After co-founding Riffle NW with partner Jennifer Quist last year, chef Ken Norris has departed the Pearl District kitchen. According to Quist, Norris's exit has been an ongoing transition for the past couple months. "I really wanted to continue with Riffle, and he really wants the mobility to take on other projects," Quist says. "We did this together so we still collaborate, we still bounce ideas off of one another. But he needs the mobility to go do other projects."
Norris and Quist moved to Portland in February 2011 with the specific goal of opening a sustainable seafood restaurant; Riffle debuted in May 2012 with early buzz from the likes of Food & Wine. Quist says that Riffle currently has no executive chef, but has been "going through the [search] process" for the past couple months. "We're looking at someone to come in to consult," Quist says. "What we might do at first is guest chef dinners to feel it out and see how it goes. I don't want to take away from the all the creativity that they're doing in there. But I understand we need a definite leader."
For now, the Riffle NW menu remains the same. According to Quist, "the main focus is still sustainable seafood, bringing seafood of this kind to Portland, and continuing on with that message." Updates as they become available.
· Riffle NW [Official site]
· All Previous Riffle Coverage [Eater PDX]
Image of Ken Norris courtesy Avila/EPDX