One Girls Crazy Outlook on life in Southern Maine

In December 2010 I moved to Southern Maine from a small town next to Bangor (Bangor is right in the center Maine and is one of the largest cities in Maine for those of you wondering if it's in Canada). Here are some crazy stories of outings, hikes, beer and just the general mayhem that is my life. Welcome. Enjoy. Love it.

Monday, May 23, 2011

The Dogfish Bar and Grille

Location: 128 Free Street, Portland Maine 04101

Price: $$

I gotta tell ya, I wasn't a fan.

I have heard some pretty great things about "dogfish", as the locals like to call it. Because of this my hopes for this little whole in the wall bar and grille were very high. I was very let down.

The ambiance of the restaurant was no where near what I enjoy. I like  brightly lite places where I can read the menu without squinting and leaning into the light. I like to be able to sit at a table and see the menu without my boyfriend "blocking my light." Dogfish is very very dark. It was hard for me to order because it was to dark to see the menu. I won't even get started on taking pictures of the food that we ordered.
Secondly, the chairs, or stools rather, were very uncomfortable. I am all about bar stools and sitting up high, but it's a little different when you don't have any place to put your feet. I was wearing a skirt and I could not get into a comfortable position without being "unlady like."I will say, however, the service was pretty good.  We walked into dogfish on a rainy Tuesday around 4:45PM. They were not busy what-so-ever, so the bar tender served us. He was literally right on top of things. Drink refills, napkins, condiments, you name it, we never had to ask. He was great. Its ashame that the place it self just wasn't.

We started with drinks. We both decided that we wanted beers. I ordered the Allagash white (it was my second one of the day and just didn't taste as good as the first. That's not the restaurants fault though. It's mine for ordering the same beer twice.) The boyfriend, who can be open minded sometimes (especially about beer) ordered the Gritty's Seasonal; vacationland summer ale.  He was not a fan. At all. In fact, neither one of us have EVER had a beer from Gritty's that was good. Anyway, it was a very bitter beer with a terrible after taste. If you are going to go with a summer seasonal, go with Sam's summer ale, it shipyard summer ale. You can't go wrong. Anyway, we both ordered beers that we didn't like, but drank them anyway because well, that's just the kind of people we are.

 It could have been worse I guess. We could have both had "undrinkable" beers. Luckily that was not the case.

For the first time since we have been together (I think) we skipped the appetizer! This is amazing! (actually we had our appetizers at Brian Boru's just prior to our dogfish visit; see prior post)

I chose the Tuscan Chicken Pita for my entree, which included "House made roasted chicken salad, oven dried tomatoes, greens, red onions and Parmesan cheese in a grilled pita." It  I haven't had pita bread in years, which is actually why I chose this particular entree. Plus, I have never had anything that was labeled "Tuscan" that tasted bad, so I figured I would give it a go. Honestly, despite my disappointment, it didn't have terrible taste. It tasted just how Tuscan should taste.However, it was very very small and certainly wasn't worth the $9.99 that I was charged. Also, the chicken was EXTREMELY dry and the seasoning didn't help matters much. It came with a side of potato salad. BLECK! (new word) The potato salad was AWFUL! I should know better by now that to order potato salad at a restaurant, but I figured after the amazing potato salad that I had at Buck's Naked BBQ I figured I would give it a go. MISTAKE (I am good at making those). It was very watery with very little taste. It had some sort of seasoning on it that did nothing for it. Basically, don't ever get potato salad at a restaurant. Although, personally, I wouldn't recommend the Tuscan Pita either.
It also came with a pickle. BUT it was one of those disgusting pickles that are only half pickled and still part cucumber. you know what I mean? I am sure you have gaged on one at one point in your life thinking you were biting into a ripe juicy pickle.
(I know you can't really see what is in the sandwich, I promise it is dry chicken...again, the lighting).

The boyfriend went with the basic burger. The basic burger is just that.... basic. The description on the menu is as follows; "8 oz. of Caldwell Farms all natural ground beef grilled to order. Served with lettuce, vine-ripened tomatoes, red onion on a wheat bulkie roll." Sounds pretty good eh? nope, not to my boyfriend. He is a little fussy, to put it nicely, and doesn't like lettuce, tomatoes or onions. This made the burger plain. So, he asked if he could add bacon. Luckily, he could.

The basic burger came with basic cheese, and basic chips, and one of those disgusting pickles.... gross. It wasn't terrible. But, he ordered the burger medium rare, like he always does. It wasn't medium at all... just rare. Rare enough that I wouldn't take a bite once he got to the middle of the burger. He wasn't to happy, but he ate it anyway.

Because we didn't get an appetizer I decided that I wanted some dessert, because god forbid we save ANY money. Plus, the dessert board was hanging on the wall in front of me and if i squinted at turned the flash light on my phone on, I could see it through the darkness.  Moving on... I ordered a piece of peanut butter pie.


it was tiny!

We shared it... so, we pretty much each got a bite.

