Nearby points of interest
Nearby points of interest
About 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.
Portland, ME 04101
Contemporary American, Organic, Seafood
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
Franklin and Pearl
$50 and over
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
Fore Street has free parking from 5pm to 12am in the parking lot behind the building, depending on availability. Street parking is available as well as customer paid parking in 2 parking garages within 1 block.
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine
Fore Street Ratings and Reviews
Perfect from beginning to end. Creative menu with so many choices. An institution that is not to be missed on par with Chez Panisse in Berkeley, CA. Tried the mushroom tasting, seafood tasting, whole black bass cooked in wood fired over. All were masterfully prepared, seasonal ingredients prepared simply allowing the flavors of the ingredients to truly shine. There were smoked mussels on the seafood tasting and I typically avoid eating mussels but these were to die for. I love when a restaurant can get me to eat foods I normally do not like. It shows great talent and skill in preparation. Ended the meal with Bite Size Lemon Meringue Tart (refreshing, almost like a palette cleanser) and Rosemary Lemon Creme Brulee, also delicious but not too heavy in flavor after a meal that was mostly fish. Michel our server was knowledgeable and fun. If we make it back to Portland we will definitely join you again.
I think I'm over Fore Street. Much as I appreciate the farm-to-table movement, I do find the menu a bit pretentious and overpriced for what we all ended up eating. Yes, the ingredients are fresh and tasty, but it's annoying to have to spend top dollar simply to have that sumac reduction sauce on my halibut or the foraged mushrooms on my lamb shoulder. And, come on, throw in some mashed potatoes or carrots with my entree instead of making me pay another $8-10 for that little side dish.
I do love the restaurant space (although the best tables are by the windows, where we unfortunately did not sit). However, the service was extremely slow the night we were there; moreover, the dishes did not all arrive at once. After all the years this restaurant has been open, I would have expected better coordination in the kitchen.
Sorry to sound grouchy, but I think Fore Street's wild success may have gone to its head. Time to try something new!
More than a dozen years after our first visit, Fore Street remains one our favorite restaurants anywhere in the US. We look forward to our annual pilgrimage and our only regrets, ever, are our inability to visit more frequently and to order ten other dishes that we know would be equally fabulous from the ever-changing menu. The focus on top quality local ingredients often surprisingly paired, the wealth of choices and methods of preparation, laid back ambiance and outstanding informed servers all make Fore Street a perennial favorite.
Restaurant had been recommend to us. Was everything we had heard. Creative menu, well prepared, delicious and a most cordial and efficient server. Staff seems to be a well oiled machine in efficiency. Would recommend to anyone who appreciates great food.
My wife and I have eaten here many times over the years and have always enjoyed it very much. On our recent date, however, we noticed a decline in a few areas. First, the service. My wife, a vegetarian, always has been able to get a chef's plate of the day's offerings. Not now. Instead she only could order sides (in her case a side of roasted cauliflower and of delicious carrots delivered as always for the table to share). In addition, the bus boys refilling water simply came, grabbed glasses from across the table, and plopped the waters back down for us to retrieve. It may seem small, but not what one expects from a restaurant other than a diner. Our waiter was great, and the food was very good. I only wish I didn't have the distinct feeling that the restaurant's enduring popularity has translated into some institutional arrogance.
This restaurant is a gem. Dinner changes every night with the emphasis on farm to table. The evening of dining started with bread made from Standard Bakery. My husband and I shared the blueberry,musk salad with a blueberry balsalmic dressing. The duck was perfectly cooked and my husband's scallops with black rice was outstanding. The prices are 5 star and reflect the 5 star quality of the food and service.
This is a place that shouldn't be missed.
We were seated 15-20 minutes late, and when we ordered, the server came back to tell us they were out of one of the items we ordered.
Additionally, we broke our order down into 4 courses and we were still done in well under 90 minutes. It felt rushed, and unnecessarily so.
Fore Street used to be a neighborhood standout. We have been eating there for over a decade. The last two times, we found the food disappointing. It was heavy and not particularly inventive. The charred broccoli was partially steamed and soggy, the seafood platter looked beautiful but was just plain average, and the soup and other dishes were simply fine. Not what we expect for the long wait in a city filled with tempting and delicious alternatives. We will not be back.
We vacation in Maine every year and always plan for a Fore Street visit. Every time has been a fabulous experience, although this year's visit fell a little short. I'm sure they're not doing any different, it just that the dish we chose was not up to the standard we have become accustomed to there. The Skate Wing entree just did not rock my world as others had in previous years. Everything else was up to par and we will absolutely be back.
We are regulars here when we vacation in Maine - you won't find a better meal in Portland...food and service are superb...our favorites are the mussels and foie gras apps and any preparation of duck and pork they happen to have on their menu which changes fairly frequently with the exception of a few fixed items
We had dined at Fore Street two years ago and loved it. That was our reason for returning. Initially, the service was slow then it improved. When we ordered our main course a request was made for the scallops to be prepared without butter because of a dairy sensitivity. Our server said the chef would not do that. We asked him to ask the chef anyway. When he came back he said, "just what I thought, he won't change the dish." The server then told us, "that is why we offer other choices on the menu."
We live on Long Island, not far from New York City, where we have some of the best restaurants. Whenever we have asked the chef to prepare a dish without butter they usually can accommodate.
Our experience was very disappointing since we were traveling and looked forward to dining at the restaurant again.
My husband and I made reservations at Fore Street (about 2 months in advance!) to celebrate our anniversary. We truly enjoyed the experience from start to finish and would highly recommend to anyone looking for an upscale spot in Portland. The service was friendly, attentive and informative. All of the food was fresh and local, and it was clear that the chefs put a lot of effort and creativity into their daily rotating menus. We ordered mussels to share, followed by the pan seared scallops and halibut for the entrees. The seafood and vegetables were all perfectly cooked and seasoned, above and beyond anything we've had in Boston or other New England spots. The hand-crafted cocktails and lengthy wine list were also impressive. We can't wait to return!
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