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Everything posted by CSASphinx

  1. Not pickled. Not spicy. A proper hot dog. Only red.
  2. Now there's a Mainiac! ← Uh, Mainer...mainiac is something else.
  3. Must not be many native Mainers posting here, because we are nearly two complete pages into this thread with not a single mention of red hot dogs. Unheard of, even in the Boston area, a friend of mine living down there will ocassionally buy a case to take home and freeze for those moments when he has a hankering for that distinctive *snap* when you bite into them.
  4. Johnny, While we are between digital cams right now, if you are of the mood, might I suggest a trek out Forest Avenue to Susan's Fish and Chips? These are my favorite clams around (Southern Maine) and they are served with a real old New England-style boiled tartar sauce. Which brings up another point. While certainly the clams, their preparation, etc. have gotten all the discussion, why no mention about the tartar sauce that goes with them? I can't tell you the number of times I've gotten a very promising plate of clams only to be completely turned off by a tartar sauce made with DILL relish of all things! Also, I have to say I disagree with the scoring criteria awarding extra points if the clams comes with a wedge of lemon. Lemon is for broiled seafood, tartar sauce for fried. That said, I'm in for a variety of reports and pictures. One last addition, while it may not rise to the level of true contender for the crown, the Sea Basket just south of Wiscasset, ME, has been a consistent performer working in fried seafood of all kinds.
  5. My favorite place in Portland right now is Five Fifty-Five at 555 Congress St. Really top notch food and they have a new pastry chef, previously from Arrows.
  6. I'd second the recommendation for Arrows, with the caveat that it will certainly be one of the more expensive meals you'll have anywhere....Maine, Boston, New York, you name it.
  7. Thanks for the report ghost, But my you sound like a fair weahter couple. Glad to hear you made it to Katahdin, a favorite of ours from way back that recently has been reinvigorated. I assume you were staying at the Holiday Inn By the Bay on Spring St. Let me say that the short five minute walk to 555 would have been well worth the effort, even if you were chilled to the bone when you got there. It would even have been worth the few bucks you'd spend to ride in a warm cab. Oh, well. Maybe next time you're here and when it is warmer you'll make it over. Meanwhile, I have tomorrow night's reservation to look forward to and this time I'll take notes and post a full report on our evening.
  8. Well now, Boo, that's more like it and at entrees around $20 Protland dining could be your veritable oyster. So now, tell us what you like. Katahdin is a good choice, thought it has been a while since I've been there. Do they still serve those fried oyster apps, johnny? An out of the way place that makes wonderful, wonderful rustic Italian is Rachel's. It's beer and wine only, but, oh! what a wine list. Restaurant neighbors Uffa! and Local 188 would also be good choices. There are plenty of others....so let us know what you're looking for.
  9. Boo, I agree with johnny. But I'm wondering: $20 total pp or entrees that are $20 and under (which would greatly widen the playing field)?
  10. I can't remember the details exactly. But I seem to recall that students at Dartmouth successfully lobbied the dining service there to start buying local organic produce to use in one of the student centers there. Sorry the details are a little hazy on this, but I believe this was two, maybe three years ago.
  11. I find Fore Street is over-hyped in general. That's not to say it isn't a pleasant place to spend an evening or that they don't exeucte their concept well. The intent is for the food to be "rustic" in the preparation and that limits the upside, I think. I can see people often leaving saying "Damn that was good!" But never "That place blew me away, I've never had anything like it."
  12. Yeah Ellie, Whenever we have people over that is abou tthe rotation of where we will go to get our stuff. Clown, Standard and sometimes Browne Trading (though not for the wine). The Parking issue is funny to me because about 12 years ago I met one of the guys who was about to open the Greengrocer (back then near the corner of Market and Newbury Streets). I was surprised (wrongly so, I must admit) back then that he thought such a high volume business could survive in the high-rent district of the Old Port. He was from New York and this is what he said or something like this: "The problem with Portland is people don't know how to park. If you are just running in to get something what differnce does it make if you park in a No Parking zone or double park? You'll be out in a minute anyway. If people can figure this out we'll do fine." I commented to him that I thought it was pretty risky to open a business based on hoping people would change their parking habits. Shows what I know....
