Eric Bechard of Thistle fame wrote me an annoyed letter earlier this week because I had failed to mention his new restaurant, “The Kingdom of Roosevelt“, which is slated to open the 2nd week of February. When I pointed out that he hadn’t included me in the press release mailing, he apologized, and asked that I mention it now, because it dovetails in with The Hunt video I posted about earlier today. So… in case you aren’t aware of his plans, here is the information:
Over the past 4 years, while living in the Willamette valley, I have had an incredible opportunity to work side by side with the farmers and ranchers that have made thistle what is has become. We are now dictated by 15 small family farms within 45 miles of the restaurant that supply us with 95% of our food product year round. We also have a hand in seed selection for the upcoming seasons and heritage breed development as well as start up animal husbandry programs.
The focus of the Portland restaurant will still be on Oregon agriculture but in a bit of a different lens: We have been developing some “wild game” programs (wood pigeon, American blue rabbit, fallow deer and canvasback duck) with the intention of opening this restaurant and it will reflect heavily on the cuisine. Along with wild greens, berries, nuts, seeds, mushrooms, whole grains and river and shellfish we will be featuring sour beers, hard ciders and funky white wine varietals. This restaurant, like thistle, will be doing whole animal butchery and smoking, pickling and curing of said animals. We will also have a small green house and will be working on the cultivation of some wild plants.
The menu will consist of 10-14 items, change daily and will feature a few large format meat cuts and many smaller dishes with the idea of sharing in mind.
Sample menu items:
Whole braised then grilled rabbit for two (carved table side)
Pickled elk tongue with its heart and marrow
Wood pigeon pie for two
Roasted and raw matsutake with emmer and smoked apples
Razor clams cooked in shell with spruce and rhubarb juice
Smoked pheasant soup with brassicas, chestnut dumplings and pickled chestnuts
Beetroot, yoghurt, dill, horseradish and oxalis
Nettle and wild garlic soup with duck egg and wood lettuce
Good luck, Eric!