Going to Portland in the summer is kind of like taking a trip to the Louvre: it’s always packed, there are lines for all the good stuff, and you’re bound to come across a rude tourist (or eight). But if you want to avoid all of that, just go hang on the patio at Isa Bistro. This Bayside restaurant is just a few blocks away from the congestion of the Old Port, but even that short distance makes this place feel like it’s on a different planet. Their seasonal menu changes regularly, but includes a wide variety of small plates and mains, with everything from tagliatelle bolognese to a lobster tostada. Stop by for brunch or lunch and make an afternoon out of snacking and drinking while you hide from the crowds.
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Oxbow Blending and Bottling
Oxbow is a brewery in Portland with food from the Duckfat people that stays open late on the weekends, unlike most spots in this town.
Rising Tide Brewing Company
Rising Tide Brewing is a smaller brewery in Bayside with a great outdoor area that tends to stay a bit calmer.
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When you’re looking for a Portland classic where everything is cooked over a giant open hearth, go to Fore Street.
This all-day spot in Munjoy Hill is a great option for brunch, Happy Hour, and dinner, serving everything from pasta to a very solid burger.
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Central Provisions in the Old Port does small plates better than most, with a wide-ranging menu and a bar downstairs.
Duckfat in Old Port is a tiny spot serving not-so-light dishes like poutine with duck gravy, brisket sandwiches, and milkshakes.
Bite Into Maine
Eating a lobster roll at this food truck located next to a lighthouse might be the single most Maine thing you can do.
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