Ssshaved Ice offers Portland Japanese Shaved Ice

With the heat wave, I thought it was an appropriate time for me to have this post where I highlight SSshaved Ice. I included SShaved Ice, a pop up on which offers Portland Japanese shaved ice on announced Saturdays at Courier Coffee, on my Eater PDX article The Hottest Portland Pop-Ups Right Now, Summer 2017. Here are some more detailed photos of some of the amazingness that you can find. You can find out when they are popping up by following their Instagram, @ssshavedice, usually it is Saturdays at Courier Coffee at 923 SW Oak from Noon – 4 PM (or until run out!).

Ssshaved Ice, a pop up offering Japanese Shaved Ice, this is the Ssshaved Ice Strawberry Milk Kintoki with Ricotta Caramel.

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A visit to Maurice in Portland

A photo essay of the various example options (they change daily and seasonally, with menus written daily) at Maurice Luncheonette in Portland.

Outside of Maurice Luncheonette in Portland Outside of Maurice Luncheonette in Portland Outside of Maurice Luncheonette in Portland

A few expectations you should have: although they open at 10 AM, Kristen Murray handwrites the menu everyday with love as it changes daily. So, until 11 AM when the food menu is ready, you only have the options of beverages and whatever pastries and desserts are already in the case.
The lunch menu is written every day with love. Until 11 am, only the beverage and pastries in the case are available, no food service The lunch menu is written every day with love. Until 11 am, only the beverage and pastries in the case are available, no food service The lunch menu is written every day with love. Until 11 am, only the beverage and pastries in the case are available, no food service

The tea here is very good- a big selection, and she specifically brings the selections from a tea proprietor in Massachusetts. Don’t be shy about asking for a refill of hot water.

The scone they offer (here is the Currant and Rosemary Scone) is the most perfect I’ve ever had – a crispy crunchy outside but soft inside and not dry in any bite like scones often are, so you might as well order one to go with your beverage.
The tea service from Maurice are from MEM TEA Imports at Watertown, MA Setup for Tea Service. The tea that Maurice carries are from MEM Tea Imports from Watertown, MA Currant and Rosemary Scone with fresh whipped cream. It was the most perfect scone texture I've ever had, with the crisp outside but soft insides and not dry at all

The atmosphere is clean and bright, with mostly two tops, counterspace, and only two tables on either side of the windows that might be able to accommodate 5 people at most, so not a place for larger groups. It manages to balance minimal decorations with a strong feel of being darling. When Bon Appetit included it in the Hot 10 of 2014 it’s described with sunshine and bluebirds and “earnest, a bit precious, and crazy charming”
Atmosphere at Maurice. Usually it is more clean lines and simple, but the garlands were added for the holidays! Kristen Murray, owner of Maurice, is in the hat on the right Atmosphere at Maurice is usually very clean and simple, the wreath is an addition just for the holidays, and you can see more of the carefully selected wine list on the chalkboard there Atmosphere at Maurice. Usually it is more clean lines and simple, but the garlands were added for the holidays

Just looking at that artfully arranged case as you enter, it’s like a perfectly set scene of pastries from a romance-comedy movie or the perfect small town bakery owned by the heroine in a Hallmark movie that the whole town adores (actually, that’s pretty close to the sentiment Portland has for Maurice, if you read the reviews from Portland Monthly, Oregonian, Willamette Weekly, and the Portland Mercury, although the dinner some mention is no longer offered. I think the word charming is in half of those reviews.). And here Maurice is, looking perfect everyday for real.

Ask for details of what are the various beauties in the case or on the platters on the case (an initial title and cost are listed on the chalkboard just to the right of the case)
Some of the treats at Maurice on and in the case by the register counter Some of the treats at Maurice on and in the case by the register counter Some of the treats at Maurice on and in the case by the register counter Some of the treats at Maurice on and in the case by the register counter
All the plates are tiny but plated in a sweet and intricate and sometimes whimsical, always thoughtfully curated artistic way.

The biggest bang for your buck will be the desserts. This is a perfect spot for a little tea or a glass of wine with a little bite, but don’t expect a big meal unless you get a lot of those petite plates and the plates at close to $10 a piece will add up. Maurice is most appropriate for a snack with tea or a small light meal.

