According to Love food (via MSN)Portobello mushrooms were overlooked by the masses until they gained a surge in popularity in the 1980s. People thought they were “ugly”, but it was later discovered that their growing process was fair and that it was a mushroom with a more intense flavor than other types of mushrooms on the market. This, of course, drew people with more daring palettes to try the mushroom, and that’s when they fell in love. Then chefs and avid home cooks decided to try their recipes.
With more sales, the portobello began to appear in the media: for example, it was 1998 when a piece in The New York Times discussed the “mushroom mania” happening all over the US. The piece reported that 80% of chefs surveyed by the National Restaurant Association included mushrooms as part of their list of fancy dishes. 1995, The Baltimore Sun talked about an Ohio chef who seasoned the mushroom with Cajun seasoning and served it on pasta with Pomodoro sauce. The same piece shared that recipe because the portobello was on its way to rock home kitchens.
At the same time, people began to notice what a great source of nutrients and protein. In the 1990s, the portobello mushroom skyrocketed in the market as a result of the number of people adopting a whole-food lifestyle, a diet consisting of choosing whole, locally sourced foods (via LoveToKnow† Then this healthy and peculiar mushroom became a sensation in sustainable kitchens, and it has remained so.
All these events have made the portobello mushroom what it is today: the chic and trendy mushroom that we all want to cook with and snack on.