Category: Event

Threshold’s Must-Try Food Menu

This weekend, Threshold Brewing & Blending launched their Polish-inspired Zapiekanka menu. This debut marks the beginning of full food service at the taproom with a savory and unique offering. For the past two years, staff mainly served craft beer and appetizers. Expanding into cooked meals is their way to welcome the post lockdown crowds who are already exploring the streets of Montavilla in significant numbers.

Foodservice is a natural fit for the brewery. Their wide selection of beers and other local drinks ensures an extended visit for customers interested in tasting all they offer. However, guests need something to eat between drinks, so growing the menu was an obvious need. “Since day one, people have been asking ‘do you have food?'” Explained Threshold’s co-owner Sara Szymanski. Threshold’s owners wanted to add food that would match their brewed beverages distinctive flavors. 

Co-Owner and brewmaster Jarek Szymanski reached into his past to find inspiration for the new dish. When eating out during his formative years in Poland, the zapiekanka was his go-to food. The traditional Polish street food is a perfect rich flavored dish to serve alongside the brewed selections, and it is not a food found elsewhere in the neighborhood. The classic meatless recipe starts with a white-bread baguette topped in a richly spiced mushroom base. Staff melt the Polish Morski style cheese over the top and then add a serpentine stripe of Polish ketchup down the center. A light dusting of smoked paprika completes the dish. Threshold Serves their zapiekanka in a traditional foot-long paper sleeve, allowing customers to eat it like a hotdog or cut it into sharable segments.

The dish expands from the classic form with several toppings, including house-brined cucumbers and several meat options. The cucumbers are reminiscent of pickles without the overbearing vinegary flavor and can be added to the zapiekanka or served on the side. Smoked Brisket or Polish Sausage toppings round out the menu. Jarek Szymanski has a passion for smoked meats and takes pride in the Brisket’s preparation. He plans to offer spareribs, beef ribs, and pulled pork versions of the dish on select occasions.

The Smoked Brisket melts in your mouth and would a popular item if it was on the menu by itself. The cheese has a mozzarella-like flavor that covers the lightly toasted but still soft bread. The ketchup is based on a traditional Polish recipe, common in that country but difficult to buy on this continent. Szymanski creates his version with tomatoes, carrots, parsnips, sugar, and vinegar. It is more reminiscent of barbecue sauce than ketchup and also unlike most condiments you have experienced. It, too, could be a popular product if they bottled it for people to take home.

The drinks are an essential part of a zapiekanka meal. Jarek Szymanski recommends the smokey all wheat Grodziskie ale titled The Cruise. This historical style of beer from Poland has a clear, light golden color and a strong smoke flavor. Its low alcohol content and distinctive aroma mix well with the meal and won’t overpower the dish’s flavors. After eating, the Rebel Razzle Gose beer will reset the palate. This blackberries and raspberries infused beer is the equivalent of an after-dinner wine with a sweet and robust flavor.

At first glance, the Zapiekanka menu appears uncomplicated and straightforward. Only through eating the dish in its varied forms will you appreciate the complex flavors it creates through each topping. Threshold’s expanded menu will attract non-drinkers looking for a memorable meal and further enamor the breweries’ regular fans.

Threshold Brewing & Blending is located in downtown Montavilla at 403 SE 79th Ave. They are open Tuesday through Thursday from 4 PM to 8 PM. Fridays, they operate from 4 PM to 9 PM and Saturday from 3 PM to 9 PM. Sundays, they are open for lunch and dinner from Noon to 6 PM.


Disclosure – Threshold Brewing & Blending provided complimentary food and drinks to Montavilla News staff during a special tasting event.

Art Supply Swap Today

May 27th, True North Studios will host an Art Supply Swap at their artists’ workspace. Located at 455 NE 71st Ave, the event will run from 2 PM to 5 PM. Attendees can donate unwanted art supplies and pick up something new. Only new or moderately used items are accepted.

This event is an opportunity to shed some of those unused supplies sitting around and perhaps find something that you need. A list of sought after items include:

  • Drawing Tools
  • Sketchbooks & Paper
  • Painting Supplies
  • General Crafting
  • Books & Magazines
  • Printing Supplies
  • Rubber Stamps
  • Drafting Tools
  • Usable Paint & Ink

Masks are required for all those who attend. There is no cost for the event, and it is an excellent opportunity to learn about this creative resource in the community.

Fire Destroys Garment Factory

A fire broke out early morning at the Portland Garment Factory located at 408 SE 79th Ave. The 1931 era building suffered a complete structural collapse of its wood structure. The masonry portion of the building remains intact, but the building’s internal structure is a total loss. Representatives from Paul Davis Restoration, who are securing the site, indicated that the whole building is likely unsalvageable and requires demolition.

