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Beast, Portland, Oregon

Like its name, Beast is straightforward and simple. This Portland-based restaurant offers up prix-fixe six-course menus of uncomplicated yet refined dishes. Each week the cuisine changes according to apparent inspiration from the fields, forests, and moods of the owner and her culinary team. Foie gras bons bons may share the menu with pork, pork liver, and sour cherry pate.

Maple mustard sauce with shaved Brussels sprouts sit side-by-side with baked warm truffled potato salad with goat cheese and watercress — last week at least. To up this mouth-watering, French-grandmother-esc menu, splurge for the wine pairing. The comforting food and wine are matched perfectly with the cozy space. Like its cuisine, Beast boasts an open kitchen, chalkboard walls, communal tables, and clear elements of Portland style. So, when it comes to edging ahead in the up-and-coming Portland food scene, chilled out Beast is the place to beat.