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CLOSED: Portobello Vegan Trattoria

  • Vegan Vegan
    ( 69 reviews )


Contact 503-754-5993

1125 SE Division St (at Banana Building), Portland, Oregon, USA, 97214

Portland Italian restaurant serving all vegan food. Features a seasonal menu. Brunch on weekends. Reservations not required but recommended. Previously on SE 11th Ave, this location has a larger dining room and a full bar. No takeaways. Confirmed closed end of 2016. Open Tue-Sat 5:30pm-10:00pm, Sat-Sun 9:30am-2:00pm, Sun 5:30pm-9:00pm.

Category: Vegan, Italian, Organic, Beer/Wine

Reviews (69)

First Review by cookiem

not to be missed - Edit

Wow! Blown away by the superb diner there. Don't miss the peps and beet tartare appetizers! For the main course, everyone was happy with their choice: ravioli, linguine, risotto and portobello steak. Baked Alaska and the orange/apple rose were excellent dessert choices. Go here. Bring friends. Enjoy!

Pros: beet tartare

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need to go back! - Edit

We got there pretty late on a Tuesday night. They were out of many items. They were out of 4 out of the 5 pastas, and 1 of the pizzas. I ordered the mushroom ravioli, because it was the only pasta left. It was okay, kind of boring. But the other pastas sounded amazing. The beet burger was excellent. I recommend getting there early!

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Great Experience! - Edit

I've been to this place a few times now, and I have continuously been impressed at the service and the food. I highly recommend the beet tartare and the ravioli, simply amazing.

Next time we go, we'll be trying the tasting menu.

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Good food, nice atmosphere - Edit

I have really enjoyed Portobello's both times I have visited Portland. Upscale vegan restaurants can be hard to find, and Portobello's is the only Itlian one I have been to. I will not say the food is amazing, but it is pretty good, and I will definitely try to go every time I visit Portland. I had the manicotti with red sauce this time, filled with Cauliflower ricotta, and my husband had pizza which, among some other things, included cashew based cheese and seitan sausage (the pizza was very good by the way). I really wanted to try the cheese plate, but it seemed like just too much food. The dessert looked great also. When we were here a couple of years ago, i remember liking the beet tartar quite a bit. Make sure to make a reservation, a couple days in advance is probably best.

Pros: upscale vegan dining, vegan Italian

Cons: bit expensive, books up quickly

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Awesome upscale vegan dining - Edit

Went to Portobello for the first time and it was worth it. I had been wanting to go. The menu has many items that aren't normally found at other vegan restaurants. We had the Hazelnut risotto and the Arrabiata pizza. The pizza by far was the best vegan pizza I've ever had and my partner agrees! Wasn't a fan of the Hazelnut risotto, but it was something new to try. We ended our dinner with the mint chocolate cake, which was out of this world. Can't wait to go back again!

Pros: Unique options, Excellent food

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Second rate food - Edit

We ordered the cheese plate, which was great. The rest of the food was all second rate. Bland food masked by bland sauces. We drove all the way from NYC to visit Portland because it's a vegan Mecca and all. Portobello was our first stop and totally let us down. Maybe our expectations were just too high.

Cons: Beet Burger, Mushroom Arancini, Kale Salad

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Amazing - Edit

Portobello is a definite must if you are visiting Portland. We started our meal with some grilled peaches with BBQ sauce. It was an unexpected and delicious dish. My husband and I then shared the ravioli and the gnocchi. For dessert I couldn't resist the sundae and it was just how I remember sundae's being from my childhood. It was magical! I had several sundae's at various places on my recent holiday but the one at Portobello was by far the best.

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Lovely dining atmosphere - Edit

We arrived a few minutes before our early reservation and were seated immediately. The service was excellent. We chose the Prix Fixe Tasting Menu. The options were limited, but excellent. My spouse especially loved the salad course. They also made excellent use of local mushrooms in many of their dishes. We both ordered different items and often shared. The garlic was a little strong in my spouse's red linguini entree. I enjoyed the cheesy ravioli. For a tasting menu the portion size was perfect. As with all the courses, the deserts were creative and beautifully presented. The Pouched Pear with Fig Sorbet Sandwich would have been better with more sorbet and one less cookie.

Pros: Service was excellent, Courses timed well, Local produce

Cons: Limited parking

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A Portland highlight - Edit

We had the tasting menu and it was delightful. They accidentally mixed up our order but were great about giving us the wrong dish for free. They were also excellent about allergies. The food was delicious in every respect, although the size of the mains was smaller than the size of the starters! The desserts were heavenly.

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Amazing! - Edit

Having never been to a vegan Italian restaurant before, I was blown away by this place! It had a very nice environment, but it was a little crowded (it was the weekend though). The food was excellent, I had the portobello steak with fingerling potatoes and green beans! It was incredible, and left me wanting to order another. It was a little on the pricey side but not horrible considering how good the food is (most expensive item is $15 unless you order a cheese plate). Their menu featured many classic Italian dishes and they had multiple gluten free options, and were open to modifying other dishes to accommodate a gluten free diet. This was honestly one of the best meals I've had in a while

Pros: Great Italian food, Moderate prices, Accommodating staff

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Nice fancy restaurant - Edit

Portobello is one of the few fancy, gourmet vegan restaurants in Portland. It books out quickly so you need to book online with a few days notice. It was pretty crowded on the Friday night and quite noisy. The service is really fast and they need quick turnover so if you're wanting to have a nice long meal it's not the best for that. If, like us, you're happy to try the food and don't need to hear the person talk much, then it's fine. Maybe we just went when there were very loud parties in the restaurant (one of which wasn't taking the hint to leave!).

