Ocotillo – Brunch in the West End

The owners of Terlingua have taken over the former Danforth/Little Giant building in the West End where they plan to open a new restaurant called Ocotillo (website, instagram) which will serve brunch 8 am – 3 pm.

As you can see from the sample menu (see below), like Terlingua, Ocotillo is taking its culinary cues from the flavors of Mexico and Texas. An agave-focused beverage program with coffee and agua frescas will complement a menu of breakfast tacos, sandwiches, and variations on eggs benedict with churros, French toast, a burger, salads and seasonal specials to round out the offerings.

Owners Melanie and Pliny Reynolds are making some design changes to the space to lighten up the room and bring it into alignment with the Terlingua color palette. Ocotillo will have seating for 106 people including the bar, dining room and the secluded outdoor seating area. The restaurant will be available for private functions.

Terlingua’s executive sous chef, Al Zoni, will be moving over to Ocotillo to become the head chef for the new restaurant. Lea Pilsbury, who has been at Terlingua since 2021, will be serving as the front of house manager. Wilson Rothschild is the executive chef for the overall restaurant group and Justin Dewalt is its chief operating officer. The Reynolds and their team are currently hiring to fill out the team for an anticipated spring launch of Ocotillo.

Terlingua opened on June 25, 2015 at 52 Washington Ave. The restaurant moved to its present location in late 2020.

Nearby Ocotillo are Ugly Duckling, Ruski’s, Zu Baker, Smalls and Oh No Cafe which take together are establishing this part of the West End as Portland’s Brunch District.

Dok Mali on Ocean Street

Dok Mali (websiteinstagram) owner Nonglack Thanephonesy has leased the former Judy Gibson spot on Ocean Street in South Portland where she plans to open Dok Mali Noodle Bar.

The menu will bring over the noodle dishes from Dok Mali on India and expand on that with additional Thai noodle dishes and appetizers. Thanephonesy plans some renovations to the dining room and changes to the kitchen to install equipment needed for the new menu. She hopes to launch the restaurant this spring.

Dok Mali will be joining SoPo Seafood, Cafe Louis, Ben Reuben’s Knishery and Solo Cucina on that stretch of Ocean Street in Knightville.

Dok Mali on India Street opened in November 2022. Judy Gibson went out of business in November.

8 Good Food Awards Finalists from Maine

The Good Food Foundation has released the list of Finalists for their 2024 awards program. Eight Maine food producers are on the Finalists list:

  • Allagash for their beer Surf House
  • Maine Beer Company for their beer Woods & Waters
  • Short Creek Farm for their Poblano Salami
  • Bixby Chocolate for their Organic Haiti 70% Dark Chocolate Bar
  • 44 North for their Honduras – Honey Process COMSA coffee
  • Coffee by Design for their Costa Rica Danilo Salazar Finca San Cristobal Natural coffee
  • Speckled Axe for their Guatemala La Bonita and Costa Rica La Guaca Natural coffees

The list of award winners will be announced by the foundation on April 29th at a ceremony in Portland, Oregon. See their Rules & Regulations and FAQ pages for more information on the awards program.

Upcoming Events

MondayAnoche is holding a family-style Paella Night with the meal prepared by famed Portland chef Rob Evans. Marilou Ranta, the chef/owner of the Beard Award-winning restaurant The Quarry in Monson will be speaking at the Lincoln Theater in Damariscotta.

Thursday – The Duckfat Friteshack is serving a Korean fried chicken dinner.

Thursday/Friday – La Cocina Latina (instagram) is holding a pair of pop-up dinners in the former Cabana space at 111 Middle Street. The menu includes street corn, tacos, mofongo, Dominican chicken, ceviche and more.

Thursday-Sunday – All this winter you can find Noble Pizza (instagram) Detroit-style pizza at The Rink on Thompson’s Point.

SaturdayDandelion Spring Farm in Bowdoinham is holding a French-inspired of American comfort food dinner.

January 20Flanagan’s Farm in Buxton will be holding a Supper Club dinner featuring chef Adrian Arvizu from Big Tree Catering. Heritage Seaweed is holding an online Introduction to Seaweed class.

January 21 – Hart Farm in Holden along with Chimera Coffee and the Phenix Inn are holding a 4-course dinner in Bangor.

January 24Chaval is holding 5-course vegan wine dinner.

January 27 – Flanagan’s Farm in Buxton will be holding a Supper Club dinner featuring chef Christian Hayes from The Garrison.

