Scarborough restaurant next for owners of popular Portland pub

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SCARBOROUGH — With 50 years of combined experience working in the food service industry, Jennifer and Brian Brenerman believe they’ve found the right spot for a new restaurant.

Dunstan Tap & Table, under construction on Route 1 in the Dunstan Crossing development, is tentatively slated to open in late May, Jennifer Brenerman said Monday. 

The 3,500-square-foot space will seat 100, with room for private events or meetings. 

The Brenermans live in Portland, but plan to move to Scarborough.

Brenerman said she has always worked in restaurants – as a teenager, through college, and during her teaching career. When she and Brian met and married, he was already operating Shay’s Grill Pub in Portland’s Monument Square, which he bought in 2006.

Brian Brenerman also had previous experience in restaurant and hotel management, including in Boston and Denver. 

Jennifer Brenerman has managed the front of the house at Shay’s, and the couple eventually began to seek another location to open a second restaurant they could develop and design from the ground up.

Dunstan Tap & Table is “everything we’ve wanted in a restaurant,” Brenerman said. She added that since they are raising two children, ages 2 and 3, they are striving to create a family-friendly atmosphere, with a vibe somewhere between casual and upscale.

“It will be open, spacious and colorful,” she said. 

The menu is still being developed, Brenerman said, but it will likely be upscale  pub-style food. 

She said the team helping create the business includes developer Elliot Chamberlain, interior designer Tyler Karu, and Nat Towl, who is building and designing the restaurant’s furniture and bar. Design firm Might & Main is working on the branding.

“We have an amazing team with so many great ideas, we can’t wait to see them all come to fruition,” she said. 

The couple will continue to operate Shay’s and will rent to own the new space in Scarborough. 

Brenerman said while the couple looked for a suitable location for about six or seven years, but nothing seemed to appeal to them, until they noticed a need in Scarborough for a pub-style restaurant, and other businesses began to move into the Dunstan development. 

Brenerman said Shay’s is a place where regulars congregate, where everybody knows each other, an atmosphere they would like to foster at Dunstan Tap & Table. 

She said she likes that residents who live in the area will be able to walk to the restaurant, and there will be a field adjacent to the restaurant for children to play in, as well as a patio and fire pit.  Eventually, the couple would like to tend a garden at the location. 

“We are expecting a busy summer,” Brenerman said. 

Juliette Laaka can be reached at 781-3661 ext.,106 or at jlaaka@theforecaster.net.

Jennifer and Brian Brenerman, owners of Shay’s Pub & Grill in Portland’s Monument Square, plan to open Dunstan Tap & Table in Scarborough in May. 

Dunstan Tap & Table, at Dunstan Crossing on Route 1 in Scarborough, is tentatively scheduled to open in late May.

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