The owners of Mainely Burgers bought the former Legion Square Market and will reopen the landmark store this summer as Barber Brothers Meat & Provisions. Photo courtesy of Barber Bros. Meat & Provisions

Owners of the Mainely Burgers food trucks have purchased South Portland’s former Legion Square Market, also known as Smaha’s, and plan to reopen the neighborhood grocery store and butchery this summer.

Brothers Max and Jack Barber aim to launch the new market, Barber Brothers Meat & Provisions, in mid-July. Alan Cardinal and his wife, Sylvia Most – the previous owners of the cherished Knightville store at 101 Ocean St. – announced in January that they were selling the business they’d owned for 11 years so that they could focus on their family.

Cardinal and Most bought the market in 2012 from the Smaha family, which had run the market since they first opened it in 1939. The Barbers have started some minor cosmetic renovations of the market’s interior.

Max Barber said the new shop will offer a wide range of locally sourced meats, including beef, pork, chicken and lamb, as well as a selection of cheeses, bread, and pantry items, and fresh produce from local farms. He said he and his brother plan to take advantage of their own culinary experience by introducing a selection of prepared meals to the market.

“We don’t want to change a lot about what they had,” he said. “We’re committed to keeping the market local and providing an exceptional shopping experience for all our neighbors.”

The Barbers are the grandsons of Gus Barber, who started Barber Beef in 1955, later expanding the business to Barber Foods. The brothers launched their first food truck in 2012, and today operate a fleet of five seasonal trucks, along with a Mainely Burgers restaurant in Boston.



After closing at the end of 2022 because they were losing money, the beloved Belfast farm-to-table vegetarian restaurant Chase’s Daily announced online Tuesday that it will reopen in pared-down form in June.

According to a post on the restaurant’s blog, Chase’s Daily will be open from Tuesday through Friday in June, contingent upon staffing. “It’s no secret that staffing is a huge challenge and we’re getting a late start,” the restaurant said on its Facebook page.

The blog post says the menu will be limited, focusing on pizza and salad, along with coffee and soft serve ice cream. The shop’s market will sell produce on Tuesdays and Fridays.

The blog also notes that employees will pool all tips and share responsibilities of food preparation, service and cleaning, and that prices will be higher this year.

“The value of our efforts will be something for you to assess,” the blog reads in part. “Is having a beautiful space to gather a tangible benefit to you and our community? Does delicious food grown and prepared with integrity give meaning to your life? Are you willing to continue to support us in creating a sustainable and equitable business?”


Chase’s Daily, which first opened at 96 Main St. in 2000, will close in the winter, and “evolution will be part of the design” at the restaurant going forward. Despite an “intensely busy” summer last year, the restaurant hadn’t broken even for the year and was $30,000 in the red by last October, the blog said.

The owners could not be reached Tuesday for an interview.


The bar at The Danforth in Portland’s West End. Ben McCanna/Staff Photographer

Two Portland cocktail bars were recently nominated for the Tales of the Cocktail Foundation’s annual Spirited Awards, an international competition considered to be among the alcohol industry’s most prestigious prizes.

Hunt + Alpine at 75 Market St. was among 11 nominees for the “Best U.S. Cocktail Bar – U.S. East” category in the 2023 competition. The Danforth, which opened at 211 Danforth St. last July, was named among 11 bars vying for top honors in the “Best New U.S. Cocktail Bar – U.S. East” category.

The Portland bars were the competition’s only nominees from Maine. Blossom Bar in Brookline, Massachusetts, nominated for “Best U.S. Restaurant Bar – U.S. East,” was the only other New England venue named to any of the Spirited Awards categories this year.


Hunt + Alpine was also nominated last year for a Spirited Award in the same category. This year, the bar goes up against some of the industry’s heaviest hitters in major metropolitan areas, including New York City’s buzzy Double Chicken Please, which specializes in culinary cocktails, and barmini by star chef Jose Andres in Washington, D.C.

“I think the Maine cocktail scene is better than it’s ever been,” said Hunt + Alpine co-owner Briana Volk. “It’s something really special you don’t find in a lot of places. Being nominated says a lot, not only about (Hunt + Alpine and The Danforth), but about Portland in general and the food and drink scene here.”

Finalists for the Spirited Awards will be named June 21. Winners will be named on July 27, at the 17th annual Spirited Awards Ceremony in New Orleans.


Chef Christian Hayes, co-owner of The Garrison in Yarmouth and a former champ from Food Network’s hit show “Chopped,” is the featured guest for the Thursday, May 18 installment of “Talking Food in Maine: Intimate Conversations at the Lincoln Theater in Damariscotta.”

Talking Food series host Cherie Scott will talk with Hayes about his critical business pivots during the pandemic. Forced to temporarily close The Garrison, Hayes started an online market with prepared meals, groceries, wine and beer, as well as hard-to-find essential items at the time such as toilet paper and hand sanitizer. Hayes also launched Thoroughfare during the pandemic, first as a takeout service in The Garrison’s riverside garden, later moving it to a corner store on Main Street.


The free talk starts at 7 p.m., and no tickets or reservations are required. Find more information on the Talking Food series at


Coffee By Design at 1 Diamond St. will host two coffee-centric events on Sunday, May 21.

At 11 a.m., the venue will feature a talk and tasting with coffee importer Jean Christophe Rustatira, owner of Umuko Coffee, a pure-sourced Rwandan coffee company based in Maryland. The son of Rwandan coffee farmers, Rustatira will share two Rwandan coffees at the event. Attendees will receive a box of three Coffee By Design coffees from East Africa. Tickets are $50 for the event, available for purchase online.

At 1 p.m. the same day, Coffee By Design hosts a celebration of the three East African coffees. The afternoon event, free to attend, starts with an Ethiopian coffee ceremony and includes samples of the shop’s East African brews.



Here are just a few area options for a special meal or outing for Mom:

Harbor Bistro + Terrace, 468 Fore St., has a Mother’s Day menu alongside its usual offerings. Specials include savory brunch dishes like Duck Hash ($21) and Shrimp & Grits ($19), as well as Pink Pancakes ($18) with strawberry puree, macerated raspberries and whipped ricotta. To reserve, call 207-523-2075 or visit

Sebago Brewing Company is featuring special brunch menus at three of its locations (the Gorham village brewpub on Elm Street is closed Sundays). At Sebago’s Tasting Room at 616 Main St. in Gorham, you’ll find dishes like a charcuterie plate ($19.50) and a “Think Spring” pizza with lemon ricotta, peas, onions, prosciutto and arugula ($18).

Sebago’s Scarborough location at 201 Southborough Drive is offering dishes like Avocado Toast on Herb Focaccia ($16.50) and Roast Halibut Cioppino ($30), while the Kennebunk Sebago at 65 Portland Road, will serve specials including Lobster Benedict ($22.50) and Spring Gnocchi with asparagus, roasted tomatoes, spinach, feta and scampi butter sauce, along with $12 mimosa flights.

Maker’s Galley, 5 Commercial St., is hosting Chef Eva Mrak of Spoondrift Kitchen from 3-5 p.m. to lead a crepe-making class, including both sweet and savory fillings. The event has both gluten- and dairy-free options. Tickets are $65, available online.

Aroma Joe’s has buy-one, get-one-free deals on its iced drinks up to 24 oz. at participating locations.

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