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The Holy Donut, Portland.
The Holy Donut, Portland.
Kyle J. Norris/Eater

Where to Eat Near Portland International Jetport (PWM)

If at all possible, exit the airport to dine.

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The Holy Donut, Portland.
| Kyle J. Norris/Eater

Ah, Portland International Jetport (PWM): on the outskirts of one of the hottest food destinations in the country, the miniature airport with the quaint name is woefully underpopulated with noteworthy dining options. Shipyard Brewport, with its tall pints, can help pass the time, but embattled L.L. Bean heiress Linda Bean's processing plant has come under serious scrutiny from the FDA, so tread carefully around her Maine Lobster Cafe. Beyond that, travelers are limited to meager options like Starbucks, Great American Bagel, and Burger King. Better to get in the car and seek alternate fare just a few minutes' drive away.

If you don't feel like heading directly into Portland's Arts District or Old Port, where parking is elusive, there are some great options just west of those, on or near Congress Street. Bonus: The eateries in question will also be useful for anyone arriving via Amtrak train or Concord Coach bus at the Portland Transportation Center, which is anything but central to downtown Portland. From doughnuts to barbecue to pizza to Thai food, here's a handy map to serve as a guide. Note: map points are listed west to east.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Locally Sauced

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4 Thompsons Point #107
Portland, ME 04102
(207) 835-7012
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Stop into Thompson’s Point en route to the airport, where Locally Sauced serves up all kinds of Tex Mex dishes: tacos, burritos, enchiladas, nachos, and pulled pork sandwiches. Whatever you get goes perfectly with a destressing beverage of your choice, found at the winery, brewery, and distillery that flank the restaurant. The restaurant is BYOB, so pick up a bottle or cans from Stroudwater Distillery, Bissell Brothers, or Cellardoor Winery first.

2. Tony's Donut Shop

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9 Bolton St
Portland, ME 04102
(207) 772-2727
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A family-run institution since 1965, Tony's makes its popular, dense cake doughnuts by hand daily. Other styles are also worth trying, from Maine whoopie pies to enormous "éclairs" (more like elongated Boston cream doughnuts). The best part may be the hours: seven days a week from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m.

3. Amato's

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312 Saint John St
Portland, ME 04102
(207) 828-5978
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With grab-and-go options like baked ziti or cheese pazzo bread (basically cheese pizza with the sauce on the side) plus plenty of made-to-order pizzas and wraps, Amato's has long been a good choice for hungry travelers. Looking for an iconic Maine sandwich that doesn't involve lobster? Amato's is home of "the Real Italian," a classic sub with ham, cheese, and all the veggies.

4. Huong's Vietnamese Restaurant

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267 Saint John Street
Portland, ME 04102
(207) 775-2344
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Huong Le's first pho restaurant, which closed years ago, was well-loved. This new, similarly named venture has rekindled that love. The pictures and accompanying descriptions the restaurant shares on Facebook are inviting and informative, and a hearty bowl of the weekly special will get flyers through a connecting flight or two.

5. Pizza Villa

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940 Congress St
Portland, ME 04102
(207) 774-1777
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A neighborhood institution founded in 1965, Pizza Villa serves up great pies in only one size (10-inch). Order at the counter and enjoy at a booth, or take it over to the connected old-school bar where the beer is ice cold.

6. The 5 Spot

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937 Congress Street
Portland, ME 04102
(207) 536-1430
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Authentic Philly cheesesteak lovers are raving about this deli, where you can get a small selection of sub sandwiches, including that famed cheesesteak. Order one "Whiz wit" (with Cheez Whiz) to sound like a pro.

7. Salvage BBQ

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919 Congress St
Portland, ME 04102
(207) 553-2100
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For lunch or dinner, chef/owner Jay Villani's barbecue joint offers expertly smoked brisket, ribs, chopped pork, pies, and more. Order at the counter for take-out or dining in, or belly up to the bar and have one of the sixteen local beers offered on tap.