We got the beet tartare for entree - it's cashew, beets, capers and herbs made into a kind of dip with bread and it was really, really great and quite original. I got the gnocchi for my main which was a bit flavourless, it was in a watery kind of sauce rather than a nice rich tomato or creamy sauce. My partner got the cashew cheese filled ravioli which was much nicer, with a divine sauce. We shared the salted caramel sundae for dessert and that was really rich and amazing with fudge sauce, candied walnuts and coconut whipped cream. I got a Virgil's cola which has to be the best cola I ever tasted. Very fast service, in and out!

Pros: Fancy vegan restaurant, Gourmet italian, All vegan

Cons: Too noisy, Gnocchi was so-so

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Vegan Italian! Wonderful for a date or celebration - Edit

Maybe this restaurant should be called "Cashews" - it's really a celebration of the amazing things that can be done with cashews. It's a bit spendy so maybe best for an occasion or celebration - or maybe everyday is a celebration of delightful food. It offers a cheese plate sample with Vtopian cheeses, lasagna, ravioli and gnocci and tiramisu for desert. Great cocktails including The Vegan Abides (with vegan Irish Creme) and wine pairings.

Pros: Amazing Italian food, Vegan cheese sampler plate, Vegan tiramisu

Cons: A treat night out/on the spendy side, Popular/Make a Reservation if you can, You will want to try all the food!

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Homecooked Delicious Italian - Edit

We got on the wait list on a Friday evening expecting to wait an hour or so to sit down; surprisingly, we waited maybe 20 minutes.
I've wanted to try Portobello's Italian vegan fare since I've read about it months ago.
It was amazing; worth the slightly higher prices and potential wait for the quality and menu variety. Our food was flavorful, everything perfectly balanced and unique.
We loved our pizza pie! It was the option with leeks,potatoes,pistachio, asparagus, and some type of lemon cashew cream. YUM! We joked that those are the few toppings we have never thrown on a pizza at home, and to have them ALL combined into one glorious creation was pretttttty cool. :)
Our appetizer was fried rice balls filled with sage and mushroom topped with marinara and basil. They were really delicious too!
I got their house made soda pop, the hibiscus vanilla, and added a shot of rum. Try it if you like Shirley temples with a little bonus.:D
I hope to go back to try their canolli, which I asked about and was told that its a seasonal thing.
Its nice to have a cozy, warm, and hearty Italian restaurant available with a totally plant based philosophy. It really feels like a home cooked meal made with some lovin'.

Pros: Flavorful, Creative Creations

Cons: Small Parking Lot, No Canoli For Me

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Loved it! - Edit

My husband and I ate here on our last trip to Portland and really loved it. We did not have a reservation so we had to sit at the bar which was fine for us but you might want to plan ahead and make a reservation if you want a table. The service was friendly and prompt and the food was amazing! The beet burger was flavorful and delicious. It was a little on the expensive side but not out of the ordinary for an upscale restaurant like this one. We will definitely be back!

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  Contributions +394

Tasty Italian - Edit

This place was pretty good. I had a pizza and I enjoyed it a lot. The only reason I'm giving this place 4 stars is because the prices are a bit steep. You're looking at around an average of $15 per meal.

Pros: Tasty Food

Cons: Steep prices

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[email protected] - Edit

Food is OK,
TOO Expensive for what you get on your plate

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Personal favorite in Portland - Edit

We ate our way through the city in five days and spent the first evening here for dinner, which turned out to be the best meal we had by far. It’s Italian food alla vegana and it was fantastic! Between the two of us, we ordered and shared—

Beet tartare: pretty much every review I read said to get this dish for appetizer, and it didn’t disappoint. I especially enjoyed the touch of zingy edge that the capers brought to it. HUGE portion.

Arancini: fried risotto balls, do I need to say more?

Cheese plate: a sampler of artisan vegan cheeses crated by various companies. We went for the three cheese plate for $12. Can’t remember all three, but the one that stood out was the peppercorn cashew brie by Vtopian. I wish I lived in the area, because then I could just go to the store and get the whole block at a better value.

Green bean gnocchi: these tiny dumplings were homemade and are supposed to be their specialty, and they were amazing. Lightly browned, soft and fluffy, it really couldn’t get any better than that.

Mushroom cavatelli: these noodles were also homemade. Okay, I ordered another pasta dish because I’m a sucker for all things doughy and chewy. As far as I’m concerned, this was the star of the show. I loved how loaded it was with garlic and fresh herbs, whose flavors shone through beautifully.

All pasta were available in either small or large portion; we had the small for both of ours and it was plenty. If I were to nitpick, though, I’d point out that they were a tad too greasy and could probably use less oil.

We didn’t get dessert as we were already stuffed by then. The selection didn’t look all that exciting anyway. Throughout our evening, the only thing that I wasn’t as happy about was the service. Not that it was our server’s fault—she was very friendly and all—it’s just that the place seemed understaffed for a busy Friday night. There were only two of them and I felt that ours was taking care of more than half of the restaurant, which led to us having to catch her attention and then wait around for service all the time. The bottom line, however, is that the food was excellent, prices were very reasonable (we paid $69 including tips and a glass of wine), and we had a great time.

Pros: excellent food, reasonable prices

Cons: understaffed/slow service

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Vegan. Italian. Awesome. - Edit

When you only have a few nights in this Vegan-Mecca-of-city and decide to go back to the same place twice then you know the place must be good.

