In my mind the Dogfish Company was established in 1987, while watching a sunset on a beach in Menemsha Harbor on Martha's Vineyard. Legally we were recognized as a formal corporation in the state of Maine in 1995. In 1987, I had only just started working in the restaurant biz, but somehow I knew, someday I'd own a restaurant. Drinking beers with my old friend Beanz on that beautiful beach, I told him so.
"Beanz someday I'm going to open a bar called the Dogfish Bar & Breakfast Café?"
His response was: "Will I be able to drink for free?"
A very costly promise I often now regret making!
In 1995, the Dogfish Company, inc. was organized. Back then we trained young minds to bartend & also had a beverage catering business. In 1999, we opened the Dogfish Market in Portland's West End. We were open 7 days a week, morning to night. We served the best breakfast sandwiches in town, great big deli grinders (does anyone remember the Manic Molly?) & had an assortment of beer & wine for sale. We ran the market for 5 years & gained a small but loyal customer base. With Chris Roux, my good friend & longest tenured Dogfish crew member at the helm, I was free to look into other opportunities.
In 2002, I noticed a vacant building for sale in Portland's prominent St. John neighborhood. (Insert tongue in cheek) In early 2003, the Dogfish Café opened. Small (real small), intimate (real intimate), but very successful, we were soon looking to expand the Dogfish empire. In 2006, I acquired the building at 128 Free Street & soon we were running the second Dogfish location, the Dogfish Bar & Grille.
We continued to build our beverage catering biz, Spirits, & now that division is a very significant part of the puzzle. That's the short & sweet story up till now. Hopefully more to come.
I would like to thank all our wonderful staff who work hard to make your experience pleasant & I'd like to thank all of our patrons for their continued support. We hope to see you all soon & often!
See ya at the Dogfish!