Portland Fire & Rescue responded to reports of a fire around 3:30 AM Monday. They found the building engulfed in flames and worked to contain the fire from spreading. The two-story commercial building is surrounded on both sides by parking lots. A single-story building on SE 80th abuts the rear wall of the Garment Factory. Damage to that building is not apparent.

Portions of SE Stark Street, SE 80th Ave, and SE 79th Ave are closed while fire crews continue to monitor the extinguished fire and prevent flare-ups. A GoFundMe donation page was established to help Portland Garment Factory rebuild their business ( https://gofund.me/19ab100f ).

Stark Street blocked by fire crews.

UPDATE – Building demolition begins on May 19th, 2021.

TriMet Opens New SE Division Platform

Friday morning TriMet announced the opening of their new platform serving the Division Transit Project. This event celebrated the fifty-percent completion point for the Rapid Bus initiative. When finished, it promises to deliver fast transportation from Gresham to Downtown Portland along 15 miles of the number 2 bus line.

TriMet’s Interim General Manager, Sam Desue Jr., emphasized the project’s economic and equitable merits. “This project here is going to spur economic recovery from the Pandemic. It created over 1,400 jobs and added more than $138,000,000 in economic value in this corridor.” Desue continued to explain that seventy percent of the companies involved in construction were majority staffed by people of color and women.

Raimore Construction President Jeff Moreland speaking, TriMet Interim General Manager Sam Desue, Jr and Division Transit Project Director Michael Kiser left

Raimore Construction serves as the lead contractor on the Division Transit Project. Rainmore President Jeff Moreland Sr. spoke about the challenges of keeping the project moving during the Pandemic. He stressed the value of his company’s 20 year-long relationships with TriMet and the transportation agency’s support for disadvantaged businesses.

The Division Transit Project is on budget and achieving timely milestones on its way to the completion date in the Fall of 2022. Starting this Sunday, line 2 buses will begin using two of the completed stations for regular service. Both stations work differently than most in the transit system. They implement a shared bicycle and pedestrian design, diverting bike lanes over the raised platform.

Much of the Southern edge of Montavilla is actively under construction in support of this project. Beyond better service to TriMet riders, it has reconstructed large portions of the sidewalk and upgraded many adjacent street corners. The community will not feel the full benefit from TriMet’s investment for another year. However, the improvements on this often neglected road are already becoming noticeable.

Hundreds Gather at Harrison Park to End Asian Hate

UPDATE – The event completed with an estimated one thousand participants. The Oregonian offers details from the March 26th gathering.


Hundreds of Portlanders have gathered at Harrison Park to speak out against violence targeting Asian people and Asian-owned businesses. Crowds began arriving before 4 PM and continue to flood the streets surrounding the public park located at 1931 SE 84th Ave. Notices for the gathering indicate Portland’s Asian community are the organizers of the event.

Local roads and street-side parking are nearing capacity. People wishing to join the even should prepare for a moderate walk to the park from where they leave their vehicle. The event will continue into the evening hours.

Crowds gathering

Enchilada Express Opens on Division

Enchilada Express opened its second location this week. The new restaurant, serving Mexican food, is open for takeout. Located on SE Division next to the recently completed Pacific Plaza, this additional location is in the heart of a rapidly growing section of Montavilla.

Located at 8245 SE Division Street, this Enchilada Express location joins the original restaurant on SE Powell Blvd. The menu offers a range of Mexican dishes that should be popular with the lunchtime crowd. Place orders over the phone at 503-477-9800, on their website, or when visiting the location.

AYCO Opens Center at TBN site

African Youth & Community Organization (AYCO) recently relocated to Montavilla on NE Glisan. Located at 432 NE 74th Ave, the group offers support services and youth mentoring for the African immigrant and refugee community. The expanded space obtained through this move allows their programs to grow, even while social distancing during COVID-19 restrictions.

Executive Director Jamal Dar founded AYCO in 2009 with an emphasis on athletics and mentoring. Over its first decade, the organization expanded its offerings to include health and education services. Added support for families continued the programs’ growth trajectory, supporting parents and people caring for special needs children.

AYCO seeks to strengthen a sense of cultural identity within the immigrant community while facilitating integration. Like the community they support, many of the team at AYCO immigrated from East Africa. Staff leverage that personal experience to guide newly arriving families adapting to this country. Their youth programs develop academic and team-building skills in a culturally familiar environment. Health services provide assistance navigating healthcare and disability resources, understanding the language and culture of those seeking support.

In 2015 AYCO opened its first location at 1390 SE 122nd Ave. That space allowed the organization to expand the services offered substantially. However, with increased community need, that location became too small. The building on NE Glisan offers the room need to grow the organization further. The new Center’s increased footprint will feature a gym to help the children embrace athletics beyond soccer and basketball. The new location also allows for a clinic to support children of all ages and abilities.

