Last January, things got awkward fast when a liquor license application for a new restaurant named Fillmore Trattoria listed 1937 NW 23rd Pl. as an address: It was the then location of Le Vieux restaurant, the upscale Mediterranean bistro. The news outed Le Vieux as soon-to-close, and owner Annette Yang confirmed it with Eater, citing "inconsistent business," adding that the sale wasn't final. It is now: Fillmore Trattoria quietly opened the weekend of April 23.
The truth is that the location on NW 23rd Place has been challenging for multiple restaurants. Before Le Vieux, the celebrated Noisette served Tony Demes's brand of fine-dining for two-and-a-half years before shuttering. The restaurant space is just a half block from Ataula, a restaurant quickly becoming a veritable Portland institution, so why the reputation for being off-the-beaten path? Sure, it borders the grittier side of Northwest, but Northwest is still prime real estate.
So perhaps Fillmore Trattoria will be the restaurant to make it work. Owner Jack Krietzman has operated Jackson Fillmore Trattoria in San Francisco since 1985, and he is an old acquaintance of Yang, with Yang perhaps offering advice on how to best operate in the neighborhood.
Fillmore Trattoria describes its food as "Italian homestyle cooking," and if the menu at Jackson Fillmore Trattoria is any indication, you'll find house-made pastas, lightly fried antipasti, and seafood and meat mains. Portland's Fillmore Trattoria is still in the early stages of being open, and it lists its hours as serving dinner Tuesday through Sunday beginning at 5:30 p.m.