My cousin Andy has always been known in the family as a world traveler. We never knew whether he would show up for Thanksgiving or Christmas, often he would be in Thailand or Vietnam or China instead. The times he did make an appearance, the food he brought with him would be stunningly good, and would speedily vanish (leaving you disappointed if you didn’t move fast enough). One year he brought a large roasting pan filled with cookies and just last year he came with a spicy Thai sausage that he had made himself.
A couple of years ago, I started hearing rumors throughout the family that he was opening a restaurant in Portland. He bought a house in SE and started renovations. Last summer when I was out there, the take-out window was open for business and I remember sitting outside with my mom, devouring a section of roasted game hen and wishing for more. When I was in town last December, Andy gifted us with a remarkably amazing meal. The fish sauce glazed chicken wings made such an impression on my tastebuds that I can conjure the flavor simply by thinking about them.
Portland diners have embraced Pok Pok and the Whiskey Soda Lounge, the accompanying indoor dining room, and last week the Oregonian named it the best restaurant of the year. Andy’s success is just one more confirmation that if you do what you love and follow your passion, you will find ever-increasing joy (and hopefully an investor or two).
*My parents occupy positions one and two.
Way to Go!
I used to live almost around the corner, 26th and Clinton (a great destination in its own right, off the hustle of Division).
I will be sure to head there my next visit to Stumptown.
I was lucky to have some good Thai curry in Chicago a few weekends back, but this menu sounds much more interesting.
I will definitely have to check out Pok Pok now. I have been meaning to for months… now I have even more of a reason to go!