Your Amuse Bouche – News Roundup for 2.4.2013

Ox Restaurant Portland - Dessert

Dessert at OX

A reader sends this note: When I went to grad school at the CIA I had to purchase all new chef’s pants and uniforms. By then, I’d collected dozens of pairs of them, and had lots of jackets (because I’d been working as a sous chef for years- having started from the bottom up when I was 17). So I never used most of the new pants. I have 5-6 pairs of unworn pants (maybe more if I really start counting) and un-used kerchiefs and hats. They’re CIA grade, high quality, and were expensive. I no longer work as a chef, and so will NEVER use them. I’m not looking for much, but they cost me an arm and a leg and I’d like to get something for them, while freeing up some of my emotional energy and closet space. It’s time to let go and move on. If anyone is interested, you can reach her at:

For the third year in a row, Coava Coffee Barista Devin Chapman has held onto his title as champion at the Northwest Regional Barista Competition. In 2011, Coava swept the Northwest Barista Competition when Devin won the inaugural Brewers Cup competition, while his coworker Sam Purvis took first in the Barista Competition. As if one trophy wasn’t enough, in 2012, Devin won both the Brewers Cup top honor as well as became the Northwest Barista Champion for the first time. Congratulations to Coava! You can visit them at 1300 SE Grand Blvd., in Portland.

The Valentine’s Day roundup is being updated regularly with new options. If you are still making plans, you can check it out here.

In case you didn’t see the press release, The Pie Spot has opened their brick and mortar café and bakery. The storefront is replacing their old cart, but is located right around the corner at 521 NE 24th Avenue. The new store has a full espresso bar and take-and-bake pies along with pie holes and pot pies. What are pie holes? It’s an individual size pie. The Pie Spot cart has been featured on the front page of the A&E section of The Oregonian, and in segments on “Eat Street,” “Cheap Bites with Eddie Huang,” and the soon-to-air “Andy Bates Street Feasts” on The Cooking Channel. I like them too – recommended.

The much-anticipated Tasty n Alder has opened to big crowds. They don’t seem to have an official website yet, but you can see the draft opening menus over at OregonLive. I’m not going to go in until they’ve been open a few months. Cough. Well, not for a review anyway.

This strange little smart phone application caught my eye – GrubTonight. From the PR, GrubTonight – Meet Awesome Strangers Over Dinner Tonight.

It’s hard to find the right time, place or crowd to meet people, so we combined all of these things in a simple iPhone app. Imagine meeting the person of your dreams, making new friends or landing a new job, all over dinner…tonight. GrubTonight let’s you join group dinners with awesome people every night of the week. The dinners are casual, the people are approachable, and if you’d like, you can always bring your closest friend!Note: Los Angeles is the first city to launch, but cities such as New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, Seattle, Washington D.C and many others are on the horizon. Help your city launch sooner by letting us know in the app!”

At first I thought this was kind of creepy, but after thinking about it, I can see how it might appeal to people. There have been lots of times I need a dinner companion for a review but my friends are all busy. When they come to Portland, I’ll be interested in hearing how it goes.

Finally, from, a Gresham bakery recently refused to bake a wedding cake for a same-sex couple.

The incident began on Jan. 17 when a mother and daughter showed up at Sweet Cakes by Melissa looking for the perfect wedding cake.

Klein apologized to the women and told them he and his wife do not make cakes for same-sex marriages.

“I believe that marriage is a religious institution ordained by God,” Klein, who owns the bakery with his wife Melissa, is quoted as saying. Specifying that he does not consider himself to be anti-gay — “I’ll sell [gay people] stuff…I’ll talk to them, it’s fine”

The Oregon Department of Justice is looking into the matter, saying that it “may violate a law prohibiting discrimination in places of public accommodation.”

You’d think that would end the story, but not so. The Huffington Post is reporting that Baltimore pastry chef and “Ace of Cakes” star Duff Goldman has offered to bake them a wedding cake and drive it up to them. This is the same Goldman who just did a cake for Barack Obama’s inauguration.

Let me get this um… straight. A guy who owns a business named “Sweet Cakes”, is refusing to make a cake for a same-sex couple. I’m just going to bite my tongue here. If you are in the mood to feel outraged, comments on the KATU website will fill the bill nicely.

Your thoughts are welcome

  1. friendly says

    Point of clarification: the owner of Sweet Cakes did not refuse to make a cake for a same-sex couple, he refused to make a cake for a wedding for a same-sex couple. Previously he had made a cake for one of the women mentioned in the article.

  2. themick says

    Well now that that is cleared up I am relieved. I thought it was blatant discrimination so I am glad to hear that he is just discriminating in his discrimination!

  3. Bertha Pearl says

    I am happy when people make me aware of their politics. If I disagree with them I can spend my money elsewhere.

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