Portlanders are in for a delightful experience next week when the three owners of Onggi invite neighbors in to meet them and sample some baked goods from their new “Food Counter” located at 93 Washington Avenue on the east end of Portland.
Onggi, the name of the new business venture of these three entrepreneurs, is a Korean pottery tradition used for making fermented foods. The tradition dates back thousands of years – before the days of glass, plastics and even before grocery stores and refrigeration.
The tradition had faded but is now experiencing a resurgence of interest. “Fermentation is the process of creating a healthy environment for microbes in certain types of bacteria and yeast that will transform food to become more delicious and preserve it,” said Marcus Im, this afternoon, outside Unit 5, one of the black box retail shipping containers.
Im, who is Korean-American, has Korean relatives, was born and raised in California. Last year he relocated to Portland from Brooklyn, New York where he and the other two Onggi owners were in a similar food business together.
“We were attracted to Portland because of the vibrant food scene. It’s a very special culture here. People really appreciate local food systems,” said Im.
The black box complex adjacent to the J. J. Nissen building was the brainchild of former developer Jed T. Harris. He recognized the need for business owners to try out their concept before investing heavily at the outset. The black box complex is viewed as an incubator space for entrepreneurs looking to get their feet wet in the complex world of business today.
It is anticipated that the Sneak Peak into Onggi will happen on Saturday, April 3rd starting at noon. Thereafter the flexible plan is to be open four days a week – Thursday – Sunday. Hours to be determined.
Please visit post herein dated February 27, 2021 for more background information on the black box shipping containers.