One of the highest compliments you can pay a restaurant as a visitor to the City of Portland is that we went here 3 times in 3 days. My girlfriend and I are adventurous eaters and typically don't go back the same restaurant often, preferring to try as many menus as we can during our trips. We came here on the recommendation of local bartenders and sat at the Chef's counter for lunch, which in my opinion is the best seat in the house.
From the moment we were greeted, the entire tone of the restaurant was friendly, professional and calm. The food was executed to perfection, bursting with flavor, and each item followed the previous one with impeccable timing. The pricing is very reasonable, especially is you are someone who understands that an $18 Tuna Crudo is better than a $10 one for many reasons. For the record, the Tuna Crudo here is one of the best I've ever had. The pricing is really about whether you're someone who wants their mozzarella fried and in stick form ($7 and indigestion), or as a Maplebrook Farm Burrata with fresh strawberries, golden raisins and black olive relish ($17 and happy memories).
We came back again on a Monday night, hoping to grab a few quick items before a concert and were happily directed to the downstairs area where there is a standing area with a pleasantly sized rail for you to stand by. The restaurant was busy but not hectic. We ordered four items, and they were brought promptly, coursed perfectly, and our server was friendly, available and totally in control.
I can't praise the team at Central Provisions enough for how well they execute this concept. The Chefs and cooks are industry professionals who send beautiful food out of a tight (and impressively clean) kitchen at a rapid pace. The serving staff is knowledgeable, energetic and genuinely happy to work there. Even the support staff in the back were aware of cleaning and prepping at a noise level that didn't insert itself into the dining room. Many thanks from two greatful guests!!
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