I have no idea why vegan Italian is so hard to find; these guys make it look so easy.

The menu is not huge but there is good variety - the only thing we doubled up on with our two visits was the battered asparagus - not for lack of choice but because it was unbelievably good! Everything we tried was excellent. It's simple food but with a touch of novelty and done extremely well.

The place seemed filled with a combo of romantic dinners, families, friends parties, etc. - a very busy place but comfortably so. The prices do add up but it's all so worth it.

Portland has it good and this place is one reason why.

Pros: Mama mia, Vegano

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amazing food and service - Edit

This place was amazing. I did the tasting menu which allows you to try a starter, pasta, main and dessert. I added the chèvre also. Soooo delicious. I had the Cesar salad, mushroom pasta, cauliflower steak and salted caramel sundae. Was very pleased with every dish. Service is great too!

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Ravioli? Sold! - Edit

I had yet to find a vegan ravioli that was actually any good. I found that and so much more here! We ordered nearly everything on the menu and enjoyed every single bite. We even ordered dessert. Everything was beyond perfect!
I was very excited to see a mocktail on the menu called the "Sea Shepherd". I ordered it and while being super tasty, they also donate money to the organization every time one is purchased. Awesome!
The atmosphere was really neat inside. Reclaimed wood on the walls and neat little art pieces tucked into the nooks and crannies.
My husband can't stop talking about how next time we are in town, we are bringing 6 friends so we can order the insane "Ziggy Piggy" dessert. But who could refuse with ice cream flavours like strawberry basil, or salted caramel?
Make reservations before you go. It gets crazy busy.

Pros: Ravioli!, Awesome desserts, Everything was amazing

Cons: A bit busy , A bit expensive

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Exceptional Inventive food - Edit

This restaurant serves unique and classic vegan food in a semi formal setting - we were amazed as each dish arrived at the table - not only did it look good, each dish tasted great.
I started with a Beet Tartare which was diced roasted beets on top of a cashew purée served with a gluten free toast - crazy good.
My husband started with the Sweety Peps which was sweet peppers stuffed with cashew cheese which was just as good.
I then had the cauliflower steak with asparagus,potato ,radish and sweet onions on the side and my husband had the Gluten free Patata Primavera Pizza with caramelized onions,Yukon gold potatoes , Douglas firs and cashew cream .both dishes were amazing and we took a good amount home for the next day as the portions were quite generous.
We overdid it by sharing a Chocolate mousse that was just heavenly- we managed to finish that.!
The service was excellent the ambience great and it was a it pricey but well worth every penny a great meal and a highlight of our trip to Portland.

Pros: inventive food, exceptional tasty, gluten free options

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Pretty good - Edit

My husband and I had our anniversary meal here. We did the taster menu - where you get 4 courses each. Over all the food was good. I was a little disappointed by the tiramisu - very difficult to find vegan. The textures were good, it was just lacking a stronger espresso taste. Also service was a bit slow, which we didn't mind too much. Our waitress was very nice and apologetic about the wait. Would definitely return on our next visit to portland. Hard for me to turn down a completely vegan Italian place.

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Overrated, I think... - Edit

My opinion of this place is clearly in the minority, but I actually found this place didn't live up to it's reputation. We got pizza and fries (strange choice to serve at a gourmet eatery). Our crusts were flat and the sauce was scant. The fries were good but that's not exactly a challenging dish. If it were half the price and half as raved about, I wouldn't have been as disappointed.

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gnocchi actually worth coming back for - Edit

Had the fixed menu on a Sunday night. Delicious. Service a bit "shy," but definitely not surly. Attentive, but not overwhelming. Food very fresh, nice portion sizes, well presented, and balanced. Will go back for more on a night when we can choose from the whole menu!

Pros: great variety on menu, rare to find a vegan Italian restaurant, all vegan, not just vegetarian

Cons: wine list is "meh", wine is a bit pricey, cavernous space...

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Choose another... - Edit

I read the reviews and went to Portobello's website. On the site their ideology is European, which means diners should plan for an hour and a half for dinner. I thought, "Cool! Love Europe! Love long dinners!" I also thought that was why there were some negative reviews about service. So my partner and I made a reservation and prepared for a lovely, long evening of feasting. First - the waitress was unknowledgeable, inattentive, and surly. Example: I asked if any of their red wines were sulfite free. She said she had no idea, and stood there looking at me. I asked her to please check with the bartender while I checked to see if I recognized any of the wines. While she was gone - for a long time - I read the legend on the wine list and discovered that if the wine had a N by the name, it was sulfite free. She finally came back - with no answer about the wine. So I educated her about her own menu and ordered a glass of sulfite free red. My partner and I are raw vegans. We do branch out when we have to (as in going out where there is no raw available), but my second question was if she could point us to any raw/living menu items. She scornfully said that some had "raw components," like the greens in the salads and the lettuce on the burgers, but they had no raw food. We stayed positive and ordered appetizers (fried mushrooms and stuffed peppers) and dinner, the portobello mushroom burger and portobello steak. The appetizers were good, though it would have been really easy to keep both raw. The entres were not good. Heavy on the bland side - light on creativity. Add that to the surly, unknowledgable service, and we will not be returning. Choose Pappa G's or Blossoming Lotus instead.

