Reviews: Pizzarino, Cong tu Bot, Isa, Mami

The Maine Sunday Telegram has reviewed Pizzarino,

Pizzarino, the sister business of Portland’s Paciarino, aims to do just a few dishes and do them well. It succeeds with its wholemeal-crust pizzas, especially when they’re topped with prosciutto or a quadruple-whammy of imported Italian cheeses…But elsewhere, Pizzarino cuts too many corners with its heavy reliance on pre-bought, packaged ingredients imported largely from Italy. There are sticky, under-flavored gnocchi; rubbery mushrooms and metallic-tasting black olives; and most egregious, an entire range of refrigerated and frozen desserts that come ready-to-serve – no added work required. There’s room on the Portland dining scene for a great Milanese restaurant. Here’s hoping Pizzarino ditches the ready-made food and puts in the work to become just that.

the Portland Phoenix has reviewed Mami

Whether or not co-owners Austin Miller and Hana Tamaki realized they would fill a mostly unexplored niche in the Portland dining scene back when their first okonomiyaki came off the truck in 2015 is unclear. Stop into their brick-and-mortar to warm up for a bit on a snowy winter evening, though, and you’ll be hard-pressed to argue that they haven’t.

The Bollard has reviewed Cong Tu Bot, and

On cold, prematurely dark evenings, I suggest the Cà Ri Chay ($16). It’s a velvety coconut curry with subtle spice and long, wide rice noodles perfect for slurping, topped with a few marinated and caramelized mushrooms. Next, cut the richness with the Goi Cai Bap ($8), a salad of cabbage, carrot and onion, soaking in a sweet, vinegary dressing and topped with crunchy fried onions, finely diced bird’s eye chilies, and a tangle of cilantro. Careful with that salad, though. Those little red chilies pack a punch (a bird’s eye chili is ranked about twenty times hotter than a jalapeno on the Scoville heat scale).

Peter Peter Portland Eater has reviewed Isa.

Isa has a number of qualities that make it special. They’re incredibly consistent with the food and drink, the menu has plenty on it for all tastes, and the warm, casual atmosphere is brilliantly comfortable. You can be sure when you go, you’ll find a good meal, but most of the time it will be much better than that, often even great. Head to Isa if you haven’t been and definitely consider making it one of your regular stops, because it’s really that good.