HOME > Chowhound > Northern New England >
What have you made lately? Get great advice
TELL US

Looking for some resurants in Portland,ME

s
SSdiner83 Sep 23, 2011 07:06 AM

Leaving today for Portland,ME with three friends and was wondering if anyone could recommend some fun places to go. I need some places for lunch and dinner. Dinner will mainly be micro brews and fish, so I am hoping for some good recommendations.

  1. m
    monopod Sep 30, 2011 08:07 AM

    Can you report back and let us know how the trip went and what you liked? Always nice to see how recommendations play out.

    1. s
      SSdiner83 Sep 24, 2011 12:00 PM

      What are some good italian places besides ciaola's? Everyone else wants italian, so I need a few options.

      6 Replies
      1. re: SSdiner83
        b
        bobbert Sep 24, 2011 02:41 PM

        In the old port Cinque Terra northern Italian, pricy. Sister resto Vignola. Corner Room homemade pasta though my least favorite Harding restaurant. Ribolita next to Duckfat. Very good with zero bar scene. Pure dinner play. I'm going to butcher the spelling but Perino on fore st. by the Portland Harbor hotel. A couple right off the boat from Milan. The best freshly made pastas. The lasagna is the best. No bar but if you can get in, my choice.

        -----
        Vignola
        10 Dana Street, Portland, ME 04101

        The Corner Room
        110 Exchange St, Portland, ME 04101

        1. re: bobbert
          b
          bobbert Sep 24, 2011 02:47 PM

          That's Paciarino. My tablet writes what it thinks I want to write.

          -----
          Paciarino
          468 Fore St, Portland, ME 04101

          1. re: bobbert
            i
            irwin Sep 25, 2011 10:39 AM

            JP's is one of the best italian restaurants in Portland...
            Bruno's is very good too..
            OK, I won't talk about Becky's anymore, but I just wanted to pull your chain....

            1. re: irwin
              n
              Noreaster Sep 29, 2011 09:44 PM

              My favorite thing to do at Becky's is walking past all the tourists waiting for a table and sit at the counter while they all glare at me for cutting in line...lol. Becky's is fine...It's a diner but nothing more. There are much better options frankly. Hot Suppa. Front Room. If price is an issue, Becky's is just, well, fine...The other posters covered the rest

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

              Hot Suppa
              703 Congress St, Portland, ME 04102

        2. re: SSdiner83
          m
          mainemal Sep 26, 2011 05:02 AM

          Actually, Caiola's is NOT an Italian restaurant.. I definitely agree with bobbert (below) on Ribollita, one of our favorites, and on Paciarino.

          -----
          Caiola's
          58 Pine St, Portland, ME 04102

          Ribollita
          41 Middle St, Portland, ME 04101

          Paciarino
          468 Fore St, Portland, ME 04101

          1. re: mainemal
            m
            monopod Sep 26, 2011 11:09 AM

            It may not be a classic Italian restaurant, but Caiola's definitely has some great Italian dishes (I recall a wonderful gnocci a year or so ago). I think it'd probably fit the bill, unless you're looking for a red-sauce southern Italian kinda place.

            -----
            Caiola's
            58 Pine St, Portland, ME 04102

        3. b
          bobbert Sep 23, 2011 01:19 PM

          I'm writing thinking you're looking into food/beer/fun in equal parts so here goes...
          Since you'll be here fairly soon, i'd start at Disrict. 4-6pm happy hour, $2 drafts (good selection of ocal brews) and $1 oysters. For "gastro publike" eating one of the better ones food wise. 45 Danforth St. A better higher class pre-game. Just off the old Port.

          Old Port food options with lively bar scenes. Portland Lobster Co. on Commercial might have live music on the deck (the whole place is a deck) = fried food, not cheap but definitely fun. J's on the patio - steamers before the oysters.

          Higher end food in Old Port with good bar scenes: Street and Co. Pure fish play, pricey and need reserations but good bar. Grill Room and Sonny's. Havana South food is OK but good bar on Warf St. Zapoteca is relatively new - haven't been yet but hear good things for good mexican small plates and lots of tequilla. Arts district gastro feel type places - Nosh and Local 188. Japanese place where you can linger and drink - Pai men Miyake noodle bar (for unbelievable sushi, Miyake on Fore St.).

          Pure beer/pub plays in Old Port. Nuvare Res - a must go. (it's behind the parking garage that 5 Guys burger is in on Fore St. - trust me on this pick. Once you find it, you'll love it). Gritty's, 3 Dollar Deweys, RiRa and maybe Bull Feeney's.

