Planning a getaway to one of Maine’s most popular and populated cities? You won’t regret it! Portland, Maine is a beautiful coastal city that has a little something for everyone including some of the best places to eat and drink!
Portland is known to travelers today for quite a few things. One, it was Maine’s first capital. However, it was changed after seven years when Augusta, a more centrally-located city, was created. Two, it was home to the first chewing-gum factory ever! Three, in addition to chewing-gum, Portland, Maine is home to the original “Italian sandwich!” Four, it has the closest transatlantic port to Europe. Five, well I guess while chewing-gum and Italian hoagies were being made locals got thirsty because Portland now has an impressive amount of microbreweries, 155 to be exact! But in addition to all of that, Portland is also known for its fresh and delicious local food. Here we have outlined the best places to eat and drink in Portland, Maine.
Happy reading & safe travels!
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The Holy Donut
Where do I even begin! Unless you absolutely HATE donuts, you cannot visit Portland without making a trip to The Holy Donut. The Holy Donut came to life after the owner/creator was craving a donut but wanted one made with “fresh ingredients that he could feel good about eating.” After much trial and error, he found the perfect not-so-secret anymore ingredient, fresh Maine potatoes! Now with three different locations, he is making and selling over two million donuts each year! I’d say that is one good recipe!
But let’s get into what to eat…the SALTED CARAMEL is my absolute favorite! Though I have not tried them all, I’m sure they are all delicious, I personally love the salted caramel. Other flavors offered at The Holy Donut include fresh lemon, maple bacon, triple berry glaze, the holy cannoli, blueberry with lemon glaze, and that’s not even all of them!
For those planning on making a trip, most locations are open from 8 am to 3 pm daily. The earlier the better though, there will be a line!
Portland Lobster Co.
Portland Lobster Co. is located on Commercial Street right along the water in downtown Portland. That being said, not only does it have excellent food but great views of the harbor as well. So if you are looking for a restaurant that offers a variety of fresh seafood and a casual dining experience, Portland Lobster Company is the place for you.
Here Kevin and I taste-tested the lobster roll as well as the scallop roll. Both were delicious, the lobster roll was served cold, brushed with sweet butter, and served on a toasted bun while the scallop roll consisted of hot fried scallops on a bun. Both were served with crispy french fries!
For those who do not like seafood, there are plenty of options on the menu for you as well. Those options include burgers (both veggie and Angus beef), lemon chicken sandwiches, a number of salads, and more!
Additionally, Portland Lobster Co. is open daily from 11 am until 9 pm so patrons can enjoy a bite to eat for either lunch, dinner, or both!
The Standard Baking Co.
Founded in 1995, The Standard Baking Co. is a staple in downtown Portland. The Standard Baking Co is family owned and operated and known for its traditional French baguettes and other artisanal breads as well as hand-rolled croissants, scones, and cookies.
Though everything at The Standard Baking Co. looks and smells amazing, Kevin and I recommend trying the bag of molasses cookies. The molasses cookies are simply delicious with just the right amount of crisp and chewy goodness. Fun fact about the molasses cookies is that the recipe is actually from a former baker’s grandmother, a perfect recipe that will stand the test of time!
The Stand Baking Co. is open Tuesday to Sunday from 8 am until 2:30 pm. We recommend going early in the day!
Central Provisions is another must-visit. Known for their mouth-watering food and historic ambiance, Central Provisions will leave you with a full belly and memories that will last a lifetime. The building itself has been standing for over 150 years with only minor renovations to preserve the history. Today owners take pride in the history and the city by supporting local farms and businesses in a way strengthening the community in Portland and who doesn’t love that!
Though all of their food is wonderful and comes highly recommended, Kevin and I recommend heading to Central Provisions for brunch. You won’t be disappointed! Brunch is served Saturday and Sunday from 11 am until 2 pm.
Allagash Brewing Company
If you are a beer drinker it’s not a trip to Portland without visiting arguably Maine’s most well-known brewery, Allagash. Though Allagash White is their signature beer, Allagash Brewing Company offers a variety of beers from sours to stouts, to IPAs so there is honestly something for every palate.
Unfortunately, when we visited their tasting room was closed to the public and they were only offering to-go beverages. Since Kevin and I wanted to try a flight or a variety of beers, we chose the Mix Of Six. The Mix Of Six includes Allagash White, North Sky, Sixteen Counties, River Trip, Allagash Tripel, and the Moselle Lager. We also tried the Coolship Red which is a sour beer aged on local raspberries. It was delicious, especially if you like a good sour!
Allagash Brewing Company is typically open daily from 11 am until 6:30 pm. Always remember to drink responsibly.
Bite into Maine
MUST TRY…enough said. No, seriously you have to try it! Bite Into Maine was started in 2011 and has been expanding ever since. Now with three locations throughout Portland, you can try Bite Into Maine while enjoying the views at Portland Head Lighthouse (their original location), while sipping on some local beers at Allagash Brewing Company, or at their 12-seat takeout location in Scarborough, Maine. Although Kevin and I ate at the airstream at Allagash I believe they are all just as scrumptious as the others.
Since we could not decide on what roll to try, Kevin and I decided to get the “flight of three minis.” I mean how perfect and cool is that! The flight included the Maine roll, with homemade mayo and chives, the Connecticut roll, with warm butter, and the Picnic roll, with coleslaw, butter, and celery salt! YUM. For those who just want to try one big roll my personal favorite was the Picnic, something about the coleslaw made it stand out from the others!
If you in search of your favorite lobster roll in Portland, we definitely recommend trying Bite Into Maine.
Looking for the perfect fall beer in Portland, head over to Shipyard Brewery. Shipyard Brewery is family-owned and has been around since 1992. So needless to say, they have had quite a few years to perfect their brews.
For those hoping to enjoy a tasting, Shipyard Brewery is located in downtown Portland and offers both indoor and outdoor seating to guests. This means not only do you get to enjoy amazing beers but if you choose to sit outside you can enjoy awesome views of the city too!
Our personal favorite beer is Pumpkinhead. Pumpkinhead is a refreshing wheat ale full of pumpkin, cinnamon, and nutmeg flavors that will leave your taste buds wanting more!
For those hoping to try a variety, no worries. Shipyard offers beer flights as well as single 10 oz pours!
Packing Essentials for the Fall in Portland, Maine
Well that’s all folks, those are the best places to eat and drink in Portland, Maine. I hope this post got your mouth-watering and helped you decided where your headed for lunch and dinner each and every day of your getaway! Enjoy!
Want to visit some other locations in Maine but not sure where to go? Check out our post on the five most beautiful towns in Maine along the coast!