"...the future of New England food" (Wall Street Journal, 5/23/14)
"He trained everywhere you might expect, first cutting meat with Dario Cecchini in Italy, then staging at Fäviken in Sweden and Noma in Copenhagen." (New York Magazine's Grub Street, 6/19/13)
"...a meal in which everything builds on itself to leave you perfectly satisfied, yet energized... 5/5 stars" (Portland Press Herald. 7/27/2014)
"a serious star... the city's leading contemporary restaurant... This is the place Portland needed to crystalize its gastronomic ambitions once and for all" (Financial Times of London, 10/25/14)
Arrived and seated quickly for our 730 reservation. Wait staff is very knowledgeable but also considering how few people were present, quite slow.
Oatcakes were fantastic! Wine was interesting but a bit overpriced. Scallops were over cooked which was really I unfortunate as the sauce they were plated with was outstanding. The menu is well diversified and the idea of complete gluten free farm to table regionally sourced dining is definitely one to support! We will try again and hope it’s a better night for the kitchen.
Great we dine here a lot
we had a strange experience at vinland. it was our first visit. our first hour, and first dishes, were wonderful. the menu is interesting, the staff knowledgeable, the space quiet and comfortable. then we ate a beef dish with rib eye that was not well cooked, and decided we were ready for dessert. we asked our waiter for his recommendation and took it. the dessert was described as a custard but was more like a giant scoop of hand cream. as we sat making faces at each other and wondering what we would say when the waiter came to check on us, he dashed right past us and out the front door, never to return! there was only one other waiter who ignored us for a solid 15 minutes. based on the first two thirds of our experience, i would return and bring friends. but after the dessert debacle and vanishing waiter act, i think not. what a shame.
One of our best meals at Vinland yet. Incredible flavors and freshest of ingredients. Such a culinary treat with outstanding and friendly service. Can't wait for our next visit.
I love this place. The food is always interesting and tasty. My one thought is that I shouldn't order meat--the lamb was delicious but was fattier than I'm comfortable with. In every other way, the meal and the beverages were wonderful.
One of the best restaurants on the east coast. The chicken is arguably as good as any I've ever had. Excellent food from start to finish with amazing wines to match.
We tried seven of the small plates and overall they were completely lacking in both appearance and taste.
Our food took forever to even begin, then forever between each course. How almost no water for about 20-30minutes. The scallops are decent and the chicken with vegetables is delectable. The fondue was decent (couldn't order a salad because they were all out of dressing). The yogurt verbal panna cotta was horrendous. It was like eating a gelatinous soap bar. The blueberry tart however, was nice with a very subtle sweetness. Overall, poor experience and poor food. I would not go back.the steak was too rare, yet tough and flavorless.
First: Celiac and gluten sensitive diners have no fear; the food served at Vinland is 100% gluten free, prepared in a GF safe environment, and even the oats, which can be problematic, are tested off site to assure <10ppm for gluten free certification. As a diabetic celiac who lands in the hospital for any gluten reaction, it is a relief to find the rare restaurant that has a full GF menu.
The main point: the food served at Vinland is severely delicious: each plate offered unique flavor combinations (scallops with blueberries? Sunchoke emulsion with oat flapjacks? Yummmmm) and was cooked to perfection. Even days later, my husband and I are talking about how impressed we are that the entire menu contains only food grown or harvested in Maine. Our server was knowledgeable and respectful - attentive but gave us space to enjoy our birthday meal in peace. The wine list is extensive. I look forward to returning.
The venison was amazing, as was the cheese plate. We were all very pleased. The dessert was extremely disappointing.
This was the best dining experience I have ever had. It was also the most expensive.
Vinland is one of the most creative restaurants we've visited! Each dish was prepared with care and originality and taste. Wonderful flavorful food and great organic wine list. Their foods are only locally sourced! For you "gluten free" folks you have it made - a brown bread for dipping and eating! Vegan and non- vegan plates were great to try - small and large plates are offered for each preparation. Lots of choices and lots of flavor! Thank you Vinland - Portland is lucky to have you!!!!
Had an 8:15 reservation. Arrived at 8:19. Was sat with my girlfriend by a confused employee at a table for two. Within 30 seconds asked us if we could sit at the bar. Said we'd prefer here. "We have a larger table coming in."
