Set on a peninsula extending into Casco Bay, Portland is packed with a variety of great options for romantic wining and dining. The Old Port waterfront is at the heart of the city and features busy working fishing wharves and gentrified warehouses with an array of shops and restaurants. The Western Promenade is a great spot to head to for spectacular river and mountain views, while the West End is a beautiful historic district full of beautifully preserved Victorian-era homes, including the Victoria Mansion museum. Here are some of the top spots in Portland, Maine for romantic dining.
© Isa Bistro
Isa Bistro is a cozy neighborhood joint with exposed brick walls, tiled floorings, and tin ceilings that offers a warm and welcoming place for gathering with friends over great food and wine. The contemporary restaurant specializes in casual Mediterranean fare with Italian, Spanish, and English influences, using fresh locally sourced ingredients and regional produce. Seasonal menus boast signature dishes like local rabbit pot pie with leeks and steak au poivre in a whiskey cream sauce, and brunch plates of eggs benedict and croque madame. An indulgent wine list with vintages from around the world, as well as craft beers and signature cocktails are available, and the bistro is open for lunch and dinner, Wednesday through Monday.
79 Portland St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-808-8533
2.The North Point
© The North Point
The North Point is a charming bistro-style eatery in the heart of the Old Port with the feel of a Parisian sidewalk café. The cozy restaurant has exposed-brick walls, sidewalk tables and bright orange chairs, and potted flowers and greenery, and serves a menu of delicious, beautifully presented cuisine along with creative cocktails, casual wines by the glass and craft beers on tap. Dishes on the menu include small, shareable plates of charcuterie and cheeses, Iraqi flatbreads and dips, olives, and gourmet sandwiches like the Ultimate Grilled cheese with tomato and bacon. Inventive cocktails include Cucumber Gin Martinis, Watermelon Martinis, and the Jala-berry of strawberry puree, jalapeno, lime, and tequila, and the wine list boasts light summer wines like Vinho Verde. North Point is open for dinner seven nights a week and lunch on Saturdays.
35 Silver St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-899-3778
3.Back Bay Grill
© Back Bay Grill
Tucked in an out-of-the-way location away from the hustle and bustle of Portland's more touristy neighborhoods, Back Bay Grill is a quiet, contemporary spot that has been serving refined American and European cuisine for the past 20 years. Chef/Owner Larry Matthews presents an ever-changing seasonal menu of fresh seafood, prime meats and poultry, and organic salads and vegetables, using fresh locally sourced ingredients and regional produce. Signature dishes include seared foie gras, beef tartare, and handmade pasta plates, and the cuisine is accompanied by an indulgent wine list with vintages from around the world, as well as craft beers and craft cocktails. Back Bay Grill is open for dinner only Tuesday through Saturday.
65 Portland St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-772-8833
© Blue Spoon
Based on Munjoy Hill in Portland’s East end, Blue Spoon is a chef-owned restaurant that focuses on fresh market-driven ingredients and regional produce to create seasonal Italian and American cuisine. The vibrant, social restaurant is owned by chef/owner Will Lavey and his wife Liz Koenigsberg and has a comfortable dining space with modern décor and large windows that flood interiors with natural light. The menu features signature dishes like Angus Beef Tartare, Pan-seared Bavette Steak, Seafood Stew, and Risotto, and a variety of casual wines, craft beers, and classic cocktails are available to enjoy with the food. Blue Spoon is open for brunch, lunch, and dinner, Tuesday through Sunday.
89 Congress St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-773-1116
Boda in Portland is a late-night eatery and bar that specializes in authentic Thai street food with an extensive menu full of delicious items such as Thai sticky rice balls, pork belly skewers, kee mao noodles, kra-prao chicken, and woon-sen pad thai. The bustling Thai Restaurant has a warm and energetic ambiance with rattling cocktail shakers and the hum of conversation as guests tuck into creative plates of traditional Bangkok street-food style and signature cocktails like the Thai Basil Tom Collins and the Fuge’s Dilemma. Boda’s ten-stool bar boasts a lively atmosphere as it serves a range of craft cocktails, top-shelf spirits, craft beers, and casual wines as well as great tapas options such as house fried peanuts, crispy squid, spicy Thai wings, and oysters. Boda is open for dinner only, seven nights a week.
