In 2007 the Pastini owners were looking for a potential location in downtown Portland, and walked by the Studio Building on the corner of SW Taylor and 9th, where the first floor retail space stood empty. We knew it was a terrific location, with Schnitzer Concert Hall, the Art Museum and Portland’s Center for the Arts just two blocks away. However the space presented lots of challenges, among them old asbestos, a floor on three levels, and massive columns in the middle of the restaurant. But we weighed the options, and decided that was where Pastini should be.
The project was truly a labor of love for Kara, Craig and I… we loved the building, loved the location and had a feeling that the 18 foot ceilings and picture windows overlooking Taylor St. would make a wonderful place to dine. An entire brick wall was built inside to replicate a vintage look, and cherry wood booths and art glass light completed the transformation. And we were thrilled when our landlord, the late Tom Moyer and his company TMT Development, generously gave us the use of the forty foot neon Guild Theater sign on the corner of the building. We had the sign completely refurbished, and now it proudly announces Pastini to everyone walking or driving up Taylor St.
Now TMT is replacing the handsome copper mansard roof of the building, not an easy fix on an historic structure where construction type, age and the pitch of the parapet make it much more difficult than a typical roofing project. The original rehearsal spaces are now offices, but retaining the integrity of the building’s exterior was important for them and we are very grateful for that. They say it will take a few years for the new copper roof to oxidize to a mellow blueish-green like the old one, and all of us at Pastini are looking forward to watching the ageing process. We hope you will visit for lunch or dinner and first stand across the street for a moment and take in the details of our beautiful building.
See you downtown!