Portland Food & Drink is the best source for online menus, news on restaurant openings, and snarky, user-penned feedback.”
In October, New York Magazine ran an article called Play in Portland’s Shadows. I have no idea why this just popped up in my linkback list, but the Related Links section made me laugh.
Portland Food & Drink is the best source for online menus, news on restaurant openings, and snarky, user-penned feedback.
Their words, not mine. I accept this award in the name of all the people who have caused me such angst, it has made me snarky.
The 2008 James Beard nominations have been announced
A few Portland chefs made the list:
Rising Star Chef of the Year: Gabriel Rucker, Le Pigeon
Best Chef Northwest: Scott Dolich, Park Kitchen (Second year in a row)
Best Chef NW: Greg Higgins of Higgins, John Gorham owner/chef of Toro Bravo, Cathy Whims, Nostrana
Outstanding Pastry Chef: Ken Forkish, Ken’s Artisan Bakery
Wine and Spirits Professional: Stephen R. McCarthy, Clear Creek Distillery
Both branches of Pix Patisserie have closed
According to the rumor mill, they will be replaced by a single large location on East Burnside. Details to come.
Roxana and Daniel, the Chef’s brought up from the Bay area to take over clarklewis have left. I’ve heard several versions of why, but let’s just say they needed another change. The Bluehour Chef de Cuisine, Dolan Lane is taking over in their place. After hearing quite a bit about clarklewis and all of its inherent problems, I don’t have much long-term hope for it, but wish them the best.
A Cena chef Scott Champine is moving to Bluehour as Chef de Cuisine. Hmm. I have to say, I didn’t hear many flattering things about a Cena.
Meanwhile, some private “chef for the stars” from Los Angeles is taking over in his place. I have a bit of hope for a Cena, as I think under the right hands it could thrive.
Lots of rumors have Stu Stein of the defunct Terroir at Aquariva, but I don’t believe it myself. I just can’t imagine… hmm. I was thinking he had probably been run out of town.
Vesta, the large high-end restaurant in Vancouver has closed.
I hate to say it, but I think their plans were just a bit too ambitious, and Vancouver wasn’t ready for it.
Let’s talk more about pet peeves in dining service.
Coincidentally, Gale Green published a list that was much more complete than ours (near the bottom of the page. Even more here). Some of the entries:
1. Seeing TVs anyplace that’s not a sports bar, but especially in otherwise upscale restaurants.
2. Being called “guys” (as in “Hi guys” or “How are you guys doing?”) by an invariably 20-something waitperson we’ve never even met before
3. The over-pouring of bottled water, especially in larger groups where the focus is on conversation so you might not even notice until you see how many bottles of unordered water end up on your check — and see how many full glasses of water are left on the table.
4. Bringing to the table an open bottle of wine that you’d ordered by the glass, and then not even bothering to let you taste it first before they pour.
5. Wine served at the improper temperature
6. Too-sweet desserts (more common in the 1990s) or too-salty desserts (more common today)
7. Being brought 7 petit fours for your table of 8
You can see a compendium from a variety of restaurant critics by reading her post.
Dave J. says
By “the original Pix on Hawthorne,” do you mean the one next to Pastaworks? I think the word “original” may be confusing, since as far as I know it was their most recent location.
1st was Division, 2nd Hawthorne, 3rd on Williams Ave.
Food Dude says
oops… you are right. I was thinking of the division location. I don’t think I even knew about the Hawthorne loc. Thanks Yogi.
Dave J. says
Wait, so now I’m confused. Which one closed?
The Pix website just lists the Williams and Division location, so I’m guessing that the Hawthorne location was indeed the one that closed. Remember that at first it was a tapas bar, with some collaboration with the guy from Navarre, and maybe a year ago it turned into another Pix outpost.
John Taboada = Navarre
I’m greatly relieved that the one on Division didn’t close. That’s the one I live near and treat myself to now and again.
I’m sad Yakuza is no longer doing sushi. It was actually the one place in this town that I ate sushi at. Wah-wah.
Ahem. Let’s get it right: The original Pix is alive & well on SE Division across from Lauro. The location on SE Hawthorne opened originally as Bar Pastiche, a wonderful collaboration btn the folks from Pix and Navarre, a wine bar w a balanced mix of sweet & savory bites, next to Pastaworks. It lost the savory half of the equation [too bad!], and morphed into another Pix outpost. That, apparently, is the location that’s closed.
Thanks to pdxgout for straightening that all out. I still miss Bar Pastiche. More Pastaworks is not what I had hoped for in that space but that is what we are going to get. Sign on the door says Pastaworks will be reclaiming this space.
Food dude, why no visits to Aquariva? Sure it is run by corporate soul suckers, and the menu is waaay to expansive, but I had a very nice meal there a few weeks ago. Small plates, excellent service, a cutesy homemade ravioli, an excellent cheese plate, and a stellar collection of meat dishes made me one very pleasantly surprised diner.
I was even considering it for my wedding next year, that is, if the place still exists.
Food Dude says
To tell you the truth, I forgot about Aquariva. Also, as you say, it is expensive, and I’m focusing on more moderately priced places.
actually, i thought the menu was too expansive, as in vast…i go by bourdain’s maxim that a restaurant should do just a few things, and do them well. they have about 40 selections, which I suppose makes sense if the dishes are viewed as tapas style. the menu was double sided, two “concepts” a red and white menu-lighter fare for the white menu and heavier northern italian for the red.
(now if they could change that to red menu and black menu they could pare the menu with quotes from Stendahl’s excellent “Rouge et noir”, one of my favorite books, but I digress, and who wants to eat off the “noir” menu anyway?)
in terms of price, i found the prices to be fairy reasonable, the wine list was pricey, but no different than a place like Tabla really. If I recall correctly, everything was around $10-$18…and since the portions were larger than your traditional tapas you would find at Toro Bravo or Patanegra, it turned out to be a pretty good deal.
anyway, i would love to hear what you thought of the place. the atmosphere i sweird, which WW captured in their restaurant guide, but I liked it. plus, maybe you could figure out if the place is going to make it another year, as a staff emmber told me they weren’t doing so well.