Pros: Vegan, stuffed peppers

Cons: unknowledgable staff, surly staff, nothing raw/living

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CALL for a reservation...but don't expect a table. - Edit

We were excited to go here during our visit to Portland and read that it's best to make reservations. Well, on their website, you can't make them after 4pm. It tells you to call. So we called and got a recording and were instructed to leave our name, number and the time we wanted for the reservation. We did so and left the requested information. So we drove there and arrived just before our reservation time. We were told we had no reservation and that they would be booked for the next several nights (even though there were empty tables). I explained that we left our number and somebody should have called us before we drove all the way there to let us know we would not be served. Then the host said we could wait about 45 minutes and they could possibly seat us. No thanks.
I understand if a restaurant thinks they need to implement a reservation system. But be on the ball about calling people back if you're not going to answer the phone.

We were happy to take our business to another veg restaurant listed on Happy Cow.

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Loved it - Edit

I came here with 8 friends, all from different parts of the country. We shared 9 items. Everything was delicious and we had no complaints about the service. Highly recommend the Salted Caramel Sundae. :-)

Pros: All Vegan, Charming ambiance

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Made a Return Visit in 5 Day Span for Gnocchi - Edit

Over a visit to the Pacific Northwest my wife and I ate here twice. The first time because of it's reputation as one of the - if not *the* - premier vegan restaurants in Portland. Our return visit was a few days later once we were back in Portland because we needed more of their Gnocchi!

The menu here is ever-changing - from entrees, to desserts to wines. The ambiance is top-notch, very haute-cuisine without being too pretentious or fancy.

The gnocchi is absolutely fantastic. Unless you're starving, the half order winds up being adequately filling while leaving room for dessert. I've tried their vegan "chocolate bomb" and was very impressed. The risotto I had my first time there, however, was a little basic without much to write home about. Still, I got what I ordered. I did see another review in here which mentioned that the pairing veggies were bland and 'soaked in oil.' This might be their chef's one point of weakness - while a mastery of inventive dishes is without question, the simple elements accompanying them may sometimes be overlooked. This semi-criticism, still, does not take much away from this excellent restaurant.

The service can be a tad slow and reservations are highly recommended; we saw many couples turned away as space was very limited on weekends and weeknights, both. The price may be somewhat steeper than you're used to but a half order of their amazing gnocchi and a glass of their cheapest ( yet always satisfying - wine actually seemed like a good deal to me.

Give this place a definite try, make a reservation in advance and order whatever sounds best - they do a great job.

Pros: Inventive, changing menu, Tasty food

Cons: Reservations almost always needed

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Did not live up to its hype - Edit

I went here based on the high reviews, booking a table 2 weeks in advance, but sadly, my main was just not that fabulous. I had the portobello steak which was interesting but the side veggies were boring and drenched in oil. The lasagna was a much better choice. I enjoyed the salted caramel sundae for dessert, though.

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Awesome food at Portobello - Edit

We ate here twice on a family road trip through the northwest.
The first time was a Saturday night, and we did not have a reservation, but the hostess was very accommodating and put us in their private alcove dining area. The service was friendly and the food was amazing! We shared a Beet Tartate and special Heirloom Tomato Salad for appetizers and we loved both, but the Beet Tartare was something special, the cashew cheese was stellar. Our main courses were also excellent,we had the Gnochi, Portobello Roast and Spaghetti with Lobser Mushroom Bolegnese. The Gnochi was among the best we ever had, Vegan or not, and the Portobello roast, was out of this world! Dinner was rounded off with a Tiramisu, which was excellent. This was one of the best Vegan Restaurant meals we have had, Highly recommended

Pros: Amazing Food, Friendly Service , Nice ambiance

Cons: None

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Beyond Words - Edit

Being in Oregon with my husband on vacation, we were both excited to try all of the vegan dining options available to us. We did not, however, expect the quality of food that was served at Portobello. Our entrees were amazing, and we STILL talk about the Cheese Course!

Pros: Amazing food, Lovely atmosphere, Wide range of menu options

Cons: No Las Vegas location

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Fantastic Creative and Delicious Vegan Food - Edit

After reading the reviews I had high expectations and I was not disappointed! I loved every second of my dinner. As noted, you definately need reservations. I made mine on line and had no trouble. Our table was ready when we arrived and the service was very good. Not the fasted, but that was fine with us because we wanted a nice leiserly dinner
The food is absolutely fantastic. As good or even better than other gourmet vegan restaurants I have enjoyed such as Millenium in San Fran, Blossom in NY and Horizons Cafe in Philly.
I know you will find this hard to believe, but I had "Vegan bacon wrapped scallops" which were AMAZING!!! It was actually chanterelle mushrooms wrapped in eggplant bacon on a bed of corn, red onion and zucchini ragout with a delectable corn sauce. My partner had Gnocchi with summer squash and tomato basil sauce.
The drinks were very very fun and creative as well.
All in all, flawless!! I wish I lived in Portland so I could go all the time.
Did I mention that our tab was very reasonable as well???

Pros: fantastic food, great atmosphere, fun drinks

Cons: do need reservations

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Portobello Vegan Trattoria, Portland - Edit

I landed in town last night. My friend and his pal's booked a table at this restaurant to eat even though I was the only vegan in the group. Someone came up with the idea of ordering a bunch of dishes to share among us. I have to say unequivocably that every mouthful was a delight. I would go back to eat hear again in a heartbeat and since I am here for a week, I may well do. Service was great, the setting perfectly pleasant.