But let me tell you, that one bite was amazing. It was very very rich and sweet. It had peanut butter filling with a chocolate graham cracker crust. On top of the pie was some fudge filling and chunks of peanut butter cups. It was SO GOOD!

The ONLY reason I would go back to Dogfish would be for a piece of the peanut butter pie. I really wasn't impressed with the food at all. And like I said, the like BRIGHT places, the dogfish bar and grille is not that.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Brian Boru Public House

57 Center Street, Portland Maine 04101

Price: $

What a place.
Brian Boru's is one of those places that you think of when you want to go out for drinks. I never would have chosen it for food, But, I am glad we did.

We walked into Brian Boru's around 2 PM on a Tuesday. This was almost a perfect time to go. There was hardly anyone there, so we were able to sit where ever we wanted. However, because they weren't busy they didn't have as much staff as they would normally have. So, the bartender served us. He was very nice, but a little slow.
No big deal.

We decided that, because we were going to multiple other places, we would just get a couple drinks and a couple appetizers.

I decided that I would start with an Allagash White

While the Boyfriend went with a Guinness.

Now, to the appetizers... they were outstanding.

We started off with the Sambal Buffalo Wings. At the time we had no idea was sambal was. Thanks to the Internet I learned that it is a chili based sauce that is popular in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Sri Lanka. The main ingredient in the sauce is fresh chili peppers. However, multiple different peppers are used.

This list includes Habenero peppers, Cayenne peppers, madame Jeanette ( Yellow or light green elongated pepper. They have an irregular shape.) and birds eye chili's (red or green (or combination) approx 10mm diameter by 50 mm long, known locally as cabe rawit (Javanese): extremely hot.) Combining all of these peppers make a hot concoction of amazing.
Anyway, back to the Sambal Wings

They were GOOD. The beauty of this sauce is, although all of these hott peppers are used, the sauce isn't unbearably hott. They are actually just PERFECT. The sauce is a hott, sweet and tangy flavor and the wings were outstanding and tender.

A very different thing about these wings though; they were served with creamy Gorgonzola dip.

Usually buffalo wings are served with ranch or blue cheese dressing. Never served with Gorgonzola dip. For those of you who don't know, Gorgonzola is a Delicious cheese. It is very very tangy.  I did not love the dip with the wings. Mostly because we eat the wings plain. However, the dip was delicious... I will tell you how I know that later in this blog.

We also ordered garlic fries.
They were so good! However, they had slightly to much garlic. They also had parsley butter which gave them a little bit of a kick to them. But nothing to dramatic. I dipped them in the Gorgonzola dip. It was outstanding! Plus, the fries weren't technically "fries" they were potato wedges. Which are the greatest types of "fries" ever.

If you have never been to Brian Boru's I would highly highly recommend it. If for nothing else, just to try the Sambal sauce on the wings.

If you are unsure you can check out the Brian Boru Public House Website and check out the menu.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Gettin' Sauced - Captain Mowatt's Canceaux Hot Sauce

"There’s a new book out, written by the host of Travel Channel’s MAN v. FOOD, Adam Richman, and the title: AMERICA THE EDIBLE. On page 207 Adam provides his readers with a top ten list of great condiments throughout the United States.

#1, CANCEAUX SAUCE – Portland, Maine"

- W.O. Hesperus Co. Facebook Page

Let's face it. Adam Richman had tried some sauces in his time. Some good sauces. He has been all over the country trying different places and trying all of the amazing foods and sauces out there and he chose Captain Mowatt's Cancaeux sauce from Portland Maine as the number one!

Captain Mowatt's Canceaux sauce is AMAZING! The sweet, spicy, outstanding blend of Red chili's, water, sugar, vinegar, garlic, salt, spices, and xanthan gum is one of the most amazing concoctions I have ever tasted.

If you don't like hott though, you aren't going to like this sauce because it has some kick. We bought our first bottle about a week ago at Maine's Pantry on Commercial Street located in the Old Port section of Portland. Since then, we have bought two more bottles. I use this sauce on everything. My salad, chicken, hot dogs, burgers, dip for crackers, and even my pizza last night. EVERYTHING. Adam Richman, you have done well and you definitely picked the best sauce in America correctly.

Captain Mowatt's canceaux sauce is made by the W.O. Hesperus Co. located at 64 Eastern Promenade, Portland, Maine 04101.

B U R N I N G   T H E   P L A N E T   O N E   T O N G U E   A T   A   T I M E.

They also have a Company Website. On the website they have an awards page where the Captain Mowatt's Canceaux hot sauce is listed twice for winning competitions... all over the United States!

From what I understand, the man that runs this company is named Dan. He is just an average guy that likes hott stuff and he started mixing his own sauces. He started bottling them and selling them... We have tried a few of his sauces but there is nothing like the Captain Mowatt's Canceaux Sauce. It is just simply amazing.

Don't be alarmed when you open the bottle. There is a chili pepper in it to give it flavor.

Monday, May 16, 2011

What is your ideal meal?

