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Updated: May 24, 2024

Friday Food Insider: Mr. Tuna opens the doors at East End site in Portland

Mr.Tuna menu and chopsticks Photo / Alexis Wells Mr. Tuna's new restaurant is located at 83 Middle St. in Portland.

Mr. Tuna, a Portland sushi vendor with food-cart roots, has officially opened the doors at its relocated brick-and-mortar business. 

Mainebiz caught up with Jordan Rubin, chef and co-owner of Mr. Tuna, while he was behind the counter making sushi rolls during the busy lunch rush. 

“We have seen a lot of familiar faces,” said Rubin. "This has been the smoothest opening I’ve ever been a part of."

Rubin and Marisa Lewiecki leased the 5,000-square-foot space at 83 Middle St. Its last bricks-and-mortar location had been in the Public Market on Monument Square.

The new location features a 15-seat sushi counter and seating in the front windows. In season, it will also have additional outdoor seating. 

“Ultimately, we decided to come here because our lease was ending in the Public Market and I always wanted to be in this area,” said Rubin. "We had the opportunity to come here and decided to jump on it. The building was new, so we had to start from scratch. It took about four months to complete everything." 

A sushi hand roll from Mr. Tuna
Photo / Alexis Wells
The spicy salmon hand roll was filled with rice, salmon, scallions and a sweet chili sauce.

The new restaurant will serve an updated Mr. Tuna menu and add a full bar program of cocktails, sake, beer and wine. The menu includes everything from maki rolls to sashimi, salads, and, of course, the Mr. Tuna hand rolls, which Rubin said are the most popular item.

The new eatery is open Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday through Tuesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

“We are really excited to be a part of this Middle Street community,” said Rubin. “It is a special atmosphere. Everyone on this street has been so welcoming and inviting to us moving here.”

Rubin also co-owns Crispy Gai restaurant in Portland and opened a Japanese-inspired restaurant, Bar Futo, at Fore Street space formerly occupied by Five Guys.

The business, which opened in 2017, also includes three food trucks, a seasonal presence at Portland's Eastern Promenade, catering and events. Mr. Tuna employs around 20 people.

What else is going on in the food world?

Mesa Grande, a California-Mexican fast-casual restaurant, opened on Wednesday at 140 Fore St. in Portland, near the Roux Institute. The menu includes tacos, burritos, quesadillas, bowls, salads and a children’s menu. 

The University of New England has partnered with craft beverage experts and beer and distillery guilds to provide industry-specific training for staff across the U.S. 

Quarryside at Rock Row, featuring Lone Pine Brewing, is reopening today for Memorial Day weekend festivities. Opening weekend events will include a gift to the first 50 visitors Friday and Saturday and free live entertainment both nights from 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Quarryside will continue to offer a selection of craft brews, specialty cocktails, an all-new dessert menu and adult slushie options for the summer.

Congdon’s After Dark, a food truck park in Wells, officially opened for the season Thursday night. The park is open Thursday through Sunday from 4-8 p.m.

What restaurant openings are you looking forward to? The Mainebiz Food Insider wants to know! Contact Alexis Wells at

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