Whether you’re visiting for the first time and wondering where to get your food and drink on or you’re a local looking for your next hangout spot, here are 4 places to eat and drink in Portland, Maine this August 2023.
From classic Thai dishes served on-the-go to elevated fast food and the crispiest hash browns in town, you don’t want to miss these spots.
Nothing beats a summer seafood shack on the coast, and the Clam Bar is Portland’s latest addition to the al fresco scene. After a soft launch last year serving fresh seafood out of a food trailer, owner Garrett Fitzgerald renovated the property that used to house Benny’s Fried Clams and created the new Clam Bar building. The area also includes a beer shed and plenty of picnic tables for enjoying delicious eats.
In addition to (you guessed it) clams, the Clam Bar plans to serve fresh seafood with a South American twist—think a lobster roll with slaw and cotija, tuna tostada with guajillo pepper and lime crema, and crab queso dip. Of course, they’ve also got the classics, including clam chowder, fried clams, oysters, fish and chips, and a smash burger, plus craft cocktails and local draft beer.
If you’re not in the mood for seafood, don’t worry: Royale Kitchen food truck offers coffee and sandwiches during breakfast and lunch hours on the same property. That’s what we call a two-for-one!
Great for: Seafood, outdoor dining, craft beer, cocktails, hanging out with friends, breakfast, coffee, sandwiches.
📍199 West Commercial Street
Variety is the spice of life, and that’s why I love Dutch’s. A from-scratch breakfast and lunch spot that also makes killer hot sauce, donuts, and pastries, Dutch’s truly has it all. In the mood for biscuits and gravy? No problem. Pancakes? Sure. Craving a breakfast sandwich with spicy chicken, crispy pulled ham, or even sauteed kale? They’ve got it. I could write a novel about Dutch’s oddly square (as in, cube-shaped) hash browns, with their crispy exterior and fluffy, starchy insides.
And we haven’t even gotten to lunch yet! Whether you’d like a veggie sandwich with halloumi and roasted red pepper hummus or a hearty chicken parm on a dinner roll, it’s hard to go wrong. Pro tip: if the Dutch crunch bread is available, try it out, and don’t forget to grab a donut or pastry to take home. In a world where restaurants disappear on a whim, there’s a reason this place has been around for nearly a decade.
Great for: hearty breakfast, quick lunch, sweet treat, hangover cure, donuts and pastries.
📍 28 Preble Street
New on the scene in 2023, Sook Thai Mobile Kitchen focuses on authentic Thai cuisine in addition to Thai dishes with a twist. Operating in the greater Portland area—including at local breweries like Mast Landing, Root Wild Kombucha, Lone Pine Brewing, and more—the Southeast Asian food truck offers a lengthy menu full of rice dishes, sandwiches, house drinks, and Thai-inspired sandwiches.
Try the bacon fried rice, spicy kra-pow, or vegan crispy rolls with a Thai sweet iced tea for a lovely lunch on the go.
Great for: Twists on Thai classics, accompanying a cold beer, catering, fried rice, noodle dishes
Stay up-to-date on Sook Thai Mobile Kitchen’s location and schedule via Instagram.
If you haven’t made it to Batson River’s Portland location, now is definitely the time. In addition to the moody interior design that will transport you straight to a cozy lodge, curated cocktails with house-distilled gin and vodka, and twelve different brews on tap, Batson River in West Bayside features a Back 40 area with large garage doors that bring the outdoors in. Did we mention the foosball, shuffleboard, corn hole, and arcade games just waiting to be played?
Besides incredible drinks—and both weekday and weekend happy hours—Batson River serves up brunch and dinner, with dishes like huevos rancheros, duck fat cornbread, short rib tacos, and a fried chicken sandwich. Don’t sleep on the Batson wings which are only $10 during Happy Hour!
It gets even better: available Tuesday through Thursday (at the Portland location only), Batson River is giving all your fast food favorites a fancy makeover. The Fast Food Glow Up menu features a rotating spread of classic meals like the Crunch Wrap, Big Mac-style Batson Burger, and Nashville Hot Chicken, so channel your inner child and enjoy an elevated take on these tasty treats.
Great for: brunch, happy hour, dinner, arcade games, cornhole, shuffleboard, foosball, beer, cocktails, great decor
📍 82 Hanover Street