Another Round, a bar and café specializing in board games, is set to launch on Congress Street Friday.

And owner Harry Sultan said customers at Another Round’s recent soft openings were very enthusiastic. “People have said they’re super excited there’s a place that’s more of a hanging-out spot, some place they can come where drinking isn’t the only thing to do,” Sultan said.

Board game-themed bar Another Round is poised to open Friday at 549 Congress St. The bar has already had several “soft” openings, for friends and family. Photo by Amanda Huebner Photgraphy

The board game bar concept has proven successful in other markets, such as New York City. Portland also hosts Arcadia on Congress Street, a bar featuring arcade games, pinball and board games.

Another Round will serve a selection of local beers on tap – including a dedicated gluten-free tap line – along with wine and draft cocktails, with a changing rotation of cocktails and mocktails featured weekly. To start, packaged snacks will be for sale, with hot-pressed sandwiches on offer later this season. The bar will serve Onyx Coffee from Arkansas, and plans to partner with HiFi Donuts to sell doughnuts in the morning.

The bar’s 1,400-square-foot space at 549 Congress St. seats about 45 customers. It had previously been office space for Portland Downtown.

The venue has 135 board games to rent for $3 an hour, with copies of most available for sale. Sultan plans to have weekly events like trivia night and drag bingo.


For now, Another Round’s schedule will be Wednesday through Sunday from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Eventually, Sultan hopes to be open seven days a week and may push back closing time an hour or two, depending on customer demand.

“Based on our soft opening, we think that people may want to hang out a little bit later than we were expecting,” he said.


A new Latin American-themed venue, Bar Publica, is to open Saturday in Bayside.

The 3,000-square-foot site – former home to The Yard – is adjacent to Wilson County Barbecue at 82 Hanover St. The space seats almost 300, including outdoor seating at a rooftop bar, which is still under construction.

Bar Publica partner Spencer Brantley said the venue is meant to help revive the city’s bar scene. “The old days of bars everywhere in Portland seems to have evaporated,” Brantley said. “Wherever a great bar was, there seems to be a great restaurant now. We just want to bring that back a little bit.”


Bar Publica’s beverage program is mezcal- and tequila-forward, Brantley said, while the rooftop bar will feature some tiki drinks. The food menu ($8-$14) includes a selection of Latin American small plates and street foods like arepas, tacos, salchipapas, ceviche and fried local seafood.

Bar Publica will be open seven days from 12 p.m. to 1 a.m., serving food until 10 p.m.


Pot + Pan Executive Chef Tara Cannaday behind the bakery counter at the company’s new store. Courtesy of Pot + Pan

Portland-based cannabis edibles company Pot + Pan is scheduled to open its first retail storefront at Woodfords Corner this weekend.

Pot + Pan Kitchen plans to launch Saturday in a 1,000-square-foot space at 646 Forest Ave. Pot + Pan was founded in 2015, and its production facility is on Industrial Way.

The new shop is “the ultimate expression of the Pot + Pan brand,” company founder and General Manager Keri-Jon Wilson said. “I feel like it’s going to unlock what Pot + Pan is and how it lends itself to lifestyle and low-dose recreational cannabis use.”


The store will feature a bakery counter selling cannabis-infused chocolate bars, gummies and baked goods. The store’s kitchen retail space will spotlight kitchen tools and cookware, party goods and gifts.

The store will be have a soft opening (open to the public) Saturday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wilson said they haven’t yet finalized their operating schedule, but that information will be available on the company’s Instagram page.


The fermentation specialty shop Onggi on Washington Avenue opened a new café and matcha bar space last week.

Launched Friday, the café is in the back half of the roughly 1,300-square-foot space at 131 Washington Ave., where Onggi moved in 2022. The shop launched in a 300-square-foot space in The Black Box, a former shipping container, three years ago.

Co-owner Marcus Im said Onggi will use the new counter-service café area to expand its beverage program and broaden its rotating selection of pastries and baked goods from co-owner and pastry chef Amy Ng.


In addition to coffee beverages and matcha lattes, the café will offer specialty drinks featuring seasonal ingredients, like a strawberry milk matcha latte. Customers also can order cold foams to top their beverages, such as a black sesame cold foam, or the Onggi cold foam flavored with a touch of tamari, which Im said “adds a little bit of umami and salt and has all those notes you want in every sip. It adds a nice texture and creaminess to any sort of drink you might get.”

