated to open for takeout on Wednesday. Jing Yan is located is located at 90 Congress Street in the space formerly occupied by Lolita.
The overall layout of the restaurant has remained the same with a number of changes to the interior design to align the look with the new restaurant concept. Co-owner Britt Langford has hand-painted a panoramic mural along the banquet wall as well as a circular motif above the front table that features a Jing Yan, a species of Bejing swallow that the restaurant is named for.
Husband and wife Leo Zhang and Britt Langford are the co-owners of the restaurant, and Chris Petrillo has joined the team as Jin Yan’s chef. Langford and Zhang met in China where the couple ran the Bar 4 Nine cocktail bar before moving to Maine.
Hours are Wednesday through Monday 11 am – 11 pm. The kitchen closes at 8 pm but a limited late night menu is available 8 – 11 pm.
Jing Yan will be open on Thanksgiving.
Here’s a look at the opening night takeout menu. Jing Yan will also have available milk and fruit teas, mocktails and soft drinks to go.
A new food truck called Sok Sabai (instagram) is under development and is expected to launch this coming spring. Sok Sabai will serve a menu of Cambodian, Laotian and Vietnamese food that will include beef and chicken skewers, egg rolls, noodle bowls and wings.
Owner Tina Nop is the first recipient of a Entrepreneurial Empowerment Scholarship from Fork Food Lab. As reported in the Portland Phoenix,
The scholarship will cover the cost of a six-month membership at Fork, as well as licensing costs, access to free legal, tax, and business planning, and additional marketing and brand support from local digital marketing agency iBec Creative.
The scholarship was made possible through a combination of private donations and a $2,500 sponsorship from Atlantic Federal Credit Union.
Of Cambodian heritage, Nop is also incorporating Laotian and Vietnamese food in the food truck menu “to honor the cultures of all the people who have helped her family.” The name of the food truck means “peace and happiness” in the Khmer language.
For more information about Nop, her family and about the Sok Sabai food truck read this in depth article in the Portland Phoenix.
Be sure to follow Sok Sabai on instagram to keep up to date on the development and launch of the food truck.
Update: Also check out this article from the American Journal.
Wednesday – Daniel Iwasko from Duckfat is Wednesday’s guest chef at the Duckfat Friteshack Grill, and the weekday Deering Oaks Farmers’ Market is taking place.
Thursday – it’s Thanksgiving…see the list below for ideas on where to get ingredients and dishes for your meal.
Saturday – Pacifico, a new Latin American restaurant in Saco, is scheduled to open.
Thanksgiving Resource Guide – a growing list of which restaurants are doing in person or takeout Thanksgiving dinners, as well as bakeries, markets and other providers with special offerings for Thanksgiving. While deciding on your own Thanksgiving Day meal plans consider making a donation to the Good Shepherd Food Bank to help fight hunger in Maine.
- Thanksgiving Wine – top recommendations from six local wine distributors, and from several wine shop and wine bar owners. Additionally, Brittany Saliwanchik from Magnus on Water is offering free 30-min virtual wine consultations.
- Belleville – has set-up an online pre-order for Thanksgiving baked goods. Order online for pick-up on November 24th or 25th.
- BlueFin – the restaurant at the Portland Harbor Hotel will be serving a Thanksgiving dinner(menu). There will be four seatings at 1, 2:45, 4:30 and 6.
- Botto’s Bakery – has some Thanksgiving breads and desserts which you can order online. Order deadlines: for breads November 24th, for pastry November 21st.
- Chaval – has some dessert options an apple tarte tatan with a side of vanilla cream, maple pecan pumpkin pie, and a chocolate tart
frangipan almond tart with poached pears and chocolate sauce. Email email@example.com to order.
- Churchill Catering – has a variety of mains, sides and desserts. Order online.
- Craft – has turkeys, sides and desserts for order online.
- Dizzy Bird – has Thanksgiving takeout available for pick-up on November 25th or 26th. Order online.
- Dock Fore – will have their full menu plus a turkey dinner calzone.
- Eighteen95 – the restaurant at The Portland Regency will be serving a Thanksgiving dinner (see the menu). Noon to 7pm.
- LB Kitchen – has sides, desserts, breads and other items for your Thanksgiving. Order online.
- Mainely Macarons – has three flavors available for Thanksgiving.
- Nigh Moves – has a variety of pies, breads and baked goods for Thanksgiving. Order online.
- Norimoto Bakery – has a short list of baked goods available. Order by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
- North 43 Bistro – is offering takeout Thanksgiving dinner for 6 people for $225.
- Part & Parcel – order your pies for pick-up on November 25th. Order online.
- Petite Jacqueline – will be serving a “3 course menu with options, wine pairings, sides, etc. Some traditional offerings and some untraditional ideas.” Reservations recommended.
- Prairie Baking Company – will be offering “cheddar herb gougeres and pumpkin madeleines by the dozen, fall themed decorate your own cookie boxes, and apple cake with maple buttercream and chai spiced crumble decorated with handmade wafer paper leaves and fresh flowers”..