Pros: All vegan, tremendous food

Cons: There isn't 1 on every corner

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food is fab - service is slowwww - Edit

I have eaten here 3 times now and each time I have greatly enjoyed the food and while the atmosphere is pleasant - there is a service divide. There seems to be an elitist attitude. And they take their time. Also they only accept 2 credit cards per table - which they could have explained when I made reservations for six friends.
The cheese platter was amazing, the salad delicious and omg the desserts!
I am torn because I want to support vegan restaurants but when I spend the amount of $ they want - I want good service.

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The food is quite good - Edit

An initial problem with the service was rectified by an attentive manager.

The food seems top-notch in terms of freshness and quality.

The beet burger is delish!

The cornmeal crust pie was savory and sweet, very nice.

The tiramisu was light and tasty.

The ambience is very charming, but apparently reservations are a must, and there are no to-go orders beyond pizza and tiramisu.

Try the 1-2-3 organic tequila, you won't be sorry. Wow.

Pros: Fresh , Flavorful, Great manager and bartender!

Cons: No to go menu

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Outstanding! - Edit

Having seen this restaurant highlighted in "Veg Edge" Food Network show, we were excited for our trip to Portland to try this place out. Our first impression wasn't the greatest as we had a reservation, and showed up on time, and waited by the hostess station--only to be passed by a number of times without acknowledgement, and as it's a tight space, felt like we were in the way. After about five minutes, the hostess decided to seat us, handed us white copy-paper menus, and passed us off to the best server in Portland. We were disappointed by the lack of attention by the hostess, and the copy-paper menus did not speak of a higher-quality restaurant. But this is exactly where our experience turned around and lived up to the hype. To say that our server was outstanding, is an understatment [sorry, her name was not on our receipt]. She timed our dishes perfectly, kept the water and drinks topped up, interjected pleasently, was discreet with some interactions--overall top notch, and I only wish I had her name to commend her. Awesome job!
As for the food, it was absolutely incredible and absolutely lived up to the hype. This chef knows what he's doing for sure! All items that are gluten-free are clearly marked. Everything that we ordered was outstanding and it made me wanting to return to try everything else on the menu. You cannot go wrong with what you choose here. It really is all outstanding.

Pros: Excellent food, Excellent service, nice atmosphere

Cons: Poor hostess, Small--reservation recommended, Cheap paper menu

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Gnocchi, bistro burger and salted caramel icecream - Edit

This is the only 5 stars I've given, I think, to a Portland restaurant. Occasionally it's not on it's game but 90% of the time Portobello is outstanding. Hey, we all have our bad days. My highlights:

Salted Caramel Ice Cream: Holy banana peels, its' amazing!
Bistro burger: fromt the bun to the beet-red patty and the fixings, this burger is well-orchestrated and thought out.
Dessert menu: it changes often and always give it a look, amazing things are to be found.
Cocktails and Mocktails: try something new, their mixologist is TALENTED.
Gnocchi: usually on the menu in some form or another, try it.

Pros: reasonable prices for great food, excellent food, changes often

Cons: waitstaff can be lacking

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Italian and vegan!! - Edit

We went to Portobello twice already and will be visiting again soon. The food was so beautiful, like rustic Italian food and very tasty. The menu changes frequently and is based on local seasonal ingredients. To be able to sample as much as possible, we shared food and the gnocchi were amazing. Their pizza are huge, even to share and the beetroot tartare was spot on. I had never eaten vegan tiramisu before but they mastered it. It was so worth the visit.

Pros: delicious, tiramisu!!, local ingredients

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Gorgeous, delicious, unusual food - Edit

We just had dinner at Portobello. We biked there from our hotel after making reservations because the restaurant was recommended to us. We decided to sit at the bar because it was so cozy and we ended up spending half of the night chatting to the friendly bartender who used to work at Millennium in San Francisco. We order the beet tartare- what an experience! So beautiful and tasty . We also shared a potato pizza, a home made pasta and a berry shortcake. We also drank tons of stuff- unusual cocktails that tasted like peppercorns and horse radish, homemade limoncello, herb liquors, etc. It was a sensory explosion for my mouth. And if that is not enough, the price was unbeatable. $60 for two people that ate and drank like there is no tomorrow! I am so glad we biked back to the hotel!

Pros: decor, staff, price

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Great Food Quirky Folk - Edit

I had read about this place on happycow, and here's my Portobello Vegan Trattoria review.

A friend brought us here on a past trip to Portland. It was my first trip to Portland, and I had mapped out a string of restaurants listed on HappyCow that I'd want to visit while here, and this was one of them.

First of all, the reservations policy seemed rigid to me, as someone coming from Los Angeles. This restaurant, at the time of this writing, books only 1 party/group per table for the entire night. We showed up at 5.30pm to an empty place but every table had a "reserved" card on them. The hostess informed us that the they were booked, and that guests would be showing up, some not until 6.30pm. But they wouldn't let us have those tables even if we promised to eat and leave by then. It seems as if they want each party to take their time and enjoy their night, and they didn't care about making more money by turning the tables more than once!

Fortunately, there were seats at the counter by the window, and the hostess was able to accommodate and let us sit there. We quickly sat and ordered our food. To share we got:
a pesto gnocchetti (soft and fragrant with fresh basil but rich with olive oil), a manicotti bake (fresh large pasta shells with vegan ricotta, tomato sauce, topped with cashew cheese), a chickpea soup (hearty and large serving), a plate of pickle vegetables (pungent, interesting, some tasty), and a polenta cake appetizer (perfectly pan fried and delicious).

