Lemme tell you about my first taste of Portland. It was an unseasonably wet and chilly night when Nastassia and I climbed out of our cab (a Prius, of course) and onto South East Division Street. Our dinner destination, Pok Pok, greeted us with indifference and news of an hour long wait. Rather than get hammered at the bar across the street, Nastassia and I did what we do best—we sought out the very best sweets.
The scoop that made me swoon was the “Sea Salt Ice Cream with Caramel Ribbons.” My first lick brought a rush of perfectly salted cream, followed by a deep and intense pull of caramel. When salt and caramel collide, the result is usually more sweet than savory, but here, the scales tipped in favor of all that is good and salty.
According to a sign hung in the shop, the fleur de sel permeating every scoop came from Guatemala and was harvested using “salt pans that are famed for supplying the Mayan Empire at the height of its power,” while the caramel was “hand-burned” in-house. Pure cream boasting 17% butterfat tied everything together, creating a scoop worth swooning about!
Note: Salt & Straw ice creams can be purchased by the pint at Joan’s on 3rd in Los Angeles.
Salt & Straw (multiple locations)
3345 SE Division St
Portland, OR 97202
One year ago: Dai Ho Restaurant – Temple City
Two years ago: District 4, Saigon: Our Home Away From Home
Three years ago: Slow-Cooked Pulled Pork with Orange and Cilantro
Four years ago: Momofuku Milk Bar – New York City
Five years ago: Hanoi Highlights I
Six years ago: Sampling Saigon’s Snack Shacks
Seven years ago: Maggiano’s Little Italy – Philadelphia