5 Portland restaurants that closed this summer

PORTLAND, Maine – The first year of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has been difficult for the local food scene. With health and safety restrictions in place and fewer people eating out, more than a dozen local restaurants have closed their doors for good.

Award-winning restaurants like Drifters Wife and Vinland are gone.

Two years earlier, Bon Appetit magazine had named Portland City-Restaurant of the Year 2018.

This summer, the closures have slowed down but not completely stopped. Lease issues, labor shortages and reassessed priorities are some of the reasons recently cited by operators.

Here is a list of five other Portland area restaurants that you can no longer visit.

On Sunday, Other Side Charcuterie announced on social media that it was closing its West End location at the end of the day.

“It has been a pleasure to serve you all over the past five years and we couldn’t be more grateful for your patronage,” he said in an Instagram post. “Unfortunately, our lease negotiations just didn’t work out.”

The grocery store, located at 235 Vaughan Street, served breakfast burritos, pizzas, cold sandwiches and gyros.

The post said its East Deering location at 164 Veranda Street would remain open.

Coco Cones, a chicken and waffle stand inside the Public Market House, also closed. On August 16, owner Casey Jabrawi posted on social media that he was looking for someone to take over the business, which opened in January.

Jabrawi now devotes all of his energy to his other business, Paella Seafood on Forest Avenue, according to the Portland Food Map.

Take-out barbecue in the West End Figgy called him in July.

“All of the kind and generous people we have met over the years will be missed,” owner Natalie DiBenedetto wrote in an Instagram post. “Sad, yes, but when it’s time, it’s time.”

The holey establishment, located behind the Yordprom Cafe on Congress Street, specializes in chicken.

“It has been a fun, stressful and interesting race for the past 6+ years and I have no regrets,” DiBenedetto said on his website. “It has become too difficult to make a profit and lead a healthy family and family life. “

Pigeons opened in May and closed a month later. It was owned by Peter and Orenda Hale, who also operate the adjacent Maine & Loire wine store.

Pigeons was located in the former Drifters Wife space on Washington Avenue. Drifters Wife, which the Hales also owned, closed last year.

“Life is definitely not a straight path, but it’s the pain and the beauty of it,” the owners said on social media. “Thank you to the team behind Pigeons who created something truly magical. A team full of talent, professionalism, charm, wit and heart.

Ultimately, One Fifty Ate, better known as 158 Pickett Street Cafe, announced on Tuesday that it was closing its doors. The South Portland bagel and sandwich store was just down the street from Southern Maine Community College and had been open for 20 years.

The owners said on social media the shutdown was due to the combined effects of COVID-19, a labor shortage, the rising cost of goods and the need to refocus on others efforts.

“We are honored to have served the community and to have shared many great moments with each of you,” they wrote.

Correction: An earlier version of this report incorrectly stated that LB Kitchen was closed. It still has a location on Congress Street.

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Sandy A. Greer

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