The owner of Pat’s Pizza in the Old Port announced Thursday that he had sold the business, but wouldn’t disclose who the new owner was or what the future holds. Come Monday, just as everyone’s grill was cooling off, the new owner issued a news release detailing his plans, which include a new bar that he’s calling a “speakeasy” with a secret entrance.

Mike Lizotte, a resident of Freeport, said the pizza restaurant and sports bar at 30 Market St. will be closed for renovations until Sept. 20. The speakeasy upstairs, which Lizotte said would feature a cassette tape-lined stairwell and telephone booth front door, will open on New Year’s Eve, the release said.

Lizotte had good news for all you pizza lovers out there: When Pat’s re-opens this month, the first 100 customers will get one 9-inch pizza a week free for 52 weeks. It’s dine-in only and a beverage is not included. Free cookies will be tucked into all take-out orders that day as well.

The Old Port Pat’s Pizza had been owned for the past decade by Chris Tyll, who also owns the Easy Day bowling alley and restaurant in South Portland. Lizotte has owned The Drink Exchange at 43 Wharf St. since 2015.

No, this isn’t New York: Would you pay $960 for a seven-course dinner in Maine?

It may be the priciest dinner ticket Maine has ever seen — certainly in the 30 years that I have lived here — but it’s for a good cause. The My Place Teen Center in Westbrook plans to host a seven-course dinner on Oct. 15 that features some of Portland’s best-known star chefs. The price for dinner for one? A whopping $960.

“It’s a risk,” admits Donna Dwyer, president and CEO of the center, which offers free programs for at-risk youth ages 10 to 18. “We know this is a heavy-duty price point.”

Only 65 tickets are available for the “Foodies for a Cause Chef’s Night” dinner, which will feature food from Portland chefs Chris Gould of Central Provisions; Rob Evans of Duckfat; Matt Ginn of EVO; Ken Thomas of Fore Street; Mike Wiley of Hugo’s; and Krista Desjarlais of The Purple House in Yarmouth. The team of chefs will be led by Christian Kryger, who is the center’s culinary program instructor and former chef de cuisine at Portland restaurants Fore Street and Bar Lola.

Great chefs, for sure, but $960? This clearly isn’t a dinner targeted to the average Mainer. Dwyer says each ticket will fund a kid for a year’s worth of services, including 250 hot meals each; 65 youngsters total will get assistance. Hunger, Dwyer explained, “is a huge part of their lives.”

“We know that (ticket) price point is exceptional for this market,” Dwyer said, “but at the same time the goal of what your ticket funds is pretty exceptional, too.”

The folks at the center also hope the dinner will reach people who have the resources to help with the capital campaign, which is raising money for a teen center in Biddeford that is expected to open next summer. That center will serve 1,000 youths a year – twice the number as at the Westbrook center – and feed them 20,000 meals a year, Dwyer said.

“We’ve got about $4 million left to raise, so we’re seeking new people interested in our mission who want to learn more about us,” Dwyer said.

If you have an extra $960 for the cause, buy a ticket online or send a check to MPTC, 755 Main Street, Westbrook, ME 04092.

Dirigo taproom to close Sept. 14; new owner plans renovations

The taproom at Dirigo Brewing Co., located at 28 Pearl St. in Biddeford, will close Sept. 14, the owner announced on the business’ Facebook page. The Dirigo production brewery is being sold to “an up and coming Maine brewery” before the end of the year, Tom Bull wrote, and the new owner plans taproom renovations and a new restaurant. Bull and his wife, Molly, opened Dirigo in 2016. Until the doors close, the taproom will be open from 4-10 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, and 2-8 p.m. Sunday. Dirigo fans and bargain hunters take note: the brewery says that cans and bottles of barrel-aged Baltic Porter are “priced to move.”

Happy Birthday, Crystal Spring Farmers’ Market

Shoppers enjoying live music at the Crystal Spring Farmers’ Market in Brunswick. Photo courtesy of the Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust

The Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust plans to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Crystal Spring Farmers’ Market on Sunday with a festival featuring local food, live music and a special beer release.

The Crystal Spring Farm Festival is scheduled for noon to 4 p.m. on the Farmers Market green at 277 Pleasant Hill Road in Brunswick. Mere Point Oyster Co. will shuck oysters, and Sowbelly Butchery and Henry & Marty will provide other food. Cook’s Lobster & Ale house will bring the wine and beer. Flight Deck Brewing will release a basil-infused, Belgian-style farmhouse ale. Activities include games for the family and music from Sons of Quint and the Ronda Dale Band.

Tickets are available online, or at the door — $10 for adults and $5 for kids age 10 and up. Children under 10 get in free.

Mobile martinis and more

Ryan Deskins, owner of the Sagamore Hill Lounge on Portland’s West End, has launched a mobile cocktail service called Maine Events Co. that will cater to weddings, parties and corporate events all over the state.

For more information, contact Deskins at [email protected]; 215-317-7469; or @maineeventsco.com on Instagram.


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