Fans of late-night bowls of macaroni and cheese, oyster shots, and jambalaya have a reason to be sad today — Le Bistro Montage will not reopen after the coronavirus pandemic ends. The restaurant’s team posted on Facebook this morning, announcing that it would permanently close its doors after 27 years of service due to financial struggles with COVID-19.
“We depart with the special feeling that most Portlanders have a memorable Montage story—whether it was a first date or the last stop after a night on the town,” the post reads. Since the restaurant opened in 1992, Bistro Montage was a haven for post-show diners, high school cast parties, first dates, and family gatherings. Its Cajun-adjacent menu was perhaps less of a draw than its atmosphere, with ribald servers in crisp white jackets bantering with diners, bellowing oyster shot orders to the kitchen, and folding up leftover bowls of spicy mac and cheese or alligator tail in tinfoil roses and animals. Its long, shared tables meant that diners often bumped shoulders with strangers in a way that few other Portland restaurants offered, predating the communal dining fad of the early 2000s. Even its location, tucked covertly under in a vintage red brick building under the Morrison bridge added to its sense of authenticity, especially as it stayed open late into the evening as other places closed up for the night.
This story will be updated with more information. Read the full closing announcement below: