Food News

This Week In Portland Food News: Italian Cocktails, Indian Pizza, and an Upcoming Beer Garden

May 19, 2023 Edition
May 18, 2023
Slurp some spaghetti at the newly opened Grand Amari. (Grand Amari)
As the weather heats up, so does the Portland food scene. This week, we're looking at a new Italian restaurant and bar from the team behind Olympia Provisions, an upcoming Indian pizzeria, and a new chapter for the city's oldest food cart pod. Read on for all of that and more food news. For more ideas, check out our food and drink guide.


Grand Amari List and Little Bitter Bar List
If sipping aperitivo cocktails and snacking on salumi sounds like a fun time to you, we've got some good news. Olympia Provisions co-owners Nate Tilden and Elias Cairo opened their new Italian cafe and restaurant Grand Amari in the Grand Stark Hotel on Wednesday, soon to be followed by Little Bitter Bar, an adjoining cocktail lounge set to launch next Wednesday, May 24. Grand Amari functions as a cafe with items like lemon curd-filled brioche bomboloni, torta caprese, and nettle frittatas by day and transitions into dinner service at night, with a menu of antipasti, pasta, fish, meat, and side dishes complemented by (naturally) an amaro-centric cocktail list and Italian wines. Meanwhile, its sibling Little Bitter Bar will serve spritzes, antipasti, and pizza with a dough recipe first conceived at the erstwhile Cafe Castagna List (Tilden and Cairo met while working at Castagna).
Pickup, dine-in

Henry Higgins Boiled Bagels NW List
This local chain specializing in New York-style boiled bagels debuted a new location in the former Kornblatt's List space on Monday.
Nob Hill
Pickup, delivery, dine-in


Fusion Curry Pizza List
Bridgetown Bites reports that a new Indian pizzeria called Fusion Curry Pizza is set to take over the recently closed Hot Lips Pizza List space in the Hollywood District. An opening date has not yet been announced.
Hollywood District

Heyday List
At long last, Heyday owner Lisa Nguyen will unveil her highly anticipated doughnut counter in the Collective Oregon Eateries (CORE) building List next Saturday, May 27. The grand opening, which Nguyen says has been "22 months in the making," will feature a pop-up market with some of Heyday's favorite collaborators.

Midtown Beer Garden List
The Fifth Avenue Food Cart Pod—otherwise known as Portland's oldest and largest cart pod—is scheduled to reopen as the Midtown Beer Garden in July. The newly revamped beer garden will feature 28-30 carts, seating for over 300, a central bar cart, heated tents, bathrooms, and a stage for music and events.


Macaroni in a Pot List
This vegan mac and cheese cart closed on Sunday. Owner Maya Huskee wrote in an Instagram post, "It was not my dream to come back from a surgery that changed my life and my happiness to say goodbye so soon to something I had wanted to work so badly. My best friends and I had a vision, and it just wasn’t time for that vision. And that’s okay, too. Whilst we grieve this loss, it’s also okay to recognise that this is what was best for all of us at Macaroni in a Pot."
Rose City Park



Kick Off Summer in Style with Grasslands Barbecue and pFriem Family Brewers Past Event List
Tuck into heaps of succulent smoked meats from Grassland Barbecue, including 18-hour smoked brisket and a pFriem-inspired sausage, paired with a range of pFriem beers and seasonal side dishes.
pFriem Family Brewers Blending Facility, Cascade Locks, 11 am-6 pm


Oregon AAPI Food & Wine Fest Past Event List
Oregon Wine Month and AAPI Heritage Month coincide in May, and this inaugural event combines the two with a seriously stacked lineup of fifteen AAPI-owned restaurants and wineries. Nosh on fare from local favorites like Bhuna, Kim Jong Grillin', Magna, Sibeiho, Sunrice, Baon Kainan, Kau Kau, Matta, Toki, and Heyday while enjoying wine from CHO Wines, Et Fille, Evening Land, Hundred Suns Wine, and Shiba Wichern. Your ticket gets you a souvenir cup and a passport to taste ten bites and ten wines.
Stoller Family Estate, Dayton


Good Food: Jewish Food and Jewish Values in the New Pacific Northwest Past Event List
Take a deep dive into Jewish food culture at this event, which will include talks, panels, breakout groups, and presentations from guests like Lisa Schroeder of Mother's Bistro and Bar, Jessie Aron of Malka, Noah Jacob of Jacob and Sons, journalist Deena Prichep, and Rabbi Natan Margalit. You'll learn about food justice, Kabbalistic perspectives on food, cooking techniques, and Jewish cuisine's role in the Portland food scene. For lunch, tuck into offerings from local Jewish restaurants and caterers, which will represent traditions from all over the Jewish diaspora.
Eastside Jewish Commons, 9 am-3 pm

Depressed Cake Shop Portland Pop-Up Past Event List
This one-day pop-up bakery sells gray-colored cakes, cookies, and other goods (all donated by local bakers) to raise awareness and encourage conversation about mental health issues. The goodies, though dismal looking on the outside, are bright and colorful on the inside to symbolize hope. Proceeds benefit Baby Blues Connection, which provides free support for parents and families dealing with perinatal mood disorders.
Opal 28, 1-3 pm

Pink! Rosé Festival Past Event List
Happy rosé season to those who celebrate! Whatever your thoughts on the increasingly ubiquitous blush beverage, it's hard to imagine a drink better suited for spring weather and picnics. Get your fill of pink nectar at the second annual edition of this festival hosted at Ron Tonkin Field, which will feature wood-fired pizza, street tacos, music, and more in addition to 22 participating wineries, including Cooper Mountain Vineyards, Eagles Nest Reserve, Helvetia Winery, Lolati Wines, and more.
Ron Tonkin Field, Hillsboro, 1-4 pm


Meet & Eat - A Unique Social Hour and Authentic Culinary Experience Past Event List
In celebration of AANHPI Heritage Month and ZabPinto's upcoming residency at the Ritz-Carlton Food Hall, ZabPinto executive chef Thanaboonthiwat "Malvin" Panyapa will prepare a menu of Isarn Thai cuisine. Mingle as you sip craft cocktails and listen to music from DJ Ken Hop and other artists. The event will be hosted by local "genre-fluid pop artist" Alana Rich.
ZabPinto Thai Kitchen, 6-9 pm


Crema Coffee + Bakery List
This cafe and bakery's pastry case is currently stocked with enticing treats like mango tres leches tarts, gluten-free banana cream tarts, German chocolate cake, and gluten-free French macarons in three flavors (mango jam cream cheese, chocolate eclair vanilla cream, and pineapple jam cream cheese).
Pickup, delivery, dine-in

Matutina List
Dig into a warm farro bowl with roasted Flying Coyote Farms cauliflower, Siberian kale, yams, farro, black sesame tehina, and yuzu vinaigrette.
Pickup, dine-in

Toyshop Ramen List
Cool off with a refreshing chilled California bowl loaded with Dungeness crab, avocado, cucumber, tobiko, tatsoi, citrus, and black sesame—Toyshop Ramen recommends rounding it out with a cucumber salad and slushie.

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