US - New England Portland, ME Guide

Discussion in 'Beer Travel, Events and Releases' started by Brez07, Oct 3, 2013.

  1. jeevo

    jeevo

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2013
    Location:
    Pittsburgh
    Hey guys. Not requesting anything too specific, but would are some things one would recommend to someone who has a day or two in Portland? I don't mind doing tourst-like things, and I'm a big fan of outdoor stuff/natural landscapes.

    The small list of things I gathered on my own so far are Portland Head Light (any other cool lighthouses?), the Old Port district, Portland Observatory, and Street and Co or Fifty Five-Five. Did a little bit of reading on lobster rolls and Fisherman's Grill sounds like the best, although dropping $40 on a lobster roll is a little steep. Any cheap eats?
     
  2. JBPortland

    JBPortland

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2013
    Location:
    Virginia
    If you're already going out to Cape Elizabeth for Portland Head light, you can swing down the road to The Lobster Shack for a good (and more reasonably) priced Lobster roll meal with some spectacular scenery and byob which is a nice plus. If in the city I enjoy the High Roller Lobster Co which is just a food cart but worth tracking down for a very good roll and price.
     
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  3. Phin

    Phin

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2013
    Fisherman's Grill is really good & their lobster rolls are not priced too bad. It's probably Even Tide that has $$$ rolls.
    Granted it's much more of a takeout or no frills cramped sit-down.
    And u could do a boat tour from the the center city's harbor. Then have a drink at Novare and/or The King's Head.
     
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  4. TheeWalrusHunter

    TheeWalrusHunter

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2014
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    My wife and I are coming out to New England from the other Portland next month and spending a day (<24 hours) in Portland, ME. There is some good stuff in this thread, so I want to summarize my thoughts and hopefully get some feedback. My priorities are:
    • Maximizing deliciousness;
    • Maximizing beauty;
    • Minimizing standing in lines.
    Get in Saturday, October 15 around noonish. Order of events:

    1.
    Got to get that lobster roll: thinking Highroller or Lobster Shack (It looks like High Roller moves around a daily?)
    2. Got to get that famous Maine beer. I don't care that much about bottles or cans unless its easy to snag with no waiting - just trying to get some draft beer. I want to try Bissell Substance, Oxbow whatever, MBC Lunch or whatever, Allagash special stuff. Is there a great taphouse/snack spot that I can get these at once? Are any brewery spots a must hit? I like a more rustic/raw quieter vibe. Allagash looks to be closed the weekend I am in town.
    3. Got to get my lighthouse viewing on. Is the Portland Head Light a must? the only? Give me your top 3 lighthouses. Can I drink while looking at a lighthouse? Can I drink in a lighthouse? All of these are important questions.
    4. Got to do whatever Maine Locals like to do that is not covered in steps 1-3. Do you have a park you go to, a game you play, a local attraction, an oddity perhaps?
    5. Got to eat and drink some more. I am looking at Duckfat and Eventide. Good spot?
    6. Got to nightcap my night with a quiet local spot. Need recommendations for bar or tap house that is not super rowdy (I am 28 going on 75).
    7. Got to spend the night somewhere. Takers? jk, you wouldnt want me. What areas of the city have decent walkability?
    8. Got to wake up and get my pour over coffee on. Tandem seems like the spot for this. Any other coffee/cafes that do great coffee?
    9. Got to take in a Maine Sunrise (depending on how hard i go in steps 1 to 6) preferably over a lighthouse. I'm a romantic that way.
    10. Got to GTFO and head south to Boston.

    Hope you took the time to read the bullshit above, and can possibly point me in the direction of enjoying this lovely city to the fullest.

    I promise if you steer me right I'll do a really nice and elaborate trip review.
     
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  5. brokensail

    brokensail

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2016
    Location:
    Dublin, CA
    Maybe overstepping my bounds, but as a fellow traveler who just wrapped up a couple days in Portland, ME, here are my impressions and hot takes on a few of your questions:

    1: Lobster Shack was good. Was super crowded when we were there even though it was the middle of the afternoon on a weekday. Don't you people work? I walked by High Roller when I was at Bissell, but didn't eat it. Eventide's lobster roll isn't really traditional but is really noms (see #5).

    2: I felt like places had really similar draft lists if you go to the good places in town. A lot of them post lists online or you can troll untappd for check-ins like a loser. Also, other than Maine Beer Co, you can easily go to all of those places you mentioned (and more) in an afternoon of driving. Portland isn't very big. Also, Austin Street was really good and worth a visit, or at least drink their beer. Rally is solid. Novare Res has a lot of cool Oxbow bottles, or did when I left three days ago.

