According to Portland Business Journal, Chris Dussin, head of Dussin Group, plans to close the outfit's oft maligned and ultra ritzy restaurant, Lucier, on December 14th.

Though Dussin claims the economy is at fault, the luxe eatery has been the butt end of some fairly lukewarm reviews, most recently from the Oregonian's Karen Brooks (which created quite a discussion at Portland Food and

Dussin tells the PBJ that the Dussin Group hopes that the closure is temporary. He claims that the group could shut the doors "for a year or longer if we wanted to," and reopen when the economy improves, "hopefully by the beginning of summer."

It may be that the glimmering palace of fine dining on the South Waterfront just didn't appeal to Portlander's sensibilities, though The Dussin Groups other fine dining venture Fenouil is apparently still doing well.

Was it the food? Was it the glass bridges and water filled canals? Was it the lack of an actual bartender in the bar? Was it the price? It would be difficult to parse out. Either way, it was certainly cost prohibitive for me. Then again, I'm not the demographic that Lucier was catering to. The Mercury, after all, wasn't invited to the extravagant media preview.

It's sad to see another staff let out into the chill of a dismal job market. But I'm not sure the loss of Lucier will be necessarily mourned by Portland's epicurean elite, even despite the fact that the Dussin Group is working hard to increase the profile of Portland's fine dining scene.