Portsmouth - Pesce Blue and Friendly Toast
Due to the weather, we ended up having only two meals in Portsmouth this weekend.
Pesce Blue was a hit - a wonderful spot for a graduation dinner. Nice atmosphere, excellent service (our waiter Adrian was perfect - patient, professional, knowledgeable and friendly), and great bartending with well-done cocktails and spot-on recs for wine by the glass. There were eight of us so we were able to sample a lot of dishes. As expected, the freshness and quality of the seafood on the daily-changing menu shone in appetizers like the yellowfin tuna tartar, mussels with white wine and fennel, the spaghetti alla vongole with fresh clams, and the calamari with 3 dipping sauces (tho they were so hot, crispy and non-greasy I ate them plain). I tried my mom's Caesar, and thought it was a very good version. Entrees included sauteed Maine skate , Grigliata Mista (the house specialty of an assortment of grilled seafood), Jumbo scallops, grilled yellowfin tuna, and two of us ordered the halibut - delicious - thick, meaty, moist and juicy. E ordered the lone non-fish dish, and enjoyed his Pork Milanese with his polenta switched out for smashed fingerling potatoes with pancetta. Two desserts - panna cotta with fresh berries, which I didn't try - and we split the dessert crepes with raisins (and apples? - a couple of after-dinner Basil Haydens made my memory a little fuzzy). We really had a great time at Pesce Blue and hope to be back.
We strolled around Market Square Days for a little bit, but it was just too rainy. Before heading home, four of us had a nice lunch at the funky Friendly Toast - huge menu with lots of options. Though the Almond Joy pancakes with chocolate chips, almonds, and coconut were tempting, I opted for the Huevos Rancheros - two poached eggs with homemade salsa and avocado served on grilled Anadama bread with a side of home fries. My brother had an omelet which he polished off (green olives, ham, ?), and his wife and my husband the French Toast with Raisin Bread, all with various sides of sausage, bacon, and eggs, and a side of spicy green salsa. I especially liked the extensive lists of smoothies, frappes, and hot chocolate to which you could add various liqueurs (Grand Marnier and orange frappe anyone?), and the variety of bread (Oatmeal, Anadama, Raisin, Sesame, etc.) any of which can be made as French Toast. Nice place, another spot I would recommend.
As always, we loved Portsmouth. We'll just have to visit Portsmouth again, and get to Chauncey Creek, another day when the sun is out.
Friendly Toast info: