Northeast Portland, Oregon is home to OX, a fine dining restaurant with a casual atmosphere. The food is wood fired and inspired by the culinary traditions of Argentina, Italy, Spain and France… with local meats and vegetables for a regional flair. OX may be an unusual name for a restaurant, but, the reasoning behind the name is very fitting of this great city. “The name OX pays homage to the work animal that pulls the plough, tilling the soil and replenishing the land’s ability to produce its fruits, vegetables, and grains.”
With this in mind, my wife and I decided to treat ourselves to some terrific cuisine created by local chefs, Greg Denton and Gabrielle Quiñónez Denton.
We hired a sitter and enjoyed a leisurely drive from Cedar hills, through downtown Portland all the way to Northeast Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. The building housing OX was not what we expected in a fine dining restaurant. A warm, red brick archway led us into a cozy building with red brick walls and ubiquitous windows. We sat at a small table and peered out on this magnificent city as our server headed over.
Everything on the menu looked delicious. After short deliberation, my wife ordered the boneless rainbow trout with herbs and fingerling potatoes and I decided on the Maple Brined Pork loin chop. Both were reasonably priced, only costing us $41 total. This left room in our wallets for a couple of local beers and a green salad. As we waited for our food, we watched flames burst up in the kitchen as Greg Denton flamed up some scrumptious cuisine. The vibe was energetic and friendly and, even though this wasn’t our neighborhood, we felt connected and welcomed.
Then the food came, gloriously presented in a way that would impress even the most stubborn purist. It was so beautiful, we almost didn’t want to eat it, but we were glad we did! The flavor was indescribably delicious. Clearly this was food prepared with care. Each delectable bite tantalized our taste buds and left us hungry for more. It took everything in us to eat slowly and savor the flavors, but we did. Yes. This was the culinary experience we were searching for! This is why Portland, Oregon has quickly risen up as one of the top food destinations in the United States.
After eating, we sat back and enjoyed each other’s company and the surrounding ambiance. Soft music coalesced with subtle conversations and the sounds of sizzles, crackles, and pops. This experience touched on all the senses and is one that should be had by all.
Portland, Oregon is home to many fine restaurants, but none, perhaps, finer than OX. Make it a date night you won’t soon forget.