PORTLAND, Maine — Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy had trouble remembering one of his past girlfriends was from Lewiston, but it seems he'll remember the pizza he had at Monte's Fine Foods in Portland for quite some time.
Portnoy recently came to Maine to film a series of his popular "One Bite Pizza Reviews," and while it's unclear whether he ventured beyond Portland, he definitely liked at least one pie he tasted in the city.
"8.4. I love it. I love it," Portnoy said after tasting Monte's pizza.
Monte's 8.4 score ranks in the top 100 of the 1,568 pizza reviews Portnoy has done. The reviews include pizza in the United States and abroad.
The review was posted Friday on the "One Bite Pizza Reviews" YouTube channel, which has more than one million subscribers. In a Facebook post on Monday, Monte's said it has been "experiencing unprecedented demand for pizza" in recent days. The market said it was taking steps to address the issues.
During the Monte's review, Portnoy also said he spent time in Portland when he was younger because he dated someone who told people she was from Auburn even though she was actually from a different Maine town. While the name escaped him at first, he eventually asked his producer, "Where's Bates College?" and remembered it was Lewiston.
Portnoy also reviewed OTTO on Congress Street, scoring it a 7.1, Flatbread Company on Commercial Street, scoring it a 6.8, Slab Sicilian Street Food on Preble Street, scoring it a 6.6, Pizzaiolo on Cumberland Avenue, scoring it a 7.5, Belleville on North Street, scoring it a 7.7, and Micucci Grocery Store on India Street, scoring it a 6.4.
"I was expecting higher just because I know these are all over the place, so the original location I figured would be unbelievable," he said of OTTO. "It's a 7.1. It's okay."
The Flatbread review took an especially Maine turn when a family invited Portnoy to do the review from their boat, which turned out to be a former lobster boat.
"Want to eat it on a lobster boat?" one of the family members asked Portnoy, inviting him onto the boat. "That's the way to do it in Maine."
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Portnoy started The Barstool Fund to help small businesses across the country get the help they needed to stay afloat during the pandemic. Business owners who were still paying their employees could apply and tell the company what they needed for money to stay afloat. Recipients, including multiple eateries in Maine, then received funds for as long as they needed in order to stay in business. The fund raised more than $35 million to provide aid to more than 600 small businesses, according to its website.
Portnoy, a Swampscott, Massachusetts native, has also been a controversial figure since founding Barstool Sports, a blog website and digital media company, in 2003. He has been criticized for using racist language and was accused of sexual assault and harassment by multiple women.