Welcome to FeederPDX
Welcome to FeederPDX

“The earliest and most basic definition of community— of tribe— would be the group of people that you would both help feed and help defend.” — Sebastian Junger, Tribe:  On Homecoming and Belonging.

Welcome to FeederPDX.  

In March of 2021, fully-vaccinated against COVID-19, I ate inside a restaurant for the first time in a year, and then went home and wrote about it.

“I remember that first bite of scallop.  Sweet, oceanic, clean.  The slender brilliant green curve of the sliver of apple.  Celeriac soft as cream beneath. I melted into the meal.  I have never forked rabbit so gently from the bone.  I could have drank the sauce.  I would have crunched the bones between my teeth.”

I missed restaurants.  I wanted more.  

I quickly discovered that it was difficult to locate information on which restaurants in Portland, Oregon were open… and I could find no local food-media coverage of which restaurants had indoor dining.  With the help of a few friends, I put together this database in order to better organize pandemic dining options.  You can search by neighborhood, by cuisine, by whether or not an establishment offers patio seating; and of course, you can find indoor dining.  You can also search for takeout options, and even cocktails to go.  (For more information, click About, above.)

This site would not exist if not for the food writing I was doing at the beginning of the year.  In honor of beginnings, I’ll leave you with the first piece I wrote, below.  

Benny’s Knife

A few years ago, my friend Benny made a paring knife for me.  Heartbroken after a bad breakup, he had begun to learn knife-making.  We met originally as regulars at our neighborhood diner.  He always carried a paperback with him when he came to breakfast.  His arms were tattooed with vibrant roses.  He had kind, patient eyes, and a thick red beard.  He chatted with the staff.  I wanted to be his friend.

And so I became his friend.  

The day he gave the knife to me, we were sitting next to each other in our regular spots at the counter.  Benny leaned against my shoulder, tears running down his face.  A homeless man came in from the street, wrapped in a blanket.  Our seats were next to the register, and when the man walked up, he asked Benny to buy him a coffee.  Benny said, “Of course,” and then offered him a pastry, too.  

After the man thanked us twice and left with his coffee and croissant, Benny said, “Fuck it, life is hard enough as it is.”

I think about this every time I use Benny’s knife.  

I think about how crucial it is to feed each other.  

Author: `aqaq`

Tasia Bernie is an essayist, and editor of FeederPDX.com.  She enjoys used bookstores, offal, and hard laughter.  She is a very good eater.  She lives with her daughter and two orange cats in Portland, Oregon.


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