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March 1, 2024

Friday Food Insider Notebook: For Maine Restaurant Week, a full menu of news

Photo / Alexis Wells Low Stakes Lodge, a steakhouse operated by the folks at the Highroller Lobster Co., will be opening at 106 Exchange St.

You may be surprised to learn Portland's newest steakhouse is coming from a place that's all about the seafood.

The Highroller Lobster Co., a Portland go-to for lobster rolls, announced Thursday it will open what it's calling "an elevated steakhouse experience with a relaxed dive bar ambiance."

The new restaurant will be called Low Stakes Lodge and is expected to launch this spring. It will sit right next door to Highroller, in the former Timber Bourbon Bar & Lounge at 106 Exchange St.

On Tuesday, owner Andy Gerry told Mainebiz that more details will be announced in the coming weeks. So stay tuned for more information from the Friday Food Insider.

Timber Bourbon Bar & Lounge closed its doors in 2023. The lounge changed its business model in 2022 from Timber Steakhouse to offer hundreds of bourbons, appetizers, meat and cheese boards, pate, tap beer and various wines.

Maine Restaurant Week is in full swing

Restaurant Week begins today, so get ready for this annual celebration of food and fun.

More than 80 eateries from Ogunquit to Presque Isle are participating in the 2024 Maine Restaurant Week, which actually runs a bit longer than that, from March 1-12. 

Each location will serve up Maine Restaurant Week specials or a three-course menu priced at $35, $45 or $55. 

“Many of the restaurants report seeing new faces in their dining rooms during Maine Restaurant Week and we've heard it can be as busy as a week in the height of summer,” said Gillian Britt, owner of the public relations firm gBritt, who helped found Maine Restaurant Week in 2009.

“It gets people excited about trying new places, and it reminds them of places they've known and loved,” she continued. “The event truly supports our restaurant community. It benefits farmers and fishermen, too, and many other vendors. There is also a section for hotel specials, encouraging people to get out and explore.”

Britt told Mainebiz there's still time to sign up if you 'd like your restaurant to participate in the celebration. Check out the Maine Restaurant Week website for more information.

What else is opening?

If you want to hit a fun new brunch or breakfast spot this weekend, you're in luck. Catface Cafe, in Biddeford, opened its doors Friday morning. The new eatery is at 17 Alfred St., a space formerly occupied by the specialty market and lunch spot Part & Parcel.

Catface's owner is Krista Cole, who's also owner and director of operations behind Sur Lie in Portland and Gather in Yarmouth. She told Mainebiz her new cafe will be open Tuesday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., although the kitchen closes at 2 p.m. On Saturdays and Sundays, Catface will be serving from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Guests can expect a menu with sandwiches — breakfast and otherwise — plus toasts, salads and fun, boozy cocktails like the classic brunch favorites, the mimosa and the bloody Mary. 

Your friend, the Friday Food Insider, is all about the restaurant news. Let me know how Maine Restaurant Week goes for you, or if you tried Catface over the weekend. And stay tuned for more news about Low Stakes Lodge. Contact Alexis Wells at if you know of any new restaurants opening in your area.

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