Portland Restaurant Review Index

A summary by type of eating establishment of my Portland Restaurant Reviews. These links go to my posts, and the posts should include pictures and a link to the restaurants/food carts. If I don’t have a review, I will link to the restaurant directly for you and the link is in italics. My most recent reviews of restaurants can be seen here in chronological order.

A summary/link of all the sections, divided into

Portland, Oregon

Top Recommendations for Portland

  • Food carts- try them! I have a whole section below. It’s part of Portland’s charm, our various cart pods. I love them, and my favorite card pods are the one at SW 12th and Alder for lunch, the Tidbit food cart for evening, Cartopia for late night, and all day (9 AM – 9 PM) would be Portland Mercado (I wrote a summary post on the carts of Portland Mercado here).
    Portland Mercado and the colorful 8 carts of the food cart pod, where each food cart specializes in different Latin cuisine

  • For classic Northwest cuisine, I point to Higgins Restaurant (April 2014) for their classic and dependable service and focus on Northwest cuisine and ingredients all the time
  • For unique Northwest ingredients combined with homemade pastas and the fact they purchase and age and use whole animals, I love recommending Renata (April 2016) especially dining al fresco on their patio.
    Isabelli Scarpinocc with porcini mushrooms and pine nuts at Renata
  • For something unique, I recommend Russian cuisine via Kachka (January 2016) and more detail on more of their menu here for a full Russian Dinner (June 2015).
    Kachka's tvorog vareniki, a dish of scallion and farmer’s cheese filled dumplings that are just melt in your mouth, and also on the happy hour menu! The famous Kachka PDX dish of the Herring Under a Fur Coat, a 7 layer dip but russian. and actually a salad, with herring, potatoes, onions, carrots, beets, mayo, eggs.
  • For ramen, Boke Bowl (March 2011) and their modernist viewpoint on ramen thrown together with NW food sensibilities like fried chicken and pulled pork and pork belly
    Boke Bowl ramen, Portland Oregon
  • Southern Brunch at Screen Door (March 2011). Yes the brunch line is crazy, but it will slip your mind when you start biting into that delicious food
  • Pine State Biscuit at the PSU Farmers Market on Saturday or any of their multiple locations around time. I’ve loved every biscuit sandwich I’ve had, including having it with pimento cheese or gravy (December 2009) and again with the Reggie sandwich (the sandwich to get!) (September 2011) This is one of my favorite PDX breakfast sandwiches in my breakfast series
    Pine State Biscuit at the Farmers Market, Reggie sandwich: Fried chicken, bacon & cheese topped with gravy between a buttermilk biscuit
  • My favorite of the Gorham restaurant empire in Portland is Tasty N Alder, which I provide highlights from a dinner (Feb 2013) as well as lunch (March 2013) and also my favorite picks from multiple visits (Feb 2015). There’s also Tasty N Sons, happy hour and dinner visits (July 2011), John Gorham mixes up flavors of the world for spicy, sweet, salty, savory. He also owns Toro Bravo. Both are known for waits. While waiting for Tasty N Sons I recommended drinks/snacks at Lincoln Restaurant (August 2016), I’m particularly am a fan of their happy hour. For Toro Bravo while you are waiting to be seated check out Secret Society for drinks.
    Tasty N Sons, happy hour, Griddled Bacon Wrapped Dates with maple syrup and almond 
  • Steaks at Urban Farmer (December 2011) in a hip instead of the usual dark wood atmosphere, located right across from Pioneer Square- they also have excellent desserts (May 2014).
  • For steaks, I also like Laurelhurst Market, like the delectable Brandt Ribeye Cold Smoked with the Laurelhurst Market cocktail of Smoke Signals (with Tennessee Whiskey, Sherry, Pecan, Lemon, and Smoked Ice) like I highlighted in this Bite and a Sip post (January 2016). I went to a Portland Dining Month dinner at Laurelhurst as well (March 2015) that gave me a chance to enjoy a few cocktails and 3 courses of deliciousness.
    Laurelhurst Market cocktail of Smoke Signals, with Tennessee Whiskey, Sherry, Pecan, Lemon, and Smoked Ice Laurelhurst Market delectable Brandt Ribeye Cold Smoked with Blue Cheese Butter and Fried Sweet Onion Rings Laurelhurst Market Portland Dining Month 2015 second course of Ten-hour braised beef shoulder with potato pancake, warm oyster mushroom salad and beef jus
  • For Thai, my current love is Paa Dee (June 2014) which tastes very authentic. I also like Pok Pok but Paa Dee is a little less written up so easy to get in without the rush with all the people who know Andy Ricker’s name. I also find it more vegetarian friendly.
    PaaDee Thai comfort food พาดี, Peek gai tod, fried wings glazed in Sriracha fish sauce. If you come here, you must get this, happy hour or not. PaaDee Thai comfort food พาดี, Kanom gui chai (3) ขนมกุ่ยช่าย -pan fried chinese chive cake, sour soy sauce