    3: Portland Head Light was really nice. They have a big park around it, too, so you can do a bit more than just get out of the car, look at the lighthouse, and then get back in the car. You could also just stop there on the way out of town and knock off this and #9 at the same time on your way south. You can walk out onto the breakwater to check out Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse. Might as well combine the two since they're not that far away (by car).

    5: Personally thought Duckfat was overrated. The fries were really good, but the other stuff was just good food and not worth waiting however long people wait for. Eventide was legit good. Holy Donuts were awesome if you want to be a disgusting human being. Salvage was fine. Thought Slab was good but not great but has a better draft list than the others. Good sausages at Thirsty Pig. We actually ended up not eating as much/many times as I was thinking, so missed out on some of the places that aren't the most popular, kind of bummed about that.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2016
  6. TheeWalrusHunter

    TheeWalrusHunter

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2014
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    I think we understand each other perfectly.

    This is exactly what I am talking about.

    Any Maine Locals wanna throw their hat into the ring of getting me the best time possible?
     
  7. brokensail

    brokensail

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2016
    Location:
    Dublin, CA
    Forgot: Two Fat Cats is around the corner from Duckfat. Good pastries there, too, but not donuts.
     
  8. Auror

    Auror

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2013
    You can go up to Camden or Rockland or whatever to that lighthouse that is a mile walk out on rocks. Then you look at it for like a minute, and walk the mile back. Millions of people do this every year. In the immortal words of Tommy Lee Jones in Men in Black "A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals."
     
  9. Brez07

    Brez07

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2013
    Location:
    Portland, ME
    The farther you get from the water, the quieter it gets. Seems obvious enough but figured I'd mention it. Exception being The King's Head... that place is usually always chill.

    There are a ton of hotels downtown now, but think they're all kinda pricey during the summer. There's a few places in SoPo/Scarborough around the mall that are a quick Uber ride from downtown.
     
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  10. TheeWalrusHunter

    TheeWalrusHunter

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2014
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Awesome Suggestion. The hotels downtown looked crazy expensive for that weekend and Air BnBs seems to be all snatched up. I got a hotel in Scarborough that was half the price of places downtown.
     
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  11. JBPortland

    JBPortland

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2013
    Location:
    Virginia
    If you're on or near Rt.1 you should check out Lois' Natural Marketplace for a nice little well-curated beer section.
     
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  12. Beerontwowheels

    Beerontwowheels

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2013
    Location:
    MD
    Headed up to visit Portland on 9/24 for a few days. Staying at a AirBnB in the West End. Thanks to everyone who contributed to this thread as it looks like there's plenty of good spots to eat and drink.
     
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  13. Beerontwowheels

    Beerontwowheels

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2013
    Location:
    MD
    Is anyone doing that Allagash grand cru tour tonight or whatever it's called? Looked pretty cool. Wish I was already up there.

    [​IMG]
     
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  14. JBPortland

    JBPortland

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2013
    Location:
    Virginia
    Would have been all over this in a hot second if I still lived up there :(
     
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  15. TheeWalrusHunter

    TheeWalrusHunter

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2014
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    So it looks like Allagash is closed when I am up there next month. Are there any places to pick up harder to find bottles in Portland?
     
  16. what are you looking for? harder to find Allagash bottles, specifically? Bier Cellar is the best bottle shop in Portland, but the other breweries sell beer to go also...
     
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  17. TheeWalrusHunter

    TheeWalrusHunter

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2014
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Yeah I'm talking about Allagash specifically. I will probably grab some other Maine beers too, but was planning on going to Allagash to grab bottles (anything sour, coolship, barrel aged) until i realized they are closed the day I'm there.
     
  18. Gotcha. You won't find a ton of that on the shelves around Portland sadly... just what you'd be Likely to find elsewhere. Bier Cellar not a bad bet, tho
     
  19. KevinC

    KevinC

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2013
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Anyone go to Barreled Souls yesterday, or better yet, plan on going Wednesday? I had planned on going but had to miss it. Wondering how it went, and if anyone would mind getting some bottles for me.
     
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  20. jeevo

    jeevo

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2013
    Location:
    Pittsburgh
    Bissell Brothers says on their website regarding cans that "CANS ARE NOT AVAILABLE ON SUNDAY UNLESS THERE IS ROLLOVER FROM THE PREVIOUS DAY." Does their stuff sell out super quick? Are cans ever available on Sunday or do they always sell out of their stash that day?