The Salt Exchange
The Salt Exchange

The Salt Exchange

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.thesaltexchangerestaurant.com/
  • Phone: 2073475687x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch: Monday - Saturday: 11:30pm - 4:00pm
    Dinner: Monday - Saturday: 4:00pm - 9:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Seafood, American, Comfort Food
  • Executive Chef: Adam White
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Catering: The Salt Exchange offers on-site catering Monday-Sunday for parties of 20-30 people (sit down) and up to 100 for passed hors d'oeuvres/appetizers. We design each party to our guests/clients specific needs and vision, please call for details and associated costs.
  • Entertainment: Various live acts performing original jazz and contemporary folk music. Please visit our calendar at www.thesaltexchangerestaurant.com. Thank you.
  • Special Events: Please contact owner Charles Bryon or chef Adam White at management@thesaltexchangerestaurant.com. You may also contact KDB at events@thesaltexchangerestaurant.com.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Union Street
  • Public Transit: Portland has an excellent public transit system. There are several ways to reach us via train, bus, taxi, and even by plane. Please visit http://www.visitportland.com/visiting-maine.aspx for the many options as well as maps and a list of sights, entertainment, and shopping. We and Portland welcome you, Thanks for visiting!
  • Parking: Private Lot
  • Parking Details: During lunch hours, street parking available in front of the restaurant on Commercial St. as well as on Cross St. During dinner hours, parking is available in the MEMIC lot at the end of our block.
A word from The Salt Exchange
Come take part in a new approach to traditional dining. Using local ingredients, Chef Adam White and his culinary team offer an innovative approach to Contemporary American Comfort Foods. Emphasizing multi-course dining, the restaurant showcases a variety of different local, seasonal ingredients prepared with simple, honest, and traditional technique. The Salt Exchange also hosts the largest Bourbon selection in Portland, a great sampling of Maine microbrews, and a menu friendly wine list. Owner Charles Bryon works with a local curator (KDB) to maintain an working Art Gallery inside the restaurant, with shows changing every two months. Enjoy fine art, fine food, and good company everyday with us...
Continued
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The Salt Exchange reviews from OpenTable diners
44 reviews since May 20, 2014
Overall Rating3.7
  • Food3.8
    Service3.7
  • Ambiance3.7
    Noise LevelModerate
64% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (24)neighborhood gem (11)special occasion (9)romantic (7)great for lunch (7)vibrant bar scene (6)good for groups (4)late-night find (1)hot spot (1)notable wine list (1)scenic view (1)kid-friendly (1)great for brunch (1)Show More
  • Bourbon sampler and appetizer
    Tikijim
    Dined on 9/7/2013
    We stopped in before dinner for bourbon and an appetizer. Both were awesome! The service was excellent and the atmosphere was very comfortable. Great place!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Discovered a New (to us) Restaurant
    WayneVIP
    Dined on 9/4/2013
    We had some business in town, down on the waterfront, and The Salt Exchange was recommended to us. Arrived around 1:00pm--after the lunch-hour rush--and enjoyed a wonderful mushroom and fennel pureed soup, along with a piece of pan-roasted cod over a vegetable risotto. It was excellent. In fact, since we're in Portland reasonably frequently we're going to try this for dinner, as well. I don't think you'll be disappointed.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Food better than service
    Jzdancer
    Dined on 9/2/2013
    Excellent food but we felt the service was below par for a restaurant of this caliber (or any restaurant for that matter) We were welcomed and seated promptly but then waited 5-10 minutes before approached for a drink order. @ waiters and no one even made eye contact or said they'd be with us shortly. Drink glasses empty and never asked if we wanted another or if the soda could be refilled. We felt invisible. perhaps an off night but there were many empty tables, so I would not say they were busy. Perhaps short-staffed. Truffle potato chips were excellent. Lobster risotto also v.g.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Lunch find!!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 8/26/2013
    This was a terrific lunch find for us as a break from our Newport Rhode Island to Rockland Maine drive. It is a perfect place to relax and the food was great. We are fish-only diners and this place is a find. We had calamari as we have never had before and blackened fish tacos which I would have once or twice a week if we lived nearby. Everything was excellent, the waitstaff were friendly and the view was mesmerizing. It is a six to ten minute drive from I-95 so stop in and relax. You just might see us there!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, scenic view, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Dissapointed
    lmurphycpht
    Dined on 8/23/2013
    When we arrived about 5 minutes before our reservation there was very few people in the restaurant. We still had to wait quite sometime for a waiter to take our drrink order and again to take our food order. they don't offer a whole lot which would make you think the fod would be really good. the food was average at best and you get very little for the price you pay. All four of us were extremely dissapointed with our meals.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Mixed experience
    POKE
    Dined on 8/20/2013
    The restaurant was almost out of oysters at dinner and could ny give s half an order--and the ones we received were oddly and I appealingly warm/ room temperature-not chilled. The bread was very salty, as we're the potato chips ( more expected than the bread!). The cod was very good. All in all an ok experience, but not a great one...