Along with more pastries, the café menu also will include new dishes like a yogurt parfait with seasonal jam, and savory overnight oats made with dashi, miso and pickles. Onggi will add about eight outdoor seats, giving them as many as 20 seats total.

“We’re excited to have a bit more room to play with,” Im said.


The owners of Highroller Lobster Co. are opening an adjacent steakhouse on Exchange Street this month.

The new sister operation, Low Stakes Lodge, is located at 106 Exchange St. in a space formerly occupied by Timber Bourbon Bar & Lounge.


Highroller co-owner Peter Bissell said he and his partners, Andy Gerry and Baxter Key, considered using the space as a private event space for Highroller. In the end, they went with a steakhouse concept that’s “based on nostalgia,” Bissell said.

“There are places that have steak on the menu, but there are no steakhouses anymore,” Bissell said of the Portland restaurant scene. “The market is so saturated with new fusion concepts and new, very specific regional or ethnic concepts. The idea here is to provide really high-quality product, but classic dishes.”

In addition to prime-grade steaks and items like pork chops, the menu will feature a variety of classic, comforting sides like loaded baked potatoes, French onion soup, Bloomin’ onions and wedge salads. For drinks, the restaurant will offer rare domestic beers on tap and “fun, original” cocktails, Bissell said.

The venue seats about 60, plus 13 more at the bar. Bissell said the decor was inspired by Maine logging camps and hunting lodges. “There’s lot of antlers and taxidermy. The ambience is as if you told an AI generator to create a Bugaboo Creek done by Highroller,” he said, referring to the former Northeast steakhouse chain.

Low Stakes Lodge is slated to open sometime in June. It will be open Thursday-Sunday from 5-10 p.m. to start.



Blake Orchard, a Back Cove juice and smoothie shop, recently launched a second location in Brunswick.

Inside Blake Orchard’s new Brunswick store. Courtesy of Blake Orchard

The new store is located at 2 Station Ave., a 1,500-square-foot space that formerly hosted Edible Arrangements. The 26-seat shop opened Sunday  offering the same menu as at Blake Orchard’s Portland location at 561 Forest Ave., according to owner Alexandra Messenger.

Messenger launched Blake Orchard about 10 years ago on Exchange Street, then moved to Forest Avenue. “A lot of customers were asking us for many years to come to Brunswick,” she said. “We were just waiting for the right time.”

Blake Orchard is also opening a location in Scarborough in Dunstan Village on Route 1. Messenger said that project just broke ground, and is about two months behind schedule, though she still hopes it can open before the end of the year.

The Brunswick location offers a variety of wellness drinks ($4-$7), smoothies ($9-$13), smoothie bowls ($13-$14.75) and fresh juices ($12-$13.50), as well as local herbal tea, homemade nut milks and nut butters.

Blake Orchard in Brunswick will be open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. in June. Starting in July, the store will stay open until 5 p.m. on weekdays.



Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church is gearing up for its 40th annual Greek Festival this month.

The event spans three days, from June 20-22 at the Pleasant Street church. The festival runs from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Thursday and Friday, and from 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday. The festival is free to attend, though the food is individually priced.

Festival committee member Demetra Giatas said the event features traditional Greek pastries and sweets like baklava, karithopita, koulourakia butter cookies, and loukoumathes donuts. Savory dishes include gyros, moussaka, spanakopita, pastisio, dolmathes, and lamb and pork souvlaki.

The event will also offer music from a DJ and traditional Greek dancing. Giatas said 40th anniversary tote bags, hats and T-shirts will be for sale.

About 6,000 people attended the festival last year, said Holy Trinity Parish Council President Bryan Snell.


Giatas advised festival-goers to visit the event early before popular food items sell out. “We had a crazy festival last year, it was great. So we’re hoping for the same this year,” she said.


Nina June restaurant in Rockport is hosting a dinner this month based on the new cookbook, “The Jewish Holiday Table.”

Set for Thursday, June 27, the evening offers a multicourse prix fixe dinner featuring food from the book, including Mitchell’s Chopped Liver, Whole Roasted Fish with Lemon & Herbs, and Yemenite Flat Bread with Zhoug & Challah. The book’s author, Naama Shefi, founder of the Jewish Food Society, will be on hand to sign books for sale at the event.

Tickets for the event are $100, available online, which does not include tax, gratuity or beverages.

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