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“Seem to have Slipped a Notch ”

Fore Street Restaurant
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Ranked #25 of 632 Restaurants in Portland
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: American, Seafood, Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Local cuisine, Special Occasion Dining, Romantic
Dining options: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, After-hours, Delivery, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: Franklin and Pearl
Reviewed 27 January 2018 via mobile

This has been considered one of, if not the best restaurant in Portland for many years. I think they are resting on their laurels and have slipped from great to very good.

Knowing they reserve 1/3 of their tables for walk ins we went during the slower season and early in the evening. A table for 4 was available but they wouldn’t seat us until everyone was present. One of our group was running late so we changed to 3 and got seated. A few minutes later our 4th showed up and joined us. Did they REALLY need to make us go through these tricks?

The waitstaff are knowledgeable and attentive. The only complaint was our waiter put butter on the table but refused to bring bread until AFTER we ordered, like we might just eat the bread and leave.

The menu is long and detailed. Maybe it is the trend of the times but now you need to order an entree and add a starch separately. Two of us ordered a side of mashed potatoes ($8) and the tiny size of the dish that arrived was comical.

It was scallop season so I would have ordered them but the only main dish with them was a complicated concoction with too many ingredients. They have always been known for hanger steak but it was not on the menu either. I did get a seafood appetizer with scallops but their flavor was overwhelmed by beets.

All in all Fore Street seem to have dropped from their peak and while the food is delicious, the choices seem to stress numerous ingredients instead of good simple (and complete) dishes.

The open kitchen is fun to watch but after leaving we all smelled of smoke like the exhaust fans weren’t working.

Thank Maine-ahh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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150 - 154 of 2,114 reviews

Reviewed 24 January 2018 via mobile

The glow of the open fire works through this room and the bar.
It sets the tone for Portland's most established fine dining
destination. Warm and busy with a stylish bustle of service
and presentation of truly delicious food that is proud and local.
Complimented easily by selections of first class cocktails, beers
and an impressive wine list by glass and bottle.
Smoked Maine Haddock is rich and subtle and the Sweetbreads
with Caramel and Grits are an almost perfect starter. Duck,
complete with a Caraway Bacon Dumpling, is earthy and surprising.
Wonderful bread, butter and coffee and desserts are not a surprise. Fore St. delivers on its promise every time you
come to dinner.

2  Thank David G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 January 2018

A real treat from start to finish. The bread is so fresh and delicious, I think I could have made a meal of it. I had the scallops which were good size and cooked perfectly. My husband enjoyed the short ribs. The exciting component of dining here is that the menu is different each night. The dessert was nothing short of delectable. The atmosphere and the service were super. It appeared to be very well run and it was obvious that everyone was well trained. We look forward to our next visit!!

Thank Colleen C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 January 2018

Fore Street has been a standard bearer of excellent food in Portland since 1996. Being a local, I tend not to go due to the difficulty in securing a reservation and high price point. I was lucky enough to go as part of a business dinner and I forgot how wonderful the food quality. From the fettuccine appetizer, to the amazing pork dish to the tasty sides and mouth watering desserts - the meal was flawless. What I particularly appreciated was our server who was warm and friendly - no prentiousness here! There is free parking on the Commercial Street side (Standard Baking lot). I think the ambiance is very conducive to winter dining. Warm and inviting with brick oven stoves. If you are a visitor, there are many wonderful restaurants in Portland but Fore Street is most worthy of planning ahead to obtain a reservation. Note: they do take walk-in in the bar at 5:00pm so that is the only option in the busy vacation months unless you plan well in advance.

Thank Rhonda A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 January 2018

It's so lovely to sit comfortably in a restaurant---tables well spaced so you are not on top of other patrons--and enjoy a perfectly prepared dinner served at a relaxed pace (not too slow, not too fast) by a first-rate waitstaff.

Thank DebOnTheRoad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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