February 10 – The Portland On Tap beer festival is taking place at the Cross Insurance Arena. Flanagan’s Farm in Buxton will be holding a Supper Club dinner featuring chef Krista Kern Desjarlais from Bresca and The Purple House.

February 18Flanagan’s Farm in Buxton will be holding a Supper Club dinner featuring chefs Ilma Lopez and Damian Sansonetti from Chaval and Devin Finigan from Aragosta.

March 28Ballast will be hosting a murder mystery dinner.

April 29 – The Good Food Awards winners will be announced. Eight Maine food producers are finalists in the 2024 Good Food awards program.

May 11CiderFeast, an “all-inclusive tasting event celebrates craft ciders from some of the top cider makers in New England and beyond” is taking place.

May 18 – The Maine Wild Wine Fest is taking place in Freeport.

June 10-16Portland Wine Week is taking place.

June 26 – Secret Supper (instagram) is holding a dinner in the Portland area.

June 29 – The 3rd Annual Mast Landing Wavy Days Festival is taking place.

August 30September 1Maine Apple Camp is taking place.

September 20-22 – The Common Ground Fair will be taking place.

Sunday Snow Day List

Many businesses are closed due today’s storm. Here’s the short list of ones that are open on today. We’ll be adding more as they post announcements.

Restaurant Real Estate: January 2024

Welcome to the January 2024 edition of the Portland Food Map restaurant real estate listings sponsored by The Boulos Company—a commercial real estate brokerage that has helped Maine’s restauranteurs buy and lease restaurant spaces since 1975.

This resource gathers in one convenient place the spaces available in Portland (and a few in the surrounding area) that could be potential sites for restaurants and food producers and retailers to locate their next business. Finding the right spot is one of the crucial early challenges in launching a new business and hopefully this resource will make that step just a little bit easier.

West End/Parkside

867 Congress St – the 3,200 sq ft former church that had been slated to be the new home of Vena’s is for sale for $775,000.

Arts District

554 Congress St – 1,621 sq ft former Dunkin’ Donuts space with hood for $2,301/month (NNN).

594 Congress St – with the upcoming close of the Congress Street Starbucks, their 2,592 sq ft space in the Upper H. H. Hay Building will become available for $35/sq ft (MG).

600 Congress St – for lease signs are in the window of the ground floor space at the corner of High and Congress. The Schwartz Building has been under renovation for a decade. For more info call (207) 773-7100.

44 Oak St – 4,347 sq ft of space in a beautiful historic building at the corner of Oak and Free Streets is available for $15.50/sq ft (NNN).


73 Cove St – a 5,519 sq ft industrial space in East Bayside is listed for $35/sq ft; it’s expected to become available later this year.

46 Elm St – this 385 sq ft corner space in the parking garage at the corner of Elm Street and Cumberland Ave. It’s available for $500/month (MG).

52 Hanover St – On the first floor of a new building will be 1,500 – 4,500 sq ft retail space available for $30/sq ft (NNN). One spot in the building has earmarked for a coffee shop.

178 Kennebec St – 2,644 sq ft of space are available in a newly constructed Bayside building for $25/sq ft (NNN).

34 Portland St – the 3,400 sq ft building that was formerly occupied by Candy’s is for sale for $525,000. It’s also available to lease for $13.50/sq ft (NNN).

Munjoy Hill

89 Congress St – 1,200 sq ft available for $25/sq ft (MG) at the top of Munjoy Hill. Contact davit70@gmail.com for more information.

Old Port

1 Canal Plaza – 4,284 – 14,412 sq ft of ground floor retail space will be available as part of upcoming renovations; $30/sq ft (NNN).

1 Commercial St – the original location of Benkay location at the corner of Commercial and India Streets is available. The 1,700-2,000 sq ft is for lease at $35-40/sq ft (NNN).

185 Commercial St – a new building under construction will include 2,334 sq ft of ground floor retail space that will be available in 2024 for $55/sq ft (NNN).

215 Commercial St – 2,487 sq ft of retail space near the corner of Commercial and Dana Streets is available for $65/sq ft (MG).

383 Commercial St – 1,193 – 4,805 square feet of space in a newly constructed building on Commercial Street is available for $28/sq ft (NNN).

