Not a whole lot going on right now, but here’s a few items that may be of interest.
1. Fooku contest is closed. I’ll be sending the entires off to the judges, and we’ll pick the top five for a community vote.
2. Most of people have probably heard, but Gabriel Rucker of Le Pigeon has been named as one of the “top ten chefs in the nation“. How does he celebrate? By closing LP for a week for ‘repairs’ and whatnot.
3. Jim Dixon, occasional food reviewer, writer, olive oil distributor, has written an interesting article over on Culinate.com on making your own dog food from scratch. You can read it here. I haven’t tried it yet, but I plan to. If so, Dog Dude may give it a rating. 4 paws!
4. One of my favorite signs that Spring is here, Portland Farmers Market opens tomorrow, April 7th. If you’ve never been, it’s a must. I always take people from out of town, because they are so impressed. It’s going to be a beautiful day, so go and wander; get some sun.
5. Under the heading of “completely unsubstantiated rumor (ooh, gossip!), but from a pretty reliable source” comes this tidbit. Simpatica has hired an all new serving staff. Supposedly they wanted a ‘fresh start’ from John and Courtney. Everyone was offered catering work as a consolation prize. The sad part about this, is that catering is an entirely different monster. Many can’t cater due to the physical demands and frankly the money isn’t as good. As I said, unsubstantiated.
6. For a while, there was a rumor that Micah of Yakuza, was going to open up a coffee place next door, but will likely open that space for Naomi, for Supper. It’s directly next door to Yakuza, to the north; it’s a cute little freestanding, one-story structure. He’s going to fix it up, put a kitchen along the south wall (at least, that’s the plan to far) so Naomi can “have a place where she can shine.” There is a patio area, which may be available for private parties. Does that mean she’s planning on leaving clarklewis? Hmm.
7. Albina Press has finally signed the paperwork on their new shop. It’s going to be on Hawthorne at the foot of Mount Tabor. Look for it to open sometime in the summer. Stopped by AP today, which was crowded as usual. Both owners were doing their best to get the drinks out to just about everyone on the who’s who list of Portland coffee elite, that had just happened to drop by. Combined with the crowd such a nice afternoon brings out, the end result was a caffeinated chaos. Great people watching.
8. Segafreddo has opened in the old Torrefazione spot (the one with the incredible old tree), in the Lloyd Center area. I’ve dropped by several times. My quick take: pastries by Nuvrei, beer and wine, panini that looks good, but I haven’t tried one, and a very friendly staff. The coffee? Hmm… well, it’s improving since they first opened, but I’m not terribly impressed. Still, it just opened.
Since it is at an intersection with a Pete’s, a Starbucks, and a Grand Central Bakery, I thought it would be fun to compare them all. We should have that finished in a few weeks.
9. Who knew? Jeffrey Chodorow, the well known restaurateur from New York, is opening a new restaurant today specializing in – brace yourself – Pacific Northwest cuisine. According to the NY Times, Charles Ramseyer who was the chef at Ray’s Boathouse in Seattle, will cook with raw materials from this area, including wild Alaskan salmon, black cod, spot prawns, mushrooms, fruits, berries and cheeses, along with wines from Oregon and Washington. Unlike his last venture known for thousands of swords hanging from the ceiling, 250 stylized copper fish hang from this one.
10. Whole Foods is now carrying Dry Soda. I’m not a fan of soda in general, just too sweet for me. However, I’ve been looking for these ever since I heard about them a year or so ago. Unfortunately, they haven’t been available in Oregon until now. Dry Soda is all natural, lightly sweetened, and mostly in flavors you would have probably never imagined. Think kumquat, rhubarb, lemongrass, pear, and lavender, yet the flavors are very subtle. Definitely not a kids drink, this stuff is good enough so adults will enjoy it, and is a good thing to have at dinners for folks that don’t drink alcohol. After trying a few of the flavors, I can see why so many higher end restaurants are carrying it.
11. Jason Barwikowski, the future chef of the ‘Clyde Common‘ in the Ace Hotel space, writes to say he is “looking to hire talented and motivated cooks to round out the kitchen staff“. If you send an email to me, I’ll be happy to pass it along, or give him a call.
12. I am feeling great, and back in the saddle again, working on a whole passel of reviews. Coming up: The Oregonian gave Meriwether’s an mostly rave review with a rating of A- last week. We’ll see if I agree. Autentica, the Mexican restaurant on Killingsworth is steadily gaining a following. I’ll weigh in. I’ve gone back to Pok Pok a few times, and am confident they have ironed out a few service bugs, added even more cocktails, and are coming up with some terrific nightly specials. With this in mind, I’ll update the review a bit this weekend, and award it a star rating: 3.5. I’m in the process of updating my review of Fife, and had my first meal at Ten01 a few days ago. Look for that review in a month or so.
