A lot has changed in Portland over the past five years. Traffic got worse. The economy got better. Menus became slightly more plant-heavy and less glutenous. Your favorite Old Portland stalwart was razed to become some new building you hate. And Gregory Gourdet has grown from Departure's shy new chef to a national foodie celebrity and Top Chef runner-up.
One thing that hasn't changed? Gourdet's Summer's End Vegan Dinner. Now in its sixth year, the annual prix fixe supper spotlights late summer and early autumn bounty in a series of vegan and gluten-free dishes. Each iteration has featured a different partner from local plant-based pros such as Portobello, Blossoming Lotus and Ava Gene's. This year, Gourdet will collaborate with Derek Sarno of Wicked Healthy Foods, a Portland-based food blog specializing in epic I-can't-believe-it's-vegan recipes.
"Their bold take on plant-based reinterpretations of favorite classics is super fun," says Gourdet. "I have drooled over their Instagram food porn, oftentimes doing a double take as their cuisine oftentimes looks like classic meat dishes but it’s a lovely vegetable tricking your eye."
Scheduled for Sept. 26, this year's Summer's End Vegan Dinner promises to be bigger and better than ever, featuring 15 dishes spread out over six courses. Highlights include a vegan charcuterie plate, grilled lion's mane mushroom tacos, kimchi and sea vegetable soup, and a sweet corn custard featuring end-of-summer fruit. Ogle the menu on the event's Facebook page, and don't forget to call soon to make your reservation—or you'll be sorry!
Summer’s End Vegan Dinner at Departure
525 SW Morrison St
6:30 p.m. Monday, Sept
$72 per person
Call 503-802-5370 after 2 p.m. to reserve your spot