MANGER: PORTLAND, MAINE

I realized today that I have never written down my go-to recs for Portland. I couldn't f@$&ing believe it. I've spent every summer there for the past 15 years (maybe more, I've actually lost count) and I haven't blogged about Portland. Good god, what is wrong with me?

Portland is famously a foodie heaven. And I swear it's not bullshit. There are more restaurants per capita in Portland than any other city in the US... and most of them are outstanding. Like James Beard Award outstanding. Since summer is basically here, and my fellow New Englanders are excitedly planning their long weekends, I thought I would share my faves in case you were venturing to my favorite little city in the Maine.


Eventide Oyster Co.
86 Middle Street | $$-$$$

Oysters at Eventide Oyster Co. | Portland, Maine | Pret A blog | meaghanmurray.com

Eventide is one of my favorite restaurants in Portland. It's a cozy spot with an incredible menu. There is always a wait but if you go during off-peak hours you can easily grab a seat the bar and watch the bartenders craft some awesome cocktails. Also, you can get Tabasco ice with your oysters. Tabsco. Ice. That alone is worth the hour wait.

MANGER: oysters (with Tabasco ice - seriously though), fluke crudo, Eventide lobster roll, chickpea fries and the biscuits (with bacon butter). 


Pai Men Miyake
188 State Street | $$

Ramen at Pai Men Miyake | Portland, Maine | Pret A blog | meaghanmurray.com

Ugh, guys, just thinking of the Paitan ramen makes me drool. This place though. It's a perfect spot to escape the freezing winter temps with a bowl of ramen. Or grab a sushi roll in the summer. Actually, F it, get ramen in the summer. YOLO.

MANGER: brussel sprouts, Paitan ramen (with extra spicty garlic paste) and the tuna sushi roll.


Portland Hunt & Alpine Club
75 Market Street | $$-$$$

Portland Hunt & Alpine Club | Portland, Maine | Pret A blog | meaghanmurray.com

Don't let the name fool you, this place has nothing to do with fox hunts. It has everything to do with Scandinavian food and craft cocktails. I've never seen such an unique array of charcuterie boards. And they have house-made pretzals. Nom.

MANGER: herb-toasted nuts, house pretzels, and POPCORN AND CHAMPAGNE.


Fore Street
288 Fore Street | $$$

Fore Street restaurant | Portland, Maine | Pret A blog | meaghanmurray.com

Fore Street is my favorite.restaurant.anywhere.period. I feel like they are constantly up for a James Beard award, because, yeah, they should be. The attention to detail, the locally sourced ingredients, the bread. DAMN. It's a pain in the ass to get a rez, you can always show up at 5p.m. and put your name on the waitlist for the night, but if you try Opentable or call a few weeks in advance, you're golden.

MANGER: Since the menu is local and seasonal, it's tough to recommend something. Their fois gras is stupidly good (yeah, I know it's not PC...), the meat and fish are so fresh and I always enjoy their vegetable sides. And eat all the bread. All.of.it.


Central Provisions
414 Fore Street | $$$
Central Provisions | Portland, Maine | Pret A blog | meaghanmurray.com

Central Provisions is getting a lot of press these days. Their menu of small plates ranges from unique salads to oysters and crudo to paninis. They were a contender for a James Beard award this year - and they definitely deserve all of the notoriety they are getting.

MANGER: beet salad, yellowfin tuna crudo, roasted cauliflower, rabbit panini, baja fish sandwich.


There are so many places I'm leaving out: Hugo's, Duckfat, Zapoteca... and so many new places are popping up. (Like The Honey Paw, from the guys at Eventide. I can't wait to try that one out... basically Asian small plates. )

Definitely let me know if you try any of these places. I'd love to hear what you think.

Bon appétit!

MANGER: BANANA ICE CREAM

If you randomly walked up to me on the street and asked if I was a savory or sweet person, 9 times out of 10 I would say savory... BUT recently I've been craving fro yo. All the fro-yo.

With warmer weather [hopefully] around the corner, a girl needs to get her bikini bod ready... so the solution to my fro-yo addiction: banana ice cream. SERIOUSLY, TRUST ME.