Start the photo essay:
Pear and Pistachio Tarte
Pear and Pistachio Tarte, beautiful and made with love, as always at Maurice

Radishes with butter and salt / Lucques Olives
An appetizer at Maurice from the lunch menu, Radishes with butter and salt A snack at Maurice of Lucques Olives

Lefse of the day: lefse with ham, brie and tumeni pickles
A plate of lefse with ham, brie and tumeni pickles from the menu at Maurice A plate of lefse with ham, brie and tumeni pickles from the menu at Maurice A plate of lefse with ham, brie and tumeni pickles from the menu at Maurice

One famous standby dessert is the Black Pepper Cheesecake and a bit of strawberry leather, here with Salted Butter Ice Cream
Maurice Black Pepper Cheesecake with Salted Butter Ice Cream and a bit of strawberry leather Maurice Black Pepper Cheesecake with Salted Butter Ice Cream and a bit of strawberry leather

Fika Pastry, a Swedish pastry, and it also means social drink break (most often accompanied by a sweet pastry, can be coffee or otherwise for the beverage) in Swedish and is both a verb and a noun
Fika Pastry from Maurice, Portland Fika Pastry from Maurice, Portland Fika Pastry from Maurice, Portland

Chocolate Mousse
Maurice Chocolate Mousse Maurice Chocolate Mousse

The famous standby dessert (besides the black pepper cheesecake) at Maurice is the Meyer Lemon Souffle Pudding Cake
The famous standby dessert (besides the black pepper cheesecake) at Maurice is the Meyer Lemon Souffle Pudding Cake

A lovely Chocolate Banana Cake Box, love the layers and the valrohna chocolate balls on top
A lovely chocolate banana cake box from Maurice, love the layers and the valrohna chocolate balls on top A lovely chocolate banana cake box from Maurice, love the layers and the valrohna chocolate balls on top A lovely chocolate banana cake box from Maurice, love the layers and the valrohna chocolate balls on top A lovely chocolate banana cake box from Maurice, love the layers and the valrohna chocolate balls on top A lovely chocolate banana cake box from Maurice, love the layers and the valrohna chocolate balls on top A lovely chocolate banana cake box from Maurice, love the layers and the valrohna chocolate balls on top

 

Have you been to Maurice, and what did you think? What do you think based on these photos if you haven’t?

Måurice on Urbanspoon

 

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The Welcome Discovery of Pavlova at Picnic House

A dinner at the Picnic House recently introduced me to this wonderful dessert that I had never heard of before, pavlova. Ah, this light airy goodness of egg whites and sugar into meringue with fresh berries and vanilla cream. At first this plate looked intimidating as it is basically the size of a whole pie but then we realized you were being given the best part, the crunchy top half, a thin shell of firmness surrounding an inside that melted in our mouth so quickly that we needed another spoonful carefully balancing crisp bits of meringue with soft vanilla cream and such beautiful sweet strawberry in each bite to extend the rush.

Pavlova at Picnic House, from Pechluck at pechluck1.typepad.com

I also discovered my favorite two cocktails that the Picnic House offers from their cocktail menu. After trying the lighter cocktail sparklers of the Fleur de Lis and Sauvie on previous visits, this time I welcomed the Moulin Rouge martini with Indio Marionberry infused vodka, Clear Creek Blackberry liqueur, blueberry simple syrup, fresh squeezed lemon and garnished with a pickled blueberry, a combination of sweet with a touch of tart so it was not too sweet. But, my favorite was The Nymph cocktail, both delicate and strong, with Pink Spruce gin, fresh squeezed lemon juice, and a simple syrup muddled with cucumber. Refreshing citrusy but you can feel the magic afterwards!

Picnic House cocktail Moulin Rouge martini Picnic House Nymph cocktail

The atmosphere is still as charming as I previously wrote about, and they still have a  nice selection of side dishes and an unbelievably addictive chocolate cake as mentioned here also. Did I also mention how wonderful the Picnic House pavlova was?

Picnic House pavlova

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