August 26th, 2009 5:33 pm | by KELLY CLARKE News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, CLEAN UP

Name Game: Sungari Pearl morphs into Seres.


New name, same game—kind of. Sungari Pearl, the Pearl District's white tablecloth Chinese bistro will morph into Seres Restaurant and Bar come October 1...even though they're not changing the menu, decor or ownership. So why the shakeup? The powers that be say the new name highlights the eight-year-old restaurant's new focus on sustainability and organic goods, which it apparently has been incorporating into its standby dishes since July. Turns out Pearl owner Sunny Shin already had a Vancouver, Washington restaurant called Seres (pronounced "series") that was committed to all things green and organic. When it closed earlier this year after less than a year in biz, she transferred the 'Couv restaurant's green focus, which includes practices like recycling all oils for Biodiesel, to Sungari—like some wholesale case of eco-possession.

Plus, Sungari Pearl was sick of being confused with Sungari, a downtown Szechuan joint that owner Shin was affiliated with a decade ago. "There's a lot of confusion between the restaurants," says Assistant Manager Audra Lavender. "People call in to-go orders to the wrong restaurant...they're not organic and we are. The name change signifies that we're not the same as we were...even though everything else about us is."

Huh. Well okay then. Frankly, we weren't all that impressed with Sungari Pearl's old offerings (we hadn't included the eatery in our annual Restaurant Guide since 2007). So we're delighted to taste test what a little organic produce and local fish from Newman's brings to Seres' new/old table.

Sungari Pearl (1105 NW Lovejoy St., 971-222-7327) will become Seres Restaurant and Bar as of Oct. 1.

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