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Updated: September 18, 2023

Portland West End restaurant to end two-year run

Building exterior against a blue sky Photo / Renee Cordes The Danforth restaurant and bar, which closed in September 2023, was at 211 Danforth St. in Portland.

Two years after the Danforth restaurant and cocktail bar opened on Portland’s West End in the former Little Giant restaurant, the business is preparing to close its doors for good later this month.

“We love and believe in everything we’ve done,” the restaurant said in a social media post. “The unfortunate reality is that we have been unable to find a path that would sustain the business financially and ensure its future.

"Our priority during this transition is supporting our teams with financial provisions in the short term, and beyond that, helping them to secure future employment.⁠”

It was not immediately clear how many jobs will be affected by the closure of the establishment, a dimly lit, trendy spot at 211 Danforth St. The restaurant's New England-Americana seasonal fare spans heirloom tomatoes to oysters and fish and chips.

The Danforth's last day in business will be Saturday, Sept. 23.

A closing-night party is planned, with all proceeds going to benefit the restaurant’s employees and an industry-facing nonprofit, currently being selected in collaboration with staff members, according to the announcement on social media. 

“We hope that those who have enjoyed the Danforth are able to stop by through the week ahead to help us say farewell and to raise a glass to our amazing team,” the business said in its post, promising to be fully transparent about the decision.

National hospitality chain Gin & Luck, which owns Death & Co. cocktail bars in New York city, Denver, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., bought the assets of the former Little Giant restaurant in 2021. 

The company leased the space at Danforth and Clark streets from Little Giant’s owner Ian Malin.

Malin had initially approached the existing managers of Little Giant about buying the restaurant back then. They declined, and he then went to look for an outside buyer, he told Mainebiz at the time.

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