I can only take the success of Vindalho as an example of the fawning that can haunt Portland's food culture and its better judgment. Because of the success of Lauro, its chef gets preemptive raves for his next spot, Vindalho, which is, essentially, mediocre Indian food that has been jacked up in price and served to you within a chilly, chic setting that strives to convince you that you're eating on the cutting edge of creative cuisine. Had Vindalho come out of the blue, with no connection to an established chef, it probably would have been dismissed. I've been there three times with a party of four, so I've tasted the bulk of its dishes. It's menu is never particularly interesting, some standards with a flourish or two. For all its talk of the glory of spice (or whatever), its dishes are bizarrely bland, often insipid. A chicken tikka, while moist, simply tasted like a grilled chicken kabob, with nothing to distinguish it from what you might pop out of your backyard grill. A mixed greens salad was a standard, drab affair. A pumpkin samosa tasted as if filled with an anonymous, starchy filling, not particularly recognizable as pumpkin, and without flavor. A couple of curries were middling, certainly not terrible, but bland and uninspired. Paneer pakora is the standard version, which you can find at any Indian spot in the world (or this city) for a lesser price.
Pros: Decent ingredients.
Cons: Bland, overpriced, overrated.