671 Congress St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-347-7557
© David's Restaurant
Part of Chef David Turin’s popular restaurant group throughout Maine, David’s Restaurant offers an imaginative dining experience in a classy space. Overlooking Portland’s Monument Square, the exceptional dining destination serves an ever-changing menu of comfort fare with passion and flair and has something for every palate, ranging from imaginative fish dishes and crispy duck breast to Za’atar crusted salmon and Maine lobster roll. Large windows overlooking Monument Square bring natural light into the dining space and offer spectacular views, and a full-service bar offers a wide range of libations from craft beers and craft cocktails to globally-inspired wines. David’s Restaurant is open for lunch and dinner, Monday through Friday and dinner only on the weekends.
22 Monument Square, STE 600, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-773-4340
7.Diamond's Edge Restaurant
© Diamond's Edge Restaurant
Housed in the former quartermaster's storehouse overlooking Diamond Cove and steps away from the full-service marina, Diamond's Edge Restaurant is a seasonal eatery and bar that serves locally sourced seafood and classic American fare against a backdrop of beautiful views. Boasting an elegant, yet relaxed environment in which to enjoy an exceptional dining experience, the restaurant serves seasonally changing menus of New England Favorites, fresh locally caught seafood, prime USDA meats, and organic salads and vegetable dishes. A gorgeous deck is open during the summer months for alfresco dining under the stars, and a full-service bar serves an outstanding wine list with vintages from around the world, as well as craft beers and craft cocktails. Diamond's Edge Restaurant is open for lunch and dinner daily.
Portland, ME 04109, Phone: 207-766-5850
Located in Portland’s vibrant downtown arts district, Emilitsa is a traditional Greek restaurant offering authentic Greek cuisine in a contemporary-chic space. Named after owner John Regas’s mother, Emily, the warm and welcoming restaurant boasts a sleek, urban feel with exposed brick walls, a magnificent white marble bar, floor-to-ceiling wine racks and a private nook with a glowing black marble table for special celebrations and gatherings. The menu features traditional Greek fare such appetizers of as grilled pita and dips of tzatziki, taramasalata, and melitzanosalata, entrées of marinated free-range lamb chops, lemony spinach rice pilaf, and fresh fish, and desserts of Latho’tourta, mouzzo, and Greek yogurt panna cotta. Drinks range from casual and after-dinner wines and imported beers to boutari retsina and classic cocktails. Emilitsa is open for dinner, Tuesday through Saturday.
547 Congress St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-221-0245
9.Evo Kitchen and Bar
© Evo Kitchen + Bar
Located in the elegant Hyatt Place Portland in the Old Port, Evo Kitchen + Bar is a stylish Middle Eastern bistro that specializes in Eastern Mediterranean cuisine, bring the bold taste and flavors of the region to the heart of Portland. Boasting a chic, energetic vibe, Evo serves a seasonal menu of creative riffs on classic cuisine prepared with locally sourced and regional ingredients with dishes like Pork Sausage with Halloumi, Beef Kibbeh with Yogurt, Chicken and Onion Dolmades, and Skirt Steak. The cuisine is accompanied by craft cocktails made with fresh, local ingredients, five local Portland draft beers and a wine list featuring a wide variety of wines from around the world, including Greece, Spain, and Crete. Evo Kitchen + Bar is open for lunch and dinner, Tuesday through Sunday.
