Ruby’s West End (shown here in 2021) will close its Pine Street location this month before moving to Congress Street, where the restaurant will re-launch in February offering French food and serving dinner. Photo by Leslie Bridgers

Popular brunch spot Ruby’s West End is moving to Congress Street next month, where the restaurant will launch a new French-forward concept and also stay open for dinner.

Ruby’s co-owner Corrinna Stum said she expects to open at 642 Congress St. – the space formerly occupied by Ada’s Pasta – by mid- to late February. In the meantime, Ruby’s last services at 64 Pine St. will be this Thursday through Sunday, from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Stum said the approach for the menu at the new venue, which will be open for brunch, lunch and dinner from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., is “Maine rooted, French inspired.” She said Ruby’s Chef Garret LeClair is designing a menu that includes such French classics as cassoulet, duck confit and coq au vin, an array of croque-style brunch sandwiches, and a smattering of French-Canadian offerings as well.

“I don’t want to say too much yet, but I can definitely say there will be some surprises, something a little bit different from what Portland has already seen from Canadian French-inspired food,” Stum added, hinting that a north-of-the-border dish featuring goose might become a Ruby’s staple.

In addition to LeClair, barista Ally Shannon has curated a French-style coffee program for the new Ruby’s, while newly hired baker Nee-Nah Hall will put out assorted French pastries.

The new Ruby’s location can seat about 40 inside – including some choice perches at a chef’s counter overlooking the open kitchen – with an additional 30 guests on the patio.


Stum said she and husband/co-owner Matt Stum decided to take Ruby’s in a decidedly Francophile direction because they’d come to feel French cuisine is under-represented in Portland. “Outside of Petite Jacqueline – which is absolutely fantastic – there’s a void in the market,” she said.


New York City’s celebrated sustainable sushi bar Rosella will open a second location in Kennebunk’s Grand Hotel in May.

Sashimi from Rosella, the Manhattan sustainable sushi restaurant opening a location in Kennebunk this May. Photo by Adam Friedlander

The opening of the new Rosella, overseen by the Kennebunkport Resort Collection, will bring upscale sushi and multi-course omakase menu offerings to Kennebunk. The original Rosella in Manhattan’s East Village landed on Esquire’s 2021 best new restaurants list and has been widely lauded for its commitment to avoiding overfished species, abiding by recommendations from watchdog groups like the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch and using locally sourced ingredients whenever possible.

For a sneak peek of Rosella’s food, Kennebunkport’s Ocean restaurant at the Cape Arundel Inn & Resort will host Rosella pop-up dinners on Thursday, Feb. 23, and Friday, Feb. 24, from 5 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. each night. Rosella Kennebunk’s Chef Matt Kramer will collaborate with Ocean’s Executive Chef Peter Rudolph to design and execute the dinners.

Reservations for the pop-up events can be made online.



The Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association’s monkfish stew has been named among the national finalists for the 2023 Good Food Awards.

The stew – developed to combat local hunger and raise funds for the association’s food security programs – was chosen from among more than 1,750 submissions to the West Coast-based Good Food Awards.

The awards’ tasters recently whittled down the contenders to 359 finalists, in categories including beer, charcuterie, cheese, chocolate and fish. Other Maine Good Food Awards finalists this year include Maine Beer Company, Liquid Riot Bottling Co., Bixby Chocolate, Bard Coffee, Dean’s Sweets, Ragged Coast Chocolates, Gulf of Maine Conservas and Smithereen Farm.

Proceeds from the monkfish stew sales have directly supported local fishermen and the Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association’s Fishermen Feeding Mainers program since the product launched about two years ago. In that time, the program has donated more than 650,000 seafood meals to over 60 community groups from Millinocket to Kittery, and kept more than 15 boats fishing for sustainably harvested local seafood.

The winners will be announced on April 21 at the Good Food Awards Ceremony in Portland, Oregon.



Maine summer resident Cynthia Graubart is coming out with a new cookbook, “Zucchini Love,” this May.

The James Beard Award-winning author of “Blueberry Love” and “Strawberry Love” – all by Storey Publishing – Graubart this time sets her sights on the iconic summer garden surplus veggie.

“Zucchini Love” offers 43 recipes for zucchini-centric breads, salads, soups, stir-fries, lasagnas and more, such as Lemon Glazed Zucchini Bread, Pesto Zoodle Bowls, Zucchini Breakfast Bars, Sausage Stuffed Zucchini Boats, and Zucchini Fudge Brownies. The new book goes on sale May 23.

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