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Why Portland Restaurants Are Flocking to the 'Burbs

Six Portland restaurants are opening shop this summer at Mercato Grove, in Lake Oswego.

Presented by Mercato Grove May 17, 2021

Lardo will have a large outdoor patio at Lardo where people can sip one of 16 different craft beers with their sandwiches.

A little less than a decade ago, you couldn’t glance at one of the many national foodie and travel columns without seeing mention of Portland, Ore. Our city was having a moment, in a big way, and the top names in food press were taking notice. Over the last year, the city has endured much, and chef-owners are now on the lookout for new ways to meet their regulars where they are.  So what are these restaurateurs doing? Heading to the suburbs.

Grassa will feature the same menu of handcrafted pastas as the Portland locations with a larger selection of beer and wines on tap.

Starting this summer, six Portland restaurants will open their doors at Mercato Grove, a new residential and retail neighborhood in Lake Oswego. And they’re all in this move together.

“The truly unique part of this for me is being part of a project with other friends from Portland,” said Rick Gencarelli, chef and partner for Lardo and Grassa. “It creates something far more interesting than your usual food-mall type of situation. This is a food community that is full of opportunities for fun collaborations like food festivals, beer events and multi-course dinners. The concepts all provide different experiences so we don't directly compete.”

The six restaurants joining Mercato Grove are:

Oven and Shaker makes their pizza dough in-house using a signature 70-year-old sourdough starter, hand-tossed and fired to order in an imported Milanese wood-burning oven.

  • Grassa: Meticulously crafted bowls of fresh pasta on the fly, paired with traditional and seasonal salads, delicious appetizers and tasty cocktails. Open now for takeout and delivery.
  • Lardo: A sandwich shop that uses old-world techniques, contemporary flourishes and a uniquely smash-mouth deli experience. Open now for takeout and delivery.
  • Fills: A new Berliner-style doughnut shop that will also serve a $4 burger, fries and soft-serve ice cream. Opening July, 2021.
  • Lac St. Jack: If St. Jack is an ode to the bouchons of Lyon, then Lac St. Jack is a nod to the classic bistros and brasseries of Paris and an exploration of

    Old favorites, like Potatoes Bravas, are back on the menu at the Tasty reboot at Mercato Grove.

    French technique. Opening July, 2021.
  • Tasty: Tasty is an eclectic, all-day eatery thatcelebrates the bounty of the Pacific Northwest. Using inspiration from cuisines all over the world, Tasty works with local producers to create a diverse menu that has something for everyone. Opening July, 2021.
  • Oven and Shaker: The kitchen at Oven and Shaker unites tradition and creativity in the arena of wood-fired Neapolitan pizza and Italian street food. Opening August, 2021.

More than just donuts, this second location for Fills will also feature family-friendly burgers, fries, and soft serve. 

The restaurants, all members of the ChefStable restaurant group, have several chef-centric events planned, including a partnership with local knifemaker Benchmade. The Benchmade Signature Chef Series will run through the summer with a monthly dinner featuring a different chef and theme from the restaurants at Mercato Grove, taking guests on a culinary journey with multiple courses and thoughtfully paired wine and other beverages.

Mercato Grove blends a thoughtful, wellness-focused residential experience with a thriving local food scene unlike anything available outside the urban core—it’s a downtown experience in a one-of-a-kind suburban setting. Located at the intersection of Kruse Way and Boones Ferry Road in Lake Oswego, a mix of studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, and townhomes are available. Schedule a private tour today by visiting mercatogrove.com.

Mercato Grove, a new residential and retail destination in Lake Oswego.