well, finally made the move. Living in the North Deering area of Portland and have been checking all chowhound recommendations for the area and maybe even found a couple new ones!
Had the best fish ever at Street and Co. whole sea bass stuffed with fresh rosemary then grilled and served with two sauces- roasted garlic and a romesco sauce. Service was excellent as was the wine list but a little pricey compared to other portland restaurants but definitely inexpensive compared to Boston or NY.
Rachael's was also excellent. Diver scallops the width of tennis balls for 21 bucks over a creamy risotto. Being a risotto snob however, I rarely find one cooked just right. If it's that hard to do, why do restaurants still attempt it? Does anyone know of any perect risotto anywhere? I'd love to try it.
Sophia's is definitely the find. Fantastic artesinal (sp) peasant breads and wonderful pastries. Sandwiches and fresh made soups are inexpensive and delightful but be there by 1:00 p.m. or risk them being out of any number of types of sandwiches. Steve, the owner aims to please.
Ezo-African was a fun treat and very tasty cusine. While the menu is short (five items) they were still out of one item and we opened the place at 11:30 a.m. Prices are almost too inexpensive (six bucks for a lunch entree) and they may have trouble staying in business. So do them a favor and order a drink too!
Bakehouse Cafe on Commercial street was a real pleasant surprise. Only about eight tables yet people were lined up to sit down for lunch. Had the best haddock chowder and a salad of beets, arrugula and spiced pears. full wine and beer list with some great looking desserts I was too full to try. Looks like it was a coffee house that felt like expanding.
North in Falmouth right off of route 88 is the Falmouth Sea Grill. An upscale place right on the water. I was told there is waterfront seating in summer and the restaurant has all picture windows overlooking the water. Again, great wine list, some creative apps like grilled whole calamari over greens with white beans, tomato and caramelized onions. Good chowder and in this world of mediocre caeser salads, a fresh, not too garlicky one with just the right amount of anchovy.
Last and certainly not least was the best find. On route 9 in lower Scarborough just before the turnoff to Old Orchard is the Sunrise Cafe. This will be their first year as a full service restaurant. Last year they were a coffee shop/deli. A quaint fifty seater built from the ground up by owners Gary and Sue Wright. Susan is the full timer. Their service and hospitality is beyond anything I have seen yet in this area. Great selection of wines and a draught selection including Guiness and Old Thumper served in the appropriate twenty ounce glass (although still too cold)! Their chef is the real find however, with many dishes bordering on an asian flair such as a tropical shrimp scampi with tomato, pineapple and ginger or the fabulous salmon napoleon with a chili slaw, stacked high on the plate. That's all I've eaten so far but will work my way through the Spring menu asap. Desserts are either made in house or from a local bakery (no Sweetstreet here). They have live jazz three nights a week and most definitely EXCURSION WORTHY. They close at nine in the off season.