Everything was delicious, especially the polenta cakes, the chickpea stew, and the manicotti. The prices were very affordable (cheap to moderate) for this good quality food.

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kidecat 22 Feb 2013 - I am glad that I read your review. Coming from Detroit for medical reasons this month, and will be returning for a length of time while my friend is in the hospital. I am a wheelchair user and am looking for vegan stores, restaurant, etc. for this month and for our return. VERY few vegan-friendly restaurants here..and the very thought of vegan gnocchi is wonderful. Don't quite understand the reservation policy which may be difficult for us as we are both mobility limited. Also, I am intrigued by the street food/carts- we don't have these.



SO yeah.. food here is amazing. BUT MAN!
We were visiting.. and it was last minute.. so NO, we did NOT have a reservation..
the host KEPT assuring us we were coming up... it went from him saying 45 minutes... to then it was an hour.. to an HOUR AND A HALF.. then.. we were so hungry,.. but waited SO LONG we did NOT want to leave... 2 HRS...
2 HOURS of waiting.. and THEN... magically a table finally opened up.

The food was great... but wait SUCKED. The host was [edit by staff].
The server was OK. They forgot something we ordered.
Did not top-off our waters...
and then it took FOREVER to get the check.

They need some professional help here... maybe Gordon Ramsey could show these kids how to be better business people and be better with PR???

BOoooooo. Don't think Ill ever go here again. Unless I am full already.. and make a reservation.

SWEAR people were jumping the line... like.. the locals... seriously. :(

Pros: GREAT FOOD, NICE atmosphere, Nicely presented


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A new habit in Portland - Edit

This was my second visit to Portobello, my first time alone. Given the wait time for a table I took a seat at the bar. This time, as last time it was obvious that the folks running this restaurant are the real deal. They are very concerned with obtaining the best, local, seasonal ingredients available.

I started out with a "Square Root" cocktail, which was a worthwhile experience. I also ordered an appetizer, the portobello and carmelized onion tart. I didn't really care for the tart. Not warm enough and too doughy, but decent enough. For the main course I had the Portobello Risotto. That was very delicious and satisfying.

Saving the best for last... the bartender, a young lady, reddish hair, and wicked smart and an absolute delight to be around. She never stopped moving, they were so busy, yet she managed to keep friendly, genuine conversation going with all of us seated at her bar. You know how every so often you come across someone who just brightens your whole day? Someone who makes eating out alone a lot less depressing? That's her.

Pros: Vegan Gourmet Food, Delightful Drinks, Angelic Bartender

Cons: Parking, Wait times

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very good food but service a problem - Edit

I am a regular going back to the old coffee shop. The food is wonderful but I have some quibbles with the service and recent food-police menu changes.

Its now impossible to get a table on a weekend without waiting ~90 mins. Because they require advanced notice and do not pick up the phone its also problematic to make a reservation. Also be forewarned, even when you arrive for a reservation, a wait is typical. The prices have also steadily increased to the point where eating here is now a *splurge* -- especially for the pasta dishes.

I'm also unhappy with recent menu changes. The owners removed field roast sausage and replaced it with a not very appetizing house-made sausage due to "processed" food phobia. Field roast is made by a local company and is no more "processed" than home-made seitan.

Pros: fresh pasta, gnocchi, burger to die for

Cons: interminable wait, expensive

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Excellent dining experience - Edit

We came for dinner last Thursday without a reservation but, thankfully, we arrived early enough to get seated right away. This is a rather small restaurant, so it's understandable why they prefer that people make a reservation.

I ordered the prix fixe menu with a pasta that was similar to ravioli (very delicious) and chocolate carmel torte (so decadent). My boyfriend ordered a burger that was truly phenomenal! It seemed to be mostly beet based with eggplant "bacon" and cashew "cheese"on a rosemary bun. I've never had such a great burger, and my omnivore boyfriend was very pleased.

We felt that a lot of thought and creativity was put into the menu and I was very happy that Portobello satisfied my meat eating boyfriend (though he loves veggies). We'll definitely come back on our next trip to Portland.

Pros: Excellent food, Unique flavors, Romantic/intimate

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Best Vegan Food EVER! - Edit

My wife and I started visiting this restaurant while we were just dating and it was not yet in its current space. It was a good this we got in on it early, as pretty soon we found we could almost never get in. Even now, with much more room (and amazing decor) this place seems to be full every time we go by - and for good reason. This is the best vegan food I have ever had. It's actually some of the best food I have ever had period, and that includes some pretty amazing stuff. It was, in fact, so good that we asked them to cater our wedding (which was amazing - many people who didn't come prepared to enjoy our "vegan food selection" left stuffed that night).

Some specific things to enjoy at the restaurant: Great vegan (and mostly local) cocktails and mocktails; half portions, in case you want to try more than one thing, or just were not that hungry; a rotating menu that takes advantage of seasonal availability of local produce; cute inside decor; knowledgeable staff who generally know exactly what is in a dish in case you have other dietary needs; did I mention delicious local ingredients?

Be sure to call a day ahead for a reservation if you can, but if you can't then don't let that stop you. This is easily on my list of 5 places you must visit while in Portland.

Pros: Excellent Food, Friendly Staff, Local and Fresh

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Mixed feelings - Edit

I have some mixed feelings about this place. It was great how fast they got us in without reservations. Their ravioli was out of this world good. Their tiramisu gave me a sugar high like I had never had before. But it was their pizza that was the down fall of the meal, the portion was excellent but the topping was lacking. I assume they are imitating a style pizza from Italy but they could have put a little more sauce and cheese, or at least warned you. And they gave us foil for the pizza to leave with which made it soggy this morning, so definitely ask for a box if they pull that on you. The mocktail was 3/4 ice, which was disappointing. But as I said their ravioli was phenomenal.

