Kachka, our 2014 Restaurant of the Year, is filled to the brim with colorful Soviet propaganda posters and a sense of nostalgia for a time that might not have ever existed but seems wonderful, boisterous and free.
Take, for example, the unappealing sounding Herring "Under a Fur Coat" ($8). This dish could be the only thing on the menu at Kachka and it would be totally OK. It's as if some wizard took all the cold salads at a potluck picnic and whipped them together and did a spell over them.
The potatoes and the beets and the herring and everything else come together in a magically refreshing and satisfying way no mother in the history of the world could re-create. Another dish not to miss is the Siberian pelmeni ($13), buttery meat dumplings that are definition of comfort food. And definitely order the super-rich crispy beef tongue ($11), perfectly offset by sweet currants and a horseradish vodka ($4 for 30 grams).
Pro tip: The cocktails are well-balanced and sweet but not too sweet. Before you start shooting infused vodkas, try Red Clouds ($10) or Imz-U
GO: 720 SE Grand Ave., 235-0059, kachkapdx.com. 4 pm-midnight nightly. $$.