- Terlingua – a turkey dinner for four people, $185.
- The Harraseeket Inn – will be serving a “reverse buffet” Thanksgiving dinner. They will also have some Thanksgiving dinner specials that can be ordered to go.
- Three Dollar Deweys – will be serving Thanksgiving dinner which is also available to go.
- Timber Steakhouse – will be serving a 3-course meal for $49.
- Tin Pan Bakery – has pies, cakes, breads and other baked goods. Order online.
- Tipo – has a menu for your Thanksgiving Eve meal. Order online.
- Union – will have a Thanksgiving takeout dinner available for pick-up on Wednesday, and will be serving a 3-course dinner on Thanksgiving Day.
- Westin – is offering a takeout meal for 2 for $70 for pick-up on November 25th. Order online.
- Wine Wise – a curated multi-restaurant meal for 2-4 people for $375. Order online.
- Woodford F&B – has a selection of 3 hors d’ouevres collections: surf, turf and vegetable with optional wine pairings. Call (207) 200-8503 to order for pick-up on November 24th.
- Southern Maine & New Hampshire – for those of you living in coastal New Hampshire and York County in Maine see this list assembled by the Portsmouth Herald.
- Lewiston – Boba is offering a package that will feed 6-8 people.
For more information on these and other upcoming food happenings in the area, visit the event calendar.
If you are holding a food event this week that’s not listed above, publicize it by adding it as a comment to this post.
The Press Herald has published a report on Maine breweries that are launching and expanding.
When beer industry veterans John Callinan and Rick McCormick decided to open a brewery together, they jokingly asked themselves, what could go wrong?
For starters, the usual things that always go wrong with a brewery opening – federal and state licensing taking longer than expected, construction delays, trouble with equipment. But during a pandemic, all of these issues are amplified and joined by a host of others. Still, they’re among several brave beer lovers who moved forward with plans to open new breweries this year despite it all.
For today’s paper, the Maine Sunday Telegram has talked to owners and chefs that have taken on opening a restaurant during the pandemic.
These restaurateurs cite personality traits like flexibility, resilience, grit, optimism and a sense of humor as key to opening in these profoundly challenging times. They also credit reasonable landlords; strong relationships with purveyors; kind neighbors; and supportive staff, families, customers, and state and local officials. Did we mention hard work? Very, very hard work.
The Maine Sunday Telegram has published the fourth and final article in their series with Maine chefs who were 2020 Beard Awards nominees. For this week they’ve interviewed Krista Kern Desjarlais and published her recipe for a shaved brussels sprouts salad. I first ate that salad in 2007 and having tried (and failed) to reverse engineer the recipe especially appreciate this article.
She has been understandably cautious about bringing back her North Yarmouth bakery/café during the ongoing pandemic, waiting until “I’m able to do it absolutely the right way.” For Desjarlais, a finalist this year for the James Beard Foundation’s Best Chef: Northeast award, that has meant anticipating the winter with equal parts pragmatism and imagination.
Prior articles in the series have focused on Vien Dobui from Cong Tu Bot, Ben Jackson from the now closed Drifters Wife, and Chad Conley and Greg Mitchell from Palace Diner.
Lois’ Natural Marketplace has announced they’ll be “hibernating our store on India Street for the winter” and consolidating operations and staff to their original store in Scarborough. The Portland store will close on November 25th.
Our entire Portland crew will be joining our Scarborough store staff. We have expanded our hours and our deli will be reopening to serve hot soups and coffee again. We are looking forward to new changes and a lot of new talent joining our Scarborough store.
The city has announced a grant program to help businesses with costs for outdoor operations during the pandemic. The application deadline is December 9.
The City of Portland’s Winter Business Sustainability Grant Program (WBSG) is being launched today, November 19. Offering grants of up to $10,000, the Program’s purpose is to assist Portland businesses with the cost of maintaining a portion of their operations outside through the fall and winter, due to the pandemic. The program’s main objective is job retention.
Grant funds can be used for a variety of items including furniture, equipment, heaters, coverings, platforms, lighting, signage, barricades and other things needed to extend outdoor business operations as the temperatures goes down. Items must be purchased after November 19, 2020 to be eligible for grant reimbursement.
see program guidelines | download application
Governor Mills has announced a new measure intended to help curtail spiking Covid numbers by implementing a 9 pm curfew November 20th through December 6th.
Beginning tomorrow, Friday, November 20, 2020, through Sunday, December 6, 2020, all outdoor and indoor amusement venues, movie theaters, performing arts venues, casinos, and businesses that provide seated food and drink service, including social clubs, restaurants, and bars and tasting rooms currently open for outdoor service, will close for the night by 9:00 p.m. This limit on hours is designed to limit extended gatherings at a time when many students and family members are returning to Maine and at a time when social gatherings are more common, both of which will likely lead to more COVID-19 transmission.