After a slight hiccup, a tornado and bad weather, in NYC I finally made my way up to the most Northeast state in the US. At this time of night the best, and only way into the city without a ride is a taxi which will run you about $15 to most destinations. I tucked myself into bed at my hosts house along the back cove and by the time I awoke they had both already headed out to work. They had graciously offered me a bicycle for the day, which is a great way to explore Portland, and I headed out to check out the city and the Old Port before one of my hosts returned from work and was going to ride around town with me. A friend also offered a double-sided page of great information pertaining to Portland since she has lived in the area for so long. Once I had conferred with a map I made my way out of the house and headed towards the back cove and into Portland proper.
I biked up to North Star Cafe which was recommended by my friend. It’s a great spot to relax and
enjoy some great organic food and good drinks. After a quick stop I cross the street to the East Cemetery. The far majority of the headstones were from the 19th century with quite marked as Revolutionary War soldiers. I have started touring breweries since checking out Magic Hat in Burlington, VT. I did a simple google maps search and came across Shipyard Brewery and decided that would be my next stop. I arrived just a few minutes before the next tour was to begin and after enjoyed what may well become one of my new favorite seasonal beers, Pumpkinhead Ale. At this point I let my eyes make my decisions and make my way around town until it was just about time to meet up with my host.
A short break later I was back on my mountain bike and we headed around the back cove this time and passed the fort that’s along the shore as well as an area along the coast dotted with islands. We stopped by Waterlily which is a cute shop in the Old Port featuring lots of imported trinkets. I mentioned the fact that I wanted to try grapenut ice cream so our next stop was Beal’s Ice Cream Shoppe. In addition to a scoop of grapenut I added my personal favourite, Coconut Almond! My hosts partner had happy hour plans so we walked over to Corner Room, which features a $3 appetizer/draft beer menu. They also have a few mediterranean items that you can munch on for free. After going back and forth over what to do for dinner we decided to stay at Corner Room although we would have to wait an hour for a table that could accommodate our party. We walked down the block to Novare Res for a quick beer and made it back just in time to be seated. The food was really good, they offer more of an Italian fare, just be sure to ask the prices of items on special. An appetizer salad set one person in our group back $15.
On our walk back to our bikes we stopped by a square which fire twirlers and other artists practicing their trades. Portland does not restrict anyone from freely practicing their artor talent which was why the twilers were allowed to publicly use an open flame. We peddled back toward the back cove and stopped by The Great Lost Bear but only stayed for a few minutes before deciding that we should head back in to be up in time for me to make yet another morning exit. I feel like I quickly become infatuated with every city I visit and this is another one on that list.