  13. Yeah, I saw that. Being a cynic, I wonder if this was just a convenient excuse to move away from the low-margin produce into the high margin items like wine, cheese, etc. The rent on that place can't be cheap and it had to be hard to sell enough lettuce and carrots to make a profit. Still, I have to wonder whether the other non-produce items were selling on their own or if people picked them up because they came in for the great veggies. Time will tell, I guess. No matter what, it is a shame.
  14. I forgot to mention.. I live in Scarborough too, Mulcahy. Whereabouts does your brother live?
  15. Ok, I think the Public Market is a good idea (only don't buy the wine there, go to the place across the Preble Street for that). The other suggestion for the Greengrocer is good, Browne does have some cheese and a pretty good wine selection but they are the most expensive whine shop in town in my opinion. Finally I wouldn't recommend the supermarket in Scarborough mentioned. If you are going big supermarket do the Hannaford off Forest Ave in Portland or the nearby Wild Oats on Marginal Way. Barring the Public Market one-stop approach that may have you compromising in some areas and singing in others here's a few ideas of mine. Mind you, they are NOT necessarily conveniently located near each other. First, I think you should give a call to Pat's Meat Market 484 Stevens Ave. Portland, 772-3961. You'll get a good pork loin, bacon, turkey breast (probably local farm-raised) as well as a lot of the produce and groceries you need. Cheese? If only the choices were better, but I'd go with the Portland Public Market. Wine? The Clown 121 Middle St. Portland, 756-7399. Don't be fooled by the exterior, upstairs is antiques and home furnishings, downstairs in the basement is a great little wine shop. This would be a place I'd go to in person as they are wonderfully service-oriented. Pies? Oh it's hard to point out one in particular But a couple you may want to condsider are Foley's 431 Congress St. Portland, 772-5837 or the European Bakery 395 Route One, Falmouth (north of the main shopping area on the way to Yarmouth) 781-3541. Call early. Hope this helps. Perhaps johnnyd has uncovered some good places for cheese? johnny?
  16. The one thing I would say that's an absolute must with any turkey is to make sure you brine it overnight. If you didn't like your Mom's turkey and you don't brine yours, then cook it, you won't like your turkey either.... Chris
  17. I've always gotten our Thanksgiving turkeys at Pat's Meat Market on Stevens Ave in Portland. Not sure about whether they are kosher, but they are from a local farm and very good.
  18. Everyone, On behalf of myself and those of us who post on the New Engalnd board, thank you so much for your thoughful and interesting questions this week for Chef Richard Hamilton of the Spiced Pear in Newport, RI. And special thanks to Chef Hamilton himself, who took time out of his busy schedule the answer the questions posed. All the best, Chris
  19. Good afternoon Chef Hamilton, In another thread I think you mentioned the ability to source many of your products nationally because of the reliability of overnight air freight. But can you talk about how you go about choosing a source that is halfway across the country when you can't just drop in on their operation to make sure they are handling their products with the level of care you require? Thanks.
  20. Hello Chef Hamilton, Thank you for joining us. I'm interested in how you create your menus for the Spiced Pear, creating them daily from what is in house as opposed to ordering what you need for specific dishes. Why do you choose to create your menus this way and why is it important for you to make these determiniations essentially every day on the fly?
  21. Welcome ella, We look forward to hearing more from the midcoast. Whoopie pies? Don't get my craving going....
  22. Here is some information from earlier this summer that I asked for regarding bar dining. Moderator's Note: The two topics have been merged in this thread. I was alone and ended up at Babbo on a Sunday night where I stuffed myself on beef cheek ravioli and fennel-dusted sweetbreads. I waited for maybe 20 minutes for my spot at the bar, but was seated next to another solo diner and we shared bites and talked. It was great fun.
  23. johhny, Yeah, there is still some corn left. I guess I consider it "done" because it's not getting any better. My wife still finds some to bring home, since she is a corn hound of the first order, but I've been very disappointed the whole year. Either it is tender, but not sweet or vice versa. Maybe I should have said I'm done with corn. And I've been known to visit Maxwell's and Jordan's they're not so far away from my house over here near in Scarborough. Finally, you can call me Chris.
  24. Yeah Ghost, Corn is done for the year and it wasn't a very good year at that. Must have beent he rather funky weather we had all summer. As for the beans. They've been consistently great for a few weeks now. We cooked a huge pot the other night with dinner and had to cook some more when my five-year-old son couldn't get enough. Not that the rest of us were complaining. Can't even remember what else we had, just lots of beans.
  25. If you stop in at Moody's, I have only one word of advice: PIE!
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