by Brian Addison
This is a part of Flavors of Long Beach, a month-long celebration of local food from Brian Addison, James Tir (aka @LBFoodComa) and Long Beach Living, with stories, events, dinners and more.
Our space—the ones we are connected to, the ones we assign importance to—is the largest part of this story.
It is about personal space—and I am not just talking your home or your neighborhood, but also your professional and social spaces. It is about historical space—and I am not just talking your city's actual historical landmarks or places largely considered generically "historical," but also the spaces which encapsulate your personal history, the places I like to say you know by heart.
And you know them by heart because they have become attached to you in ways that are much different than a home.
For many humans, 32 years is a decent chunk to have been directly connected with anything, let alone a space that has overtaken your life's direction.
For Portfolio Coffeehouse owner Kerstin Kansteiner, that time has come to wave auf Wiedersehen to a space that has not only defined her professional career but also connected her with a new home when it opened and, as time passed by, create a community that has wandered through its doors for thirty-plus years—and the goodbye is two-fold: She is not only moving Portfolio, the coffeeshop that has been an anchor for over three decades on Retro Row, she is also moving her bistro, Berlin, away from its downtown location.
Here's the thing: She's moving them into the same space just a bit down the street from the current Portfolio, where Portfolio would operate in the morning and early afternoon before transitioning into dinner service from Berlin. It's a bold concept attached to big food news—two things Kerstin has rarely shied from.
So it would be appropriate to start from the beginning.