Natural Selection
Natural Selection

Natural Selection

  • Dining Style: Fine Dining
  • Website: http://www.naturalselectionpdx.com/
  • Phone: (503) 288-5883
  • Hours of Operation:
    Dinner: Wednesday - Saturday: 5:30pm - Close
  • Payment Options: AMEX,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Modern European, Vegetarian
  • Executive Chef: Aaron Woo
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Wine

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 31st
  • Public Transit: The Trimet Bus #9-Powell/Broadway can be boarded on Broadway Ave in the Portland City Center. The bus crosses NE Alberta at 27th, a few blocks from our location. Broadway and Radio Cabs are a good option for travelers. Ample bike parking available.
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: Ample parking available on the streets surrounding the restaurant. Please note that Alberta Street is closed to traffic on the last Thursday of each month, June through September, for the Last Thursday Arts Festival. Please allow extra transit time, as well as additional time for parking.
A word from Natural Selection
Natural Selection is a restaurant built on vegetables, fruits, and grains, featuring finely crafted meals paired with choice wines and spirits.

Served in a warm European-style setting, the menu combines both rustic and modern cooking techniques while highlighting the flavors of France, Italy & Spain.
Continued
Foodspotting photos
See all photos
Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Service
Natural Selection reviews from OpenTable diners
103 reviews since July 31, 2014
Overall Rating4.6
  • Food4.6
    Service4.6
  • Ambiance4.3
    Noise LevelModerate
92% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (87)special occasion (75)romantic (59)neighborhood gem (55)notable wine list (25)hot spot (8)good for groups (4)great for outdoor dining (2)late-night find (2)vibrant bar scene (1)Show More
  • Amazing Flavors
    Tommystyles
    Dined on 11/22/2014
    I've only recently stopped eating meat, and it saddens me to think that's what it took for me to try this incredible restaurant. Do yourself a favor - don't get hung up on the fact that this is a vegetarian / vegan meal, go and be blown away. They use fresh, natural and diverse ingredients to craft the most staggering flavors in every bite they serve. Also really nice to find some creative 'mocktails' for my wife and I who aren't drinking at the moment, but good to see a great cocktail/wine/beer selection for a future visit. I'd be hard pressed to find a better place for a joyous and celebratory meal, meat-eater or not. Try it - you won't be disappointed. And we definitely did not leave hungry, a great, satisfying meal all around. Can't wait to go back!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • FIne Gourmet Dining on Alberta
    BillyOjai
    Dined on 11/20/2014
    We've been to all the veggie/vegan restaurants in the Portland area and this place is special. Great service, great food presentation, and most importantly great food. Many places I've gone to end up with, I just can make this just as well at home. Not so with Natural Selection, their menu selection of food blending is Michelin quality. The waiters take the time to explain each dish when serving and will patiently answer your questions. Don't let the 4 course price put you off, you can also just order 1 or 2 items.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amazing place. Every dish-the small masterpiece.
    Ania
    Dined on 11/15/2014
    I am vegan, and Natural Selection is a place that can prove that meat is necessary to have a perfect dinner! Excellent place, highly recommend!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Best veggies I've ever eaten!
    RyanetSonia
    Dined on 11/14/2014
    Had been on my list for a long time. Didn't disappoint. Pretty spendy to be a regular dinner spot, but great for special kid-free occasions.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always a treat
    PdxFoodie
    Dined on 11/1/2014
    With two menus to choose, $45 prix fixe for four courses and the wine pairing option; this still remains the best deal with the added bonus of being vegetarian.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Cozy and delicious
    delish
    Dined on 10/25/2014
    Every element of the dining experience at Natural Selection resonate the senses. The warm atmosphere and downtempo pace set the tone for an incredibly memorable four course meal that will visually excite and dance across your palette.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Excellent food and service
    plantEater
    Dined on 10/24/2014
    Was visiting Portland and made reservations here to celebrate my boyfriends birthday. Food, cocktails, and the service was outstanding. Courses were well-paced and unique and we enjoyed the open kitchen atmosphere. Every dish was packed with flavor and portioned well. Would highly recommend to anyone looking for a truly unique and high quality meal.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A True Portland Gem
    Kmc8
    Dined on 10/23/2014
    Having recently taken a trip to Portland and excited to try a number of well spoken of places, I had found myself less than enchanted with the overly large portions and too much salt so many offer. So, looking for a truly excellent vegan/vegetarian restaurant, I came across Natural Selection (oddly not through vegan/vegetarian reviews etc.). I dined with a good friend, and without question, this was the very best meal I had in Portland. From ambiance to service to food... across the board this was one of the best dining experiences I've had in a very long time. The server was gracious, knowledgeable and able to speak to the execution of the menu. The food was inspired and beautiful.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Not Stellar any longer
    Rugger
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    I have sent so many friends to Natural Selection and taken friends visiting here..as it was my favorite spot, key word here is was. No longer will this be the case. Service was poor the minute we walked in with the hostess not being accommodating, and not customer focused...then to find out the meal has gone up $10 since we first started going... Courses were hit and a big miss on the main entree with vegetables in a soy sauce.. Poor execution of my typical favorite spot. We left hungry, embarrassed I talked it up so much. With our wine & tip we spent over $300 for 4 very unsatisfied past customers.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Wanted to like it, but...
