On this repeat visit to the restaurant that caused me to fall in love with Portland, we ordered the steak tartare again. We were completely enamored with the skillfully diced beef, the petite drop of egg yolk, and the crisp crostini. It was just as fresh as I had remembered it. Consistently executed quality dishes like this is what makes for an awesome restaurant. This is a must if visiting Olympic Provisions... or even Portland at all.
The mixed beans salad from last time gave me such a lasting impression that I convinced Allie to order some vegetables... at a salumeria. Yes, I know. But how could we resist? Nutritious, beautiful, and ever so fresh, the kale salad with thinly sliced radishes was a fitting complement to our meal.
One item on the dessert menu that we did not order last time was the salame de chocolat. Yes, you read that correctly. Chocolate salami. But it's not what you think. Or it might be exactly what you think. It's smooth chocolate in the shape of a sausage with bits of nuts and toffee right where the fatty spots of a salami should be. Genius. Pure genius. Along with the citrus marmalade and the salt and pepper shortbread... holy momma, this was devilishly delicious. We particularly took a liking to the shortbread. It was like a melt-in-your-mouth Ritz cracker... but even better. Some would say this cracker was on crack.
To top everything off, we sneaked in a few small bites of some dessert that the staff was catering to a wedding.
Hats off to Chef Alex for his genuine food preparation, passion, and prowess. Just in case you are expecting a swanky place, this is not it. Don't expect anyone to place a white cloth napkin over your lap as you sit down. It is just a straight forward salumeria, a glorified butcher shop of sorts, that makes food without fuss. Olympic Provisions is for me what a day spa is for those working in corporate America. Feeling stressed? Suffering from culinary depression? Chef Alex will give you a realignment. And at the end of your session you'll want to come back again. Until then, let's all get S.O.F.A.T.
ML - 20130622