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Maine's Definitive, Overlooked Meat Dishes

Calling anything "definitive" is begging for criticism. We certainly invited it with our piece "Maine Map of Ten Definitive Meat Dishes," which ran during last week's The Five Days of Meat.

Fred Eliot, chef of Petite Jacqueline, took umbrage with a quote from Central Provisions' owner/chef Chris Gould which named an American duck liver the "best foie gras in the world." Though Petite Jacqueline also sources its foie gras from the USA, the French chef insists that "Quebec, France, and recently Spain" produce the world's greatest versions, free from unpleasant blood vessels that result from a more forceful feeding process (these animals will gorge themselves naturally under the right conditions, he explained later). Other commenters agreed with Eliot regarding the inferior quality of American foie gras.

Eliot offered his own suggestions for definitive meat dishes, including the roasted chicken over the pit at Fore Street and the burger at Back Bay Grill, "which is terrific." Omitting these titans is like "not mentioning Peter Luger in NYC," he scolded. He also offered the steak frites at Petite Jacqueline—"marinated and properly seared then basted in butter, crushed garlic, and thyme, New York-style"—for consideration. Furthermore, the seared duck magret plat du jour on Saturdays "is probably the best duck breast you will get in Portland, period - but maybe I'm biased!"

Commenter "The Lard of Avon" felt the geographical diversity was too limited, and shared additional thoughts: "[Hot dogs from] Wasses as well as the 7 Napkin Burger at the Owls Head General Store are glaring omissions of specific, meat centric, definitive offerings, as well as any of the pork belly offerings at Long Grain."

Is that all? If you think of anything else we missed, the comments are a good place to start. Hit up the tipline or correspond via the anonymous tip form, too.

Petite Jacqueline

190 State Street, Portland, ME 04101 205 530 7044 Visit Website

Fore Street

288 Fore Street , Portland, ME 04101 (207) 775-2717

Back Bay Grill

65 Portland Street, Portland, ME 04101

Long Grain

20 Washington Street, , ME 04843 (207) 236-9001 Visit Website