What: Park Avenue Fine Wines
Where: 626 SW Park Avenue, Portland
When: Spatzle & Speck caters Tuesday - Saturday from 2 - 9pm (the shop has other hours)
First of all, if you find that you highly value our content and opinions (and if you really do, maybe reflect on that...), you should follow us on Instagram for more regular, but still mostly irregular, updates. You can find us at @happyhourhoneyspdx.
It's been four months so I'm sure you're dying for an update. Good news: our throuple is going strong (the throuple being Katie, her husband Doug, and me). Don't get confused, it's not romantic, but it makes me feel better than referring to myself as their "third wheel" on many, many a date.
Us at a rooftop movie this summer
Recently I joined Katie and Doug at The Color Purple at Portland Center Stage and we decided to check out Park Avenue Fine Wines prior. Karl Holl, chef of Spatzle & Speck cooks up delicious eats there Tuesday through Saturday, and we knew he wouldn't disappoint. I had been last winter before a writing class and was angling for a reason to return, plus Karl caters my cousin's member events at L'Angolo and Portland Monthly named him their chef of the year...
We started with a bottle of wine (not pictured) that was a good deal for the three of us and, as I recall, tasty. They have wine by the glass and featured wines, but you can also get any wine in the wine shop. We told our server what we were hoping to spend and let her make the call.
For food, we started with Oregon bay shrimp ($9) with hazelnuts, sultana, and a rustic baguette, which I was a little hesitant on. I don't usually like bay shrimp or raisins and the combination wasn't necessarily calling to me, but as in all relationships, you compromise. And sometimes you find out you do like something!
Their menu is fresh, seasonal, and often changing so this particular burrato/tomato combo isn't on there right now, but it was fresh and light. Also, everything was so pretty, it was just nice to have it arrive at the table.
Next up, a more predictable crowd pleaser, Tempura Vegetables ($14) with their garden ranch dip and dusted with smoke parmigiano reggiano.
We ended with the 100 Layer Lasagna ($21) with wild mushrooms, ricotta, fonduta, winter truffles, and more parmigiano reggiano (do you see it there?). It was delicate and silky, and I'm glad we tried it. There are other pastas and vegetable dishes that I would try next time before having this again, but don't get me wrong, if anyone ever just set this in front of me, I would thank them.
Overall a lovely fall evening that I would highly encourage you to replicate. It's fine, we like to be copied. Next up on the blog: Katie and I go from the present to the past and remember why we like the present.