288 Fore Street
Portland, ME 04101Neighborhood:
Contemporary AmericanPrice: $50 and over
- Dining Style: Casual Dining
- Website: http://www.forestreet.biz/
- Phone: 2077752717
- Hours of Operation:
Monday - Thursday: 5:30pm - 10:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 5:30pm - 10:30pm, Sunday: 5:30pm - 10:00pm; Bar opens daily at 5:00pm
- Payment Options: AMEX,MasterCard,Visa
- Cuisine: Organic, Seafood, Contemporary American
- Executive Chef: Sam Hayward
- Dress Code: Casual Dress
- Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
- Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine
A word from Fore Street
Located in Portland's Old Port District, Fore Street opened in June, 1996. The interior surrounds a unique brick and soapstone hearth with a wood-burning oven, grill and turnspit; visible from most tables. We believe that good food travels the shortest possible distance between the farm and the table. Our menu changes every day and is founded upon the very best raw materials from a community of Maine farmers, fisherman, foragers and cheese makers. Most of the Maine foods are organically grown or harvested wild, each brought to us at the peak of its season. In 2002 and again in 2007, Fore Street was named by Gourmet Magazine as one of the Top Fifty Restaurants in the United States. In 2004, Chef-Partner Sam Hayward was named Best Chef: Northeast by the James Beard Foundation.Continued
Foodspotting photosSee all photos
Awards voted by OpenTable diners
- Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
- Diners' Choice WinnerContemporary American
Fore Street - Best Restaurants in Portland ›
Fore Street reviews from OpenTable diners
110 reviews since July 3, 2014
- Ambiance4.4Noise LevelModerate
fit for foodies (83)special occasion (74)romantic (38)notable wine list (33)neighborhood gem (33)hot spot (31)good for groups (17)vibrant bar scene (10)scenic view (8)late-night find (3)kid-friendly (2)Show More
- Love Fore Street's FoodgymgirlDined on 10/28/2014The food is always exceptional. Probably our favorite restaurant - anywhere.... A few issues... room was really really dark, could barely see our food. I also felt like we could have had a slightly better table - because plenty were open... not sure if it was random, but we were celebrating our anniversary, which I am almost certain I added to our reservation(?) I can overlook both of those, my biggest issue, the server seemed to not care at all. She was not friendly, not engaging, and seemingly not interested at all. It was odd. Not that we are there to make friends, but if you are spending $200 for dinner, maybe acting interested would have been "nice". It was a sour note in our dinner.Special Features:
- Great AgainOpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 10/28/2014My wife and I are just never disappointed with a dining experience at Fore Street. The muscles were the best we've had, the entrees were well portioned and delicious, and the desserts stole the show. Next time we go (and I've said this before), we are splitting the muscles, each getting a salad, then splitting three desserts.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Capecodfoodlover14Dined on 10/21/2014This is the one place we always visit when we come to Portland and the first reservation we make once we know we will be visiting Portland. It is always a wonderful experience in a city of many fine dining choices.Special Features:
- Excellent restaurantwakerutlandDined on 10/18/2014Fantastic dining experience. Food was exceptional, service was great and the open kitchen provided an amazing show. Would highly recommendSpecial Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- One of the BestthebrasilianDined on 10/18/2014This is definitely one of the best restaurants in Portland, Maine, and I'd venture to say "one of the best" in the entire U.S. Great selection of food, which changes very regularly (sometimes daily), depending on local availability and seasonality. Very attentive staff. Great views of the "open kitchen" from just about every table. It's a place to go to have an exciting and interesting dining experience. Just be sure to make advance reservations so as to not be disappointed.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Put it on your dining wish list!OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIPDined on 10/17/2014Fantastic. From the extensive (but pricey) wine list to the absolute freshest salads and perfectly cooked meats and fish, Fore Street is at the top of our 'must eat there' list when in Portland. Service was right on, no hovering but our waitress always seemed to know when we needed something. You know it will be great when you can see the kitchen staff all smiling! Now if only the hostess would do the same.Special Features:
- DisappointingDemogenesDined on 10/15/2014As a chef I tend not to over-analyze my dining experience. Chef's are traditionally overly critically for the sake of their own ego. So I make it a point to brag about everyone else's cooking. I can't do that here. I must have gone on an off night, because the food was bland, dry and the selections were completely uninspired (as in they seemed designed to be completely bland and dry). Perhaps they're resting on their laurels and just writing their menu ideas kind of slap dash? Or perhaps I went on a bad night for me to go. Hopefully the latter.