Glad to hear you are feeling better FD. I’m looking forward to more reviews. I read in the O that Le Pigeon is now taking reservations for parties of four or more. Maybe I will actually get to try it out now (I hate waiting for tables…)
Food Dude says
Thanks Apollo. RE: Le Pigeon, I saw the same thing in the Trib. I’m pretty surprised he would do that.
pollo elastico says
Christ, Food Dude. Right when you get back in the saddle, your dog? As a dog lover, I empathize. I’m not sure what’s going on with food production in North America, whether its for dogs or people. WTF?
FD, Glad to hear DD is doing better. Based on the comments on the Jim Dixon article, people are quite happy with the recipe and he has some added comments of his own on how to store and and how long it keeps.
Again, glad to hear DD is back on his paws, so to speak.
Well Seasoned says
Delighted to hear that you’re doing so much better, FD! And also glad to hear that Dog Dude survived the horrendous melamine poisoning. For what it’s worth, I’ve been feeding my dog and my cat a raw meat diet for the past 8 years, they love it and they’re thriving. I used to have to make it myself and supplement it with commercial food to make sure that they got all the nutrients they need, but now you can buy frozen raw meat diets that already contain everything necessary. These foods aren’t cheap, but they can save you a lot in vet bills – especially if your dog or cat is allergic to grains, which many are. Pet Loft on Macadam carries several good brands.
Pollo, I agree – food production in this country is screwed up beyond belief, and we should all be following the rules laid out so eloquently by Michael Pollan in his NY Times article “Unhappy Meals” cited by FD on March 21: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” His explanation of the first rule is: “Don’t eat anything your great-great-grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food.”
Food Dude says
Actually, the dog was the first thing to get sick. At that point, no one knew about the food poisoning. I used the RAW diet for years, but then with 15 hour work days and whatnot, I migrated to a good dry food. That’s been fine; my mistake was not throwing away all the food people gave my dog for christmas. Next year, lesson learned. Now I trust nothing, and have gone back to RAW again. Heck, my dog is just about the most important thing in my life.
Hmm.. I should probably try dating again.
Cuisine Bonne Femme says
I’m so glad you and dog dude are better!
I used to make my own dog food, and sometimes I still do. However when I got my beast (a rescue from some questionable circumstances) she was not in the best shape and my vet recommended Solid Gold brand dog food. Really, I can’t say enough good things about this company and their products. In 8 years, my dog has never been sick, never had a hot spot (and her breed is known for them), and has the energy of a much younger animal. My dog also gets lots of people food such as foie gras, Ken’s artisan pizza, and, just kidding…or maybe her good health is due to all the chicken bones she finds when we go walking or the large amount of chicken poop she likes to eat from my garden…
So sorry to hear about DD. As a big RAW diet advocate, but in the same position as you (not enough hours in the day to make my own) may I recommend MEAT, a raw food store over about 22nd and E. Burnside. Really good selection, helpful staff, and reasonable prices.
FD, welcome back, we missed you.
My 16-year old cat/housemate/companion (got her when she was 6 weeks old) died of renal failure on 3/15/07. I don’t think it was due to the Menu Foods recall since she had been diagnosed with chronic renal failure 16 months ago and her littermate/sister is doing fine. We did have a few cans of the Science Diet gravy stuff in the pantry, which is a scary thought how close we came to feeding this stuff to our cats. We switched over to “Wellness” products mid last year.
Reading the developing story, the finger pointing and corporate spin going on as the FDA tries to figure out how the bad gluten got into the retail products, I am encouraged to continue buying human food DIRECTLY from the grower whenever possible. I may start making my own pet food too. Farmers Markets and small meat producers have always been a great place to meet your food supplier.
Interesting mczlaw article in the O about reservations. Lots of whining from the restaurants but no consideration that some/most of us diners don’t have time or patience to stand outside waiting for a table for dinner!!!
Doctor Stu says
Sorry to hear your dog got sick from all the crap that is in most animal food today. We have had very good luck with the products made by Dick Van Patten (Natural Balance). ALWAYS check the label and never by anything that lists “byproducts” as an ingredient!
syrah girl says
They have dry soda on the menu at Ten 01, they flavors are lavender and kumquat which sound interesting. It is $3 at Ten 01, sounds like something I would like! :)
We’ve been cooking our own dog food for years (one of our dogs has a very delicate stomach and threw up all the store bought stuff). Our recipe is similar to Jim’s. We use hamburger for the protein and frozen green beans for the veggies. Our vet suggested we add a little milk or cottage cheese to the plate for calcium and they love it. We used to warm it up to serve them, but dogs are not gourmands, they eat it cold just fine!
Dry Soda pairs well with food, the rhubarb is great with cured meats (seriously)….I’m glad we can get it here now.