Mexican restaurant Xico brings high performance building, sustainable business, and tasty, tasty enchiladas to Portland’s SE Division Street

Xico, co-founded by Hammer & Hand’s Daniel Thomas, to open August 10.

Built by Portland / Seattle remodeling contractor
Photo courtesy of Xico.

With a thriving culture of artisanship and an eclectic array of restaurants and shops, Portland is quickly becoming one of the top cities in the country to visit and call home. In September 2011 Travel + Leisure ranked Portland #6 for America’s best cities for foodies, so it comes as no surprise that we face an enviable predicament: so many tasty options, so little time.

The latest addition to our fair city’s foodie scene is Mexican restaurant Xico (3715 SE Division St.), being launched by Hammer & Hand co-owner Daniel Thomas and restaurant industry veteran Elizabeth Davis at an August 10th opening.

Xico, built by Hammer & Hand, is situated on the ground floor of the Glasswood building, directly under the first-ever Passive House commercial retrofit in the country. (Our building science corps just moved its offices into that upstairs space, read more here.) While aspects of a commercial kitchen make it impractical for a restaurant to meet the rigorous requirements of Passive House, we drew heavily on Passive House principles and strategies as we remodeled the ground floor as a high performance space.

Xico’s design incorporates high quality windows, ductless mini-splits, heat-recovering ventilation, and an advanced building envelope (see video for details), that together provide unprecedented levels of comfort and air quality to guests and employees and reduce the carbon footprint of the restaurant.

The building itself is just one manifestation of Xico’s focus on sustainability. Co-owner Elizabeth Davis explains how the mission of sustainability is achieved through sourcing organic corn and working with local farmers to source produce, meat, beans, and grains. In addition to supporting the local farming community, Xico direct trades with a coffee farmer in Oaxaca for its organic, shade grown coffee.

Conscientious sourcing practice, care for employees (healthcare is provided to all employees), and high performance building – Xico is a Portland dinning destination for comfort, quality, and tasty, tasty enchiladas.

For more information about Xico, check out these articles:
Portland Montlhy
PDX Eater

- Jeff

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