Monday, October 26, 2009

Harvest On The Harbor / Saturday Marketplace

Harvest On The Harbor continued on Saturday in the rain... but that didn't keep the crowds away!  The crowds were waiting for the noon start and just after 12:30 all the tickets were gone. Sous chef, Andrew Taylor, Hugo's restaurant started the day off on the Viking cooking stage.

He was followed by Peter Berley, Chef, author of The Flexitarian Table, and James Beard winner.

As the crowds passed thru the land side terminal building and Ocean View Room, they were greeted by Maine fashion designer, Meredith Alex's food meets art installation of extravagantly dress models.

Having been warned about the crowds in the market place tents I never the less decided to fight my way around holding my camera in one hand and my light at arms length in the other at times guessing what the camera might be seeing and checking the viewfinder after every 4-5 shots.

Lucinda Scala Quinn who did a session friday on Italian cooking, pulled  double duty coming back for the 3rd session on the Viking stage on saturday, working from her new book, "Mad Hungry: Feeding Men& Boys". Then stuck around to sign copies after.

Last up was Justin Nichols and Barbara Car "Cooking What You Grow."

Despite the rain Harvest On The Harbor  was a huge success selling almost all their tickets for the three day event, begging the question have they outgrown the Ocean Gateway venue after only the 2nd year.
After 4 plus hours of fighting the crowds I was to tired to go to the blowout closing Party/Dance at the Landing at Pine Point. That event was also sold out.
All in all a fun three days.  I got to sample some very good food and spirits from lots of Maine producers, meet some very interesting people and I'll be saving a place on  my next years calendar for this event.  If you missed it or were one of the unlucky ones who wanted to go but couldn't get tickets, I suggest you plan ahead and by your tickets early next year.  Visit to find out more of what you missed and
Visit my flickr site for more photos of all 3 days.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Harvest On The Harbor, The Grand Tasting

Big week for food in the Portland area as Harvest On The Harbor got underway at Ocean Gateway with the Grand Tasting on Thursday evening.  The event was sold out and the triangle shape Ocean View room had food stations along 3 1/2 sides and a large island in the middle as well.

For More from Thursday Night Go Here

Friday the Ocean View Room was packed again for three separate sessions, starting at 11:00 am with the Maine Lobster Chef of the Year Competition.  Chef Mackenzie Arrington was this years winner with his "Roasted Lobster Tail" on braised cabbage & cornbread.

Session two got underway at 2:00 p.m. featuring celebrated chef and cook book author, Peter Berley and sommelier Jennifer Flock, showing you the way to be a Gourmet on a Budgit.
At 5:300 p.m. session three had the host of Everyday Cooking, Lucinda Scala Quinn giving tips on how to make your Italian cooking a breeze. Pairing wines with her dishes was Tom Hansen of Chartrand Imports.

Other Harvest events were taking place around town, with food tours, special diners at area restaurants and continue on saturday with the Food & Wine Market Place, starting at Noon- till 4:00 p.m. at the Ocean Gateway facility.  Turn left off Franklin Street Arterial onto Commercial Street and look for the White Tents along the pier.
schedule & info at:

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

All Fall Down!!!

It's Fall (ing) and what's hitting the ground but LEAVES. That and I'm heading out of town for a few days, so I thought I'd post some images I've made of leaves in my neighborhood and around town last fall.  I'd never shot any before and one day picked one up and before I new it I had a couple of bags full sitting in my upstairs studio.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Misc. # 1 / Food Related Items

Portland may seem like the big city if you come from Mars Hill or East Blueberry, especially when it comes to food, where we are blessed with both variety and high quality in our choices.  That goes equally for the food events, such as this springs Restaurant WeekME and last weekends 20 Mile Meal.  But it's small in  & that you keep running into a lot of the same people.  For instance, during restaurant week I first ran into the Tollef Olsen & Paul Dobbins of Bangs Island Mussel / Ocean Approved (seaweed)

tagging along the next day as they escorted freelance writer Chris Ladd, working on a Boston Globe article on their Kelp beds in Casco Bay.  What was then a test site on a temporary permit is now the first commercial seaweed aquaculture bed in the US.

On the trip out and back we passed their rope growing mussel operation. A process that produces plump juicy mussels because they don't need to grow thick shells an so put more energy into the mussel itself.

Another Restaurant week participant was Maine Mead Works, located in Bayside.

I ran into Eli Cayer again at 20 Mile Meal, where they were again serving his and partner Ben Alexander's delightful nectar. Also serving was Steve Melchisky & Maine Coast Vineyards from Falmouth, which had a horrible year with their grapes and all the rain, but are looking to add to their acreage in the near future.  His Rose hit the store shelves in September.
Check R.S.V.P. or Whole Foods.

Another guy who's been making the rounds this summer trying to alert the public to the great food he's serving is Earl Morse, Executive Chef, at the Portland Harbor Hotel's "Eve's At The Garden" restaurant.  He's been at both Taste Of The Nation and Antiques In The Garden and was on hand serving a chicken sausage with local mushrooms and a tangy sauce.  
One of the real treats at 20 Mile Meal and a seasonal dish was Bob Smith, from Edible Rind, in Scarboro, quest cooking for Aurora Food, in the West end, with fried green tomatoes.

Upcoming food events are

Harvest On The Harbor, Oct 22, 23, 24 check their website for event times &

The 5th Annual Caviar Dinner at the Portland Harbor Hotel, Oct 23 pairing Earl Morse and Rod Mitchell of Browne Trading Company.  You can combine both by taking advantage of the Harbor Hotel's package of the Champagne and Caviar Dinner, two nights at the hotel and two tickets to the thursday Grand Tasting kick off event of  Harvest On The Harbor.

You can find Bangs Island Mussels & Ocean Approved products at Harbor Fish Market, Browne Trading Co, and Whole Foods Market.