Returned to The Original in downtown Portland, was last there about sixteen months ago. Been a few changes on the menu, some of the more innovative dishes appear to have vanished; I guess that’s not so hard to understand, a lot of online reviews kind of panned those efforts, but I don’t know why. A chef has to stretch his legs once and awhile.
A lot more emphasis on coffee shop food, these days, and they are closed in the slow hours between meals. I went with the Deluxe Burger, cascade natural beef, fried onions, blue cheese, gruyere for 10.95. Upgraded from fries to the poutine for an additional $2.
The other half of the Dive Dining Duo, Portland attorney William Du Val, went with the regular burger, sans cheese. Both of us ordered them medium rare, Du Val had a small Caesar on the side, in quest of a strong garlicky Caesar dressing, the server said it wasn’t very garlicky, but Will plunged ahead in any case. Bold move, my friend. The poutine was amply gravied, as I had asked the server to tell the chef to be generous with same. I guess he figured that being overly generous with gravy meant he could skimp on the curds, which were few and far between. I believe I had that same experience my first visit.
The burgers were prepared exactly as ordered, and while mine was supposed to be laden with both Gruyere and Gorgonzola, the latter wasn’t present in a detecable amount. Du Val thought that the Cascade Beef patties were super grand, once he added a little bit of NaCl. (Oh, stop laughing, Mrs. BDB, in fact I did NOT salt my burger!)
Note to chef: At medium rare, the Cascade puts out enough juice to make the bun less than supportive for the sandwich, particularly in the southern hemisphere. You might want to rethink those buns. But granted, they are delicious.
Would I return? Sure. My recollection is that I was not too impressed with the service before, but today it was just fine. As were the burgers, and as always, the company.