You may already know this about me, but I love Portland, Maine.
I love it so very much. It’s my happy place, well – outside of Atlanta. And also the Netherlands. And, any restaurant that has decent tacos on the menu.
Portland is home to some favorite local spots – like The Honey Paw, Eventide, and a whole bunch more. You may have even seen my Portland City Guide! Or perhaps you saw that Tim and I got engaged in Portland? Either way, you may already know about my love for the darling coastal city.
It’s got everything – kind locals, great oysters, and even a delicious fermentory – because…Portland. It also holds some of my fondest memories. Yes, of course – that one time I went to the lighthouse with my dear friend Kelly and walked away with a ring and a fiancé. But also frigid winter walks in the perfect amount of snow, strolls through Old Port, and the ridiculously incredible flavors of the city.
Our Weekend in Portland, Maine
And, in honor of a very special day, I’m revisiting our latest weekend in Portland, Maine. What special day, you ask? April 2! Tim proposed on this very day last year and we thought it was reason to celebrate.
While we spent our actual anniversary on the road driving from Boston to Atlanta, we took our annual anniversary trip out of Massachusetts to Portland. Well – sometimes we go to New York, but that’s beside the point. We eagerly ventured up for our favorite getaway in Maine the day after Christmas and promptly planned to head to all of our favorite eateries, including a few new ones.
Where we ate in Portland, Maine
The Honey Paw: The Honey Paw arguably my new favorite restaurant in Portland. It’s divine. It’s by the folks behind Eventide Oyster Co., so you know it’s darn good. Pro tip: Get the Lamb Khao Soi!
Oyster Shop: This spot is an outpost by the Island Creek Oysters team and oh man did they do it right. We went in for oysters and wine – basically everything I wanted (and still want).
East Ender: This was our first visit to East Ender and oh my was it darling! We split a meal, which was so tasty, but it’s the brussels that take the cake. Please get them if you’re there, you won’t regret it.
Taco Escobarr: Now, you may know my love for tacos already. Sure I’ve got my favorite authentic spots and my favorite tex-mex spots, but this here is simply one of my all-time favorites. They’ve got chili string lights adorning every inch of their ceiling, cheap margaritas (hello happy hour!), and puffy tacos that are out of this world.
What we did in Portland, Maine
Rising Tide Brewing: If you’ve been to Portland, you know that they have some of the best breweries – including Rising Tide. It’s right down the road from The Shop, which meant we had beer and oysters for the afternoon and I couldn’t have been happier.
Urban Farm Fermentory: We discovered our favorite new concoction at Urban Farm Fermentory – Fire in the Hole. It’s a spicy, kick-you-in-the-behind mix of apple cider vinegar, horseradish, and all other kind of flavorful ingredients. It sure has a kick but it’s fantastic!
Liquid Riot Bottling Co.: We discovered Liquid Riot on our first-ever trip to Portland. We wandered in on a seriously chilly night, and were treated to the most beautiful mini snowfall. I still remember that delicious White Oat Old Fashioned I had on our first evening in. Now, we go to Liquid Riot every time we’re in Portland! Including right after getting engaged – clearly we’ve got our priorities right.
Tandem Coffee Roasters: I know Tandem is known for its coffee (which is delicious), but it should also be known for its out of this world salted chocolate chunk cookie. I can almost taste it now. Do we think they’d overnight ship them?
Portland Head Light: Of course, it was a must that we venture out of downtown and Old Port for a bit to visit the spot where we got engaged – the Portland Head Light. And once again, it was frigid and covered in snow – but that didn’t spot us. Nor did it stop the gentleman taking photos of it outdoors in shorts….in negative temps.
And finally, at the risk of sounding like a total tourist (or perhaps just someone who always wants cheese), we always pay the Cabot cheese store a visit. We spend about 15 minutes sampling as many cheese as possible, then always buy a few for the road.
Where we stayed in Portland, Maine
Once again we used one of our favorite apps – Hotwire and scored an amazing deal over at at the Westin Portland Harborview. This is where we stayed on our anniversary trip to Portland a few years back, so it was fun to visit again as an engaged couple. If you’re looking to stay somewhere central, we love this spot and highly recommend it!
Now I’m curious – what did you think of this mini city guide of sorts? Please check one: Y, N, Maybe so.
*ps. In true Gabi fashion, this was supposed to go live yesterday….don’t worry, I know it’s 4/3 now! What can I say, life happens, right? 😉