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planning a chow weekend in Portland, ME

My husband and I are coming up to Portland for a relaxing and food-filled weekend. I'm overwhelmed by all the wonderful suggestions on this board and elsewhere. So far the plan is Hugo's for Saturday dinner and Duckfat for Saturday lunch. Looking to fill in the following spots:

-Friday night: driving up from Boston, we're not sure if we'll make it to Portland in time for dinner. So either need a place in Portland that's relatively casual or somewhere to stop on the way for something quick but nonetheless in the spirit of our chowish weekend.
-Saturday breakfast: light enough that we leave room for Duckfat.
-Sunday lunch: open to anything. prefer lunch over brunch.
-any other foodie destinations: markets, bakeries, great ice cream, etc.

We're open to absolutely any type of cuisine. We don't eat shellfish and we tend to like vegetarian-friendly places. We are looking to have as much deliciousness per square inch of weekend as possible. Of course, we will wander and see where the spirit takes us - but I do like to come to good food cities with a plan in hand.

What would YOU do with one eating-out weekend in Portland?

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  1. Local 188 is on Congress St....should be open later than the rest of the places.
    Caiola's is a must, on Pine St.....it's Italian....delicious....and the staff rocks with friendliness...
    the bar is my favorite place to sit, as Randy, sir mix alot...is genuine and serves a great manhattan, to say the least....555 is another MUST....their Sunday Brunch is absolutely top notch...not to mention Steve Corey winning the Food & WIne Mag Chef of Year 07....I would highly recommend their brunch..Bibo's Mad Apple Cafe off of Congress at Forest is a great small place for brunch on SUnday too. .As far as vegetarian food goes, there is a relatively new, ALL VEGAN place called the Green Elephant. I LOVE IT!, and I am a meat eater...
    it is located on Congress, close to High st.....another place for vegetarian, as the name escapes me at the moment, is three doors down from Hugo's and across the street from Duckfat on Middle st.....they also do a brunch.....
    I hope you enjoy your culinary adventures!!!

    1. Two suggestions: Pepperclub for Sunday lunch - excellent vegetarian.

      Emilitsa - new Greek restaurant that is getting great reviews but I have not tried it yet

      1 Reply
      1. re: StevensAve

        Great suggestion...totally forgot about Emilitsa...it's tasty and a GREAT selection of Greek wines that I have never tried.

      2. For the Saturday lunch, I'd go to Yosaku (assuming you like Japanese food)--plenty of veg options and outstanding sushi. I definitely second the recs of 188 and Caiola's, and the Good Egg (the breakfast incarnation of Pepperclub).

        1. Do you want to add some excersize (not much though) and great scenery (if you love being out on the water) - then take the ferry over to Peaks Island for a fantastic lunch at the Cockeyed Gull. I think it's only $4.00 for the 15 min. trip - goes every 1 1/2 hours and short walk up from ferry dock. There's another great pub there too - Inn on Peaks Island. It's a nice change from being in Portland.
          http://www.cockeyedgull.com/
          http://www.innonpeaks.com/dining.htm

          1. Thanks all! Great suggestions.

            2 Replies
            1. re: edamame

              Caiola's is a must! super wait staff.

              1. re: uncle rico

                get the poutine @ Duckfat or regrets till the next visits!!!!!Theres a food market on congress thats pretty great too,awesome cheese shop and good beer and wine shop ,and bakery ,etc.fore st is always good,and Js oyster bar for classic.