Ever since I was a little girl my family has been piling up into our Honda and driving two hours north to Portland, Maine. It’s been a tradition for years and years to visit the sea side city at least once a year, if not more. Over the years, I’ve compiled a list of my favorite restaurants and bakeries. Even though I’ve been visiting the town for upwards of ten years, I feel like I find something new on every trip. It’s just such a captivating town that I’m not sure why anyone would want to leave.
Portland’s food is phenomenal. They have a great variety of choices and are accommodating to all diets (check back soon for a post on that!). I always seem to find new favorites whenever I spend time wandering around the city.
This bakery has been a family favorite since the very beginning of our Maine travels. The interesting name drew us in and the amazing pies kept us going. Our family favorites include the Sour Cherry, Blueberry, and Mixed Berry, although we have never had one that we don’t like. I’m more of a cookie person so I always have to grab one of those when we go. My favorite cookie that they make is their peanut butter because it’s perfectly crisp and crumbly. It’s all around just everything that a peanut butter cookie should be.
I FREAKING LOVE THIS PLACE. If I had to eat one food for the rest of my life it would be Standard Baking Company’s granola. I don’t know what it is about their granola but it is like no other. It’s crunchy and sweet but not too sweet. It’s almost like a cookie but since it’s granola I can pretend that it’s good for me. I am not lying when I say that any granola we buy from them does not last longer then a day. I, myself, have eaten an entire bag in one sitting. I’m not proud of it, but man that’s what this stuff does to you. It’s like a drug- but one that might actually be good for you? Their other baked goods are pretty good too if you’re not into granola, but I mean, who’s not into granola?!
My mother and I stumbled upon this adorable new coffee shop when walking to get breakfast. That’s the best part about Portland, you can always find a new shop or store by just wandering around. This cafe open just three weeks ago and was beautifully constructed by the owner himself. Their coffee is great and their baked goods are just as pretty as the shop itself. The owners are so hospitable and friendly, we will definitely be visiting again.
Upon first entering this bagel shop you are hit with a wave of aromas. It smells like an old timey bakery, something that I think bakeries today are laking. It’s adorably tiny and their avocado crunch spread is other worldly. I recommend it on a toasted sesame seed bagel as pictured above.
This restaurant has been a favorite since one of our very first trips. The food here is just divine and much like everywhere else in Portland, the staff is extremely friendly. Their cheese and charcuterie plates are like no other and their breakfast crêpes look mouth watering.
This pizza place is one of the best around. I dare to say that it’s my favorite pizza place. There is almost always a wait, but it is 110% worth it. I almost always go with their plain cheese and herbs pizza but their are tons of other options and each one is just as good as the last. This restaurant is complete with a somewhat open kitchen so you can actually watch the chefs make your pizza. It’s pretty cool and in the summer time they have outdoor seating so you can bring your pooch! When we brought Hazel along this summer they gave her a little water bowl. It was adorable.
I know this is going to sound a little strange, but I love Maine carrots. I don’t know why or what makes them so different from Massachusetts carrots, but they are just better. Since I love Maine carrots so much I always stop at Rosemont Market and pick up a bunch. They’re always fresh and by buying them here I can support local farmers and get my fresh Maine carrots. They’re just so sweet and delicious, especially grated over a bed of fluffy lettuce. Yum.
You’re probably thinking, “Kat, I have one of those in my local mall, why would I travel out of the way to buy jams and kitchen ware?”. This Stonewall Kitchen is nothing like the one that you know- okay maybe it’s a little bit like your local one, but does your local one have a cafe AND a cooking school? I thought not! This is my go to lunch stop on the drive up, between the freshly baked cookies, sandwiches, and jam samples, I always leave Stonewall stuffed to the brim, but in a good way. Their avocado lobster BLT is to die for if you eat meat. It sounds like a lot, but it’s amazing. The lobster and avocado blend together in perfect harmony with the regular BLT ingredients. Oh and as a bonus their sandwiches come with house made potato chips which are just as heavenly (if not better) than the sandwich.
*This Stonewall Kitchen isn’t actually in Portland, but it’s on our drive up and it is well worth the extra drive.
I hope that if you do stop by Portland and visit any of these eateries you love them as much as I do! Also if you discover any that you think I’d love make sure to share them with me because I’m always up for trying new places.