Monday, April 21, 2014
John Golden has written about food, dining and lifestyle subjects for Downeast magazine, the Boston Globe, Cottages and Gardens magazine, Gourmet magazine, Cuisine magazine, the New York Times and the New York Post.
In his highly opinionated blog, John reports on his experiences dining out all over Maine and his visits with food personalities, farmers and farmers’ markets throughout the state.
Portland continues to attract food mavens who flock to our restaurants, farmer’s markets and locavore’s delights and endeavors. But what we lack is a retail shop that focuses on specialty foods from around the world.
What the good global foodie needs is one place to find it all. We have a handful of stores where you can buy various items, but no one-stop mart where it’s under one roof.
Larger cities like Boston and New York are chockablock with gourmet food shops. In New York, Dean and DeLuca is the best known as is Eataly, the Chelsea Market and hordes of smaller specialty food retailers.
It’s been nearly six months since I’ve stepped foot into Salvage BBQ after the kafuffle of barbecue joint openings late last summer that included the aforementioned and South Portland’s Elsmere, both of which debuted around the same diametrically planned time.
Nice touches like this vintage diner bench turn out to be a convenient place to wait for your take out order at Salvage
Sometimes you find a recipe that’s so good it becomes a firm favorite. That happened recently when I was thumbing through the cookbook, Southern Comfort, by husband and wife chefs and authors, Allison Vines-Rushing and Slade Rushing.
The book is based on their food memories of growing up in the south and their various cooking journeys working in restaurants from San Francisco to New York. They’re back on home turf now, in New Orleans, where their highly regarded restaurant, MiLa, is located
The recipes in the book are very inventive and the few that I’ve tried so far have been wonderful. The one I’ve included here is Chicken Thighs Braised with Creole Mustard. It has great flavor, from combining the sweetness of the raisins, wine, cream and stock with the mustard.
Finding your groove for Sunday brunch you have to ask, what’s it going to be? Eggs ad infinitum? Maple bacon delirium? Or descending into the crusty annals of hash? Still, Portlanders think brunch is the evanescence of a Sunday moment, an illusionist’s collective reprieve where the entire town lines up in front of foggy doors--waiting for the breathy gates of brunchscape to open.
I looked online at Vinland’s carte du jour and immediately knew I wasn’t in the mood for Chef Levi’s yogurt whey, the foundation for much of his cooking.
When Portlanders want to eat well on a budget, a place like Hot Suppa! fits the bill. Since I’ve been frequenting so-called cut-rate dining rooms this month in my quest to find good, moderately priced food, I set my sights once again on the hungry heart of fine dining on a budget.
The dining room and bar at Hot Suppa