Hear me now!

November 12, 2010 § Leave a comment

Meredyth Jensen  interviews me for her series on KZME radio station. Listen to why I’m crazy about food and farms:



Pinot Opens!

September 2, 2010 § Leave a comment

I’m pleased to announce the opening of my newest design project Pinot American Brasserie 1205 SW Washington Street, Portland, Oregon.  Here are my design notes:


Pinot is designed as a contemporary urban brasserie.  We transformed the tradition of a richly detailed, large, brightly lit French Brasserie into a contemporary space that is comfortable, approachable and appropriate for the setting in a wonderfully modern building.

In the design of the restaurant we referenced the machine age where technology was embraced and celebrated. This theme was selected to allow some familiarity to the details of traditional brasseries while keeping the language of the design careful and tailored. Textural effects of the stainless, aluminum and mirrored surfaces create reflection literally within, and figuratively remind us of zinc bars and art deco friezes.  The pewter panels on the columns and bar are abstracted designs of grape vines. The long thin space is a diorama where the city is brought in, and the patrons can see and be seen.

Sustainability is the ethic of choices: less is more, reuse is golden, and recycling is transformative.

The design efficiently uses space to provide comfort and utility for the staff and customers. Using ultra-high efficiency heating and cooling systems, we utilized the ground-source chilled water plant in the Pearl and wind-based electrical energy, to achieve this higher efficiency. Economizers were installed to bring in more fresh air during most of the temperate days we enjoy.  The exhaust system cleans the air, leaving it scrubbed and fresh on it’s way out.

We believe in sourcing locally!  We are proud to showcase locally sourced products and materials including Schoolhouse lighting and PaperStone bartops. Reclaimed oak from wine casks was salvaged and transformed into a chic wrapper for the Center Table. The cooperage marks and handwritten vintner notes are still visible.


Pinot photo mural

The photomontage represents a selection of the Icons of Portland in a stop-action animation effect that resembles the spliced reflected views of a beveled mirrored array. Represented are Ray Atkeson, considered the Ansel Adams of Portland and Rick Schafer a genius photographer in his own right, and caretaker of the Ray Atkeson Archive.  Other local artists are Don Pyle, Bob Eddings and Will Vanlue.  The icons are meant to celebrate our culture here: Bridgetown (The Saint Johns Bridge), Mass Transit/Celebrating our heritage (Go By Streetcar & NW Lovejoy signs), Foodie Culture (sauté pans ready for action), Port City (Fleet Week light show), Bike Town (hub & spokes), Heaven for Wine makers & Wine drinkers (responsible, approachable Willamette Valley Vineyards), Saving what matters (Union Station).

Pinot embodies “Pride of Place”. It has been a joy for me to work closely with visionaries Bill, Brad and Manny on this project.  I wish them & their partners the utmost success. -Julia

Hop Chronicle

September 2, 2010 § 4 Comments

Researching new beer recipe for the almost ripe Cascade hops from the backyard.  Can you see the leaves growing anew out from between the lilliputian petals? Reminds me of the “Doppelganger” echinacea planted nearby. Should it be an British Extra Special Bitter?  A Pale Ale?

Hello world!

September 2, 2010 § 2 Comments

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