Restaurant Updates: Pizza, Bagels, Brunch and More

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I thought I’d catch us up on the current status of stories I’ve been following here on the blog.

The Lift Off Lounge is open. Newcomer praised as a highly anticipated “non dive-bar” for the neighborhood (Rose City Park/Hollywood), The Lift Off Lounge had their soft opening last week; response from the neighborhood seems pretty positive. On Tuesday they posted on their Instagram account, “Thanks to everyone who came out to support for our soft opening weekend!!!……. we will be opening for regular hours sometime this week.” From what I can gather, 5pm seems to be their opening time of choice until they establish their regular hours. 5216 NE Sandy Blvd, Portland

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Photo credit: The Lift Off Lounge Continue reading “Restaurant Updates: Pizza, Bagels, Brunch and More”

The Continuing Cully Brunch Saga

Yesterday PDX Eater published an update related to the Beeswing situation—turns out the owner, Kevin Dorney, shut the location down and opened it up again at Cafe TBD, which I plan on checking out (love supporting food biz in Cully). All the Beeswing staff is there at TBD… except for Marissa Lorette and Ian Watson, the two chefs who launched the Kickstarter (and were part of the original Beeswing).

The opening of Cafe TBD is great news for the tiny world of Cully brunching, and I wish them only the best. But I can’t help but think there’s a whole load of stuff we just don’t know… the rest of the story could be pretty interesting. We (Kickstarter backers) did get an email from Marissa and Ian yesterday clarifying Cafe TBD is a totally separate business from Beeswing, which is helpful, and that they are working hard to find a new space.

I wish everyone involved only the best and look forward to putting all their delicious brunch food in my belly… like this “savory black sesame scallion waffle with sweet fermented chili glazed fried chicken, topped with a sunny egg.”

Good News From Beeswing: They Will Reopen

Full disclosure: I backed Beeswing’s Kickstarter

In my little corner of the Portland food world, my attention was grabbed most intensely over the past few weeks by the Beeswing situation—unfortunate wording in their Kickstarter leading to a number of pledges being canceled (mine was); the impassioned plea to resubmit donations (I did); and then the news that their silent partner would not sell them the business so they had to close.

News was sent out to Beeswing’s Kickstarter supporters this morning that they will indeed reopen, just in a different space. I wonder if that means they will leave Cully (likely); after all, the Country Cat space is open, among others. Here is the message they sent out today:

Hello Beautiful Backers,

Unfortunately our business partner refused to sell us the business. After 2 1/2 years of working towards this goal with him, he decided out of the blue to close the restaurant. We are in shock. Beeswing was our baby, our identity as chefs, our livelihood.

Beeswing will live on. We are currently looking at restaurant spaces (I am seeing 3 today). We have an amazing amount of support from you and our community. We are looking to make this a fast transition. We will honor all the perks at the new restaurant, and keep you updated along the way. Every penny of the money you backed us with will go into creating the new restaurant.

This is what we do. We are excited to get back to cooking beautiful food for our community. Ultimately you will have the honor of empowering us to be the sole owners of our restaurant.

Thank you Thank You Thank You from the bottom of our hearts.

Great news, best of luck to them, and I can’t wait to see what happens next!

First Tastes: Sweet, Savory, Salad

Portland is full of delicious food, so here are some first impressions on the latest tasty things I’ve eaten recently in town.

Dahi Papri Chaat | Bollywood Theatre. I ate lunch there a while back and really enjoyed the meal, but the dish that has really stuck with me is their Dahi Papri Chaat. It starts with a base of housemade garbanzo bean flour crackers, then topped with small dark chickpeas, little cubes of potatoes, yogurt, cilantro, tamarind chutney, all dusted with chili powder and topped with sev, a kind of crunchy noodle made from chickpea flour paste. I had something like this at Dosa Hutt in Flushing a few years ago, and have been hoping to encounter a similar dish since. It’s quite saucy and very flavorful; a true flavor bomb. I love the contrasts of cooling yogurt and spicy chili powder, earthy chickpeas and tart chutney. I could eat this every day.Ā bollywoodtheaterpdx.com, 2039 NE Alberta Street, PortlandĀ  Continue reading “First Tastes: Sweet, Savory, Salad”