Power Lunch: Headwaters
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1001 Southwest Broadway
Owners: Vitaly and Kimberly Paley, Marcel Lahsene, and Garret Peck
Atmosphere: Last February, when the Heathman Restaurant shuttered, the dining room was completely gutted and revamped. It now has a modern, open feel with oak floors, lime-green banquettes, pressed tin ceilings and an open kitchen that runs the length of the dining room. Striking slate waves by Oregon artist Michael Schlicting hang on the wall, lending the space a sea-focused vibe.
Clientele: Lawyers, politicians, tech workers, journalists, Heathman hotel guests, theater-goers and ladies-who-lunch-after-shopping.
Most popular: The entire smoked, kippered, and cured section of the “Sea Bar,” which includes smoked sablefish, sturgeon pastrami, beet-cured steelhead, and mustard-kippered salmon — all with house-made matzo crackers and smoked-herring schmear. Kale Caesar salad with chicken, the Dungeness crab Luigi, the open-faced Reuben and “Le Grec,” a pita stuffed with rotisserie chicken salad, pesto, and a cucumber yogurt dressing served with crispy fries.
Best seat in the house: All the window seats. If you’re craving privacy, the seats behind the mesh screen in the back of the dining room are best
Danger zone: Impress your clients with a seafood tower. The petite tower ($45) serves 2-4 and will give you a sampling of what’s fresh from the sea: oysters, prawns, cherrystone clams, sea urchin shots, smoked mussel shots, Dungeness crab, and assorted sauces. The grand version ($86) is twice as big and feeds 4 to 6.
Bragging rights: Over the decades they’ve been in Portland, the Paleys have built strong relationships with local winemakers. As a result, the wine list emphasizes wines from small Oregon and Washington producers.
Overheard: Two middle-aged men in suits converse: “One real mistake in our political system is we’ve created an elite class“; “It’s weird to think about being passionate about data”; “I was going to put it into stocks, but I think there’s a bubble right now. Real estate makes sense.”