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Business Description
About Vino Paradiso Vino Paradiso Wine Bar & Bistro is downtown Portland's only bonafide wine bar, located in the Pearl District. It was opened June of 2005, as a warm, inviting, hip, yet casual place for friends to hang out for fabulous food and a wine list that is at once easy to read and eclectic, with choices for the meek as well as the wild. Our goal is to shake the notion that one must know a lot about wine or have a lot of money to enjoy wine at a restaurant. Free from downtown, on the Streetcar, in "Fairless Square." Get off at the Glisan Stop. See the Google Map Below. CHEF PAUL LOSCH Chef Paul Losch received his formal training at Vong in London under Jean Georges Vongerichten, and the Culinary Institute of America in upstate New York, where he graduated with honors and amongst the youngest graduates the school had seen to that time. However, his first introduction to the culinary arts came at the age of 13, when he learned how to make pasta from scratch from a library book. I rolled the dough by hand and cut it with a Pam spray can lid, he remembers. In the 17 years since then, Losch has worked as a pastry chef, appetizer chef and executive chef, and proven himself to be creative and versatile in the kitchen. He has worked as a butcher at an artisan grocery in Brooklyn, as a poissonier at Rene Pujol's iconic French restaurant in the Theater District and ran the kitchen at Frederick's Downtown in the West Village before moving to Portland. Now he brings his varied breadth of experience to Vino Paradiso, where he was sous chef for a year before taking over as head chef in January of 2010. Losch's dinner menu at Vino Paradiso is modern American with a focus on Northern Mediterranean flavors, featuring flatbreads, salads, cheeses and at least two or three house-made pastas. Expanding upon solid past menus, Losch includes more sharable small plates, as well as entrees, seafood and fresh, local ingredients. Seafood, one of his passions and specialties is often prominent. The key to making the best-tasting food is to highlight the ingredients, he says. And being in the Northwest, you can get the best quality for basically everything you need within 100 miles of where you stand. Timothy Nishimoto was born in Florida and grew up in Long Beach, California, the second of three children. He credits his Japanese grandmother with teaching him that food and drink are so much more than nourishment. From her, even a plate of peanuts was well-presented, he recalls. Timothy graduated from Cal State Long Beach in 1990 and moved to Portland, Oregon in1991, where he has held a variety of restaurant jobs ( Bima, Papa Haydn, Santa Fe ) both on the floor and in management. In 1999, he began work as a wine steward for what was then Nature's Northwest Fresh in Laurelhurst district. When cornered into naming a 'favorite' wine, Timothy will allow that it would probably be a Pinot Noir. Place he's most enjoyed drinking wine? In Paris, on the steps of Sacre Coeur, he says, without missing a beat, After the opera, Fall 2000.
Hours

Regular Hours

Extra Phones

Phone: (503) 295-9536

Payment method
debit, amex, master card, visa
Neighborhoods
Neighbors West-Northwest, Pearl
AKA

Vino Paradiso Wine Bar and Bistro

Vino Paradiso Wine Bar & Bstr

Categories
Wine Bars, Bars
Other Information

Cuisines: Wine Bars

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Reviews

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04/08/2010

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Great Atmosphere

I have been going to Vino Paradiso for many years and the service has been consistently good. The staff there knows their wine.

02/23/2010

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
observations

observations, In reading some of the last reviews its clear that something is not right. I have to agree. The wine is fine, over priced but the food has drooped in quality. What I've noticed is that there is a new chef. Before when I was there it was chef Duncan (and the food was always grate) but now it is someone new. I think the change happened at the first of the year. And I am noticing that all of the bad reviews started about that time. Just in my observation the chef can really make the place along with the service and as of now both are lacking.

01/03/2009

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
ummmm, ok???

I agree with previous review.....the host slapped down our cheap looking menus and hardly gave us a smile all night. The wine was ok but overpriced. There is definately better wine bars out there.

12/08/2008

Overall
Great dinner and all-around

My husband and I have been going to Vino Paradiso now for about six months, and have discovered that their food rivals most of the "Hot" restaurants in town, and is way less expensive. Their dinner menu is Italian-inspired, but the chef, Ian, is creative with his ingredients so it's never dull. Oh, and he uses local organic produce!! Last night, we had a dish with creamy polenta, pancetta and a poached egg topped with a pork gravy (the gravy has an Italian name, but I don't remember what it's called) and truffle oil, and the sommelier paired it with this '98 Chianti Riserva. The combination was devine!!!!!!!!!!!!! Among other things, we tried the candied bacon ice cream dessert, that sounds weird, but was so decadent and satisfying, words cannot describe it.

