le pigeon or simpatica?
coming to portland from out of town...wondering which is better? any other suggestions?
we will be dining with a chef from boston.
They're both very good. A couple things to consider about each, though: 1) Le Pigeon often has lines and does not take reservations; 2) Simpatica often sells out their dinners ahead of time, either because of their popularity or because they have a company or whatever reserving the whole place, 3) Simpatica has a set menu without choices and is only open for dinner Friday and Saturday nights. 4) You'll get more food per dollar at Simpatica.
I think that SImpatica is booked for the month of December, with exception to the Sunday Brunch. You may want to check into this.
I love what both do, but Simpatica is not a restuarant. They have set fixed price dinners that happen twice a week and can very greatly in cuisine. Not that that is a bad thing, but it is not the same as going to a place like Le Pigeon (which I highly recommend) and being able to order what ever strikes your mood.
Either way, you will be happy.
I like Simpatica but sometimes I don't feel like passing around the family-style dish and pretend that I only eat modest portions so that others at the communal table will have enough to go around.
Le Pigeon is very good. A good way to beat the line is to go early. They open at 5 PM, I believe.
Not all Simpatica dinners are served family style. Some are and some are not. I have had more dinners there that were not served family-style than those that were, actually. They'll probably be able to tell you before you make a reservation, if you ask...
I agree about going early to places around Portland. There's rarely a wait before 6pm at MOST places.
Go for le Pigeon. It's more creative. Simpatica's charm is the experience of the long communal table but the food varies based on the chef and there are often guest chefs. But when you are in town, do not miss Park Kitchen.