And in 2012 Portland became a better place to drink coffee: with two coffee shops, the SPECKLED AX and TANDEM ROASTERS bringing a new level of craft and ambition to the roasting and brewing of beans. Meanwhile the huge CREMA CAFÉ AND BAKERY, from the Arabica folks, always seems full despite its size. And while Crema has some good soup, and the famous Arabica toast, the best thing in Portland to eat with coffee might be the potato-based HOLY DONUT, with a new shop out on Park Avenue.

And unfortunately 2012 was the year that several restaurants surrendered to the difficult circumstances of the last several years, spots like District, Gogi, and Havana South. The one that may be most sorely missed is Figa, which seemed to have so much going for it: a great space, a talented chef, and an interesting Latin twist on American cuisine.

Is the coming recovery just a little peak in a jagged downward line? Will the aging of the population, the pilling up of student debt, the rising of the oceans eventually turn everything back to crap? Probably. But that's all the better reason to enjoy this little break while it lasts.

< prev  1  |  2  | 
  Topics: Food Features , Chiang Mai, SABOR LATINO, Al Huda,  More more >
| More


Most Popular
ARTICLES BY BRIAN DUFF
Share this entry with Delicious
  •   THE QUAY TO GOOD LIVING  |  July 11, 2014
    Though they offer an appealing moral clarity, in practice zero tolerance policies have ruined any number of urban schools, fragile marriages, and card-marred soccer games. Zero tolerance almost ruined Portland a few years back, too.
  •   BITING INTO THE FANTASY  |  July 10, 2014
    Is it a sign of the shallowness of our national culture that we have spent half a decade excited by the idea of food served from trucks? Sure. But is it a symptom of some deeper condition? I suspect so. This summer offers a chance to investigate thanks to the arrival of a critical mass of food trucks around Portland, along with the film Chef, about a restaurant chef who starts a food truck.  
  •   A RAIL-CAR PALACE IN BIDDEFORD  |  June 11, 2014
    The barrel roofed train-car looks incredibly good given it’s nearly a century old.
  •   FINDING BALANCE IN BRISKET  |  June 06, 2014
    Salvage might suggest a plausible strategy to...salvage the distinctive experience of casual dining in Maine.
  •   THREE TIMES LUCKY  |  May 16, 2014
    Miyake’s new diner reclaims the location of his original restaurant, the wonderful Food Factory. 

 See all articles by: BRIAN DUFF