Pros: Vegan

Cons: Not organic

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Great food - Edit

I had high hopes for this restaurant, and it did not disappoint. My husband had the ravioli and loved it, and I loved my pizza. Good prices, good food, nice staff.

Pros: healthy food, nice atmosphere

Cons: location is a bit out-of-the-way

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Vegan Heaven Not Just for Vegans! - Edit

The photo of Portobello shows the entrance to their old location. The trattoria is now at SE 11th and Division in a group of small stores, with a (small) parking lot. My husband and I go whenever we can get in, and that used to mean before 6:30. Tonight we learned that the trattoria now takes reservations for small parties as well as large, which will make later dining with friends much more convenient . This is a wonderful kitchen with every dish carefully considered for flavor, quality of ingredients, and appearance. Salads and entrees are offered on small or large plates, and the small plates are often generous enough for a full meal. If you look at my photos, you may notice that we'd already started to eat a couple of dishes before I remembered to take a photo! Too bad, because everything looks like a magazine spread when it arrives at the table. I can't imagine coming up with anything but praise for this place--excellent and inventive all-vegan food, fabulous desserts, wine, full bar and wonderful "mocktails," very friendly and helpful service, and reasonable prices. Really, the prices are low, given the quality and deliciousness of what's offered. Be sure not to skip dessert--Portobello has some of the best.

Pros: excellent food, water carafe on the table, friendly staff

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Wonderful - Edit

This place is a gem!

Everything on the menu sounded so delicious and mouthwatering it took a while to decide what to order.

The pasta dishes can be ordered in full or half-orders, so my date and I ended up ordering 4 half-orders of the pasta dishes so we could get a sampling of each.

They were all delicious, but my particular favorites were the gnocchi and the bottlecap pasta. All their pasta is made in-house.

Unique relaxing yet sophisticated atmosphere, and very friendly and attentive service, too!

I'd highly recommend this place to veg*ns and omnivores alike.

Updated from previous review on Tuesday September 28, 2010

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Good but not great - Edit

We were visiting Portland for a couple of days and a vegan trattoria sounded like a dream come true. I wish I had read all the info on reservations, because the first day we showed up, the place was packed so we had to make a reservation for the next day. Food was ok, I really liked the gnocchi but husband wasn't crazy about their portobello dish that comes with mashed potatoes. Tiramisu was delicious. Overall a great atmosphere but don't know if we would go back when in town next time.

Pros: Nice atmosphere, Good Food

Cons: Slow Service, Reservation NECESSARY

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Fabulous Vegan Mediterranean - Edit

The menu changes regularly, depending on the availability of fresh local produce. I've learned through my experience (been there twice now) that it's important to dine EARLY. The best dishes sell out by 7/7:30 and the wait gets absolutely ridiculous. Both times I've gone, the waitress has recommended wonderful dishes. I'm a big fan of the pizza and gnocchi. The tiramisu was just average, but the appetizer was superb (some time of creamy spread with crustini bread). I look forward to going back to Portobello soon...and bringing a friend!

Pros: excellent food, healthy cuisine, warm atmosphere

Cons: long wait

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Incredibly delicious and rich Italian food - Edit

I went to Portabello with my gluten-free, vegan partner and his omnivore sister and both were impressed and satisfied with their meal. This restaurant provides a menu that is very inclusive and palatable for most. The food was high quality and in good proportions (unexpected for a "fancier" restaurant). The prices were reasonable- 2 appetizers, a bottle of wine, 3 entrées and 2 desserts came out to about $85.

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GREAT! - Edit

We recently had lunch here and it was superb. Both my husband and I had one of their sandwiches. They were beautifully presented and delish. I have to use the word "superb" again. And GOURMET!

Pros: atmosphere, menu, food

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High-Class Vegan - Edit

Probably the nicest vegan restaurant in Portland, Portobello is fantastic. They recently re-located into a larger space, meaning they could also offer more variety. They have many gluten-free options, as well as tantalizing cocktails, appetizers, and desserts. Everything is good here, and your waiter is more than happy to help you make good choices for the perfect meal.

Pros: variety, delicious, all vegan

Cons: expensive

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Delicious! - Edit

I'm glad we didn't know about the reservation issue, because we wouldn't have even tried. We walked in as soon as the restaurant opened with a party of 6 and were seated. Every dish we ordered was delicious. My not-vegan-knowledgable brother-in-law was very impressed!

Especially recommended: gnocchi, linguine. My three-year-old son had pizza (made with Daiya "cheese"). The adults all liked it, and my son ate it. However, over the next week or so, he randomly mentioned that he didn't like the pizza.

Amount-of-food per cost : it was pricier than what I'm used to, and that's why the four star rating. Food was excellent! Perfect for a special occasion.

Pros: excellent food, friendly staff, interesting tincture beverages

Cons: a little pricey

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Nirvana! - Edit

I have no idea how anyone can give this place anything less than five cows. It was, so far, the best vegan food I have ever had. Completely awesome in every way. The new spot is comfortable, and while you may have to wait a bit, the beer pub next door is a great place to do so. We had three dishes: the marsala mushrooms (a side dish), which were spectacular. Tender and with a stupendously delicious flavour. Our sausage pizza was perfection, as was a wonderful spaghetti dish. Just when I thought it couldn't get any better, along came a sublime cannoli(!) with vanilla mousse. Only complaint (minor) was the lack of soy milk for the coffee to put the final cherry on the sundae. Do not miss this place. The appetizer list alone was enough to make me salivate in anticipation. We will be back!!!! I would give this six cows if I could.

