This week, discover a new series of ice creams on the theme of the picnic of Salt & Straw’s Tyler Malek, ranging from fried chicken ice cream to baked Brie and fig cheesecake ice cream. Also, lunch and pastry services from Mauritius have resumed, there’s a new Peruvian pop-up in town from former Andina chief Alex Diestraand wait for the return of The star of Thai restaurant Langbaan.
Salt & StrawNew June flavors include….Fried Chicken?
The folks who brought you Thanksgiving turkey ice cream are back with another poultry-themed variety for the month of June only: Honey Cinnamon Fried Chicken. It’s a collaboration with Ezell’s Chicken, a Seattle-based chain beloved by Oprah Winfrey, which also has a location in the Washington Square Mall. We spoke to Salt & Straw co-owner Tyler Malek before the flavor was released, who says this flavor took a ton of R&D. “We probably sent 20 iterations of confit fried chicken back and forth,” says Malek, but it turns out that when you throw fried chicken skin into ice cream, it tends to get soggy. Their solution: pieces of croissant dough fried in chicken fat, sprinkled on a honey-cinnamon ice cream base. So while you’re not biting into real chunks of meat here, the savory notes of chicken still stand out. So while you’re not biting into real chunks of meat here, the savory notes of chicken still stand out. Our opinion ? You have to hand it over to Salt & Straw – it’s a tasty combo, if not quite on par with brie and fig cheesecake. But more of that later.
The whole series of June Summer Picnics is one of the best Salt & Straw has done recently – it’s like a complete multi-course meal, with lots of flavors using local ingredients. Rosy Pink Watermelon Sorbet, made with Sokol Blosser wine, is refreshing and airy and tastes like watermelon soaked in Sour Patch kids wine. Smith Teamaker’s Deviled Egg Ice Cream with Smoked Lapsang Souchong is sultry and bizarre with a swirl of balsamic marshmallow, though the flavor is true to its inspiration. Two flavors, however, are so superb we think they’re worth adding to the permanent collection: Baked Brie and Fig Cheesecake, a super creamy flavor with just a hint of salty funk, and the nocino chocolate and cherry tart, with well-drizzled nuts. liqueur-soaked cherries, chunks of flaky pie crust and a subtle single-origin chocolate base that steals the show. This is definitely a flavor situation to try (and store).
Mauritius Reopens for pastry lunch once a week
In April, we wrote about Chief Kristen D. Murray’s Last Stand, which has transformed its beloved French-Scandinavian luncheonette Måurice into a restaurant with a seven-course tasting menu (seating Friday to Sunday, by reservation only) At stake: survival and sanity. Still, we couldn’t hide our sadness at the loss of Måurice’s legendary pastry and quiche. Now the house signings are back, Thursdays only to start. You don’t know what you have until you lose it. Now is the time to sample the kitchen’s gorgeous rosemary and blackcurrant scones, authentic French quiche (cream to the core), famous lemon soufflé pudding cake, celestial black pepper cheesecake and to seasonal smorbrod sandwiches served open and layered with flavors of beets, strawberries and soft cheese. The limited a la carte menu includes soup, salad, a tea menu, and wines by the glass and bottle — walk-ins are welcome, inside and out. 921 SW Oak Stmauricepdx.com —Karen Brooks
A new Peruvian-Japanese pop-up, Callaodebuts June 10
Chef Alex Diestra, former head chef of Andina, is now executive chef of the waterfront restaurant King Tide Fish & Shell. Soon, he will launch a new concept on the restaurant’s terrace: Callao, which will serve Nikkei, or Peruvian-Japanese dishes. There will be a full menu of anticuchos (skewers) ranging from miso black cod to chilli beef heart, as well as mains including udon, ceviche and short rib yakisoba. The pop-up runs Wednesday through Sunday from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. until October 2; there will also be a live DJ on Fridays and Saturdays from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Langbaan Will reopen July 1
Langbaan has been closed since February 2022, when preparations began to move the restaurant from its former location on NE 28 to the new space shared by Phuket Cafe (1818 NW 23rd Pl). The Phuket Cafe opened in March and Langbaan is now set to debut as well. Starting July 1, the Langbaan dinner service will be offered on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, with two seats offered per night in a tasting menu format. Langbaan will take over the dining room tables on those evenings, while the Phuket Cafe menu will be available at the bar and on the outdoor terrace.
Many of the same iconic snacks will reappear, like kanom krok (those delicious crispy rice cups filled with coconut cream and scallop ceviche). The menu will also include wok stations and grill stations fueled by fiery, very hot charcoal, as well as some of the same dry-aged beef and pork you’ll find at Phuket Cafe. Look for tasting menu additions like A5 wagyu beef and oysters, as well as rotating themed dinners inspired by childhood memories or street food, or perhaps a vegan menu.