- Amazing dining experienceFoodiejules27Dined on 10/14/2014The restaurant was gorgeous and we enjoyed watching the kitchen in the middle of the restaurant. The bar was exquisite, the plush chairs were inviting for you to relax before you dine and the overall design and layout was divine, food included. Would recommend making this a destination while visiting Portland. Gourmet magazine was on point.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Fore sure!CharslinkDined on 10/13/2014We had an amazing experience here. The waiter was friendly and helpful. The food was phenomenal. Worth every penny.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Fore St exceeds expectations!RDridesDined on 10/13/2014Both my wife and I are pretty accomplished chefs and are often disappointed when dining out and the meal is not as well prepared as we felt it would have been if we had cooked at home. At Fore St last Monday that was certainly not the case. We had guests in from London and all 4 of us were extremely pleased with our meals. I sampled all 4 of the fish dishes and found them very remarkable. The Bluefish special is the reason for writing this review. It was incredible! Not only cooked delicately and presented beautifully, the balance of flavors complimented what can be a difficult fish to prepare. My sincere compliments to the chef!Special Features:
- Over the TopSandyDined on 10/13/2014Have eaten in numerous excellent restaurants but this was over the top. This was a recommendation so we expected a good meal but that does not begin to describe it. From the hostess who seats you and remembers your name from check in, to the well informed waitress who was so very into every part of our meal, to the chefs you observe preparing the entrees as you waited for your meal, to one of the best meals we have ever had. Main courses of swordfish and hanger steak with indescribable sides. We shared two mini desserts, carrot cake and chocolate brownie which was served with a dollop of caramel, two raspberries, fresh whip cream and taste size special pop corn, oooh so delicious. Cannot say enough about this unassuming Portland gem.Special Features:
- Still good, but not great.CTFrequentDinersDined on 10/10/2014First time we went there, everything was great. This time, a year later, everything was good, but not great. And at this price point, they should be focused on being great. Getting a reservation is still difficult, so we settled for a very early dinner time. That was a mistake. From the moment we sat down, although the waiter was professional, it was structured that we would eat on their schedule and get out so that they could turn the table. I don't like being rushed through dinner, and no sooner did we finish the apps, the main arrived, just as we finished the mains, the dessert menu arrived. If the food were better, I would have been very upset. We'll no doubt try it again, but only if it's a late res for the last seating.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Just a RestaurantOpenTable Diner Since 2009Dined on 10/9/2014It was good but it was "just a restaurant". We can't figure out the hype. Food was ok but we have had better at a lower price. Hangar steak was ordered medium but was served red! Sardine appetizer was about 5 inches long with large bones. Fish entrees were nothing to rave about. Waitress was pleasant but seemed hurried. The noise level was high. The seats were uncomfortable for short people, our feet did not touch the floor, this was especially bad for my pregnant friend (5'2"). Do not think we will return, it is not worth dhowing up on time for your reservation and not being seated because 2 members of your party were not there yet. And then being told that if they were much later our table might be given away! That's rude!Special Features:
- DisappointingPandaFoodDined on 10/7/2014We wanted to love Fore Street. We are major foodies and were in Portland on basically a self guided beer and food tour of the city. Fore Street was our only disappointment. The food was under seasoned and lack luster. The ethos and presentation are spectacular (fresh and local ingredients) but execution was a miss. Foie gras was boring - how do you mess up foie gras? :(Special Features:
- Incredible!JuneauDined on 10/3/2014Best chicken we ever had (spit roasted). We visit Portland every year and so look forward to dining at ForeSpecial Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Great restaurant!ShellyVIPDined on 9/29/2014I have wanted to dine at the restaurant for a long time, and I finally got the opportunity. The food was excellent, especially the foie gras, something we can no longer get in California. We were seated in a room off the main dining room at a table for two by the window. We both thought that was nice and that it would be quieter. Not so, across the room there was a table of 10 people, 3 women and 7 men who were enjoying their evening, but were VERY loud. A very unpleasant distraction to our dining experience. Not sure if the restaurant has the space for a separate room for large groups, but should consider that option. I would definitely dine at the restaurant again, but would make sure I was not seated near a large group.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- ExpectationsTastyVIPDined on 9/27/2014As good as it gets. Wondrous, savory food, perfectly paced, and excellently described.The best duck I ever had. A must visit in Portland.Special Features:
- UnderwhelmingSoPoFoodExplorerVIPDined on 9/26/2014Over the past 18 months, our visits to Fore Street have steadily declined from knock your socks off delicious to good, but not spectacular.Special Features:
- Friday NightTAC49VIPDined on 9/26/2014What an absolutely incredible dining experience. The SERVICE was probably the best I've experienced. We enjoyed Mussels, Chicken Livers, Squid as starters and then Venison, Hake and Flounder entrees and all three were wonderful. The chocolate souffle with caramels was unbelievable !!! The portions are large...so if I was to do this again, I'd cut way back. As an example, the mussels starter is more than enough as an entrée. The entire menu also a little pricey...so be forewarned.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- OpenTable Diner Since 2012VIPDined on 9/24/2014Very unique menu - fresh daily. Waiter was very patient with questions - delicious recommendationsSpecial Features:
- Good but over rated.OpenTable Diner Since 2009Dined on 9/23/2014Food was good, fresh and large portions. It's trendy right now. I have eaten at better restaurants not in Portland though.Special Features:
- One of the BestluvfoodDined on 9/23/2014One of the best restaurants ever! Hard to get reservation, but well worth trying!! Food is superb, service is great. Lives up to its reviews. Came from RI to try restaurant, will be back!!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- wonderful food, big excellent menuSteveVIPDined on 9/22/2014Outstanding food in an exciting, energenic setting, served by friednly, attentive wait staff. Always very satisfying to dine here.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- pepper8Dined on 9/22/2014Waiter's recommendations were spot on, food was delicious, hostess was very accommodating.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Very NiceDenisDined on 9/17/2014This restaurant came with high reviews, and it performed accordingly. The food was excellent, the service sharp and professional. As it was our anniversary I was especially pleased at finding this place for this particular occasion.Special Features:
- Still amazingTravel2eatDined on 9/16/2014Go here every time I'm in Portland...so happy to see it hasn't lost anything over the years. Outstanding service, food is just so tasty and well prepared. Loved the pork belly, hangar steak and monkfish...excellent wines and couldn't even eat dessert...we took home a little box of the chocolates - WOW!I would recommend this to a friend.
