Portland, Maine, is a haven for food enthusiasts, offering an eclectic mix of dining experiences that reflect its vibrant coastal culture. From the upscale elegance of Fore Street, renowned for its wood-fired dishes, to the inventive cuisine at Central Provisions, there is something to tantalize every palate. Sample fresh seafood at Eventide Oyster Co., savor the farm-to-table delights at The Honey Paw, or enjoy the artisanal pizzas at Otto. Each restaurant provides a unique glimpse into Portland’s culinary artistry, making it a top destination for gastronomes.

If you need transportation from Maine to Logan Airport, numerous convenient options are available, including shuttle services, private car hires, and regional buses.

Here’s a curated list of the top 10 restaurants in Portland, Maine, to guide your gastronomic exploration:

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1. Fore Street Restaurant (Upscale American)

Fore Street is a Portland institution, renowned for its upscale American comfort food with a unique twist. The open kitchen allows diners to witness the culinary artistry firsthand. The wood-fired oven imparts a smoky depth to dishes like the roasted bone marrow and grilled meats, while the menu highlights Maine’s bounty of fresh seafood and seasonal vegetables.

  • Ambiance: Rustic, open kitchen with a wood-fired grill and oven.
  • Cuisine: Upscale American with a focus on seasonal, locally sourced ingredients.
  • Must-Try: Charred octopus with chorizo and fingerling potatoes, roasted bone marrow with toast, grilled rib-eye steak.
  • Opening Hours: Fri-Thu: 5 PM – 10 PM, Sun: 5 PM – 10 PM
  • Phone Number: +1 207-775-2717

2. Central Provisions (Small Plates & Cocktails)

Central Provisions offers a vibrant atmosphere, perfect for a social dining experience. Their menu features an eclectic selection of small plates, allowing you to sample a variety of flavors. Don’t miss the crowd-favorite duck confit tacos, and be sure to explore their impressive cocktail list for a refreshing accompaniment.

  • Ambiance: Rustic, brick-walled setting with a lively bar area.
  • Cuisine: Eclectic small plates, perfect for sharing.
  • Must-Try: Crispy duck confit tacos, roasted cauliflower with tahini, grilled octopus with chorizo.
  • Opening Hours: Fri-Thu: 11 AM – 2 PM, 5 PM – 10 PM, Sun: 11 AM – 2 PM, 5 PM – 9:30 PM
  • Phone Number: +1 207-805-1085

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3. Eventide Oyster Co. (Seafood)

Eventide Oyster Co. is a Portland must-visit, especially for seafood lovers. With a focus on fresh, local catches, their menu offers a variety of raw bar options and inventive takes on classic dishes. The lobster roll is a perennial favorite, available in several styles to satisfy your cravings. Be prepared for a lively atmosphere and potential wait times, but the delectable flavors are worth it.

  • Ambiance: Tiny, bustling seafood shack with a raw bar.
  • Cuisine: Fresh seafood, with a focus on innovative dishes and classic Maine favorites.
  • Must-Try: Lobster roll (various styles available), oysters on the half shell, brown butter lobster stew.
  • Opening Hours: Daily: 11 AM – 11 PM
  • Phone Number: +1 207-774-8538

4. Duckfat (Sandwiches)

Duckfat’s claim to fame is its irresistible duck fat fries, perfectly crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. However, their menu goes beyond just fries, offering creative takes on poutine and other comfort food classics. The lobster roll is a popular choice, showcasing fresh Maine lobster in a toasted brioche bun. Be prepared for a casual, counter-service experience, ideal for a quick and delicious bite.

  • Ambiance: Casual, counter-service spot with a focus on takeaway.
  • Cuisine: Gourmet takes on classic French fries and other comfort food.
  • Must-Try: Poutine (various options available), duckfat fries with aioli dipping sauces, lobster roll.
  • Opening Hours: Daily: 11 AM – 8 PM
  • Phone Number: Information not publicly available

5. Chaval (French)

Chaval offers a refined take on French cuisine, using seasonal ingredients and presenting them with a modern twist. The intimate setting and attentive service create a truly special dining experience. Signature dishes like steak frites and roasted bone marrow are must-tries, while the duck confit is a testament to their culinary expertise. Be prepared for a higher price point, but the exceptional quality and ambiance justify the splurge.

  • Ambiance: Sophisticated, intimate bistro with a French flair.
  • Cuisine: French cuisine with seasonal ingredients and modern interpretations.
  • Must-Try: Steak frites, roasted bone marrow with escargot persillade, duck confit with lentils.
  • Opening Hours: Tue-Sat: 5:30 PM – 10 PM (Closed Sun & Mon)
  • Phone Number: +1 207-772-1110
top 10 restaurants in portland maine

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6. Street & Co. (Seafood & Mediterranean)

Nestled on a cobblestone alley, Street & Co. exudes a charming, rustic vibe. Their menu highlights fresh, local seafood with a touch of Mediterranean influence. The whole roasted branzino is a popular choice, while the grilled octopus and halibut bouillabaisse showcase their expertise in preparing flavorful seafood dishes.