  • I admit I don’t have a blog post on it, but I always tell people to give Salt and Straw a try of their incredible ice cream. Don’t be intimidated by the line, it does move and at one point you will be offered various tastes of ice cream to try before you officially get to order!
  • For an alternate take on sophisticated ice cream, I am a huge fan of Fifty Licks, as I covered here (Nov 2013) and who offer sophisticated sorbet cocktails.
  • For a totally different dessert, how about churros at 180 (January 2016)
  • For charcuterie or cheese I’m a big fan of Chop and Olympia (formerly Olympic) Provisions and Cheese Bar. You can see hints of the meat fun from Olympia Provisions with the spread from Olympic Provisions at Bailey’s Taproom 5th anniversary(August 2012) and the spread at the Portland Beer And Cheese Festival 2014. At the Portland Farmer’s Market at PSU on Saturdays, you can sample both Olympia Provisions and Chop. You can see Chop participating at the Portland Beer and Cheese Fest as well  (June 2011 and June 2012 again providing meat accompaniments). As for cheese, visit Cheese Bar or alternative visit Chizu (March 2015).
    Portland Beer and Cheese Fest 2013: charcuterie provided by Chop Butchery Portland Beer and Cheese Fest 2013: charcuterie provided by Chop Butchery
  • I love the atmosphere of Picnic House, for which I wrote posts noting the great style and soups, salads, and chocolate cake (July 2012) and again for sandwiches and sides (July 2012), and again where I loved the cocktails and a dessert of Pavlova (August 2012) and then a simple Soup, Salad, a Sandwich (October 2012)
    Sandwiches and Sides at Picnic House, Portland Picnic House pavlova Picnic House cocktail Moulin Rouge martini
  • Fried Chicken? I think of Basilisk (November 2016)
    Basilisk Fried Chicken Sandwich with fried chicken thigh and house pickled cucumbers, shredded cabbage and special sauce that needs a knife stabbed through the middle to keep it together
  • When it comes to trying Portland Beer:
    • I always recommend Bailey’s Taproom first for their 25 rotating taps of local Northwest beers, and it’s location in the downtown area means you can choose to just have food delivered from Santeria (you can call or walk over and tell them where you are sitting adn they will deliver delicious Mexican- try the moles!), or you can then walk up to other restaurants/come from dinner beforehand. I’ve also brought in food from nearby Sizzle Pie and Lardo West.
    • Other options include Deschutes Brewery Portland Public House where you can make your own samplers and enjoy some pretty decent food if this is your first time with Portland microbrews for a beginner course. They were part of the “P’s downtown beer tour” I blogged about for my sister in March 2011.
    • I also like Breakside Brewery for this (get the blue cheese waffle fries I had (June 2011) and I also liked their curry fried chicken (Sept 2011)!).
    • Beermongers (Aug 2009) which you can combine with a visit to Double Dragon or Portobello
    • Saraveza and Hop and Vine which you can walk to both.
  • For cocktails, I always recommend Teardrop Lounge (Sept 2011), Clyde Common (June 2012) or the small Pépé Le Moko (February 2014), and I also like the Rookery (part of Raven and Rose (see more in the Southwest Area section of this page)) and Luc Lac because of the great bartenders. My favorite Portland Drink and a Bite Highlight places that I’ve written about before include
  • If you are here in September, consider checking out Feast Portland events: I blogged about several events during my coverage of Feast 20-2017
  • If you have some time, I really like Forktown tours, where you can have a progressive meal, sampling and learning about a neighborhood in Portland. Previously I took my brother on the Forktown NW Alphabet District Tour (Dec 2011). I also like the beer tours by Brewvana, such as this one I took to Corvallis and another (sponsored by Google+) that stayed in Portland
  • There are several pop-ups in town you might consider, such as lucking out if Holdfast Dining or Langbaan has an opening. My favorite popup have been for Nodoguro (The famous Twin Peaks dinner is recapped here as well as intro to the Nodoguro experience or see all my Nodoguro recaps in a list.), Mae PDX (as I recapped in September and November 2015) and also for Ruchikala (recap from Spring popup and a Winter popup). I wrote a list of 2017 Portland Pop Ups if you want to see what is active in PDX.
    Nodoguro July 2014 Cucumber soup with fermented ume, and Nasturtium Skillet Fried Chicken with Crystal Hot Sauce and the gorgeous skillet of Creamed Corn with Summer Savory and Smoked Soy
  • Gluten free? Check out this list from Portland Monthly of all the places to eat and drink!

