The Back Bay Grill, 65 Portland St. in Portland, is celebrating it’s 25th anniversary this year. In honor of the achievement, chef/owner Larry Matthews created a bistro menu for customers to enjoy on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays through June 7. The menu offers items not found on the regular menu and is $30 per person for two courses and $10 for paired wines.
A new restaurant, Eventide Oyster Co., at 86 Middle St. in Portland, is expected to open mid-June. The 25-seat restaurant occupies the former Rabelais bookstore, and will offer diners cooked and raw seafood, chowders, lobster rolls and local beer. Eventide is owned by the new owners of Hugo’s restaurant: general manager Arlin Smith and chefs Andrew Taylor and Michael Wiley. The two restaurants will share a kitchen. The oyster bar will be open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to midnight. And Hugo’s, next door at 88 Middle St., will be open Monday nights starting in July.
There are still two entrances – at 10 Dana St. and 36 Wharf St. – but inside Portland’s Vignola and Cinque Terre have merged and share a kitchen. Diners have a choice of seating, decor and menu options, all under one roof.
Carmen at the Danforth, a 40-seat restaurant inside the Danforth Inn at 163 Danforth St. in Portland, is expected to open at the end of May. Chef Carmen Gonzalez will feature a menu highlighting Maine seafood with a Latin twist.
Fans had to say goodbye to Freeport Brick Oven Pizza and Freeport Wine Outlet, but can expect Freeport Seafood Co. to open by the end of May. The restaurant is at 175 Lower Main St. in Freeport and will be a casual, classic Maine fish house with pub items and a saute menu.
Dickey’s Barbecue Pit opened in the Maine Mall at 364 Maine Mall Road in South Portland in April. The restaurant offers meat, side dishes and a variety of sauces. The original Dickey’s Barbecue Pit was founded in 1941 in Dallas. There are now 220 locations in 40 states.
Area farmers’ markets are sprouting in greater Portland area. In Portland, the Saturday market at Deering Oaks opened April 28 and will continue through late November from 7 a.m. to noon. On Wednesdays, customers can get their meat, vegetables and dairy products in Monument Square from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The Cumberland Farmers’ Market will open Saturday, May 19, at Town Hall on Tuttle Road from 8 a.m. to noon. The Wednesday market in Falmouth will be moving from the Walmart parking lot to the parking lot at 183 U.S. Route 1 at the Maine Realty Co., the building that was formerly Performance Motors. The Falmouth market is open from noon to 4 p.m.
The Yarmouth Farmers’ Market will open Thursday, May 24, from 2:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Town Hall Memorial Green. Freeport’s market will operate on Fridays, June 8 through Sept. 7, from 1 to 5 p.m. at Discovery Park on the L.L. Bean campus.
The Brunswick Farmers’ Market opened on May 1 and will be held every Tuesday and Friday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the mall between Park Row and Maine Street. In Bath, the market is open from May through October every Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to noon at the Waterfront Park on Commercial Street.
In Scarborough, the market runs Sundays from June through October, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., in the Town Hall parking lot. And the South Portland Summer Farmers’ Market now takes place every Thursday from 3-7 p.m. on Hinckley Drive, near Mill Creek Park.