When I think of hotel restaurants I typically imagine dimly lit rooms, small spaces, and boring floor length table cloths. Walking into Urban Farmer was anything but that. The restaurant is a large open space with natural lighting pouring in through the large skylights. The tables are made out of finished wood and the whole place has a rustic yet modern vibe. Urban Farmer is more than just a hotel restaurant, it could stand on it’s own in any city.
My class of fellow baking and patisserie students decided to make the eight floor elevator ride to the restaurant to partake in a dessert tasting. We were handed dessert menus and I immediately felt overwhelmed. Everything sounded so good and I wanted to try everything. I knew my stomach wasn’t going to be happy with me when I was done, but I was certain it was going to be worth it.
As a class, we decided to all chip in and get eleven desserts to try and share as a group. The two that stuck out to me the most were the Butterscotch Sundae and the Lemon Cheesecake Brulee. Ultimately, the presentation of the Butterscotch Sundae is what got me the most. I was so transfixed on the sundae that I didn’t even notice the other desserts being brought out. The dessert was presented in a clasp-lid canning jar. It was so perfectly Portland, but the only thing more perfect was what was actually inside the jar. Inside was a warm blonde brownie sitting underneath a scoop of praline and toffee chip ice cream, drenched in a butterscotch sauce. On top of the ice cream sat a scoop of chantilly and some cherries. This dessert could have easily been way too sweet, but it was perfectly balanced.
The other dessert that I really enjoyed was the Lemon Cheesecake Brulee. It had a great lemon flavor, not too strong but not too subtle. The texture wasn’t quite like your typical cheesecake. It was a little more of a custard consistency, but still very light and airy. The top of the cheesecake was torched like a creme brulee. And for a garnish, a little scoop of champagne sorbet resting on top. For such a little scoop, it packed a ton of flavor. It was like eating a shot of cold champagne.
Everything else we tried was equally amazing. There is something for everyone to enjoy. Pastry Chef Carrie Merrill has created a very impressive menu and I can’t wait to back and eat my weight in Butterscotch Sundaes.