News this morning is that the Portland branch of the worldwide chain Todai has closed.
The restaurant, on the top floor of the downtown Portland Pioneer Square Mall was known for its huge buffet, which featured all you can eat sushi and rolls, as well as a huge selection of other Asian/Asian-fusion dishes.
Though it is a franchised chain, the restaurant was popular with many people, especially for the free birthday meals. This was such a big part of their business model, they asked everyone if it was their birthday when they came in the door.
Todai opened it’s Portland location in 2000 to long lines; the first time I stopped in for dinner the wait was over an hour. However, the buzz faded over time, the food has gone downhill and the closing was not much of a surprise. Calls to the restaurant have gone unanswered, and the website is gone. A handwritten sign on the door says they are closed.