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • 50/50
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 8/8/2013
    The food was very good except for one item. The service especially the waiter was terrible. Not attentive, sloppy and uncaring
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Outstanding
    SeanKimble
    Dined on 8/7/2013
    I know....the Mac and cheese is amazing. Tuna special with a guacamole purée was wonderful.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • would not return, service
    john
    Dined on 8/5/2013
    would not return, service was very slow, food was average considering price/value wait staff was going thru the motions, did not feel welcome
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great food, but service a problem
    mbhdinerVIP
    Dined on 8/5/2013
    This was our fourth time at the Salt Exchange, one of our favorites. This time we encountered a 30-40 minute wait for our first course, then were told that there had been a mix-up in the kitchen and our order had been lost. But when it arrived the cioppino was excellent, although very spicy. After another lengthy wait, our entrees arrived. The loin of pork was sensational, tender and flavorful with a wonderful crust of seasonings. The duck breast (described on the menu simply as duck) was quite good. So the food is still outstanding, but there were only two servers for the entire room, which included one table of eleven (very loud) diners. As the two courses took almost two hours to complete, we decided to forego dessert.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Disappointing
    miss505
    Dined on 8/2/2013
    The location and atmosphere are nice. Food is salty yet bland! We had the pear salad which was ok but then for an entree I had their signature dish the Lobster Rissotto. My husband asked the waiter about the Tuna special. Instead of commenting on the Tuna the waiter went on and on and on about their Dog Fish special. So my husband ordered that instead. Neither one of us liked our dishes enough to finish them. My rissotto was bland and didn't even taste like Lobster. It had Lobster chunks in it but still didn't even taste like any seafood. There are so many reálly good restaurants in Portland but this is not one of them.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • What is was like
    SandownBill
    Dined on 7/30/2013
    1. Food- presents well, portions are small, pricing seems to be higher than other comparable restauants 2. 5 people and they added 20% tip to the overall bill- gurrh 3. Waiter was very attentive but not 20% worth
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great New Find
    Bruce79VIP
    Dined on 7/27/2013
    We discovered The Salt Exchange on our annual walk around downtown Portland and gave it a try - it's not on the permanent list. Great food, delightful service. Highly recommended!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, notable wine list, romantic, neighborhood gem, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Old Port dining experience
    3RosettesVIP
    Dined on 7/27/2013
    Down at the far end of Commercial Street, The Salt Lick is just enough off the beaten path to be non-frantic but accessible. Our reservation had to be changed because our plane got in late, but they were most accommodating. The lovely reclaimed warehouse has striking paintings and photographs everywhere, a treat in itself. The food was excellent: pear salad, Damariscotta oysters, marinated grilled Gulf of Maine dogfish (a small shark, sustainably fished), and the most lobster-intense lobster risotto I have encountered (and I have encountered quite a few). Service was amiable and well-paced. All in all, a very positive experience!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • good solid dining
    emmaVIP
    Dined on 7/25/2013
    The food was good and tasty but nothing special. The service was a little sloppy-- the waiter asked if we needed more time and when we said we did he just stood there which is a bit uncomfortable and he forgot a side order. Finally, the plating was quite old fashioned and on very small dinner plates.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Too bad - so many others
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 7/24/2013
    This restaurant has a great chef and a beautiful space. However, the servers do not fit that situation. The door person and the servers could care less about the customers. That is sad because the chef is the owner and is very good at what he does. The place is about one block further than where most people go. This would make it mandatory to have a welcoming staff. There are so many great choices in Portland - no need to put up with poor service.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • review, July 2013
    anonymous
    Dined on 7/24/2013
    Overall, Fair at best. Very noisy. Pretentious food descriptions. One main course out of three was good. Bread very good. Dessert very good. Waiter was moderately curt.....would suggest that he pause for a second or two after describing food to see if customers had a question; he might even come back after serving and ask if everything was fine or not. The restaurant was not busy at the time we were there; initially only one other table was occupied. From the survey I wonder if the owner wants to cater to a younger bar scene crowd as the "noise level" choices are "quiet to energetic"; the choice should include noisy....which it was.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Ribeye?