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    I really wanted to like this place. Heard so many great things about it. But..I like food, and I like to leave feeling satisfied, and the portions here are not enough to do the job. Tasted OK, but seriously this is the chintziest plate of food I've ever had, but the price tag certainly wasn't. $17 for some veggies in broth and two mushrooms tossed in? I don't think so. Best of luck to you, Natural Selection, but you'll never see me again...
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Vegetarian Adventure
    Rideshorses
    Dined on 10/15/2014
    If you've poo - pooed vegetarian cuisine in the past, you never will again after a visit to Natural Selections. Suprising, fresh, healthy, and inspired. Can't wait to go again.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fantastic!
    Papeleta
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    This is my favorite place. Each course is a delight. Ingredients that are so tasty and surprisingly good together. I love having the wine pairings too. Worth the price, treat yourself and love ones!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Amazingly complex
    edudik
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    Natural Selections was a to-be-savored experience. I don't think my wife and I have ever experienced such complex flavors and intricately prepared dishes. The intelligence, creativity and care of the preparation shone through. We much appreciated that NS was strict about reservations, so there wasn't extra waiting for a table, something uncomfortable for the diners, the folks waiting and the wait staff. We especially enjoyed the moderate level of music and the retro tunes that accord with the atmosphere. My wife were able to converse easily--and that's part of what a great date out is all about!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Wonderful
    Damselfish
    Dined on 9/24/2014
    The food is exciting for those who love a creative, innovative dining experience. This is vegetables as haute cuisine. I would recommend Natural Selection for everyone, not just vegetarians.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • PRDPDX
    Dined on 9/17/2014
    Seated across from the ice machine which added to the noise level. Ask to be seated towards the front of the restaurant: avoid the back if possible. We had no choice. In fact, the restaurant seemed totally unaware that we had a reservation so were unprepared for us when we arrived. The cocktails are stellar. The food is artfully presented and explained. You can tell by looking and tasting that careful thought has been given to each dish. Most are delicious. The night we dined, the desserts were the weakest link.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/17/2014
    I thought the food had too many elements to each dish. Keep it more simple and a few more choices. I loved how fresh the veggies were. The kitchen in the middle of the restaurant was nice and silverware and water glasses were beautiful.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • My favorite restaurant in Portland!
    ChickpeaDee
    Dined on 9/12/2014
    Amazing food; so inventive and beautifully presented! Impeccable service and nice cozy Portland style atmosphere. A fantastic choice if you want a fresh, seasonal, gourmet vegan dinner. Delicious and never disappoints!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Magical Experience
    LoveTMM
    Dined on 9/12/2014
    I came to Portland for my first date with a woman I've known for eight years. Restaurant selection was really key for a great first date. We loved Natural Selection. The poached egg with puffed pastry was amazing. We could enjoy that dish every day! Loved the staff and ambiance was perfect for our date. Definitely coming back soon!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Disappointing
    KatrinMT
    Dined on 9/11/2014
    I had high hopes for this restaurant. The two of us ordered one of each option and got the wine flight. They obviously use great fresh ingredients but most of the dishes were discordant at best and simply not good at worst. vegetarian food can be amazing (e.g. Millennium) but this restaurant seemed to lack vision and the ability to craft a composed purposeful dish. Clearly the vegetarian options out there are limited for this restaurant to be so busy.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • loved it!
    allynfarrell
    Dined on 9/6/2014
    Great service and stellar food! The wine pairings and drinks were great and the food was almost too beautiful to eat. What a wonderful place!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great anniversary destination
    MarlonBrando
    Dined on 9/5/2014
    I reserved a table for two for my second anniversary with my boyfriend. We enjoyed stellar service, the standard prix fixe offering seasonal foods lovingly prepared, and fantastic wine pairings. This includes some extras they don't mention: a delightful aperitif, an amuse bouche, and a refreshing post-entree granita. And the staff also served us a special salad course in honor of our occasion. I could not have picked a better spot! Well done!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Didn't live up to the hype
    mkk1
    Dined on 9/5/2014
    My girlfriend and I tried this place two times because, based on all the hoopla this place gets, we figured our first mediocre experience must have been a fluke. It wasn't. The food was fine (with the exception of one really under-poached egg), but there was nothing so out-of-this-world as to justify the $45 per person price tag. Just as good (or better) can be had elsewhere for a third of the price.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • carnivores won't miss meat here
    mtf419VIP
    Dined on 9/4/2014
    The preparation and quality at this all vegetarian establishment would rival any traditional restaurant. With an open kitchen and rustic chic ambiance, diners will feel very comfortable trusting staff recommendations.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 9/4/2014
    Food was very well presented and was all very good. The two column 4 course fixed price menu made decisions easy, one of everything so my partner and I could share our plates. Definitely worth coming back to.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Outstanding dinner, great service!
