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another portland question: an informal dinner (Old Port) on Sunday night

  • s

Hi all, I'm taking the daughter for a really quick college tour this weekend and we'll be in Portland (Old Port) on Sunday night. We'll want to make the most of what Portland has to offer in the tiny bit of time we have, but we'll be tired and will probably not want anything too ambitious. Probably a bowl of chowder and a lobster roll would be perfect. From what I've read here, it seems like Portland Lobster Co or J's Oyster might be our best bets. Am I on target? Thanks for your help!

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J's Oyster
5 Portland Pier, Portland, ME 04101

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  1. You'll get posters falling on both sides of this topic, but I fall in the "I like Gilbert's Chowder House" camp. Especially if it's a nice afternoon/night and you can sit on the back deck.

    1. Old Port is fun to walk around, and Standard Baking Co. has great breads and pastries to snack on or bring home. But when we're in that area for something casual, we usually go to Flatbread Company for great pizza and salads, with a nice view of the ferries coming in. For a casual dinner, we drive a few minutes to Front Street if we want something a little more substantial, the food is very very good, it's informal, and the prices are very reasonable. My other suggestion would be Duckfat, just a couple of blocks from Old Port, for a yummy sandwich and great fries. My college-aged kids love all these places, though I know it's not exactly what you had in mind.

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      Standard Baking Co
      75 Commercial St, Portland, ME

      Flatbread Company
      138 Congress St, Portsmouth, NH 03801

      Old Port Cafe
      111 Main St, Winterport, ME 04496

      3 Replies
      1. re: winedude

        I'm guessing that you meant to say the Front Room on Congress, not Front Street. It's a great choice for what you're looking for.

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        Front Room Restaurant & Bar
        73 Congress St Ste A, Portland, ME 04101

        1. re: hicow

          "we drive a few minutes to Front Street if we want something a little more substantial"

          I don't know, I bet you could buy some substantial stuff on Front Street. They do curbside delivery too there I'm sure.

          On a serious note, yeah Front Room is a pretty safe bet. Even The Grill Room wouldn't be that bad of a choice on Sunday if we're talking about one of the rooms.

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          Grill Room
          84 Exchange St, Portland, ME 04101

          Front Room Restaurant & Bar
          73 Congress St Ste A, Portland, ME 04101

          1. re: grittys457

            Yes, you're right, I meant Front Room, of course. I don't get the Front Street joke--it must mean something in Portland?

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            Front Room Restaurant & Bar
            73 Congress St Ste A, Portland, ME 04101

      2. I like Gilbert's too, but I like the Port Hole even better. Flatbread is also great but it's just pizza and salad, and I don't think Duck Fat is open for dinner.

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        Duck Fat
        43 Middle St, Portland, ME 04101

        1 Reply
        1. Thanks so much, everyone. I'm clearly going to have to persuade my daughter to go to school in your part of the world so I can have the opportunity to try all the wonderful restaurants!

          We visited the Canadian Rockies this summer and went to a place called Rocky Mountain Flatbread (in Canmore, Alberta) that sounds a lot like the Flatbread restaurant you have. It was just great. They don't seem to be related...but maybe they are?

          3 Replies
          1. re: spa

            I'm pretty sure the Portland Flatbread is related only to the American Flatbread Pizza place in Waterbury Vermont.

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            American Flatbread
            46 Lareau Rd, Waitsfield, VT 05673

            1. re: johnnydj

              Actually, there seem to be 10 restaurants in the chain! http://www.flatbreadcompany.com/2007D...

              1. re: johnnydj

                American Flatbread is an entirely different group. http://www.americanflatbread.com/

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                American Flatbread
                46 Lareau Rd, Waitsfield, VT 05673

            2. Just wanted to thank everyone for the help. It was a lovely evening and we couldn't bring ourselves to go inside. We ended up on the deck at Portland Lobster Co, and were perfectly satisfied with our lobster roll, onion rings, soup, veggie wrap, and Harpoon cider. My daughter loved Bates College so you never know--we may have the chance to spend a lot more time in Maine in coming years and have the opportunity to try lots of other restaurants. Hope so!

              Oh, and a full box of treats from Standard Bakery made the drive home very pleasant. What a great place.

              1 Reply
              1. re: spa

                Thanks for the update. Hopefully you'll become a regulah!