AYCO leased part of the single-story building from Metro, which acquired the site from Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN). The previous owners used the building as a TV studio and broadcasting facility before selling the property in late 2019. Metro plans to develop the site two years from now and sought short term tenants. “The building where AYCO is leasing space will eventually be demolished, and the new housing that will be built in its place will prioritize families and households with very low incomes.” Said Constantino Khalaf, Senior Communications Specialist with Metro.

Metro happily made space in the building available for AYCO, reducing the rent to support the group’s efforts. “We’re excited that such a great, community-serving organization can use the space during these early stages rather than let it sit vacant.” Explained Khalaf.

Regardless of the short-term lease on the space, Dar looks forward to the site’s pending development. He intends to become a tenant within the new development’s commercial area when completed. NE Glisan Street is close to the community AYCO servers, and Dar feels it will be an ideal home for his organization.

When the pandemic’s risk has subsided, Dar hopes to interact with the Montavilla community more. Until then, his organization plans to continue to their outward community engagement through support for the hungry and unsheltered. Look for the location to become more lively with youth activities over the coming months, and visit the AYCO website if you want to know more about the organization.

Union Rose Open in New Location

Union Rose completed the move one block east to a new location. Now at 8029 SE Stark Street, the longtime Montavilla retailer has doubled the shop’s footprint. The storefront exchange, completed two days ago, was briefly documented on the shop’s Instagram account with pictures and a video tour.

The new location also has update hours of operation. The store is open from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM Tuesday through Saturday, and 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM on Sundays. The store is now closed on Mondays in alignment with the neighboring children’s retailer Beanstalk.

The impending move was previously reported at the beginning of December 2020. The former location of Union Rose will soon be available to rent. Located at 7909 SE Stark street, the vacant shopfront is between Vintage Cocktail Lounge and Redwood restaurant. Union Rose owner, Rita Hudson-Evalt, describe the previous space as “a fantastic location” that the store just outgrew.

The paper is down from the windows at the new Union Rose location. Stroll-by the shop and peek in the expansive storefront windows anytime. Shoppers can drop in to see some of the new items filling the larger store, and everything is also available online for local pickup.

Arc Thrift Store Opens Thursday

Montavilla’s newest business opens tomorrow, Thursday the 7th. The Arc Thrift Store, located at 8304 SE Stark Street, will host its grand opening this week. The secondhand apparel and home goods store sells items that it received as donations.

Starting tomorrow, the store will open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 10:00 AM to 5 PM. Already a wide range of clothing and other unique items donated to the organization’s NE Halsey Street location fill the storefront. The parent organization, Arc of Multnomah-Clackamas, provides services to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Some donated items directly support those individuals and their families. With sales through the new thrift store, excess donations will provide financial support to other services the group offers.

Shopping at this store can help save customers money and support a worthy organization. Keep an eye on the store’s Instagram for images of notable items for sale, and stop by the store starting Thursday to find something to bring home.

Tinker Tavern Opening Next Week

UPDATED – Tinker Tavern opened Monday

Tinker Tavern will open for takeout and outdoor dining next week after months of COVID-19 delays. The restaurant and tavern announced on Instagram their intent to have a limited opening in mid-December. A newly completed covered Parking Plaza sits on Stark Street outside the business’s front door.

Tinker Tavern’s website describes the general flavor of menu offerings. “A fantastic beer line up with local collaborations, local and imported wines… Well-crafted collection of Buffalo, NY inspired bar food.” The tavern’s Instagram provides more details, displaying pictures of future menu items. The image captions read as probable menu descriptions and receive enthusiastic responses from Instagram followers.

  • Tangy marinara, gooey mozzarella, and crispy curly pepperonis on a crunchy French roll.
  • Housemade mild Italian sausage topped with spicy Weber’s mustard, Kewpie mayo, and a pile o’ peppers and onions on a mini Lavin roll.
  • Beef on Weck: A kümelweck roll piled high with juicy roast beef, horsey sauce, and just a *kiss* of au jus.
  • Housemade spicy Portuguese linguiça with chimichurri on a Lavin French roll.
  • Cured meat Italian sub: Stuffed to the gills with capicola, salami, prosciutto, provolone, and all the fixings on a sturdy Portland French Wedge roll.

The owner, Erik Mahan, committed to the new tavern just before COVID-19 shutdowns rolled out across the state. Not having staff to support, Mahan managed a slow buildout and could wait for the right time to open up. After many challenges and a near year-long startup process, it is finally time to open. Starting Monday, look for signs Tinker Tavern is open and try out Montavilla’s newest addition.

Tinker Tavern is located at 7980 SE Stark Street.

Tinker Tavern’s covered Parking Plaza

UPDATED – Added wording to specify Monday as the first open date.