How to Celebrate Fat Tuesday, Portland-Style

Grab your beads and party down with these Mardi Gras-loving Portland restaurants.

By Alex Keith February 5, 2016

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Whether you’re actually giving something up for Lent or not, Mardi Gras is the perfect excuse to gorge yourself on rich, fatty foods. It’s tradition, even in Portland. So, laissez les bon temps rouler!

Northeast Cajun and Creole eatery Tapalaya kicks off the Fat Tuesday celebrations early with its third annual Lundi Gras Breakside Brewery Dinner on Monday night. Chef Anh Luu will be cooking up a 10-course, family-style Caribbean Creole feast paired with five Breakside brews. Think jerk-spiced potato chips, oyster cocktail shooters, banana leaf-steamed mahi mahi, coconut curried jumbo gulf shrimp, jerk chicken skewers, pork cheek pepperpot, white grits with sofrito butter, and more. Ending on a sweet note, Luu puts her own spin on the classic king cake with a chocolate key lime version.
$60 per person. February 8, 6-9pm. Purchase tickets here.

New Orleans bistro Acadia lets loose some Louisiana flavor with a prix fixe dinner menu from chef Seamus Foran. Classics get a Cajun twist in dishes like crawfish deviled eggs, crab cakes with frisée and hollandaise, braised pork cheeks with grits and cane syrup gastrique, and house-made king cake with cream cheese icing. The person lucky enough to find the traditional baby wins a $50 gift certificate.
$45 per person. February 9, 5-10pm. Call 503-249-5001 to reserve your seat. 

In addition to the usual menu of Southern soul food staples, Mississippi Avenue’s Miss Delta serves up bayou classics like turtle soup and alligator bites just for Mardi Gras. To top it all off, the restaurant has flown in a king cake all the way from reputable New Orlean’s bakery, Antoine’s. It doesn’t get more authentic than that.
Tuesday, February 9. Call 503-287-7629. 

Looking to enjoy Fat Tuesday at home? Better call Bowery Bagels to place your order of traditional pączki— deep-fried, jelly doughnut-like pastries in flavors like vanilla cream, chocolate cream, apple, and prune. (And they’re all vegan!) Popularized in Poland, pączki were consumed at Fat Tuesday parties as a way to use up all the lard, sugar, and eggs in the house before Lent. Not a bad plan...
Pre-order here before Friday, February 5 to skip the line.

Fat Tuesday lingers into Friday at My Brother’s Crawfish, a Southeast joint satisfying all your crawfish cravings. The restaurant’s Fat Tuesday (err, Friday) festivities include collecting beads, grooving to New Orleans jams, and savoring a lineup of Cajun Bloody Marys, oyster shooters, crawfish etouffee, Dungeness crab cakes, jambalaya, and more.
Friday, February 12. Call 503-774-3786.

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