One of Portland’s older neighborhoods, the mostly residential Beaumont, offers a shopping district along Northeast Fremont Street where one can indulge in mini doughnuts, stroopwafels, yoga and excellent small-maker shopping. The walkable neighborhood is a favorite area for snacking, imbibing, and hunkering down for a long and leisurely meal with friends. Both in anchor restaurants of Fremont Street and with new ones that just opened in the past year, Fremont Street is home to incredible Black-owned dining destinations.
Located in the heart of Northeast Portland’s evolving Beaumont neighborhood, Amalfi’s Restaurant is an “Old Portland” staple. The family business has since been passed down to its third generation over the course of 60 years. Kiauna Floyd purchased the business in 2006 from her stepfather. Floyd was no stranger to Amalfi’s, having bused tables, hosted and washed dishes there while she was in high school. Later, as she attended Portland State University on an athletic scholarship, she balanced academics and athletics with shifts at Amalfi’s. Born and raised in Northeast Portland, Floyd has now amassed over two decades of experience running and owning a small business. She continues to take satisfaction and joy in working with her close-knit staff and customers every day.
Amalfi’s has always been a popular restaurant in the neighborhood for family dinners and date nights alike; however, the restaurant’s pandemic pivots have cemented it as an innovative and ever-popular culinary asset to the community. The expanded patio dining includes inviting tabletop firepits, tents with magical twinkle lights, and live music.
The Black-owned Amalfi’s has been on NE Fremont for a long time; however, the new culinary talent staking claim on this walkable and charming street includes other standouts that are Black-owned and incredibly delicious.
Nacheaux is a Portland Cinderella story of when a food cart concept finds its way into a brick-and-mortar restaurant space. Owners Anthony and Stephanie Brown serve up dishes that defy being cornered into one category. As Anthony is from Los Angeles and Stephanie is from Louisiana, the menu reflects a harmonious comingling of their hometown eats. Fried chicken quesadillas, cornmeal fried shrimp burritos and churro beignets are all had-it-here-first dishes that cannot be missed. Already building on their early success, Anthony and Stephanie are planning to open a speakeasy bar next to Nacheaux (it will require a passcode to enter). The bar, Bourbon Street, bar will serve seafood boils and their own takes on the classic Sazerac. The aim—much like with Nacheaux—is to pair New Orleans style with the fun and eclectic nature of Los Angeles.
Dirty Lettuce is another food-cart-turned-restaurant with vegan comfort food. Owner Alkebulan Moroski is a lifelong vegetarian originally from Mississippi. The food is a vegan take on Southern favorites, including bowls of fried “chicken” and sides, as well as hearty po’boys. Dirty Lettuce also has a shopping area as an homage to the southern general store in its décor, including glass coke bottles and worn wood accents.