Pazzo Ristorante

$$$ Italian

Come. Grab a seat at the window. Order a glass of Chianti, maybe a plate of paper–thin San Daniele prosciutto spritzed with black–truffle vinaigrette. Eavesdrop on the power lunch at the next table or fix your gaze on SW Broadway as it thrums with shoppers and Samsonite–clutching tourists. Such are the rhythms of a meal at Pazzo Ristorante, located in downtown Portland’s flossy Hotel Vintage Plaza. Chef John Eisenhart’s Northern Italian cooking is refreshingly sharp. Primis such as spaghettini in a guinea hen ragù and a squash–filled tortelli in a brown–butter sauce stand out from the half–dozen house–made pasta selections on the menu, any one of which could centerpiece a meal all by itself. Fresh ingredients do the talking in a sprightly secondi of seared tuna served over lobster mushrooms, blood oranges, and spinach. Smartly attired servers come to coddle, and after describing each nightly special down to its details, they still have enough breath left over to walk you through a twenty–page wine list.

Last updated: 08/23/2012