          Nice day tomorrow, take the ferry (commercial st.) to Peaks Island - 20 minutes and about $7. Walk up from the ferry to the hotel owned by the Shipyard people. Lunch has to include Duchfatfor the fries (Nosh also has great fries) and Otto t some point for pizza. Late night could include Boda.
          Finally, I don't often recomment driving but if you want a great bar, The Great Lost Bear on Forest Ave. Tons of beer on tap. Meet the locals.

          That list should keep you busy for a few days. As you'll find just wondering around, theres a lot more. These are just few of the places I hit up for a beer or tw with maybe a bite to eat.

          4 Replies
          1. re: bobbert
            i
            irwin Sep 23, 2011 02:23 PM

            No-one mentioned BECKY's................

            1. re: irwin
              g
              grittys457 Sep 24, 2011 06:54 PM

              lol, Irwin you gotta be a part investor in Becky's cause you always mention them and they are not good. Who on earth would pick breakfast there over something like Hot Suppa or even District from what I've heard. I used to go to Becky's all the time hungover on the weekend and finally realized it wasn't bad cause I was half drunk, it just wasn't good.

              Nosh- If you want a great selection of microbrews and awesome hand carved meat sandwich and whatnot. Bacon dusted fries for the win.

              Grace- Might be a good place to have a drink before dinner just to see the atmosphere there.

              Novare Res- Best bar in the city, hands down. You like beer? You'll like Novare. Big outdoor deck too to roam on and get some air.

              Fun bars to just drink some beer and be elbow to elbow with folks... Gritty's, Bull Feeney's, Rira.

              Also love Paciarino and you're probably not going there but just want to agree with the other poster on here.

              -----
              Bull Feeney's
              375 Fore St., Portland, ME 04101

              Hot Suppa
              703 Congress St, Portland, ME 04102

              Paciarino
              468 Fore St, Portland, ME 04101

              1. re: grittys457
                b
                bobbert Sep 25, 2011 07:48 AM

                I tend to agree with you about Beckys. I certainly do not go for the food. It's the same as a million breakfast joints around the country. That sometimes works when I have kids and/or my in laws with me. I know they'll be satisfied with the menu. The appeal of Beckys goes way beyond food. It's being able to block another car in when you park though you might have to move it mid meal. It's being 50 years old and being called "hun" by the waitress. It's being able to be very hungover and still be welcomed. When the tourists are gone it's sitting at the counter at 5 AM and eating with real fishermen. 10 AM on a Sunday? That ain't happening. I don't usually send chowhounders to Beckys because the food really isn't chow worthy but at 5AM on a Tuesday in November, sure, I'll hit up Beckys.

                1. re: grittys457
                  m
                  monopod Sep 26, 2011 11:08 AM

                  I have to say that I'm kind of glad to see confirmation that others also aren't that into Becky's. It always seems to pop up on "best of" lists, even on the Food Network, and I don't get it. It's fine, not bad, but nothing unusual - I've had the same breakfast a thousand times at other diners. The authenticity is nice, and the staff is nice, but if someone asks for a recommendation I'd think they're primarily concerned with the food (or drink, if we're talking about a bar), and Becky's always falls short for me.

            2. m
              monopod Sep 23, 2011 12:26 PM

              Portland's a great food town, you're in for some good meals if you do your research. I'd recommend searching "Portland" in the Northern New England boards (search function is top right of the screen) - you'll find a ton of posts about this very question, with a lot of good info. There are too many places to list them all, but off the top of my head, Duck Fat and Nosh are great for lunch and Caiola's, Fore Street, Street & Co., 555, Front Room, Miyake (both the sushi and noodle shops) and Hugo's are all great for dinner. Have fun!

              -----
              Fore Street
              288 Fore Street, Portland, ME 04101

              Caiola's
              58 Pine St, Portland, ME 04102

              Street & Co
              33 Wharf St., Portland, ME 04101

              Duck Fat
              43 Middle St, Portland, ME 04101

              3 Replies
              1. re: monopod
                r
                rainey Sep 23, 2011 12:29 PM

                Great choices! Don't forget Micucci for pizza and Standard Baking Company for coffee and pastry for brekkies.

                1. re: monopod
                  s
                  SSdiner83 Sep 23, 2011 12:36 PM

                  Did not really have time to check; as I am driving up from Boston right now. Thank you for the recommendations.

                  1. re: monopod
                    b
                    Bellachefa Sep 25, 2011 12:19 PM

                    It's been a couple of years, but we really loved Front Room and 555. Found Fore St to be surviving on its laurels.

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

                  Show Hidden Posts