In 2007, Portland was recognized by the Food Network Awards as their "Delicious Destination of the Year". In the same year, the New York Times recognized Portland for its burgeoning restaurant scene. Overall, Portland has quickly, and quietly, become a foodie heaven.
In the New York Times piece, several chefs spoke about their culinary pilgrimage to Portland , calling the city a “full-fledged dining destination.”
This is a golden age of dining and drinking in a city that 15 years ago was about as cutting edge as a tomato in January. Every little neighborhood in this city of funky neighborhoods now seems to be exploding with restaurants, food shops and markets, all benefiting from a critical mass of passion, skill and experience, and all constructed according to the gospel of locally grown ingredients.
The excellent restaurant scene is, of course, directly related to the skills of the chefs that fashion the cuisine. One of the most sought after careers in the Portland culinary field is that of the Chef. Chefs are responsible for creating recipes and ensuring appealing presentation, while other cooks and food preparation workers prepare individual foods for meals, with duties such as peeling vegetables and monitoring temperatures. Chefs are also the most skilled cooks in the kitchen and use their creativity and knowledge of food to develop and prepare recipes.
Executive chefs, head cooks, and chefs de cuisine, are primarily responsible for coordinating the work of the cooks and directing the preparation of meals. Executive chefs are in charge of all food service operations and also may supervise several kitchens of a hotel, restaurant or corporate dining operation. A sous chef, or sub chef, is the second-in-command and runs the kitchen in the absence of the chef.
Most top chefs pursue formal training through culinary institutions or vocational programs in the culinary arts, culinary management, or pasty arts. Many programs include an externship or apprenticeship opportunity. Though many cooks and food preparation workers leave the industry, some may go on to cooking school to have more formal training and increased responsibility.
Culinary Schools, Culinary Programs & Career Schools in Portland
- Oregon Culinary Institute
- Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts - Portland
Hospitality and Restaurant Management, Patisserie and Baking
- In Good Taste - Portland, Cooking Classes
- Sur La Table - Portland, Culinary Program
- Whole Foods Market - Portland, Salud! Cooking & Lifestyle School