OK, we'll move, since they're more important than us.
Corner 3 chairs at the bar were available, however the table next to those chairs was occupied by a family with an infant and their carrier, bag and gear. Walked out immediately after noticing that we couldn't get to the seats without inconveniencing the mother and interrupting their meal ourselves.
Not a great experience, prep a bit better for your tables! Food smelled good. Went to Nosh and ate a gigantic Big Mack.
Great meal and great service. Two of us did the tasting menu and shared our plates. We had a super time and the food was delicious.
My husband and I went to Portland for my birthday and I chose Vinland since they had only local Maine foods. The waiter was really nice and the food was delicious. I am not a foodie but the waiter was really patient and charming.
The food was just delicious. So carefully done! Knowledgeable and friendly service
This is my favorite Portland restaurant. The music can be a bit loud, but they're accommodating about turning it down if it is. The food is creative, healthy, and local. The wine selections are very very good. Price is at the upper end for Portland, but the meal is worth it. I particularly appreciate the small plate options, and their use of sustainable seafood like mussels and monkfish. Service is friendly, knowledgeable, and attentive without hovering.
Each course cooked to perfection with local ingredients and flavor pairings are unique and original.
Interesting approach that generally impressed. Local, fresh, seasonal - in April in Maine, when nothing is growing yet - and mostly was a hit.
Pros: expertly cooked seafood with great sauces that enhanced natural flavors. Amazingly spot-on and perfect wine pairings. Flexibility in the 5 course tasting - you can get whatever 5 you want, including 5 of the same dishes! Reasonable price for what they’re doing.
Cons: It’s gluten free, which while fine for most dishes was noticeable with our cheese fondue and cheese plate courses, which could have benefited from more than the dry oat toast offered. Dessert itself could have benefited from more sweet options - everything was more on the savory side. Whie again, fruit is mostly out of season, it still left us wanting a sweet end to the meal.
But will definitely try again when summer fruits & vegs are here! Am sure it will be a very different experience.
Service was excellent and food was delicious, especially recommend the salad. However, it was expensive and portions small. No bread came with meal.
The location in Portland is perfect, within walking distances from the hotels. The food, service and overall experience was wonderful. Can't say enough about the quality, taste and presentation of the food. Superb!
Fantastic meal. Wine list was full of esoteric choices but still had plenty of safe options. Food was unbelievable, we opted for the 5 course menu. Be warned, it’s a LOT of food! Service was excellent, the guys know their food and drink.
A superb, highly original restaurant with locally sourced produce and brilliantly innovative cuisine/
We were surprised to find that this was the worst meal we have had in many years. The service was very slow, even though we had an early reservation on a Saturday night. The waiters presented a rushed and anxious presence throughout the evening.The prices were extremely high for the courses and sizes. The monkfish was truly inedible. Any taste there might have been to the smoked fish did not penetrate beyond the sour and unpleasant flavor of the kale juice. The fish was over salted and rubbery and the sun chokes were watery and overcooked. The flavors individually and in competition in were unpleasant rather than delicious.We were very disappointed.
Everything they served us was incredible, and our waiter was very attentive, relaxed, and easy to chat with. The menu was creative and unique, without being overly pretentious. Overall, if it was priced slightly more in my budget, this would be one of my go to Portland restaurants.
Our second visit to Vinland (for a birthday celebration) was even more outstanding than the first time. We shared two five course meal options. Extraordinarily beautiful presentations, creative use of spices, fabulous sauces that showcased the main ingredients rather than drowned them, and generous portions to boot produced an unforgettable experience. (We appreciated that the food was not overly salted as it is in many restaurants). Our particular favorites were actually pretty much everything: the salad (a whole delicate Bibb type lettuce looking like a water lily with dressing, carrots and other sliced veggies hidden under the "petals"); the squash soup; mussels; the oat cake; the monk fish and lobster entrees; a delicate chicken dish with crispy skin, and both desserts. Our server Tim was fantastic...courses were served in a perfectly timed sequence (neither too fast or slow), with informative but unpretentious descriptions. The decor of Vinland is very sophisticated, like the food, but very soothing at the same time. We enjoyed the background music also.
