Joe Ricchio

Joe Ricchio

Joe Ricchio is Down East’s food editor.

Pig out: pastry chef Ilma Lopez's Spanish sundae, with chocolate cake, caramel, and smoky serrano ham ice cream.

Chaval

The culinary duo behind Piccolo, Portland’s much-loved Italian restaurant, dives into Spanish and French fare at their new West End bistro.

Musette - Maine scallops with butternut puree, orange reduction, fennel, arugula, and crispy sage.

Musette

“I wanted to transition into cooking food that isn’t fussy, and to create an environment for my team that centers around enjoyment, rather than feeling like punishment.” — Chef Jonathan Cartwright. Read more from our visit.

Cong Tu Bot, Portland, Maine - An aromatic bowl of chicken pho.

Cong Tu Bot

Vien Dobui and Jessica Sheahan have been hosting Asian noodle pop-ups in Portland since 2013, so they had a good idea of what would resonate with local diners when they opened Cong Tu Bot with partner Joe Zohn on the East End.

Tipo's charred Mediterranean octopus with fregola sarda, chermoula, and fennel.

Tipo

I can’t think of a better way to spend a summer evening than sitting on Tipo’s patio, sipping rosé, and enjoying a beautiful plate of marinated sardines.

Oxford House Inn

Oxford House Inn

Oxford House’s ambience hasn’t changed much since the inn opened in 1985, but the cuisine has. Jonathan and Natalie Spak, who bought the place in late 2007, offer contemporary American and Asian-influenced fare.