The plates here don't have fancy names, and each comes out with minimal adornment. It's a straightforward style echoed by the streamlined dining room, where you are forced to direct your focus on the subtle and beautifully tended-to ingredients that arrive at your table at a perfect tempo so you always have something to enjoy, but also enough time to really enjoy it.
Chef Kevin Gibson, who mastered the art of simplicity in fine dining at Evoe and Castagna, continues to execute dishes expertly at Davenport, like the opah ceviche ($16) swimming in coconut milk with sweet yellow and purple grape tomatoes. The slightly charred lamb ($18) melts in your mouth, its smoke enhanced by the tang of a fresh tzatziki. And a pork and apricot ($14) plate could satisfy anyone seeking out fatty, salty indulgence.
The care shown to meat dishes extends to the vegetables, which are lovingly cooked to bring out their best flavors and textures. A plate of velvety beets served on a bed of ricotta with orange zest ($12) could almost double as dessert. And a salad of radicchio, apples and walnuts with a crust of baked cheese ($12) evoked memories of digging into crisp coleslaw at a summer barbecue.
Pro tip: Davenport's plates are meant to be shared, so order two or three dishes for each person at the table, striking a balance between the heartier meat dishes toward the bottom of the menu and the lighter fare near the top.
GO: 2215 E Burnside St. 503-236-8747 davenportpdx.com 5-9 pm Tuesday-Thursday, 5-10 pm Friday-Saturday. $$$.