Confirming the rumor Eater reported on Tuesday, restaurateur Jason Loring (Nosh, Slab) sent out a press release today that he is, indeed, constructing a Tiki bar called Rhum in downtown Portland. "Rhum will be a refined take on Tiki with a distinctly Portland, Maine flavor. Elegant, modern translations of classic Tiki dishes will be bolstered with an impressive raw bar featuring local seafood." The bar will also feature "contemporary counterparts, and a large format program for team tippling." Ready your crazy straws.
The press release refers to Rhum as "the first restaurant project by Fifth Food Group," which includes Loring, Mike Fraser of Bramhall, and Nat Towl, a builder and designer who was said to be part of the postponed Thompson's Point clam shack project.
Heading the kitchen and bar programs will be Frank W. Anderson and Rebecca Ambrosi, "who bring years of experience from restaurants like Animal and Son of a Gun in Los Angeles and the kitchens of Thomas Keller and Jean-Georges Vongerichten." Their recent project has been The Hunter's Bend, "an underground supper club and catering company."
Look for the "subterranean escape" this winter. The official address isn't given, but construction is underway on Cross Street; a recent tip said it's beneath 4 Free Street rather than 2 Free Street as initially suspected.