Recipe for Banana Ice Cream | Pret A blog | meaghanmurray.com

Ingredients
1 - 1 1/2 frozen bananas (like overnight frozen, not a couple hours frozen)
1/8 cup almond milk (more if needed)
1 heaping tbsp powered peanut butter (I love the PB2 brand)
1 handful of chocolate chips (I've been feeling Whole Foods' dark chocolate chunks lately)

Blend all ingredients until the mixture resembles an ice cream consistency (approx. 20 seconds).

Put in bowl or mug. Eat. Do a happy dance.

PORTER: LILLY PULITZER x TARGET

Friends, brace yourself, because the Target x Lilly Pulitzer lookbook was just released, and it's good. REAL good.

Lilly isn't always my go-to style choice, but as a preppy leaning New Englander, I'm stupidly excited about this collab.

Amazing, right? They NAILED everything. They have us covered for basically every summer event - beach day, happy hour, music festival, wedding. Lilly would be so proud.

The collection will be released on April 19th. In the meantime, you can stalk the whole line on Target.com.

Bring on summer and see you in line!

VOYAGER: PARIS

The Louvre | Paris, France | Paris Travel Guide | Pret A blog | meaghanmurray.com

It's no secret that Paris is my favorite place on Earth. I spend the majority of my time trying find a way to visit again, and I day dream about living there. Oh la la.

SO I've been talking about writing a Paris post since last February. It just seemed like such a daunting task...to summarize the trip... because I love the city so much, SO MUCH, that it seemed impossible. I figured I would try to simplify and post 6 things to do when you're in the city. These 6 things are some of my favorites but I really don't like the idea of categorizing them that way. These are more like 6 things you HAVE to do at least once. HAVE TO. (Judging so much if you don't.)

The Tuileries
The.BEST.people.watching. But seriously, it's a catwalk. If you have time, and of course you do because you're strolling through Paris LIKEABOSS, sit in one of the iconic green chairs and pretend you're a local. There's nothing like it.

The Marais
Plan to not have a plan when you're visiting the 3rd and 4th arrondissements. Take your time, get lost. It's the best neighborhood. (The food doesn't suck either.) If you're looking for the iconic architecture of Paris, you've found it. Make it a point to visit the Place des Vosges.

Merci
Visit Merci. It's an incredible shop in the Marais with two wonderful restaurants. Grab a cappuccino in the library cafe after you do a little window shopping. Or whole paycheck shopping.

The Rodin Museum
The Rodin Musee is GORGEOUS. Try to visit on a sunny day so you can walk the grounds. It's a mini-Versailles right in the middle of Paris. And there's a cafe in the garden.

The Musee D'Orsay
I love this museum. I would easily spend hours in there just wandering around. The restaurants are delish too... so I could potentially move in and call it a day. If you're looking for the ultimate Instagram, head up to the top floor and through the impressionist exhibit to get the clock shot.

Le Grand Colbert
There are thousands of fab restaurants in Paris but this is my favorite. I love the ambiance. It's iconic Paris right out of the 20s. And the roast chicken and fries is TO.DIE. And get the profiteroles for dessert. You really can't go wrong. (BTW, this is the restaurant in the Something's Gotta Give. Diane Keaton knows what she's talking about.)

PORTER: #JCREWNYFW

Friends, countrymen, it's New York Fashion Week and I'm reporting to you live from... my couch. I've tried to keep up since shows started last Wednesday but with my company's 50th anniversary events kicking off on Thursday, I've been a tiny bit busy.

As you can probably imagine, I'm always the most excited for J.Crew's presentation. Lucky for us, they just posted behind the scenes of all the last minute touches.

All of the spring colors are helping to brighten my day... if only they could melt some of the snow. A girl can dream, right? If you need a little more color in your life, you can see all of the pics over at the J.Crew blog.

And if you're stuck inside like me because the millionth snowstorm and need a little retail therapy, J.Crew has a pretty epic sale going on right now. Ch-ch-check it out.