Trendy restaurant concepts and Portland go together like waxed mustaches and designer flannel, but Casa Mia isn't biting. This little Italian eatery serves breakfast, lunch—yes, there are restaurants open for lunch on Division—and dinner seven days a week in the former Detour coffee shop venue at 3035 SE Division St.
Opening last week, Casa Mia is the second Portland-area restaurant by chef Benito Omana, who's cooked in Portland since 1992 in places like Pazzo, Piazza Italia, Southpark, Wildwood, El Gaucho, and El Guero. Omana opened Hillsboro's Bellino Pasta & Cafe in 2014, and speaking with Eater, he said the opportunity to open on SE Division Street was too good to pass up: He lives in the area, and the landlord liked his proposal.
Omana says the food at Casa Mia will reflect his experience as a cook. "I want to show what I've learned from my mentors," he says, and while most of the menu focuses on classic Italian hits like lasagna and spaghetti and meatballs, you'll find Mexican-influenced Italian dishes, too, representing Omana's heritage. The steak comes with jalapeno butter, and the Caprese Messicana replaces the typical caprese salad's mozzarella with cotija cheese and adds avocado.
In keeping with Italian tradition, Casa Mia makes some of its pastas, including pappardelle and linguini, in-house, and dishes are served family-style. In the mornings, you'll find cornetti (croissants) from Grand Central Bakery and espresso drinks, and lunch delivers panini, salads, and pastas. Dinner brings on the entrees and full pasta menu, and Casa Mia is about to launch cocktails, too, featuring a mix of traditional Mexican and Italian drinks.
Casa Mia is now open. Visit any day of the week, from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m.