My boyfriend and I were talking about what our ideal meals would be. Mine was:


Fried Pickles from Buck's Naked BBQ


The Fried Haddock from RiRa (minus the fries)


Sweet potato fries from Binga's

 BUT, I would add brown sugar to them like they do at Buck's Naked BBQ
Bacon Dusted French Fries from Nosh


Dessert was a tough choice. I couldn't decide between the lava cake at Ri Ra's or the chocolate cake in a jar at the Great Lost Bear. So, because of this, I decided to stuff the lava cake into a mason jar and eat it!


I couldn't decide if I wanted a beer, or an actual drink. So, instead of actually having to make a decision, I decided I would choose both.

For a beer, I would go with the Tripel Karmeliet from Novare Res

The Mixed Berry Margarita from Buffalo Wild Wings

My boyfriend decided that he would go with the pulled pork french fries from Gritty Mcduff's for an appetizer. For an entree the Apocalypse now burger from Nosh with duckfat french fries. His dessert would be a Portland pie pizza. No just kidding, although I am sure he could put away at least half a pizza after downing a 4 patty burger. He would really choose the Guinness sundae from Ri Ra's. For a drink he said he would go with a beer from the oldest brewery in the world Weihenstephen.

What would you're ideal meal be?

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Lack Of Posting

Man, Have I been BUSY. Working a new job where I work like a real adult (5 days a week), working evenings so I don't get out until 11, and working on my photography business, has made it nearly impossible for me to post about the 30 restaurants that I need to post about.
 Don't worry though, I haven't forgotten about my readers. Bear with me, I will be posting soon. I hope you all have a lovely Wednesday! I'm off to work! I will post a photography website soon!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

The Blazin' Challenge at Buffalo Wild Wings

I've thought about it, talked about it, even told people that I was going to do it. Did I ACTUALLY think that I would ever do the Blazin' Challenge at Buffalo Wild Wings? ooh hell no!  I figured it would be one of those things were I talked a big game but, like usual, chickened out when I got there. For some reason though, I was feeling pretty daring on this particular day.

When we walked into Buffalo Wild Wings in South Portland. We were greeted by many people from work. This could have been part of the problem. Not to mention the fact that I was strictly told that I better not back down.

I started out with my typical order of fried pickles.

In all honesty I was fairly disappointed in the size of the appetizer. It was brought out and there were maybe 25 pickles. This was frustrating just because of the volume served at Binga's and Buck's Naked BBQ. They were still delicious though.

We then told the waitress our plans. We wanted to do the Blazin' Challenge.  She didn't really seem to awfully scared to be honest. She was a little surprised that we wanted to do it, but never really said anything about them being hott. I was kind of surprised that she didn't really try to talk us out of it or anything like that.

She then brought over the  waiver form. Now, generally, if a place have a waiver form to eat their hottest wings, you should probably rethink every decision you have made up to this point... we, however, signed away or lives without even thinking about it.

So basically the waiver just says if you die, or your stomach lining burns out you can't sue them... fair enough.

Then, the wings came.
 ooooh. mmmmmmyyyyy

So, here, sat in front of me; 12 of the hottest wings in the place, and I had to eat them in 6 minutes... This wasn't going to be good.

No sauce, no napkins, no drink...
When the waitress said "go!" all of my determination went into just finishing the wings.

I took the first bite..
Much to my surprise, they weren't the hottest wings I have ever had!
The Blazin' wings at Buffalo Wild Wings range at only about 300,000 scoville units. ("only") That is about as hot as a habanero pepper.
Just a few nights prior, my boyfriend and I were at his Brother-in-laws where we indulged in 4 million scoville units... not THAT is some hot stuff.

Basically, what is came down to is speed, because the wings themselves were not "hott" to my standards.
Luckily, I was blessed with a big mouth. This made it easy for me to tear the chicken off the bone and "pocket it" while I started in on the second and third wing. This way, I could eat many wings and not waste time swallowing after every one.

Of the three people at our table who did the challenge;


I did the challenge in 3 minutes 15 seconds. About a minute faster than my boyfriend (who HATES to lose).

I will say this, if you do the challenge, do everything you can to keep the sauce off your face. My mouth was fine, but my cheeks and my chin were BURNING for about 15 minutes after the challenge.

We walked away with a free tee shirt, cheaper wings (the amount you pay for your wings equals the time that you completed the challenge. Example: I finished my wings in 3 minutes 15 seconds, so I only paid $3.15 for my 12 wings.),and our bellies full.... especially since we ordered 12 Asian zing wings after.

It's ashame this day was ruined by stupid bullshit drama. luckily it started off well.

Do the wing challenge! Unless you're scared!

Monday, May 2, 2011

The Wet Napkin Disclaimer

I have so many restaurants to post about, but with my lack of time right now (and pure laziness) I just haven't had a chance. In the mean time I just want to leave you with this note.


Don't get me wrong, I enjoy the entire tree... I mean, pile of napkins that is placed on my table... But I rather have a wet nap!

I guess I will just have to bring my own....

I will write about more places later this week... things have been a little... well... let's just say rough lately.