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 7/17/2013
    I was looking forward to a nice meal out with my son. The side of Chips was very nice, as were the salads we enjoyed. I ordered the ribeye med rare. I got a sirloin that was med-well. Very disappointing. My son's cod (the special) was perfectly prepared and most enjoyable. However, we probably won't go back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Good food, bad value
    Mookie
    Dined on 7/13/2013
    Food was terrific but costly and in small portions. The entrees were portioned as an an appetizer. Otherwise, creative, tasty, and well presented.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Will not be going back
    Takemeout
    Dined on 7/13/2013
    Over priced, over salted food. Food not with the price. Mediocre experience at best.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great spot
    Brook
    Dined on 7/6/2013
    Very sophisticated kitchen with knowledgeable staff.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • did 95 settings on a saturday night
    PCRob
    Dined on 7/5/2013
    ....on only 26 reservations; a testament to the local, walkin popularity popularity despite the sophistcated atmosphere anchored by tecnically competent local painting hanging, live jazz. Its very unusual to find a place where a third of the clientele walked in from nearby neighborhoods with their toddlers, a third could actually buy the art , and there remainder are their for what can be the best food in the city any given night. This particular night the kitchen ran out of dish after dish and owner just gave up trying to fill orders from the menu and just gave away the remaining entree's, lobster rissoto and all.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, hot spot, kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • It was not my first choice
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 6/28/2013
    It was not my first choice but it proved to be an outstanding place. Not many people there, had great seats, service was excellent and the food well prepared and reasonable portions. I will be back.
    Special Features:
    romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Decor, location great! Nice
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 6/22/2013
    Decor, location great! Nice cocktail menu. Food was ok, but should have been better for the price. Chicken and duck pâté under seasoned. You can make a better grilled cheese at home. Fish tacos were very good. One order was messed up, brought appetizer sandwich instead do entree, but didn't charge for appetizer. We were a party of. Five adults and one child should not be counted as a party of six....hence charging 20% gratuity uncalled for. Especially at lunch where we were one of two group, the other being a couple.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Delicious diversion
    RWeek
    Dined on 5/27/2013
    Arrived Monday night of Memorial Day weekend and found the place nearly empty. A real shame, since the food was impeccable. A real alternative to better known Fore Street and Grace. Wine list is limited but imaginative. Waiter was attentive, professional, and fun. Taste and presentation are the things to savor. Hope it's busier on normal nights, since Salt Exchange deserves a life.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Upscale but informal fine dining
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 5/18/2013
    Finally, a restaruant that understands appropriate portion size! We shared a cheese plate appetizer, each had a main course (well presented, not too large, very tasty) and separate desserts (small but tasty). Pleasant ambiance -- wood and old brick, lots of art on the walls. Highly recommend for an upper end experience in Portland.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always Enjoyable
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 5/17/2013
    My husband and I enjoyed a wonderful dinner at Salt Exchange. Food is fresh tasting and simply prepared. Portion sizes are manageable and pricing is reasonable. Our only disappointment was they were out of 2 fish appetizers, both the mussels and oysters. The waiter said they had a busy lunch service. We live in Maine and I found this difficult to digest. Right across the street are several fish companies. Whoever does the ordering, in my opinion, if you run out of something at lunch on a Friday, do your best to purchase more by dinner service. Also our waiter, who seemed new, forgot to offer bread or serve with our meal. I had to grab a piece from my husbands appetizer. Other than that, Still MY FAVORITE LOCAL dinner restaurant!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, notable wine list, romantic, neighborhood gem, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.