Portland, Maine: Pearl of the East or East Village by the Sea?

I didn’t know that Portland, Maine was utterly pleasant, delightful, hip, and rich in culinary joy.  Somehow I was stuck in the remote past of my college years when it was stiff, Yankee, and aloof.  No, no, no.  Now what you find, in addition to the beautiful brick buildings and sloping, cobblestone streets, are crowds of folks of all colors and genders lining up to hear music or have a few beers or eat delicious food.

The Portland Harbor Hotel was the H.Q.  Dead center, within walking distance of everything.

LFK: Open less than a year.  Great cocktails, a sweet vibe, prices that are about half of Boston and about 25% less than NYC.  Everyone was friendly.

Fore Street: Easily one of my ten favorite restaurants in the country; think Zuni in SF or Esca in NYC in terms of the atmosphere.  A huge, fiery brick oven for breads and many menu items.  Mussels, raw oysters, sweetbreads, Rohan duck, good Duckhorn S.B., and, again, prices easily half of Boston and about the same as NYC.  Lively.  Happy.

And no trip is complete without breakfast at Becky’s.  Turkey club heaven.

Love this town!

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