WWeek 2011 Restaurant Guide
Parisian Portland -
“It takes guts—the kind you can’t find in pâté—to open an untested establishment in the restaurant bubble Micah Camden blew, but Cocotte, even in its infancy, breezily meets Northeast 30th Avenue’s high standards. The space is remarkably versatile, with a cozy dining room cloister that transforms into a temperate patio when the French doors are thrown open to let a warm evening in. (The modest garden that hangs on the wall can probably use the light, too.) And one or two minor hiccups in service aside—empty plates overstayed their welcome on a recent visit—everything making the trip from kitchen to table is stellar. The menu changes often to take advantage of seasonal shifts; late July found chefs Kat Liebman and Zoe Hackett performing a minor miracle with a summer corn soup, which could only have tasted fresher had it been somehow shaved directly from the cob into the bowl. The paquet dû chard makes for a worthy and texturally thrilling complement, with juicy pork sausage wrapped in brittle, charred summer rainbow chard. Cross your fingers and hope Cocotte keeps its Berkshire pork chop around. Whiskey-brined and tender enough to cut with a plastic spoon, paired with creamy corn grits, wax beans and peach chutney, this merger of salty meat and harvested sweetness does the neighborhood proud. CHRIS STAMM.”
Ideal meal: Summer corn soup, paquet dû chard, Berkshire pork chop and ice cream.
Best deal: $5 food specials during happy hour. The corn soup is one of them.
5-10 pm Wednesday-Saturday, 5-9 pm Sunday, brunch 10:30 am-1:30 pm Saturday-Sunday. $$
Also see our Petit Dejeuner under “5 Things”… Ways to Eat Eggs.