Another space designed and executed by the ELK Collective and while it is an older project that has been done for a while now, it was skipped over for some reason on my part. I’ve had the pleasure of getting to enjoy this space a few times now and it inspired me to giving it it’s own little blurb. C’mon in…
Portland has become a Mecca for young, inspired chefs. The relatively affordable overhead alongside a genuinely interested food culture makes for a ripe proving ground. Aesthetics and spacial design can be the difference between one restaurant’s success, and it’s failure as there are so many quality venues boasting inventive, unique or simple, well done fare. Scott Snyder the owner and chef at Levant recognized the need to design his space around his vision, and ELK obliged in spades.
With the aroma of freshly made corn tortillas and chile rubbed rotisserie chicken wafting through the warm and inviting space occupied at 3715 SE Division Street in Portland, you may just find yourself transported to a lighter and more festive locale. Xico (pronounced “Chico”) is a respite from the grey winter gloom reflecting off of the wet Portland sidewalks, there to warm and whet your appetite. For those who’ve not been fortunate enough to spend time in Mexico, you should go ahead and just take my word for it, it is the next best thing. For those who have, this restaurant combines elements of traditional homemade southern Mexican dishes with the libations to accompany them providing a great way to relive past travel memories. I was contacted by Liz Davis, manager of Xico, to shoot some of the authentically inspirational culinary creations that she, chef Kelly Myers, and owner Daniel Thomas have brought to life here. I’m a self admitted non food photography professional, but with some other recent restaurant type work fit firmly under my belt of late, I was excited by the challenge and after meeting with both Liz and Dan, I knew that their vision was something I wanted to help capture for them, the fact that they fed me and gave me liquor didn’t hurt either.
While the title may allude to a sinister, Imperial-esque characterization of a city known for many a questionable, extra curricular activity, I mean to speak quite literally. For anyone who’s read my blog for more than a year, you may know that I travel to Amsterdam once a year on business. Because of said business, coupled with the late time of year and Holland’s geographical placement, I rarely get to experience it in the light of day. With a +9 hour difference to tackle, and tiring hours spent working while there, my window for photographic opportunity normally falls within about an hour and a half between when I get done working, and the inevitable collapse into a jet lagged coma that prematurely greets the end of each day. Luckily, this year, this window happened to open while the weather was crisp, but dry as it gave me the ability to wander around, camera in hand to document a bit of my annual stay in what has become my home away from home.