10/15/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Vino Paradiso is Something Special

We've been going to Vino Paradiso for over a year now, sometimes once a week, sometimes once a month.

What I love about Vino:

THE FOOD - fresh, local, organic, creative, delicious, perfectly priced. Chef Duncan has even hand picked the nettles he uses in spring dishes! His lamb is amazing. His hand made sausages are incredible. I want to eat his heirloom tomato/mozarella/basil/olive oil salad as my last meal. Last night we had a really, really good winter squash wrapped in speck. We've never had anything but excellent food, wine pairing and service. We love the food so much we hired the chef, Ian Duncan, to cater an outdoor summer grill party which was a resounding success.

THE WINE- An extensive menu with great, approachable descriptions to help us decide what we want. Tim Nishimoto, the owner/sommelier will tell us about the region, history, and flavors (sorry - I have no better word) of the wines we try. He's so down to earth, mellow and approachable that it's a fun experience. I hate the idea of snooty wine bars. Back in NYC, my fiance and I were at a snooty wine bar/restaurant where we'd asked the waiter to tell us a little about the two wines we were considering and he sneered ""You wouldn't know the difference"" before turning on his heel. He might have been right, but that's 180 degrees difference from the approach at Vino.

THE ATMOSPHERE - hip without being aware of it, relaxed without being too casual. Every month there is a different painter or painters' work displayed. We bought a painting by local artist Rebecca Shelly from Vino that now hangs in our living room. The owner is part of Pink Martini, one of Portland's most favorite local music groups so there's always good music on. Vino serves dinner until late - we rarely come in before 9 pm. All the staff are friendly, approachable and professional.

10/13/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Great Wine Bar and Great Choices

I've been frequenting this wine bar for a couple of years, it was the first wine bar I went to when I moved here. Consistency is always what I look for and that's why I keep coming back. Great attention to the wine list (variety, not just your northwest choices), always something new on the menu, sit at the bar and ask great questions of the team and get to learn about and taste fantastic wines. The food is good portions (not huge, not small) and complements the tasting. Bring friends and hang out in the back corner for some privacy or chill out after work. Love this place of all the wine bars in Portland.

10/06/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Wonderful Experience

Truly a wonderful experience! This is much more than a wine bar! We stopped by Vino Paradiso while waiting for another couple for dinner. We were so impressed with their dinner menu we changed our plans and stayed. The meal was awesome; we enjoyed strong Italian flavors in everything. My husband ordered the duck, it was prepared perfectly. I stuck with risotto and a wonderful Chardonnay. The most impressive part of the dinner was the bill. Completely reasonable and the service was extraordinary. I highly recommend Vino Paradiso over any other wine bar in town and better yet try the dinners. You won?t be disappointed.

10/17/2007

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
So Disappointed

Okay, I could understand the dismay if I showed 10 minutes before closing- but not two hours.
-The guy who tossed the menus did not speak a word and slunked away like an irritated 16 year old hostess at The Spaghetti Factory.
-The server made no small talk. (And no, he was not busy. There were 5 people in the whole place.)
-The $12 snack plate consisted of: 7 prosciutto-like slices of salami, 5 slightly-larger-than-stamp-sized slices of cheese, a teaspoon of chevre, 8 little pieces of bread, and 5 salted almonds.
-Wine pours were wussy and $10/pop.
-Nobody checked on us after we got our ""food.""

The place really has the potential, but I won't ever go back to see if they got the kinks out yet.

08/28/2007

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
I like it

Nice, quiet place with a good wine selection, nice ambience & friendly servers. Unlike other spots in the pearl, this place doesn't seem to attract all the doucheturds that wander around in the pearl most of the time so I'm loving it even more.

08/24/2007

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
""The Best Day in My Life""

I planned my husband's birthday party at Vino Paradiso. I talked with Tim and others about the menu and wine selection (I don't know much about wine, so I left it to the staff). Everything was perfect!!! The backroom was big enough for about 40 guests who showed up and the food was amazing (buffet style). They even got a birthday cake with his name and candles on. From the initial phone conversation to handling the final bill, everything was done professionally and with grace. The pricing was clear from the beginning, so there was no hidden charge and it stayed within the budget as well. My husband later told me that it was THE best day in his life. We had such a wonderful time and we owe it to the staff at Vino Paradiso.

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