Tidbits for June 23

Jessica Jewell labels bottles of Twenty 2 vodka at the distillery she owns with her husband, Scott Galbiati, in Houlton on Friday, Jan. 8, 2010. The idea to maufacture vodka started as a college project then quickly turned into a family business. (Bangor Daily News/Kevin Bennett)
Jessica Jewell labels bottles of Twenty 2 vodka at the distillery she owns with her husband, Scott Galbiati, in Houlton on Friday, Jan. 8, 2010. The idea to maufacture vodka started as a college project then quickly turned into a family business. (Bangor Daily News/Kevin Bennett)
Posted June 22, 2010, at 6:09 p.m.

Houlton’s own Twenty2 Micro Distilled Vodka, owned and operated by the enterprising young couple Scott Galbiati and Jessica Jewell, has picked up more accolades in the first half of 2010. In addition to being awarded the bronze medal for vodka in the 2009 World Spirits Competition, Twenty2 recently picked up a Gold Medal from the SIP awards, which took place on June 10 in San Diego, Calif. Ordinary consumers judged the SIP awards in a blind tasting, and out of 162 other vodkas, Twenty2 merited a gold medal rating. Back in March, Twenty2 received a gold medal at this year’s San Francisco World Spirits Competition. Their handmade vodka bested big-name brands including Stolichnaya and Smirnoff. Twenty2 is available at most Hannaford supermarkets and liquor stores around the state, and each bottle is still hand-labeled and numbered. For information, visit www.twenty2vodka.com.

One of the joys of summertime is the ability to purchase farm-fresh produce, meat and dairy from the folks who raised it — whether at a farmers market, a farm stand or co-op, or through a farm share. With local food a hot topic in discussion about food nationwide, now is a perfect time to learn a little more about what farming and growing in Maine is like. Maine Farmland Trust, a statewide nonprofit which works to preserve farmland and keep Maine’s farms farming, is hosting “Meet Your Farmer,” a series of eight short profiles of farms in Maine, starting at 6 p.m. Friday, June 25, at the Strand Theatre in Rockland. From the potato harvest in Aroostook County, to the innovations of a seventh-generation farmer Down East, to the struggles of a dairy farmer in western Maine, the short films detail the long history and current vitality of farming in Maine. The evening kicks off with a reception featuring local, farm-fresh hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar from 6 to 7 p.m. Viewing will start at 7:15 p.m. Filmmakers Cecily Pingree and Jason Mann, several of the featured farmers, and MFT executive director John Piotti will provide additional commentary. Coffee and chocolates will be served after the films. The cost is $25 for the entire evening, $20 for MFT members, or $10 for films and coffee. To purchase tickets, call MFT at 338-6575, or buy them at the Strand box office the day of the event. For information, visit www.mainefarmlandtrust.org.

Bar Harbor’s Havana has opened a new location in Portland called Havana South. The original Bar Harbor location has successfully merged Latin American cuisine with local Maine ingredients for more than a decade, and owners Michael Boland and Deirdre Swords recognized an opportunity to expand its reach to the restaurant-heavy southern portion of Maine. Havana South opened for dining on June 22, and is located at 44-50 Wharf St. in Portland’s Old Port. Havana in Bar Harbor welcomes a new chef this summer, with Culinary Institute of America graduate Jason Casey taking over the kitchen after cooking in New York City for a number of years. For information on menus and coming events at both locations, visit www.havanamaine.com.

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