- DianeMDined on 9/13/2014First time..the mussels were outstanding I would recommend and would go backSpecial Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- SLIPPED A BITpalu22Dined on 9/12/2014Did not get blown away as usual. Even the mussels, which we looked forward to were off the mark compsred to previous times. And the cheese on the salad was like rubber, tasteless and chewy.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Still wonderful in a repeat dinner.TouringDined on 9/11/2014We had been to Fore Street two years ago while visiting Portland and found it be be very good. We returned, knowing that it's difficult to repeat magic, and found it to be just as wonderful as the first time. I would recommend this restaurant to anyone.Special Features:
- Fantastic!OpenTable Diner Since 2011VIPDined on 9/8/2014Adam our server knew how picky we were (coming from NYC) he gave us the best recommendations and we enjoyed everything! Such a great place!!!!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Excellent!SusanDined on 9/5/2014Our waitress was very attentive but not intrusive. Food was excellent. We had a nice table on the upper level overlooking the kitchen which was fun to watch the chefs. Our first time to Portland and would return to Fore Street. We had a reservation and would recommend making one.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- What's the Fuss?SallyDined on 9/4/2014It was very convenient to our hotel, actually right behind the Hilton. It was booked every night. The food was creative and good. The chef used the best quality of foods. However, the portions could have been a little more. I was glad I went, but wouldn't go back. The food for the price just wasn't there. I really don't know what all the fuss is about this place. If it's your first time in Maine, just go get some lobster at a reasonable price.Special Features:
- One the best restaurants anywhereOpenTable Diner Since 2006VIPDined on 8/29/2014Every summer we stop at Fore Street on out way to and from a location much farther in Maine, and while there are other great restaurants in Portland we just can't imagine missing a dinner we could have had at Fore Street. The best ingredients impeccably and creatively prepared.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Reputation uphelddavidDined on 8/27/2014We have eaten many times at Fore St. over the years -- often, as this time, with visiting friends and relatives. The menu is unfailingly creative and the food excellent. On a busy late summer evening, the place was crowded, the noise level high, and the service a bit slow -- all of which we anticipated: it's the price of excellence.Special Features:
- Good FindMissDeeGeeVIPDined on 8/27/2014Great food, nice ambiance and exceptional service.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- outstanding mealRegulardinerVIPDined on 8/25/2014This was one of our vacation highlights. We had been in Acadia for a week, and relived all the sound and smell memories with the seafood here. Great casual vibe, but excellent service, and food is just suberb. We also succombed to the deserts, even though we were all full. Fabulous. A fine food experience that was as relaxed as a back yard barbecue. Did not want to leave.
- Overpriced/Small PortionsoverpricedDined on 8/14/2014Noise level was very high. Service was slow but polite. Everything had a smoke flavor due to the wood ovens. OK for meats, not for cauliflower. Wine by the glass, high price not all that good. Would not return.Special Features:
- OutstandingCookiemonsterDined on 8/11/2014I know the gourmet mag top 50 list is old, but I have yet to go to a restaurant on it that isn't out of this world. Fore street is more a more casual variant of the nations' top dining spots - consistent with Maines laid back feel. It is similar to chez panise w/ menu changes daily based on the market & the different station chefs then create options based on what's available. A few standards stay on the menu year round - one of these was the wood fired mussels which we tried & was great. The front page of the menu were small plates I ordered quail which was a full bird & could have been a meal to itself. The wine list was approachable for any budget which was nice. My wife enjoyed watching the food being prepared in the open kitchenSpecial Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- RiverheadDestinationVIPDined on 8/11/2014To be the best in Portland - the foodie town of the northeast - is really saying something. Year in, year out, Fore Street continues to stand as the best of the best in Portland's fine dining landscape. Recommended without reservation.Special Features:
- Almost perfectPoppyVIPDined on 8/7/2014We have dined here whenever in Portland. Their reputation is exceptional, as has been our experience during previous visits. This time, while everything was wonderful, our main coarse was off the mark. We had the Lobster with Garlic Scapes and Corn Pudding; it was disappointing. The Lobster was tough, the Garlic Scapes were overdone, but the Corn Pudding was to die for! Our appetizer was fabulous, as was the dessert. Do visit them!!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.