443 Fore St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-358-7830
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© Five Fifty-Five
An attractive and permanent fixture on the Portland dining scene for over ten years, Five Fifty-Five is an elegant and inviting dining venue owned by Chef Steve Corry and his wife, Michelle. With a design reminiscent of a 19th-century firehouse, the restaurant is spread out over two levels with second-floor balcony tables offering lovely views of the bustling kitchen below. Hailed as “the most romantic restaurant in Portland,” the seasonal features a five-course tasting spree that includes fresh New England scallops and truffled lobster, with ‘chocolate-in-five-ways’ dessert. The scintillating Point Five Lounge boasts a more casual scene, offering lighter fare, signature cocktails, and an impressive wine and spirits list.
555 Congress St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-761-0555
11.Fore Street Restaurant
Close to the waterfront in Portland's Old Port District, Fore Street Restaurant is a rustic spot with an open wood-fire grill, oven and spit where prime meats are cooked over the fire and served in a casual atmosphere. Part of a family of restaurants in the city, Fore Street features exposed brick interiors, comfortable décor and a warm glow from apple and hardwood fires that crackle in the soapstone hearth. The menu celebrates the bounty of Maine with diversity of fresh seafood, prime USDA meats, and game, fresh locally sourced salads and vegetables sourced from day-boat fishers, four-season farms, woodland foragers, and shellfish gatherers. Fore Street Restaurant is open for dinner, daily.
288 Fore St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-775-2717
Located in Portland’s Old Port in the burgeoning India Street neighborhood, Hugo’s is a family-owned and operated restaurant that serves farm-to-table cuisine in a chic, handsome setting. The sophisticated eatery has grown from a humble family-friendly eatery to one of the city’s top dining destinations and serves seasonal menus that celebrate culinary innovation and reflect the rich bounty of Northern New England. The restaurant boasts a sumptuous dining room featuring 160-year-old reclaimed red birch accents, wrought iron detailing and soft leather seating, and an open kitchen where expert chefs showcase their skills. The cuisine is accompanied by an indulgent wine list with vintages from around the world, as well as craft beers and craft cocktails, and the restaurant is open for dinner, Wednesday through Saturday.
88 Middle St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-774-8538
13.Lolita Vinoteca and Asador
© Lolita Vinoteca + Asador
Reminiscent of an Old-World bodega, Lolita Vinoteca + Asador is a modern American bistro where locals and visitors alike can gather over fantastic Mediterranean cuisine and craft cocktails in an inviting and friendly atmosphere. The bistro features rustic, rough-hewn walls adorned with a curated wine collection, a custom wood-fired grill, cozy banquettes and sidewalk seating, and a zinc bar, which serves a wide variety of libations from craft beers to casual wines, with over 75 choices by the bottle and 15 by the glass. Lolita Vinoteca + Asador is open for dinner Monday through Friday and brunch and dinner Saturday and Sunday.
90 Congress St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-775-5652
Paciarino is a cheerful, informal eatery and market that specializes in Italian classics, house-made pasta, and made-to-order dishes prepared with fresh local ingredients. Open for lunch and dinner, the casual restaurant is named for the Italian expression that roughly translates to “the food that makes you happy,” and owner Fabiana de Savino strives to do just that. The dining room is warm and welcoming with Tuscan-inspired pale, yellow walls and large windows which flood the interior with sunlight and has light wooden tables and hanging lights made from stainless colanders, which add a whimsical touch. The menu follows suit with simple, delicious Italian dishes like bruschetta, fusilli with pesto, ricotta-thick Bolognese lasagna, and seasonal pumpkin ravioli. Paciarino is open for lunch and dinner, daily and offers catering services with customized menus.
470 Fore St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-774-3500
© Petite Jacqueline
Situated in Portland's West End neighborhood, next to the city's famous "Arts District," Petite Jacqueline is a casual, laid-back French bistro that serves delicious café-style food, carafe wine, and excellent coffee. Opened by Five Fifty-Five owner Michelle Corry and restaurant partner, Liz Koenigsberg, Petite Jacqueline was inspired by the need for a typical French bistro in Portland that served food akin to her grandmother. The bistro’s food is classic, homely, traditional French fare (think French onion soup and foie gras) that focuses on simple ingredients and delicious flavors. Aiming to serve home-away-from-home cuisine that had diners coming back for more, the quaint French bistro has done just that.
