TOM’S COOKBOOK LIBRARY: Discovering Portland’s gastronomic flair
In “The Mighty Gastropolis: Portland” (Chronicle), Karen Brooks, a Portland-based restaurant critic and dining editor, shares an open secret among knowledgeable foodies.
This laid-back Oregon town ranks high as a fount of culinary innovation. Its chefs create innovative dishes that, at the same time, are unpretentious and affordable. Here’s one example: while Chicago is only now dipping its toes in the food cart arena, Portland currently has licensed 600-plus such eat-on-the-go options.
As Brooks observes in the introduction to her book, Portland is “where guerilla gourmets go their own way . . . throughout the city, low-budget storefronts and ‘pop-up’ dining rooms barely hint at what awaits inside – candlelit intimacy, personal playlists, irrepressibly seductive food.”
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