For Labor Day - we decided to get out of town. The beginning of September is such a cluster in Boston. So many college students moving in, and 80% of the city leases are up so it is moving day all over the place!
It starts around 8/25 and is still going today - 9/11!
We booked a condo on VRBO and left Saturday morning. Our first stop was Elsmere BBQ for lunch. Scott had gone with his bros when they were in Maine for his bach party, and he couldn't wait to go back. I got the Chicken Tacos, which were DELICIOUS! Everything was so good, and they had great local beers to drink too! Next, we stopped at Trader Joe's for breakfast food, dinner to grill, and essentials for a cheese plate. Then - we headed to the condo to drop our stuff.
A quick uber to downtown Portland got us right in the center of the action without having to bother with parking, or worry about a DD.
Portland was busy! We wanted to listen to some live music, but it was down near the water where it smelled like dead fish so I couldn't make that work. Luckily - the Thirsty Pig had some live music by local band Gunther Brown that was pretty good. We hung around town for a few drinks, then headed back to grill and hang on the deck.
Sunday! Such a gorgeous day, but a little muggy. We checked out Fort Williams Park which had some cool old buildings, a lighthouse and great paths to walk around.
Of course our adventures made us thirsty, so we went to Fore River Brewing Co. as recommended by Jen! It was in a very residential area so we were half expecting to end up in someones garage!
The space was really clean and nice - they had a good outdoor area with Cornhole and picnic tables too.
We went back to the condo for lunch, which was our leftover BBQ from Elsmere! I can't wait to get back up there for more! Portland has recently redone a whole area called Thompson's Point, which used to just be abandoned / empty buildings and lots. It was a few miles from the condo, so we got on our bikes for a nice afternoon ride.
We found Portland to be cyclist friendly, with lots of bike paths and courteous drivers.
Thompson's Point had some cool places to check out:
I had a Ward 8, and Scott sampled the Vodka, Bourbon and Gin.
Next: Cellar Door Winery
Cool space, funky decor, and great wines! They had a reserve Rose open for tasting which isn't very common - so we were lucky to be able to sample it!
We biked back to the condo to drop off the bikes and head back downtown. We walked around and checked out a few local spots before deciding on dinner at the Grill Room. Unfortunately, dinner wasn't great there. The French onion soup was bland, and our food wasn't cooked right. The waitress was less than attentive, and clearly other customers were getting better service after arriving and ordering after us. Oh well.
The next day, we drank coffee and relaxed before packing up our stuff and heading out of town. Hoping to beat some traffic, we left Portland by 11:30a.
In a heavy traffic area near the tolls they had a moose waving at cars.
We toyed with the idea of stopping at our other fave spot - Portsmouth, and in retrospect wish we had! We opted to check out Rockport, MA which I hadn't been to since college and Scott has never seen. It's a small town on the north shore with beautiful views. Lots of shops and little cafes, but not a lot of restaurant life. It used to be a dry town, and is slowly getting more places to eat and drink. We had lunch and shopped around.
The water was a bit rough due to the hurricane/tropical storm in the Atlantic. It was so windy, and the waves were so high! The pics below don't quite do it justice.
One place we definitely want to check out is the Stalin Liu Performance Center - Look at the backdrop for concerts!
The views during shows must be amazing!