8. Saeng Thai House

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921 Congress St
Portland, ME 04102
(207) 780-0900
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In a town with no shortage of Thai restaurants, this unassuming spot has been serving some of Portland's best Thai food for twenty years.

9. The Holy Donut

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194 Park Ave
Portland, ME 04101
(207) 874-7774
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This modern Portland landmark opens at 6:30 a.m. A Maine potato doughnut (the dark chocolate sea salt is world-class) and cup of Coffee By Design joe can make an early departure much more bearable. There are even gluten-free options.

1. Locally Sauced

4 Thompsons Point #107, Portland, ME 04102

Stop into Thompson’s Point en route to the airport, where Locally Sauced serves up all kinds of Tex Mex dishes: tacos, burritos, enchiladas, nachos, and pulled pork sandwiches. Whatever you get goes perfectly with a destressing beverage of your choice, found at the winery, brewery, and distillery that flank the restaurant. The restaurant is BYOB, so pick up a bottle or cans from Stroudwater Distillery, Bissell Brothers, or Cellardoor Winery first.

4 Thompsons Point #107
Portland, ME 04102

2. Tony's Donut Shop

9 Bolton St, Portland, ME 04102

A family-run institution since 1965, Tony's makes its popular, dense cake doughnuts by hand daily. Other styles are also worth trying, from Maine whoopie pies to enormous "éclairs" (more like elongated Boston cream doughnuts). The best part may be the hours: seven days a week from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m.

9 Bolton St
Portland, ME 04102

3. Amato's

312 Saint John St, Portland, ME 04102

With grab-and-go options like baked ziti or cheese pazzo bread (basically cheese pizza with the sauce on the side) plus plenty of made-to-order pizzas and wraps, Amato's has long been a good choice for hungry travelers. Looking for an iconic Maine sandwich that doesn't involve lobster? Amato's is home of "the Real Italian," a classic sub with ham, cheese, and all the veggies.

312 Saint John St
Portland, ME 04102

4. Huong's Vietnamese Restaurant

267 Saint John Street, Portland, ME 04102

Huong Le's first pho restaurant, which closed years ago, was well-loved. This new, similarly named venture has rekindled that love. The pictures and accompanying descriptions the restaurant shares on Facebook are inviting and informative, and a hearty bowl of the weekly special will get flyers through a connecting flight or two.

267 Saint John Street
Portland, ME 04102

5. Pizza Villa

940 Congress St, Portland, ME 04102

A neighborhood institution founded in 1965, Pizza Villa serves up great pies in only one size (10-inch). Order at the counter and enjoy at a booth, or take it over to the connected old-school bar where the beer is ice cold.

940 Congress St
Portland, ME 04102

6. The 5 Spot

937 Congress Street, Portland, ME 04102

Authentic Philly cheesesteak lovers are raving about this deli, where you can get a small selection of sub sandwiches, including that famed cheesesteak. Order one "Whiz wit" (with Cheez Whiz) to sound like a pro.

937 Congress Street
Portland, ME 04102

7. Salvage BBQ

919 Congress St, Portland, ME 04102

For lunch or dinner, chef/owner Jay Villani's barbecue joint offers expertly smoked brisket, ribs, chopped pork, pies, and more. Order at the counter for take-out or dining in, or belly up to the bar and have one of the sixteen local beers offered on tap.

919 Congress St
Portland, ME 04102

8. Saeng Thai House

921 Congress St, Portland, ME 04102

In a town with no shortage of Thai restaurants, this unassuming spot has been serving some of Portland's best Thai food for twenty years.

921 Congress St
Portland, ME 04102

9. The Holy Donut

194 Park Ave, Portland, ME 04101

This modern Portland landmark opens at 6:30 a.m. A Maine potato doughnut (the dark chocolate sea salt is world-class) and cup of Coffee By Design joe can make an early departure much more bearable. There are even gluten-free options.

194 Park Ave
Portland, ME 04101

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