46 Market St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-553-7044
Piccolo is an intimate Italian bistro that specializes in the traditional cuisine of Southern and Central Italy. Owned by Damian Sansonetti, the warm and welcoming restaurant boasts a wood-accented dining room with a cozy ambiance and serves a menu of rustic Mediterranean home-cooked meals with influences from Abruzzi and Calabria. Dishes feature fresh grilled seafood, homemade pasta with from-scratch sauces, prime meats and sun-kissed vegetables from the Italian countryside, and some of the finest imported Italian ingredients. The cuisine is accompanied by an indulgent wine list with vintages from Italy and around the world, as well as craft beers and craft cocktails, and the restaurant is open for dinner Wednesday through Sunday.
111 Middle St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-747-5307
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Nestled in what was once a bustling Italian neighborhood between Portland's historic Old Port and East End districts, Ribollita is a traditional Italian restaurant that serves artisanal Italian food in an intimate, unpretentious setting. Chef/Owner Kevin Quiet uses fresh locally sourced ingredients to fuse traditional Italian cuisine with modern culinary innovations to create dishes of fresh local seafood, homemade pasta and sauces, fresh salads, and Italian favorites like veal Osso Bucco, and the signature namesake dish, ribollita. The cuisine is accompanied by an exclusively Italian wine list, with a wide range of offerings from Orvietos to Brunellos, which are paired with dishes by friendly and knowledgeable staff. Ribollita is open for dinner Monday through Saturday.
41 Middle St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-774-2972
© Roma Cafe
Located in a historic 19th-century mansion on Congress Street in the heart of the West End, Roma is a throwback, classic American Italian restaurant that serves traditional red-sauce Italian in a relaxed and comfortable setting. The casual neighborhood outpost pays tribute to the great American Italian restaurants of decades past with simple bistro tables, deep red banquettes, and a working fireplace, and serves classic Italian-American fare such as housemade tagliatelle, veal piccata, and shrimp scampi. The cuisine is accompanied by an extensive wine list with vintages from Italy and around the world, as well as craft beers and craft cocktails. Roma is open for dinner, seven nights a week.
767 Congress St, Portland, ME 04102, Phone: 207-761-1611
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© Sur Lie
Sur Lie is a cozy, contemporary tapas-style restaurant in the heart of downtown Portland that specializes in small plates prepared with locally sourced ingredients. Owned by Krista Cole and Antonio Alviar, the restaurant serves top-notch tapas of fresh seafood, charcuterie and cheeses, fresh salads, and marinated olives. A creative cocktail menu blends pre-prohibition knowledge with a quirky modern-day tipple with signature cocktails like the Grey Ghost, and other drinks from the full-service bar include a range of whiskeys, craft beers on tap and by the bottle and casual wines from around the globe. The spacious, yet cozy dining room can seat up to 75 people, and is open for dinner, Monday through Saturday.
11 Free St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-956-7350
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© The Treehouse
The Treehouse is an intimate eatery with unique treehouse-style decks where visitors can dine outdoors surrounded by woven tree boughs strung with fairy lights in the summer months. The restaurant serves Mediterranean-inspired comfort fare and a variety of creative cocktails and causal wines and offers the perfect place for a special celebration or romantic dinner beneath the stars. The menu features delectable dishes like wild mushroom flatbread, three-fish salad with littlenecks, shrimp and mussels pan-fried Brussels sprouts, Maine crab cakes, and juicy pork tenderloin with blueberry-ginger glaze. Signature cocktails include the Pearls and Buoys and the Crow’s Nest, and a robust wine list features New and Old World by the glass or bottle. The Treehouse is open for dinner Wednesday through Saturday.
