Large front windows cast natural light on the dining room's red and green walls, whose saturated pigments echo the rich colors of the spices that permeate each dish. Before pieces of tender chicken line up on skewers, they marinate in yogurt, cook over red-hot charcoal in the tandoor, and get passed under the trunk of the resident elephant statue for inspection. Fresh-baked naan breads transport hints of garlic and honey to scoopable stews, speckled with cubes of house-made paneer or infused with cinnamon and saffron.
The chefs at Seasons Grille and Bar fry up early-morning egg dishes and sear steaks in the evening, drawing on fresh local ingredients to create an inventive menu of signature dishes. Early risers brandish forks at three-egg omelets and host mock United Nations meet-and-greets with french toast. Dinnertime diners coax taste buds into deep-sea diving with the seafood celebration's scallops, Maine shrimp, and mussels sautéed in a garlic vermouth broth, or the haddock provencal crisped up in sundried tomato olive tapenade. Pan-fried boneless chicken hides beneath a blanket of bubbly mozzarella, clutching linguini and tomato for security on the parmesan plate, and shrimp scampi flatbread pizza fuels conversation about news on a flat-screen TV. As patrons chow down, an exposed stone fireplace warms bodies and hearts simultaneously by using Chicken Soup for the Soul as kindling.
Kon Asian Bistro's chefs embrace the cuisines of Japan, China, and Thailand as they create a contemporary, pan-regional menu that includes fresh sushi and hearty, spice-laden entrees. As the hibachi chefs shuffle cuts of chicken, swordfish, or filet mignon across iron tabletop grills, searing diners' food and unwanted junk mail directly in front of them, the sushi chefs roll a combination of familiar and inventive maki behind their bar. The kitchen also forges its own menu of traditional pan-Asian fare, including General Tso's chicken and tropical mango shrimp with basil and thai sweet-chili sauce.
In 1989, the Huynh family emigrated from war-torn Vietnam to the United States, settling in Portland, Maine. They weren't able to take along many tangible possessions—just two suitcases of clothes—but they did bring a slew of Vietnamese recipes that they knew by heart. Those recipes brought the comfort of familiarity to family meals and also made the Huynhs popular with new friends who sampled the cuisine.
The family now officially shares their Vietnamese specialties with the public at PHOever Maine. Here, diners can sample appetizers such as chao tom, a dish made by artfully placing ground shrimp around slices of fresh, peeled sugar cane. More substantial fare includes vermicelli noodle bowls and pho simmered with rare beef. The cooks also put together banh mi sandwiches with fresh baguettes, covering your choice of chicken, pork, or beef with pickled carrots, daikon, and other flavorful ingredients.
The Galvez family invites guests to taste the vibrant flavors of their homestyle dishes at La Familia, creating hearty dishes with Spanish, Cuban, and Puerto Rican influence. Paella with mussels, clams, and shrimp, a recent addition to the menu, takes a starring role, as do Puerto Rican-style beef empanadas, Cuban sandwiches, and coconut flan. Recognizing that a wealth of culinary riches can be overwhelming, the Galvez family also offers Noche de Locura on Friday and Saturday nights–a chance for families to order five dishes to share as a table.
Partners Mike Jerome and Drew Kinney are obsessed with soup. Before they opened Kamasouptra, they spent much of their early professional lives learning about soup, apprenticing under famed chefs, researching techniques, and looking under floorboards for hidden-away family recipes. It must have paid off because readers of The Phoenix named Kamasouptra’s soup the best around in both 2012 and 2011.
The culinary team crafts offerings to satisfy pescatarian, vegetarian, and vegan diets, taking advantage of fresh produce and seafood caught locally. While the menu at the shop’s two locations changes daily, the kitchen tries to keep certain staples on hand, including beer-and-cheddar soup, chili, and vegan pasta fagioli.
Putt putters can bask in the soothing phosphorescent splendor of Glowgolf’s mini course as they navigate their illuminated golf balls through glowtopia. Courses contain sights such as light-defying blush corals, incandescent fishes, and lush foliage. Each pass is good for three 18-hole games, giving golfers ample opportunity to outmaneuver any vividly bright and very alive windmills that may appear. Equipment is available on the spot, so players won't risk bending their own putters when they chase after that pesky, good-for-nothing, hole-digging, ball-stealing, and most likely hallucinated gopher.