Pros: Everything, q

Cons: Nothing

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i still won't beg you to take my money - Edit

I called again last go around in Portland. This time I had a man answer to tell me that he could indeed seat us only to keep me on hold for 5 minutes and tell me rather rudely that he didn't think he could seat us and if we were to blah blah blah. I mean, really?

The first time I called I got a very confused woman tell me that she could seat me if we wanted to sit in 2 pairs of 2, one at the bar and the other 2 later. She said she could not seat us at tables. Good, what about the bar? Oh wait yes, that can work. But only for two of us. THen she decided somehow that our four could come in BUT we would have to know exactly when we were coming in. THAT IS A RESERVATION!!!

I don't think this place is as super busy as it is poorly managed. The folks I talked to who've eaten there seemed surprised because first it was not that good and two, it is never busy. They eat there as locals.

[And I think two attempts at not being allowed to eat somewhere enables me to this opinion; they are rude and confused. Look at some of the Portland reviews I can share w you of a woman walking in to a teahouse and giving it 5 stars, or calling Midwest cafe for info and reviewing it. This is dining related. (same woman)]

Pros: they will close soon

Cons: Rude, confused, wont serve me, no cows

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kidecat 22 Feb 2013 - I'm sorry, but your line: "THAT IS A RESERVATION" reminds me of the Seinfeld episode where they "TOOK" his rental car reservation, but did not "HOLD" his reservation (they told hom they did not have any cars). Still don't understand the reseravtion policy at this restaurant. Planned on going there this month (traveling from Detroit). I better call now!

Heaven on Earth! - Edit

I'm so glad I read here that I needed a reservation, because I wouldn't have been able to eat here, and my life wouldn't be the same. Oh my, this was wonderful. The buckwheat crepe with dill was AMAZING. I had the gnocchi, and my friend had pumpkin / butternut squash ravioli (or something like that) -- all fabulous. I'm not a wine drinker but I tried a local wine called something like "hot chicks" - and loved it. Good thing I'm not a local - I'd become a wino! Make reservations and visit this place!!

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Amazing - Edit

We went tonight for 12 year anniversary without a reservation at about 5:45. They said that they didn't have availability until after 7pm but then thankfully sat us at a table and let us know that it was reserved at 7:15. I am so glad we didn't have to go somewhere else because the food was amazing. My husband (who is not vegan) had the Portabella steak over polenta, I had the Mushroom Agnolotti and my daughter had the Gnocchi. For a starter we had the bruschetta. I'm deathly allergic to sulfites and was so happy to have some sulfite organic wine with my meal. For desert we had the blueberry cheesecake and tira misu. Everything taste wonderful and the greens were delicious as well. The prices are very reasonable with 1/2 size options. Compared to Millenium in San Francisco this place is a bargain. I can't wait to go back! I've been trying out vegan restaurants for 7 years now and I really think it was the first time that every dish was good. My one suggestion would be to scrap the reservation for small parties. If they would like to make more money it would do away with empty tables. Until then, make sure you call ahead and leave them a message if before hours or on off days.

Pros: Delicious, Organic Wine, Feels like home

Cons: None so far

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Generally good, but not great - Edit

They have a good menu and some interesting pasta dishes that can be ordered in full or half size. The leafy greens were tasty although somewhat gritty. They perpetually have a sign on the door that they can't seat you that night because they're booked. However the night I was there the place was completely empty. I saw people walk up to the door, look at the sign and leave. I wonder how long they'll be in business.

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Aww yeah! - Edit

This place is a treasure trove! Its small size and casual demeanor might fool you, but the food is superbly flavored with enough pizazz to wow your taste buds for days! Although I've only been here twice, both times were outstanding. Portland doesn't seem to have a vegan friendly Italian restaurant, until now! The prices are shockingly low for freshly made, local organic produce based dishes. Definitely order as many dishes as possible, probably 2-3 per person, and share with everyone.

The appetizers are wonderful, ranging from breads with spreads to olives. The ingredients really couldn't be fresher. The vegetable sides are bursting with flavor. Who knew brussel sprouts and broccoli rabe could taste that good?! Oh, but the crimini mushrooms are the best.

Beware, their menu changes with season, as well it should. The entrees, oh boy! Forgive the mistaken names, as I can't recall any.... but the spaghetti with meatball is such an interesting concept, it's a new classic (wheat-free). All of the pasta dishes are excellent, such as butternut squash and pumpkin filled ravioli/raviolo with a cashew cream sauce, fresh sage (I think it was sage) and a dusting of hazelnuts. The lasagna is delish and the soup divine! The flavors are so wonderful, it is perfectly paired with the dish sizes. They are not overwhelming, but perfect! It's unlikely to have leftovers, as the portions are very reasonable (not gargantuan enticements to eat a day's calories in one dish)!

Dessert, well, that's for another time. Let's just say this reviewer has other preferences for decadent dessert. Nice way to finish the meal though.

I would definitely recommend this to everyone I know, veg*n or otherwise. It's an outstanding little establishment that Portland is lucky to have!!

Pros: Fresh, seasonal, Made to order, Flavorful

Cons: Too many choices, Everything is good, Dessert is so so

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