Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Norm's Bar & Grill

On the day of this review, we were in the mood for comfort food, but since it was sunny and springlike, we didn't necessary want anything heavy like beef stew or mounds of pasta. Had to find someplace that would offered a decent variety to choose from to help make up our minds, so we settled on Norm's Bar & Grill.

Norm's is located on Congress Street, almost directly across from the Post Office, so at times parking can be a challenge. We lucked out, though, and got a spot almost right in front of the restaurant.


Since we were early, we had our pick of tables and chose a booth near the window for people-watching. The waitress came over and got our drink order right away (always a plus). We also asked her for something that wasn't on the menu: a portabello mushroom appetizer, grilled and dressed in balsamic vinegar. It's a treat that Norm's used to serve years ago but is no longer available...unless you ask, because the kitchen was more than happy to accommodate us (see photo). A yummy start.

My hungrygals companion ordered the meat pie (lamb and beef combo) and I got the grilled Rachel, which is basically a Reuben made with turkey instead of corned beef.

The meat pie looked more like a calzone than a pie. Guess we were expecting something more like a chicken pot pie or something, but despite being a bit hard to eat - it looks like something you can eat with your hands but really a knife and fork worked best - the ground beef and lamb mixture was very good. Warm, juicy and seasoned well, it was served atop a salad with a side of rice.

The Rachel was delicious. Norm's uses REAL sliced turkey, the kind you get at Thanksgiving, not the uber-processed, sodium-bomb type from the deli. The sandwhich, served on rye, was stacked high with saurkraut and moist, tender turkey. A sucker for cabbage of all kinds, I asked for a side of cole slaw too, which was crispy and sweet.

The meat pie took a bit long to cook, but the waitress warned us of that up front. Our bill came to $34 without tip. The four-legged hungrygals missed out on the portabello (mushrooms are on the do-not-feed-your-dog list) but they did enjoy the leftover beef/lamb from the pie and turkey from the Rachel.
Two thumbs and two paws up for Norm's!

Norm's Bar and Grill
(207) 828-9944
617 Congress St, Portland, ME 04101

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