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“Great quick bite” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Departure Restaurant and Lounge

Departure Restaurant and Lounge
525 S.W. Morrison St, Portland, OR 97204 (Downtown)
(503) 802-5370
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Ranked #111 of 3,621 Restaurants in Portland
Price range: $15 - $20
Cuisines: Asian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Bar scene, Large groups, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: Downtown
Cross street: 5th and 6th Avenue
Transit: Within a block of max transit. Within a couple of blocks of bus system of Trimet.
Description: Departure Restaurant is located atop the Nines Hotel and offers modern Asian cuisine in a sleek, cosmopolitan setting with two outdoor decks and stunning views of the city, mountains and river. Chef de Cuisine Gregory Gourdet creates traditional Asian preparations with Northwest ingredients in signature dishes such as the restaurant’s grilled kushiyaki selections, Indonesian spiced chicken and maguro karai honey sushi rolls. Departure’s bar showcases exotic cocktails, a global wine list and the city’s largest sake list.The saké and shochu list is one of the largest in the city and represents many hand-crafted, artisan producers. Departure boasts the design skills of Jeff Kovel of Skylab Architecture, one of Portland’s leading architectural firms. The overall design of the 9,000 square-foot space added a new full-level 15th floor to the original 1908 Meier & Frank building and two new rooftop patios with views overlooking downtown Portland, the Willamette River, Mt .Hood and Mount St. Helens. The design elements play off the notion of an urban escape.
San Francisco, California
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Great quick bite”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2014

I have been to Departure previously but for drinks only on their outdoor deck so was excited to have dinner there.

I just got back into town from Bandon Dunes and wanted something on the light side as we had stopped to have some lunch
en route back to Portland. There weren't any seats at the bar so I told Whitney that I would walk around a bit around Pioneer
Square and come back later.

She convinced me to stay by offering me a south facing view of the Willamette which was beautiful. Josh came by a short
while later and suggested some items that I had not initially chosen. I ended up selecting both of his suggestions: the spicy
carrot & avocado salad and the kampachi sashimi and really enjoyed both.

Josh was a great server not only because he made two good recommendations but also because he knew when to check in with
me and was a good at making conversation as well.

Kudos to both Whitney and Josh and I look forward to my next visit if for not other reason than to make my way down their
food and drink menus.

  • Visited February 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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249 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Top Contributor
88 reviews 88 reviews
27 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 58 cities Reviews in 58 cities
58 helpful votes 58 helpful votes
“Great Asian restaurant”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2014 via mobile

We really enjoyed this restaurant as it is a bit different from the norm. The menu can be described as asian tapas so the plates are smaller. They have sushi also. The octopus we had was excellent. Some of the other dishes were ok but not great. The restaurant is on the top floor of The Nines hotel in downtown. There are tables outside although it was too cold for that when we went. Great views for Mt Hood and Mt St Helens. I would definitely return.

Visited February 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Great quality & setting, but overpriced”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2014

Departure is not what most residents of the area would consider to be a "true" Portland restaurant. However, that being said it may well be worth your consideration if you enjoy great views and generally more upscale dining. The quality and attention to detail here are excellent, and their specialty drinks are also quite good. However, portion sizes are incredibly small given the prices. Expect to get three Dim Sum dumplings for your table. The main dishes are also smaller. My only other minor complaint, at least in the area we were seated, is the proximity of other diners to you. Fellow patrons are literally at arms length at other tables and since the restaurant itself is generally busy and louder than others, it is hard at times to hear your partner over other tables' conversations, which are quite audible. However, it is quite a modern setting with a great view of the city, and some very tasty dishes.

  • Visited February 2014
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, OR
Top Contributor
167 reviews 167 reviews
97 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 65 cities Reviews in 65 cities
75 helpful votes 75 helpful votes
“Best Asian food I've had in a long time”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2014

I've lived in the Portland area for about 10 years and my one complaint is the lack of good Asian food. Finally, Departure to the rescue!

We went to Departure for a special occasion and were so pleased. Although the decor was a lot more hip and trendy than we are, the ambiance was very nice and we felt comfortable.

The service was fantastic. Our server was friendly, professional, personable, and very helpful when we told her it was our first visit. She gave us a great tour of the menu and helped us select just the right amount of food to share between the two of us.

Everything we sampled was fantastic, full of flavor, and beautifully presented. Particular favorites were the Spicy Carrot and Avocado Salad, the Malay Meatballs, and the Ishiyaki Steak.

I definitely recommend Departure. We went on a Thursday night and didn't have a wait or need reservations. The server said that is typically the case except on Fridays and Saturdays and during the summer due to what looked to be an amazing patio.

  • Visited January 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Acton, Massachusetts
Top Contributor
193 reviews 193 reviews
118 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 78 cities Reviews in 78 cities
102 helpful votes 102 helpful votes
“Stylish and fun”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2014

Is on the 15th floor of a downtown building with large balconies and a lovely view of the city.

Departures is an Asian contemporary restaurant with a sleek design and a sizeble bar area. We had reservations on what seemed to be a busy Saturday night. Had a window table with a pretty good view. They have three complete menus: regular, gluten free and vegan. This is a small plate to share place. The service was in all respects friendly, efficient and helpful. The food was quite lovely. Most enjoyable evening.

  • Visited January 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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