Northwest Pacific regional Cuisine

  • For classic Northwest cuisine, I point to Higgins Restaurant (April 2014) for their classic and dependable service and focus on Northwest cuisine and ingredients all the time
  • Castagna (March 2013) for modernist fine dining with strong Northwest regional ingredient
    Castagna Snax: Onion Terrarium pea vines sunflower sprouts winter cress from Castagna Restaurant
  • Clyde Common: Happy Hour and a Dining Month Dinner (June 2012) has amazing crafted cocktails from Jeffrey Morganthaler

Food Carts – these move around so check for the latest location. A great site to look up food carts to find out where they are and the latest (they do move around) is the website Food Carts Portland. You can find all my food cart posts under the category Food Cart

  • The cart is specialized in one dish, but does it sooo well- teriyaki chicken boxes at Dosirak (January 2015)
    Dosirak Food Cart, specializing in Teriyaki Chicken at its location of SW 4th and College. They've had their loyal fans since 2009, which is a testament of what a simple but great offering they provide.
  • Haan Ghin (July 2014) has a small menu because they hyper focus on two excellent Laotian dishes (Larb Gai and Mii Ghai) for a unique the weekday lunch by PSU
    Mii Gai, egg noodles with housemade sweet and savory Mii sauce topped with chicken, ong choy, fried garlic/shallots, scallions and crispy chicken skin from Haan Ghin, a Laotian Food Cart in Portland Laap Gai. This is a dish of minced chicken that you eat in lettuce wraps and can adorn with cucumber, a pinch of sticky rice, and a little scoop of jaew bawng (a dark thick reddish paste made from chiles and galangal root) from Haan Ghin, a Laotian Food Cart in Portland
  • Mama Chow’s Kitchen (July 2014) for addictive lollipop chicken legs and those garlic noodles, also Jeff makes great wontons using his mother’s recipe
    Mama Chow's Kitchen: Garlic noodles and cayote squash, or garlic noodles that are fresh made local noodles with chayote squash and onion relish Mama Chow's Kitchen justifiably raved about lollipop wings with honey soy garlic glaze with jasmine rice and baby bok choy
  • Pulehu Pizza for incredible combinations of flavor on grilled pizza from a food cart
    Pulehu Pizza Strawberries and Crème Flamee Fresh Strawberries, Lemon Zest & Fresh Mint on a creamy base, Portland food truck grilled pizza
  • Kargi Gogo – Food from Georgia from a Food Cart (April 2013). Georgia the country mind you, not the state! I love their Khachapuri (Cheese Stuffed Bread)- I’ve had everything at their cart before. This cart has closed as of December 2015 but keep an eye out for their Supra Dinner popups, as I attended and adored in this Supra Dinner recap here Closed cart, unsure if they will do dinners once in a while
  • Artigiano– Yukon Gold Gnocchi in Gorgonzola-Cream Sauce (April 2013), known for their incredible homemade pastas, yes from a food cart
  • Tabor Food Cart and their Original Schnitzelwich (September 2012)
    Tabor Food Cart and their Original Schnitzelwich
  • Noodle House Food Cart (May 2012) offers Handmade hand pulled Asian noodles
  • PB&J Grilled (April 2012) for grilled fancy peanut butter and jelly, but they aren’t just regular pb and j…
  • A Plate Lunch: 808 Grinds Food Cart (October 2011) for Hawaiian onoliciousness
    808 Grinds Food Cart, food cart, Combo plate with Kalua Pig and Fried Chicken, hawaiian food
  • The Mac and Cheese Strikes Back, by Big Ass Sandwiches (September 2011), they live up to their name with the fries piled right into the sandwich
    The Mac and Cheese Strikes Back sandwich special, by Big Ass Sandwiches, Portland food cart