441 Congress St – the 2,400 sq ft former Guitar Grave retail space is available for $15/sq ft (MG).

8 Exchange St – the 3,600 sq ft space formerly occupied by The Bar is available for lease for $33.25/sq ft (MG).

201 Federal St – 2 retail spaces will be available in the new 18-story building under construction at the corner of Temple and Federal Streets. The 527 and 2,300 sq ft spaces are listed at $40/sq ft (MG).

420 Fore St – the space formerly occupied by the Old Port Slice Bar is for lease. The 1,100 – 2,600 sq ft space is available for $55/sq ft (MG).

446 Fore St – a 1,600 sq ft space on the corner of Fore and Union Streets is available for $30/sq ft (MG).

40 Free St – a 1,511 sq ft space in the new building constructed by JB Brown is available for $27.50/sq ft (NNN).

28 Market St – the 850 sq ft space formerly occupied by Lucky Juju is available for lease for $2,800/month (MG).

46 Market St – the 2,100 sq ft space formerly occupied by Petite Jacqueline is for lease for $42/sq ft (NNN).

55 Market St – this 3,700 sq ft space on Market Street was formerly occupied by the Big Easy. It’s available for $18/sq ft (NNN).

121 Middle St – a 2,482 sq ft retail spot is available for $45/sq ft (MG).

157 Middle St – 1,091 – 5,155 sq ft of retail space is available for $27 – 29.95/sq ft (MG).

5 Milk St – this 2,199 sq ft former hair salon is available for $28/sq ft (NNN).

1 Monument Square – 1,500 sq ft of first floor space adjacent to Cera is available for $3,125/month (MG).

28 Monument Square – with the opening of their new location this year, the MR/ Tuna space in the Public Market House will become available.

25 Pearl St – 1,689 sq ft former Subway space available for $30/sq ft (MG).

66 Pearl St – 5,796 sq ft of space—the former Bull Moose retail shop—is available for $15.75/sq ft (MG).

24 Preble St – the original Arcadia space is available. The 2,835 sq ft storefront near Dutch’s and Slab is listed for $20/sq ft (NNN).

3 Spring St – the space currently occupied by the Stars & Stripes tasting room is for lease; 2,554 sq ft for $17.50/sq ft (NNN).

3 Spring St – the space currently occupied by Stage Cannabis is for lease; 2,000 sq ft for $15.50/sq ft (NNN).

144 State St – 2 retail spaces will be available in the development in the former Mercy Hospital building on State Street. The 1,100 and 2,566 sq ft spaces are available for $20-26/sq ft (MG).

23 Temple St – a 947 sq ft retail space in the Temple Street garage is available for $26/sq ft (MG).

110 Thames St – a 2,700 sq ft space and a 3,200 sq ft space are available in the newly constructed building in the Portland Foreside development, $35/sq ft (NNN).

53 Wharf St –a 1,600 sq ft space on the corner of Wharf and Union Streets is available for $30/sq ft (MG).

India Street Area

144 Fore St – the former VA building is near the Portland Foreside development and adjacent to several new office buildings off Thames Street. It has 1,560 – 10,620 sq ft of space available for $22-29/sq ft (NNN).

Outer Forest Ave

503 – 509 Forest Ave – the exterior of this building is slated to be restored to its historic design. It has 4,500 – 9,500 sq ft of space available for $10/sq ft (NNN).

634 Forest Ave – this former garage is located at the center of Woodfords Corner near Bayou Kitchen Woodford Food & Beverage, and Bird & Co. The 1,305 sq ft building has had a change of use to allow for a restaurant use, and comes with room for 8-12 parking spaces. It is available for $2,750/month (NNN).

701 Forest Ave – 3,147 – 6,405 sq ft with parking available for $16/sq ft (NNN).


476 Stevens Ave – the Elsmere BBQ building in Deering Center is for sale for $1,395,000; the sale includes all FF&E inventory.

550 Washington Ave – 2,000 – 2,400 sq ft of the former Botto’s bakery is available to lease for $18/sq ft (NNN).

Elsewhere in Portland

1339 Washington Ave – the 4,150 sq ft former Parker’s Restaurant building in North Deering is for sale for $1,995,000.

Northgate Shopping Center – 2,000 to 3,500 sq ft of space is available.

Westgate Shopping Center – three spaces are for lease at $18-40/sq ft (NNN).

Other Spaces – some vacated restaurant spaces haven’t yet been formerly listed for by the owner. Check the closing announcements for the latest information.

