With just 20 seats in all (four of which are at the bar), Middle Street newcomer Bresca is one of Portland’s most coveted reservations—with good reason. Owner-chef Krista Kern, a former pastry chef for Guy Savoy in Paris and Las Vegas, strikes a rare balance between comfort and fine dining. Here, in the intimate mix-matched space strung up with old-time snapshots, one feels more like a dinner guest in Kern’s home than a restaurant patron. You’ll undoubtedly wonder how she does it all, as a one-woman show in the kitchen and with just two servers. “All” being lots of little Mediterranean-inspired bites, like her addictive fried Marcona almonds with lavender, chorizo and Gorgonzola-stuffed dates, and fennel salad with anchovy beignets. Kern’s delight in unusual ingredients and novel combinations shines through in bigger dishes like Tuscan black kale with pancetta and honey-glazed duck breast with Roman trading spices, poached nectarines, and mascarpone polenta. Frenchified daily desserts and a thoughtful wine list of rare but reasonably priced bottles from Italy, Spain, and Portugal also help make Bresca one of Maine’s most alluring dining experiences.
AS FEATURED IN...
Tune in on Wednesdays at 10PM ET for Top Chef: Boston, the 12th season of Bravo's Emmy-Award winning, hit reality series.