484 Stevens Ave, Portland, ME 04103, Phone: 207-874-0706
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TIQA is locally-owned and operated eatery close to Portland’s Old Port that serves refined Mediterranean plates and creative cocktails in a chic, contemporary space. The stylish restaurant features a spacious dining room with a bar and an elegant lounge, and an outdoor patio for alfresco dining in the summer months. The innovative Pan-Mediterranean menu offers sharing plates of mezze, dips and olives, fresh soups and salads, small dishes of calamari and falafel, and entrées of kabobs, prime meats, and fresh seafood. The cuisine is accompanied by casual wine list, craft beers and signature cocktails, which can be enjoyed with the food or in the lounge. TIQA is open for lunch and dinner, seven days a week.
327 Commercial St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-808-8840
22.Twenty Milk Street
© Twenty Milk Street
Located in Portland Regency Hotel & Spa, Twenty Milk Street is an elegant, romantic restaurant with warm, intimate décor that specializes in modern American dishes with a New England flair. The signature restaurant’s beautifully appointed dining room has an ornate brick fireplace and exquisite chandeliers that cast a soft glow in which diners can savor award-winning dishes of house-made porcini mushroom gnocchi, cedar plank roasted haddock, lobster stew, bone-in pork chops, and a variety of Chef’s daily specials. The cuisine is prepared using fresh locally sourced ingredients and regional produce and is accompanied by an extensive collection of local and international wines, and classic cocktails made with top-shelf spirits. Twenty Milk Street is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
20 Milk St, Portland, ME 04101, Phone: 207-774-4200
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© Union Restaurant
Located within the Press Hotel across from Portland's City Hall in the heart of Portland's Old Port, Union Restaurant is a sophisticated, yet casual eatery and bar that serves creative and elegant cuisine and house cocktails in a refined setting. The contemporary American farm-to-table restaurant led by Maine native Chef Josh Berry serves a thoughtfully designed menu of market-driven cuisine using fresh locally sourced ingredients. Signature plates include local Norumbega oysters with kimchi caviar, grilled asparagus with goat cheese panna cotta, poached salmon topped with Kalamata olives, local skate, Maine lobster beurre monté, and desserts of Maine maple pudding, and coconut custard tart. The cuisine is accompanied by a curated wine list, local and imported craft beers and inventive cocktails, and the restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, seven days a week.
390 Congress St, Portland, ME 04103, Phone: 207-808-8700
23 Best Restaurants in Portland, Maine
- Isa Bistro, Photo: Isa Bistro
- The North Point, Photo: The North Point
- Back Bay Grill, Photo: Back Bay Grill
- Blue Spoon, Photo: Blue Spoon
- Boda, Photo: Boda
- David's Restaurant, Photo: David's Restaurant
- Diamond's Edge Restaurant, Photo: Diamond's Edge Restaurant
- Emilitsa, Photo: Emilitsa
- Evo Kitchen and Bar, Photo: Evo Kitchen + Bar
- Five Fifty-Five, Photo: Five Fifty-Five
- Fore Street Restaurant, Photo: davit85/stock.adobe.com
- Hugo's, Photo: Hugo's
- Lolita Vinoteca and Asador, Photo: Lolita Vinoteca + Asador
- Paciarino, Photo: Paciarino
- Petite Jacqueline, Photo: Petite Jacqueline
- Piccolo, Photo: Piccolo
- Ribollita, Photo: pressmaster/stock.adobe.com
- Roma Cafe, Photo: Roma Cafe
- Sur Lie, Photo: Sur Lie
- The Treehouse, Photo: The Treehouse
- TIQA, Photo: TIQA
- Twenty Milk Street, Photo: Twenty Milk Street
- Union Restaurant, Photo: Union Restaurant
- Cover Photo: pressmaster/stock.adobe.com