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March 14, 2018

Maine Restaurant Week's Spirit Quest crowns a new champ … twice

Courtesy / Maine Restaurant Week
Courtesy / Maine Restaurant Week
Chef David Turin of David's Restaurant in Portland created the bite and bartender Lindsey Petersen concocted the sip to win the third annual Maine Restaurant Week "Spirit Quest" event in Portland on Sunday.

Old Port and Congress Street chefs and bartenders invited customers into their restaurants to taste and rate pairings during the third annual Maine Restaurant Week "Spirit Quest" event in Portland on Sunday.

As 400 guests roamed Sunday afternoon from restaurant to restaurant sipping cocktails and nibbling on paired bites, a trio of professional judges visited each location to sample the pairings.

By 6 p.m. Sunday the results were clear, with both the guests and judges naming David's Restaurant best of the best.

David's Restaurant, located at 22 Monument Square in Portland, served a chicken andouille sausage slider with apricot gastrique, quick pickled carrot and red onion slaw on a cheddar and buttermilk jalapeno biscuit with apricot butter. This bite was paired with spiced coconut punch made with spiced rum, solerno blood orange, coconut milk, pineapple and orange juices with candied orange zest powder.

Chef David Turin created the bite and bartender Lindsey Petersen concocted the sip.

Event raises money for Preble Street Teen Center

Courtesy / Maine Restaurant Week
Courtesy / Maine Restaurant Week
David’s Restaurant's winning entry was a chicken andouille sausage slider with apricot gastrique, quick pickled carrot and red onion slaw on a cheddar and buttermilk jalapeńo biscuit with apricot butter. This bite was paired with spiced coconut punch made with spiced rum, solerno blood orange, coconut milk, pineapple and orange juices with candied orange zest powder.

Spirit Quest competitors included:

  • The Armory at Regency Hotel
  • Boone's Fish House and Oyster Room

  • Congress Square at Westin Portland Harborview Hotel

  • The Cumberland Club

  • David's Restaurant

  • Five Fifty-Five

  • The Grill Room & Bar

  • Liquid Riot Bottling Co.

  • Petite Jacqueline

  • Sur Lie

  • Timber Steakhouse and Rotisserie

  • TIQA

  • Union/Inkwell at The Press Hotel

  • RiRa.

Among the judges' favorites were: Timber Steakhouse and Rotisserie, The Cumberland Club, Five Fifty-Five and The Grill Room & Bar. In the people's choice category, The Grill Room & Bar and Timber Steakhouse and Rotisserie tied for first runner-up.

Restaurant Week was founded in 2009 to give restaurants a boost during winter. The special events — including Spirit Quest, the Crave event and Incredible Breakfast Cook-off — were created to stir up buzz and raise money for a select nonprofit organization.

The 2018 fundraising beneficiary is Preble Street Teen Center.

Restaurant Week www.mainerestaurantweek.com starts March 1 annually and participating restaurants serve multi-course menus at special prices.

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