Great staff and ambiance. Very interesting menu with dishes of very diverse flavor profile and super fresh ingredients. However I found a couple dishes (oat cake and monk fish) a bit too salty for my liking, though it's worth noting that I eat very bland usually.
Our second time at Vinland was as memorable as the first. We each got the 5 course with wine pairing, so we had 10 dishes and 10 wines to share. Every bite and each sip was delicious. Creative, seasonal, local sourcing, beautiful plating, and the server knew everything about each dish and wine. Their commitment to local extends to every ingredient, which requires some creative, but very successful substitutions for common items. I’d suggest some specific dishes - fermented oatcake, fondue, lobster, scallops, steak tartare, panna cotta- but the menu will change, and any choice will be a winner.
Vinland features 100% local ingredients, and offers imaginative and delicious food in a minimalist but beautiful setting. The cocktails, wine, and beer offerings are exemplary, and the service was genuinely friendly without being overbearing. I will return again!
This may be my favorite Portland restaurant! The dishes are creative and delicious, and serving size is reasonable. The portions are well balanced, so one can eat less, savor more, and leave without feeling "stuffed." Service is personal and pleasant, enthusiastic and knowledgeable. My only sort of negative is that the space is small, and sometimes the music is a little louder than one might like for conversation, but if asked, I'm guessing staff would turn it down. I had the monkfish--not typically found on menus but a pleasant change and important as an option to some of the species that are being over-fished or whose numbers are dropping for other reasons. Highly recommended!
Delicious healthy meal and a perfect choice for dinner! Love that everything was locally sourced and organic, including the wine 👌🏼 the mussels, steak, and scallops were just so good! Definitely would come back.
My husband & I absolutely LOVED Vinland!! We used Open table as reservation system which on a Sunday night was unnecessary. We got a window table!! My husband had lobster and I had chicken dish. He loved his lobster but my chicken was unexceptional. The fondue was totally worth it!! Order this as appetizer!! The "shrub" nonalcoholic drink was delicious!! Coffee from Speckled Ax also worth it!! Definitely going back!!
Several items put on the table did not match the menu description. Food was very good, but the portions were quite small for the price paid.
Had a wonderful time NYE at Vinland! Definitely have a cocktail the manhattans are the best I've ever had!
Recommend requesting table away from door if possible. Flavors in food were awesome. Scallops slightly under cooked. Too much dressing on salad. This is a restaurant to be adventurous and try things you would normally not try...
Beauties of taste, texture and presentation along with the awareness that food is Maine based and "grower" supportive, help make it the special place it is. The intelligence of the service and its cordial ambience make it an enjoyable place to dine alone or to share with friends. I am a recidivist...one who enjoys continuing visits and who also looks forward to sharing its experience with others.
after reading about the chef in the local paper a few years ago, I bought my parents a gift certificate for 5 course plus wine pairing. it took them quite some time to get down there (so long that the prices had gone up, but the certificate was still honored!). 3 years later they did the same for me this christmas! I am not a rich woman and wouldn't dare to buy myself such a luxurious meal, so I was especially pleased with my opportunity to join everyone for dinner. all my courses and the corresponding wine were fantastic (steak tartare & syrah blend... ooohhhh man). I left full in both soul and belly. I love the philosophy as much as the food. I feel privileged for the opportunity.
Except for the food, our experience at Vinland was nice. The ambiance was pleasant in a minimalist Scandinavian way, with pale colors and lattices or birch (some complete with desiccated mushrooms — very cool). A cool selection of songs played at a nice volume in the background — Rodriguez, Nick Drake, Nico, etc.
I’ve heard enough good things about it food-wise from people I trust to conclude it was either an off night (it was Christmas Day), or our palates simply didn’t connect to the cuisine. There was an unexpected sourness or bitterness to a number of the things we are and drank, some of it expected (a play on sauer kraut and grilled radicchio), some not. Even the wines tended toward a sour taste that I’d last experienced with trendy beers made with wild yeasts. These may be your cup of tea/wine, but we found ourselves leaving a number of the wine pairings half full. After a turn, the dishes started blending together so as to feel all too similar. We did like the frozen chaga desert, but mainly because it cleansed our palates.
This is one of my favorite places in all of Portland. David is an incredible chef. Tim is a wonderful host.