The year is almost done, and we’ve gone over the winners of 2019, the biggest stories of the year, some of the year’s big openings. Today, however, is about the people who started to make Portland buzz in 2019 — and who seem primed to explode in 2020. Below, take a look at some of the people to watch in the next decade, from the pitmaster to the bar maven.
Jamie King, Voysey and Bar King
After moving to Portland just a few months ago, Jamie King has become a rising cocktail name. After months running the cocktail program at Mikkeller, King has now started a residence at the new speakeasy-style bar Voysey, while she prepares to open Bar King with her husband Shaun King. After years at big-deal bars and supper clubs like Velveteen Rabbit and Sara’s, she doesn’t shy away from savory ingredients or unusual flavors — a blessing in a sea of “classic cocktails with a twist.”
Kyle Rensmeyer, Holy Trinity Barbecue
Rensmeyer, the pitmaster behind Southeast Portland barbecue cart Holy Trinity, went from home cook to national barbecue name in one year. He’s been referenced in places like Texas Monthly and Food & Wine, all for his classic Texas-style brisket, juicy Czech sausages, and gorgeous ribs. As the pod he’s in continues to develop and he continues to partner up with other cart stars, it’ll be interesting to see what else he has up his sleeve for 2020.
Diane Lam, Revelry
For those in the know, Diane Lam isn’t a new name. The State Bird Provisions alum took over as chef de cuisine at hip Southeast Portland restaurant Revelry in 2017, and has quietly been taking on more responsibility within the restaurant: In many ways, she holds things down on the ground floor — front and back of house — while the many other restaurant owners juggle other projects. But Lam has started to step into the spotlight, cooking the winning dish at this year’s Wild About Game and starting her own pop-up, Sunshine Noodles. Something tells us she’ll be a person to keep an eye on in 2020 — and maybe through the decade.