I was very sad when I heard the news late last summer that Cheryl Wakerhauser was selling Pix Patisserie. The original Southeast Pix is home to one of my favorite Portland food events Dim Sum Yum Yum and the North Portland Pix is Portland's answer to French cafe seating. When the weather is decent the wicker chairs near the roll-up garage door face out toward the street and sun and the small tables get topped with wine, espresso, Belgian beer, macarons, ganache covered cakelets, housemade chocolates and more. If it's my table there's most likely a hazelnut and chocolatey Royale, a few different macarons, and a dessert wine or Lambic on it all getting equal attention.
I met up with Cheryl yesterday at the North Portland Pix right after she'd tipped back some raw Chelsea Gems down the street at EaT Oyster Bar. While we talked she sipped on a fleur de sel rimmed margarita and soaked up the sunshine. Everything seemed right with the world -- especially when she told me Pix was off the market. The gist: after meeting with interested parties she doesn't have faith that anyone would be kind enough to her fabulous employees or loving enough and true to her devoted customers.
Lately she's figured out ways to spend more time working and experimenting with ingredients that she's passionate about, which is hard when you manage 40 employees at two rocking dessert-and-beyond houses and host more regular events than just about any other place in town: Annual Bastille Day Block Party, Culinary Trivia Night, Concoct Yo' Own Dessert, Monday Movie Night...
I feel lucky that I moved to Portland in 2002, the year that the original Southeast Pix opened, especially since we rented a house just a hop and skip from it for three years. When we moved to North Portland and bought a house in January 2006 the North Portland Pix had just opened its doors. If I thought that another move might garner yet another Pix I'd consider it. Pix is one of my favorite Portland places which is why I'm so happy that it's sure to shine on. No one can fill Cheryl Wakerhauser's shoes. Long live the Pix!
Pix Patisserie Southeast 3402 SE Division St. 503.232.4407
Pix Patisserie North 3901 N Williams Ave. 503.282.6539 www.pixpatisserie.com