Outside of Portland

188 Lincoln St, Lewiston – this 2,371 – 5,554 sq ft former fire station has been renovated for use as a retail/restaurant space. It’s listed at $5-14/sq ft (NNN).

521 Route 1, Scarborough – the 9,211 sq ft former Amore restaurant is for sale for $595,000.

1637 Post Rd, Wells – the 4,000 sq ft build that was formerly the home of Joshua’s is for sale for $2,150,000.

Billy’s Chowder House – both the building and business of Billy’s Chowder House in Wells is for sale. The ~200 seat restaurant comes with a 62-car parking lot and sits on Mile Road which connects Route 1 with Wells Beach.


MG – Modified Gross which indicates that the operating expenses (taxes, insurance, maintenance, etc.) for the property are included in the lease rate. The tenant would pay its own utilities, which sometimes includes heat.

NNN – Triple Net which indicates that operating expenses are not included in the lease rate, and the tenant will pay them separately. They are often referred to as CAM (Common Area Maintenance) charges and taxes, which are expressed as $/sf. The tenant is also responsible for utilities.

Gross – Gross indicates all expenses including utilities are included in the lease rate. The tenant would be responsible for phone and internet access, as well as interior janitorial.

Thai Tree on Congress Street

Nonsee Oumkasem along with his parents Poj and Tunya Oumkasem have taken over the Pom’s Thai Taste restaurant on Congress Street from Rattanaphorn ‘Pom’ Boobphachati where they plan to open Thai Tree (website, instagram).

Poj and Tunya Oumkasem had been chefs at the Portland Pom’s location since it opened in 2007. They will continue to serve their most popular dishes and augment the menu with food from the Nakhon Ratchasima ‘Korat’ province where the family hails from. Thai Tree will serve beer, wine and Nonsee Oumkasem is working on a creative cocktail program that draws on flavors from Korat cuisine.

The Oumkasems are doing some renovations to the space and hope to open Thai Tree by the end of February.

Boobphachati continues to operate her other locations in South Portland and Falmouth.

Argenta Brewing

Mainebiz has published an update on Argenta Brewing, the new lager brewery under construction in Bayside.

Combining Dunlap’s Western roots with his passion and knowledge for beer, Argenta Brewing will have five rotating lagers on tap, along with nonalcoholic and gluten-free options. He also plans to work with local restaurants and food trucks in the area to offer dining options, whether via pick-up or delivery.

The interior of the space and the brewery’s branding draws inspiration from historic Western saloons.

New Leaders at Miyake

Longtime managers Emily Phillips and Courtney Packer have taken over ownership of Miyake and Pai Men Miyake from Masa Miyake. Packer and Phillips aren’t planning on making any big changes. Their intention is to keep the hours, menu, and “overall essence” of both businesses the same moving forward. The new owners have been managers at the restaurants for more than ten years.

Chef Miyake will be handing over culinary leadership of the flagship Miyake restaurant to his longtime sous chef Bounahra Kim towards the end of January. He’ll continue to be a resource through the transition to Packer, Kim and Phillips.

Masa Miyake opened Food Factory Miyake in 2007 at 129 Spring Street. The small BYOB sushi bar quickly developed a reputation for excellence. The restaurant moved to its present location in 2011 and for a time the original space was home to Miyake Diner, an izakaya-style restaurant. Pai Men Miyake opened on September 15, 2010. After a pandemic induced break and renovations Miyake on Fore Street reopened on December 1, 2022.

Maine Food & Dining News: Camden, Bar Harbor, Bath, Biddeford

New food and dining developments are taking place all across Maine. Here are some recent updates to keep you in the know on what’s going on:

  • Warren Wine Shop (instagram) owner Joanna Spinks has leased 31 Elm Street (above) in Camden where she plans to open First Fig which will serve Kavka Coffee, croissants from The Place bakery, breads from Brazen Baking in the mornings as well as wine and beer by the glass later in the day. First Fig will also be a wine retail shop. 31 Elm Street was previously occupied by an Oyster River Winegrowers tasting room. Spinks hopes to open First Fig by the end of January.
  • The Bangor Daily News has a report on some sales activity in the Bar Harbor restaurant industry.
  • A new restaurant called Linden + Front is under construction in the former Relish/Salt Pine Social space in Bath.
  • Buttermilk Kitchen at Marriner’s is under construction in Camden.
  • Owners Anna and Bowman Brown announced they’ve decided to “close Jackrabbit Cafe as we know it.”