Portland in 36 hours
Oh Portland, thank you for being a foodies dream. Portlanders take their food very seriously. Standard Baking Co. is a requirement for trips to Portland. The morning buns are literally out of this world. Warning: they will melt in your mouth. If there's a line just wait, it's worth it. If coffee shops are your jam, head over to Coffee by Design for a delicious micro brew. For a perfect almond milk latte and minimal vibes, Tandem in the west end has it covered. Portland Lobster Company has a perfectly buttered lobster roll. If you can grab seats along the water, there will be nothing left to desire. Looking for something more formal? Head over to Central Provisions for their divine lobster fritters and tapas style fare. To make the meal complete stop by Mount Desert Island ice cream on Exchange Street for an epic ice cream flavor like Root Ginger, Blackstrap Banana, or Vietnamese Coffee.
Perfect combo: Mami food truck + Rising Tide Brewery. On certain days the Japanese street food truck is parked outside of the brewery and you can pick up a tasty meal (of insane portion size) and eat inside the brewery while enjoying a flight. I ate like a queen for around $12.
EXPLORE Don't expect to find the typical strip mall in Portland. Small businesses (retail boutiques and restaurants) are the norm here. Take a couple hours to explore the downtown shopping area and pop into a few of the boutiques. We stopped by Portland Trading Company in search for a lobster measure cuff bracelet (similar here). The art district which is about 2 blocks long is worth a visit to see the street art. Of course, a trip to Maine is not complete without seeing a lighthouse. We went to Bug Light which was packed with people because unbeknownst to us, the Tall Ships were in town. After navigating through the crowd for 10 minutes or so we left the lighthouse in search for, you guessed it, food.
TOUR My huge DSLR is typically a dead giveaway that I'm a visitor. Few things are worth the tourist stamp, and beer and distillery tours in Portland are two of those things. Allagash Brewery is a common tourist destination for obvious reasons but if rum and gin are your jam, I’d opt for visiting Maine Craft Distilling. It's a quaint micro brew with the best decor. You know, all the things essential to making good spirits. But seriously, the drinks are well crafted, flavorful, and the hospitality is unmatched.
Regrettably, the only thing I did not get to do in Portland was kayak. The weather didn't work in our favor, but I will be back.
If you check out any of the places above I would love to hear about it.