When I first moved here, I learned pretty quickly that Portlanders love brunch. If you’re looking for a dreamy Middle Eastern inspired brunch, head on over to Tusk ASAP. I highly recommend getting there early as the restaurant was completely packed 15 minutes after they opened for brunch. I visited for brunch with a few (omni) bloggers, and we were lucky enough to get a window seat with perfect lighting.
At Tusk, they describe their menu as “Locally Sourced, Aggressively Seasonal”. Every dish created by Executive Chef Sam Smith is fresh and vibrant. The menu is vegetable focused, and all the veggies and many of their other ingredients are sourced directly from local farms. Oh, and Tusk’s modern, bright white interiors with feminine touches had me swooning!
At first glance, the brunch menu may not seem very vegan-friendly as almost every dish seems to have eggs or some kind of cheese. However, when I asked about vegan options, our server cheerfully gave me a comprehensive rundown of the menu, dish by dish on what the kitchen could easily adapt to be vegan. Bonus points for being so knowledgeable and helpful. I was torn between the veganized pita sandwich with fries and the grain bowl before settling on the latter.
The brunch cocktails and mocktails are very beautiful; I opted for the refreshing sparkling iced mint matcha. I normally steer away from ordering hummus at restaurants, but the hummus served with flatbread is a must. They go heavy on paprika and fresh parsley, and I wanted so badly to lick the plate clean. My grain bowl was small, but mighty with sprouted barley, veggies, avocado, dukka, and argan oil. If someone orders the za’atar fries at your table, you must try that with the house made ketchup.