Sunday, February 8, 2009

Restaurant Review: Fore Street (Portland, ME)

Wow this is the first time I've sat at a computer since Friday night! I have lots of deliciousness to share from this weekend, but I'll keep this post to just my amazing dinner last night.

Brian and I drove up to Maine (with a stop in Portsmouth, NH), yesterday to walk around the shops in Old Port in Portland, Maine! Actually the shopping was more to kill time before our dinner reservation.

We had dinner at the amazing Fore Street...right in the historic waterfront district. The restaurant begins seating for dinner at 5:30, but you can enjoy the bar area at 5pm. Many of the nicest restaurants in Boston are not very crowded when they first open at 5pm...Fore Street, however, was bustling with people at the bar waiting to be led to their table as soon as the restaurant opens.

When you first walk into the doorway area you can view the Menu for that day.(p.s. the page on the left is entirely appetizers, entrees are on the right)

We were a little early so we grabbed a drink at the bar...Brian had Merlot and I opted for a sparkling glass of Prosecco.The seats at the bar are never vacant for too long...not when you can get dinner there too.I love the decor and atmosphere. The walls are exposed brick, high ceilings with exposed duct work, lots of candle light and even copper tables!!But my ABSOLUTE favorite part is the large open kitchen at the center of it all...I had a perfect view from my seat (as I requested :)I could watch that kitchen all day...1 chef manned the big brick oven (far left), then there was the chef at the wood grill, the next guy I believe was the head chef (calling out the orders and inspecting each plate), and the far right was the chef for the stove top and regular oven.

The other SUPER COOL feature here is the Vegetable Room!If you look at the picture of the kitchen, this room would be off the picture to the right. This is a climate controlled room to keep all the fresh veggies and herbs at peak conditions. There was 1 woman going in and out of here all night grabbing large baskets of vegetables to prep during the evening.

Then we began perusing the menu for that day...I already had an idea of what I wanted for an appetizer because I saw them go by while we were at the bar and the smelt insanely good...
Under "Roasted and Grilled Sea Food" you'll see the Mussels
The broth they were cooked in was SO flavorful...I was happy when the waiter took the pan away as to stop be from dipping more bread into the garlicky sauce!They were cooked in the HUGE brick oven...and these were popular as I saw many being cooked that night. He slides that cast iron pan right into the oven with the flaming wood, takes it out once to shake them up, then back in...and they are done.

Now the copper tables make sense because many of their dishes come right out of that brick oven and 2 minutes later are sitting right on the table in front of you.

It was definitely a meal from the sea for us that night. Brian had the Arctic Char (second item down) and I had the Sea Bass (third one down):
My fish came whole, right in the skillet...Those greens were the turnips...I've never seen turnips like that but they were very tasty. I probably should of let the waiter fillet it, but I just ate right from the whole fish. I had 1 side and have another as leftovers!

The side dishes are a la carte, and we chose two: Roasted Cauliflower with a smoked pepper cream, and Sweet Potatoes with caramelized onions and ripened cream.Both were DELICIOUS! The cauliflower had such great flavor from the brick oven, and the caramelized onions were pureed right into the sweet potato, heaven.

Oh and then came the finale...dessert menu time!Oh the decisions!!! But I knew after reading exactly what I'd order: The second one down in the picture below: Warm Banana and Almond Brittle Turnover with Mango and Vanilla Bean Coulis, coconut ice cream with Milk Chocolate covered holy WOW!!Brian ordered the Warm Apple Tarte Tatin: Butter pastry, caramel sauce, and vanilla bean ice cream.
The caramel sauce on his tarte was incredible...salted caramel that went perfectly with the sweet apples and vanilla bean ice cream!Mine was heaven...and I have one of those turnovers sitting in the fridge as we speak...mmm, I bet you know where I'm headed in 2 minutes.

If your ever remotely close Maine...GO HERE!! It's probably one of the best, if not THE best restaurant I've been too (this was our second time here).

Hope you all had a great weekend!


  1. Looks AMAZING! I'm so glad you had a great time!

  2. What a wonderful restaurant! Everything sounds perfect :)

  3. wow its so great to read about someone eating at the fore street!!I grew up around there!! It's one of my veryyy favorite restaurants, I have never had a meal there that wasn't truly delicious! I hope you had a fun day in the old port as well :)

  4. Fancy schmancy! What a fun treat :) I would have gone for the dessert you ordered, too! Anything with "warm banana," in it has got to be delicious, right? :)

  5. Looks like a really wonderful dinner at an amazing restaurant. I want those desserts- I haven't had real dessert out in forever!

  6. That dinner looks amazing! Love all the seafood, especially the mussels. Moules et frites is one of my favourite dishes to order when I can get it.

    I spy a dessert with chocolate, caramel, and peanut butter...I so would have gotten that!

  7. I LOVE Fore Street! I've only been there once, but I keep wanting to go back. Portland is a great place for Christmas shopping, so I end up going up there about three times between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Loved this review - the restaurant definitely doesn't get enough attention!

  8. That dessert looks absolutely divine!

  9. oooh i love trying new restaurants too! And just like you, my weekend eats are almost too abundant to share in one post. hehehe :)

    That fish you guys ordered looks FABULOUS, and I love it when restaurants have unique desserts like the ones you guys ordered. Your blog rocks!!!

  10. What a great restaurant. I love the kitchen and veggie room. I am sure the seafood is delicious and fresh! Glad you two had a fun time.

  11. the whole fish?!!! you were very adventurous! i would have chickened out and ordered a filet!

    those desserts look fantastic!!! sounds like a really cool restaurant!

  12. Wow, everything looks delicious!

  13. I've heard of this place... I'm definitely going to make sure to go next time my husband and I are in Maine. Thanks for the wonderful recap :)