Portland Soup Company prepares to leave town

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Jesse Shido, an employee of Portland Soup Company, hands lunch orders to Lillian McAllister, 43, and Monique Gorman, 27. Brian Mcgloin / PSU Vanguard

After serving for nine years in Portland State’s iconic food cart pod, the Portland Soup Company is packing its bags. The closure set to happen in May 2018.

As first reported on KGW News Jan. 8, food cart owner Jeremy Davidson has partnered with another Portland restauranteur to start a full-service restaurant in Pacific City, Ore.

“We’ve been lucky,” Davidson said of Portland Soup Company’s success. “It’s been a good run.”

The Portland Soup Company first joined PSU’s pod on SW 4th Ave. in 2009. The pod serves students, faculty and staff at the engineering buildings across the street, as well as workers from nearby corporate buildings and the Wells Fargo bank.

Davidson said he is partnering with Steve Howard, owner of Portland Italian restaurant Bocci’s on 7th, to reopen the Riverhouse restaurant, housed in a picturesque wooden building on the Nestucca River in Pacific City.

Davidson built his remarkable food cart, which more resembles a country cottage than a box-on-wheels, in his driveway with the help of a friend and money he borrowed from his brother. Davidson said he used to work in fine dining but started a food cart as a low-overhead way to get his homemade soups out to customers.

Alongside his from-scratch seasonal soups, Davidson’s menu now includes sandwiches and salads.

After the food cart opened in 2009, The Oregonian wrote the menu was “a step up from what flies at most carts: a changing list of fresh soups, salads and sandwiches, made with a seasonal bent and a chef’s eye for combinations and ingredients.”

“It’s the nicest of the carts [and] the most aesthetically pleasing,” said Tina Wilson, a customer who works nearby. “I have nowhere else to go to get mac and cheese.”

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