From time to time I make a general posting in the hope that it will guide others as they look for input, or - for those of us "regulars" - dispense with advice.
One thing that I think is VERY important when responding to a request is the timeframe in which the person is looking for input. It is important for this reason - someone who posts on Wednesday or Thursday looking for great suggestions in Portland during the summer ISN'T going to get in to Fore Street, Street & Company or Hugos. They will all be - most likely - booked solid, sometimes two weeks or more in advance for a Friday or Saturday night.
My personal favorite "walk in off the street" restaurants in Portland are The Old Port Sea Grill (though that can get booked up also), David's, Oolang, and Yosaku (Japanese). Oolang has definately improved their menu and their consistency over the past six months, to the point that its worth giving them another try if you have been put off in the past. I continue to be baffled as to why the Sea Grill doesn't have reviewers doing backflips down Commercial Street - I find it to be the most consistently excellent restaurant in Portland. Street & Company, Fore Street and Hugos are all well-worth visiting if you can get a table, but there are other fine choices when you haven't had weeks in advance to plan...
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