Bachelorette Weekend in Portland, Maine

A few weeks ago I visited Portland, Maine for a girls’ bachelorette weekend. I hadn’t visited Portland since I was a kid, and was looking forward to seeing what the small city was all about. Since Maine didn’t have any snow remaining March 1st, we had to cancel our original ice-skating and snow-shoeing reservations and figure out an plan. It turned into a fun weekend of eating, drinking and eating some more! Portland has become a major foodie-hub of New England, and lots of famous chefs and restaurants reside there. Here are some pics and links to the spots we visited (almost all of the cafes, bars and restaurants surpassed our expectations by far! However, one…disappointedly fell short.) Scroll on!

Maine Foodie Walking Tour:

We started off our Saturday morning by embarking on a 3 hour “foodie” walking tour, which consisted of strolling around Portland – learning about the history of the city and sampling dishes from local restaurants and bars on the way. I lost track, but we probably stopped into 8-10 different places. All the girls LOVED the food and drinks, and probably could have skipped the history lessons (or perhaps I am only speaking for myself….not the biggest history buff.) What I did love, is hearing about all the different restaurant owners and chefs personal backgrounds, and how they found themselves living and working in Maine.

Foodie Walking Tour

Foodie Walking Tour

Vena’s Fizz House
This was my favorite stop on the tour! Its a vintage bar that serves custom made sodas and drinks, specializing in hundreds of varieties of bitters. We sampled their award winning deviled eggs (so delicious) and learned that bitters are apparently really good for you, aiding digesting. Who knew! The bar tender bragged that he consumes anywhere between 100-125 drops of bitters on a daily basis…

Vena's Fizz House

Vena’s Fizz House

Deviled Eggs and Fizzy Soda (with Bitters) at Vena's Fizz House

Deviled Eggs and Fizzy Soda (with Bitters) at Vena’s Fizz House

Bard Coffee

This spot wasn’t on the tour, but several people at home had told me about this well-known cafe. The coffee is unbelievably good and they also serve steamed almond milk – which is hard to find in Boston!

Slow Drip at Bard Coffee

Slow Drip at Bard Coffee

Bard Coffee art

Bard Coffee art

Saturday afternoon we drove over to the Portland Headlight in Cape Elizabeth. Its a 20 min drive from downtown, and absolutely stunning. A lot of people there had brought their dogs (theres tons of grassy areas around the lighthouse) and I would love to come back here on a warmer day for a picnic. March 1st, it was FREEZING, so we bundled up and snuck a bottle on wine onto the premises to cheers our bride-to-be!

Cape Elizabeth Lighthouse

Cape Elizabeth Lighthouse

Grace Restaurant

For dinner, we had reservations at Grace – a famous restaurant located inside a huge, old renovated church. The restaurant is gorgeous, and the service was outstanding – however the food fell really really short. Its an expensive restaurant, and I thought all of the food was extremely (I mean…almost hard-to-swallow) salty!!! I noticed on Yelp that a few other people had commented on the saltiness of the food as well, so I am a little confused because the chef is so well-renowned! So, the food wasn’t great – but the sweet bread and drinks were awesome, and I recommend visiting Grace just for the incredible architecture and design. I still have to say its worth a visit and a cocktail. Lay off the salt Grace!

Inside Grace

Inside Grace

Outside Grace! Check our the doors...

Outside Grace! Check our the doors…

After dinner, we bar hopped around town until Portland shut down around 1am. It was a beautiful, really nice weekend and I would love to head back to Portland this summer. There are a bunch of places that I need to visit that we didn’t have time for (a foot soak spa specifically! Its called Soakology.) I know there are also tons of distilleries and wine bars that are supposed to be a great time.

What other spots in Portland are must-visits? Please share!! The city is so close to Boston…an easy 2 hour drive away 🙂

 

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