Last week, on instagram, I posted about trying out the new Beyond Meat Burger – a vegan, gluten, soy free “hamburger-like” patty made with only plants. Ya’ll freaked out about it — but in a good way. Those of you who had tried it, gave big ups and those who were curious reached out as well.
Now, you may be one of those meat-eating-people who say, “heck, no! I’m not going to give up eating real burgers for something made with plants! A burger is a burger!”
Still, you’d be surprised at how many ways you can still be good to the earth and your body without having to give up eating meat entirely.
As more and more people are looking for meat free/meat(less) alternatives and seeking out ways to cut back on their animal consumption (for their health, for the earth, etc.) the James Beard Foundation created a contest for chefs to make healthier burgers using a combination of ground meat and mushrooms — better for you and better for the planet.
This is VERY exciting, for everyone (except for my mom, who hates mushrooms).
It’s an easy way to reduce your meat intake and also add that extra flavor punch from the earthy, umami taste that mushrooms bring to the table. Not to mention, they are protein packed and super healthy for the body.
I got a chance to meet with chef de cuisine Luis Escorcia of Altabira City Tavern and sample his take on the Blended Burger project creating a Catalan Burger incorporating 25% shiitake and maitake mushrooms into the patty. By blending meat with mushrooms, the burger has less calories, fat and sodium while increasing your intake of vitamin D, potassium and B vitamins. It was Yum to the Max!
In addition, I sampled some items off the Altrabira menu on their beautiful rooftop patio (What a view! Helloooo Portland!), tried some super tasty cocktails (named after song titles that inevitably got stuck in my head) See: Million Reasons pictured below in Gallery.
Oh, yeah, and check out this most perfect view for dining and watching the fireworks this coming 4th of July **
If you haven’t been to Altabira City Tavern for Sunday brunch, try one of their 16 local craft beers on tap, or stop in for a Happy Hour cocktail, make haste my friends. And oh yeah, try that tasty burger already! You can VOTE for it until July 31st. You could win a chance to win an expenses paid trip for two to the 2018 Blended Burger event at the James Beard House.
** Still need a place to see fireworks this 4th of July in PDX? Altabira is hosting a special 4th of July prix-fixe dinner and front row seats to the spectacular downtown Portland fireworks display. Dinner guests will have full access to the 6th floor patio overlooking downtown Portland’s annual fireworks celebration and a reserved table for the entire evening.
Seatings from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. and the prix-fixe dinner is $65 per person.
Call the restaurant for reservations 503-963-3600