    o2wineanddine
    Dined on 9/3/2014
    I read about this restaurant in an article about restaurants to try in Portland. We were so glad we went! They have a prix fixe 4 course menu, with 2 choices for each course. This is a vegetarian menu but meat lovers won't miss a thing. Each course was lovely to behold and delicious to taste. There is an optional wine pairing which is thoughtful and well chosen. This is a small intimate space, very romantic, though we did see a couple of groups of up to 7 diners. Very knowledgable, friendly staff. A real find!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Outstanding
    Stef
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    The food in this restaurant is absolutely outstanding. The mix and balance of flavors and sophistication level is among the best, if not the best, I have ever experienced. What elevates the cooking, and my admiration of the chef(s) skills, is that it is all done with a vegan or vegetarian menu - it does not rely on a meat to take center stage. Natural Selection has moved into my all time favorite restaurant spot, replacing a restaurant in Santa Fe that has been my standing favorite for over 20 years. Well done Natural Selection, thank you for the experience!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amazing vegetarian cuisine!
    zenyo
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    We went for a special occasion and took the 4-course dinner. We had a good time while eating well prepared vegetarian food
    Special Features:
    late-night find, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Amazing all around
    AaronB
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Vegan or not, Natural Selection should be on your list. The present ion, pacing, and pure passion shown by the kitchen and front of the house staff are all top notch and the food is to die for!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • I absolutely loved it!
    Lodigirllovestoeat
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    I've been a vegetarian for about four years and this is the first time I've ever dined at a vegan gourmet restaurant complete with wine pairings. The food was fabulous and the service was impeccable! I was dining alone and the wait staff was very attentive and made me feel special. They even brought me a bonus appetizer and glass of wine to go with it! I loved it and can't wait to go back!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Really Amazing
    Eater10000VIP
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    Each of us had the one of the two tasting menus. The food was really remarkable and inventive. Plus, the service was impeccable. The staff explained each dish very well and were truly friendly and appreciative. Everything was a highlight, yet the bruleed peaches for dessert really stood out for me.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Vegan trying to be upscale
    GourmetFaux
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    The service and table settings were upscale but the noise level and ambience detracted from the overall experience. The tables were very close, and the party next to ours was so loud that we could barely hear each other talk. The first course dishes were excellent but quite pricey, but the main dishes were disappointing and very expensive for the ingredients they contained. My dish was taken back and redone because it was too salty, and returned less salty but minus the beans. In fact, without the beans there was no concentrated protein source in the whole dinner. We were given a dessert on the house because they felt bad about our experience--and the dessert was the best dish! WE have much better vegan food at a third of the price.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Best Restaurant In Portland.
    pdxbennett
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    It's like an art gallery for food. Looks great. Tastes great.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • great place for something new
    mehereVIP
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    Innovative and very tasty. Lots of great flavors. The deserts are 'good' but the mains/apps, and so on were spectacular.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Gourmet vegetarian!
    CalgaryFoodieVIP
    Dined on 8/6/2014
    This was an outstanding dinner experience. It's a tiny place with a small menu, but everything on that menu is prepared with creativity. This is vegetarian food at its best - no TVP or tofu masquerading as something else - just the vegetables shining in their glory. Service was top-notch and professional, fine-dining level. A surprise, and a very pleasant one!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Not your mothers vegetarian
    fussylady
    Dined on 7/31/2014
    Terrifically inventive vegetarian. Beautifully presented. Had the tasting menu and really liked each course. The aranncini was a bit over done but that was the only less than perfect moment. The watermelon amuse bouche was worth adding to the menu.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Best dinner I've had in awhile
    Sarahshu
    Dined on 7/31/2014
    Came to Natural Selection with my husband for my birthday. The food was amazing! I was perfectly full and content at the end out our meal. All the staff were friendly and very attentive. I look forward to returning soon!
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 67 ratings-only reviews submitted since July 31, 2014
    • Overall Rating4.7
    • Food4.7
    • Ambiance4.4
    • Service4.7
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 580 reviews are from the Natural Selection reviews archive.
  • A true gem!
    SWsubfoodlover
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    Natural Selection was fantastic in all respects. We were in from out of town, staying in downtown Portland without a car, but managing the bus system to get to NE Alberta Street was well worth the effort. At NS, the food was spectacular - fresh, intriguing, and prepared flawlessly. We did the wine pairing, and each wine choice was of the the highest quality and matched perfectly. We are not vegetarians, but have always appreciated excellent vegetarian meals, and NS is the best we have had in any city on our culinary journeys.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 7/24/2014
    These folks are artists whose pallet is vegetables and whose audience is you. We traveled 2000 miles for our second visit and it was as wonderful as the first.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Natural Selection Portland
    LEGDiningVIP
    Dined on 7/18/2014
    One of the most amazing meals I've ever had! Innovative, healthy and incredibly delicious! The wine pairings were fantastic! I cannot wait to go back! A great dining experience!!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Expand to Scottsdale
    DesertRat
    Dined on 7/17/2014
    Please open a sister restaurant in Scottsdale....I will personally invest if you would consider the idea. Our community needs and would support the healthy living that Natural Selection models. Todd LaPorte Chief Financial and Strategy Officer Scottsdale Lincoln Health Network 480-882-4904
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, special occasion, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.