  • Ambiance: Rustic, cozy bistro with a focus on fresh seafood.
  • Cuisine: Seafood-centric dishes with Mediterranean influences.
  • Must-Try: Whole roasted branzino, grilled octopus with gigante beans, halibut bouillabaisse.
  • Opening Hours: Fri-Thu: 4:30 PM – 10 PM, Sun: 4:30 PM – 10 PM (Closed Mon & Tue)
  • Phone Number: +1 207-775-0887

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7. The Honey Paw (Asian Fusion)

The Honey Paw injects a dose of Asian fusion into Portland’s culinary scene. Their menu boasts bold flavors and creative combinations, sure to tantalize your taste buds. The crispy Brussels sprouts with fish sauce caramel are a must-try, as are the Korean fried chicken and short rib bao buns. The lively atmosphere makes it a perfect spot for a fun and flavorful dining experience.

  • Ambiance: Lively, modern space with a vibrant atmosphere.
  • Cuisine: Innovative Asian fusion dishes with bold flavors.
  • Must-Try: Crispy Brussels sprouts with fish sauce caramel, Korean fried chicken, short rib bao buns.
  • Opening Hours: Tue-Thu: 5 PM – 10 PM, Fri-Sat: 5 PM – 11 PM, Sun & Mon: Closed
  • Phone Number: +1 207-775-7007

8. Izakaya Minato (Japanese)

Izakaya Minato offers a vibrant taste of Japanese pub culture. Their menu features a wide selection of small plates, ideal for sharing and trying a variety of flavors. Don’t miss the takoyaki (octopus fritters) and yakitori (grilled skewers), both staples of Japanese pub fare. The tuna poke with avocado is a refreshing option, perfect for a light bite.

  • Ambiance: Casual, energetic Japanese pub with a focus on small plates.
  • Cuisine: Authentic Japanese Izakaya fare, perfect for sharing.
  • Must-Try: Takoyaki (octopus fritters), yakitori (grilled skewers), tuna poke with avocado.
  • Price: $$ (Mid-range)
  • Opening Hours: Tue-Thu: 5 PM – 10 PM, Fri-Sat: 5 PM – 11 PM, Sun & Mon: Closed
  • Phone Number: +1 207-773-0111

9. Magia (Italian)

Magia transports you to Italy with its warm ambiance and focus on fresh, seasonal ingredients. The highlight of their menu is undoubtedly the house-made pasta, available in classic preparations like cacio e pepe or ragu. For a more adventurous palate, try the grilled octopus with nduja (a spicy Calabrian spread) or the roasted branzino, a Mediterranean sea bass dish. Magia offers a delightful fine-dining experience perfect for a special occasion.

  • Ambiance: Warm, inviting space with a focus on house-made pasta.
  • Cuisine: Italian cuisine with a focus on fresh, seasonal ingredients and house-made pasta.
  • Must-Try: Handmade pasta dishes (like cacio e pepe or ragu), grilled octopus with nduja, roasted branzino.
  • Opening Hours: Tue-Sun: 5:30 PM – 10 PM (Closed Mon)
  • Phone Number: +1 207-775-2785

10. Woodford Food & Beverage (New American)

Woodford Food & Beverage rounds out our list with its innovative take on New American cuisine. The chic, industrial space provides a stylish backdrop for their creative dishes. The menu changes seasonally, showcasing fresh ingredients with unique flavor combinations. 

The smoked duck breast with huckleberry gastrique is a signature dish, while the roasted cauliflower steak offers a delightful vegetarian option. Woodford is a great choice for those seeking a trendy and flavorful dining experience.

  • Ambiance: Chic, industrial space with a focus on innovative cuisine.
  • Cuisine: New American cuisine with a focus on seasonal ingredients and creative presentations.
  • Must-Try: Smoked duck breast with huckleberry gastrique, roasted cauliflower steak, grilled hanger steak.
  • Opening Hours: Tue-Thu: 5 PM – 9:30 PM, Fri-Sat: 5 PM – 10:30 PM, Sun & Mon: Closed
  • Phone Number: +1 207-774-0479

This concludes our curated list of the top 10 restaurants in Portland, Maine. From upscale ambiance and innovative cuisine to casual eateries with local favorites, Portland offers a diverse culinary scene to tantalize every taste bud. So, grab your appetite and embark on a delicious adventure through the culinary delights of Portland!