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Restaurant Apocalypse 2008: Nutshell closes


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http://wweek.com/wwire/?p=16307

 

Sean Coryell, Nutshell's first chef. Photo by Amy Ouellette.

 

Nutshell , Adam Berger's vegan-turned-vegetarian restaurant on North Williams Avenue, closed over the weekend. The news, first reported at Portland Food and Drink, will likely cause much cheer among Portland's militant vegans, a number of whom angrily called for a boycott of the restaurant to protest the continued presence of delicious foie gras on the menu at Berger's other restaurant, Ten-01 ...

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  • 2 months later...

I think it is happening all over the country...Portland just has more vegan restaurants than pretty much anywhere else, so a handful of them are here.

 

But.......it's not just because of the "economy" some vegan restaurants closed for totally different reasons....

 

Veganopolis closed and moved back to Chicago (because they wanted to)

 

Others closed for various other reasons......but "some" did close because they weren't doing well.

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Restaurants generally don't have it easy. While most vegans I know here thought Nutshell was good, they also were not too into the prices. When you add that to the various concerns many folks had with the place and the fact that there are so many other options available here, then it's really no surprise that they closed down. Same basic story with Veganopolis and The Pirates Tavern.

 

It's also worth noting that we just as frequently have new vegan or very vegan-friendly places opening up - I'm very happy to have found a local place that has $1 vegan corn dogs all day Wednesdays!

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Sweet! Thanks! I actually went there once...just a few weeks ago but was in and out, had breakfast with some visitors...I didn't even know the place existed!

 

I had heard thendanisays say something about it one time but didn't think much over it....then when I was there, had a nice breakfast and headed out but didn't pay much attention to the menu or corndog specials!

 

Cool, good to know. Thanks!

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I heard one of my favorite places in Austin has closed, but it is not yet confirmed. What I dont get is why more vegan places don't adopt a cheap food model. When I was living in Denton, TX, there was an eatery called Terra Pherma. The staff was friendly and the food was pretty much served at cost. They stayed open for a year or two (not bad for a business who's model was to not make money), but the food was made of common ingredients. The supply of students seeking cheap food probably also helps. I think that restaurants featuring a vegan diet ought to have cheaper fare, since one of the arguments to go veg is cheaper food. Lentils vs. beef, you know? I think most vegan food i've had anywhere has been fairly expensive (over $5)...well, except for Taco Bell, but that really shouldn't be factored in here.

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As usual I'm with ya on this Brian! Making vegan food more affordable and accessible is certainly a very worthwhile goal. I'm looking into taking another trip up to BC before "our" government further locks down the border in June by requiring passports from US citizens who wish to re-enter the country. As usual, I'm on a pretty tight budget and the fact that I've only been able to find very limited options for comparatively inexpensive food up there weighs on me heavily...

 

On the other hand my experiences up north have given me an even greater appreciation for living here in Portland! Happily, I find that there are a lot more options available for fairly inexpensive (let's say $6 or under with inflation, etc) vegan meals here in Portland then there are most places I've been. Plus lots more coupons!

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You're so funny with your coupons!

 

Nutshell was a special case though, I know a lot of vegans that boycotted it. I'm not surprised it went out of business.

 

Just being vegan isn't enough for a restaurant in portland, portland is pretty unique. Even a restaurant that was owned by a self proclaimed radical animal rights activist got boycotted over his treatment of the staff.

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