  • The Frying Scotsman – Fish and Chips (July 2011)
    The Frying Scotsman - Fish and Chips, food carts, Portland
  • PDX 671 (April 2011), specializing in food from Guam- 671 is the zip code. I sampled the chamarro flatbread, the red rice flavored with achotte, the chopped grilled chicken I had loved at Eat Mobile, a fritter, the choice to add a Finadene sauce to infuse more flavor of soy sauce-lemon-chili-onion (added in the last pic). Everything he offers is great, you can’t go wrong here. Try Guamanian food!
    PDX 671
  • Pyro Pizza (April 2011), great pizza from a wood fired oven, they also make their own sodas. I like their white truffle pizza, add basil and tomato as additional toppings.
  • Whiffies (April 2011), fried pies that may be sweet or savory, your choice. The most popular are the bbq beef brisket with mozzarella, and the apple, fried pies
    Whiffies fried pie with bbq beef brisket with mozzarella 
  • Potato Champion (April 2011), has poutine, which means fries topped with gravy and cheese curds, one of the few gifts from Canada. The fries were fresh and crisp, they are generous here with the rich gravy (I went with the meat based one not the veg one although there is one available- but look at how thick that gravy is, well flecked with seasoning), and there were nice sprinklings of squeaky chewy chunks of Rogue curd throughout.
    Potato Champion's poutine
  • Flavourspot (April 2011), has an extensive menu of “Dutch Tacos”, which are basically savory (cheese and maple sausage for instance) or sweet foods wrapped in a waffle instead of soft taco
    Flavourspot cheese and maple sausage Dutch Taco  Flavourspot Dutch Taco  Flavourspot Dutch Taco
  • Emame’s Ethiopian (April 2011), specializing in Ethiopian food. I sampled both the lentil version on top of the injera which had a nice mild spice to it, and the much spicier chicken in berbere which is the Ethiopian national dish. This would be the favorite even by the end of the tour of several of the tour participants. The name Emame comes from what her son called her, aw.
    Emame's Ethiopian, lentil on top of the injera  Emame's Ethiopian, spicier chicken in berbere
  • Baowry (April 2011). I met this cart on a food tour, and got to hear how Ross built the cart from scratch, their attempts to handmake and struggle to get the dough for their bao to rise in the winter, and then from their humble St Johns cart they have opened a brick and mortar so they can begin to offer many more ideas he has for Asian inspired dishes, a la Pok Pok. The meat here with their steamed Chinese bun is tender and moist, and came with the same little scoop of white ginger scallion rice and spicy noodle
    Bao from Baowry Food Cart
  • Grilled Cheese Grill- Cheesus and Quesus (March 2011)- eat grilled cheeses in simple and fancy formats on buses – a peek at the bus on Alberta and some of their other grilled cheeses here (December 2010)
  • Gaufre Gourmet Food Cart (March 2011), specializing in mini waffles  with sweet or/and savory. Example: a “street taco waffle” with seasonal shredded chicken with pico de gallo, salsa verde, sour cream and guacamole on a cornbread jalapeno waffle
    Milk and Honey: goat cheese mousse, pistachios, and balsamic caramel sauce, Gaufre Gourmet Food Cart, liege waffles, sweet waffles, savory waffles, mini waffles
  • Parker’s Waffles, using waffles as a wrapper taco style, genius (January 2010)
    Waffles as wrapper = genius, Parker's Waffles, two eggs scrambled with ham, onions, mushrooms and Gruyere
  • Savor Soup House‘s homemade soup and grilled cheese (choose your own fillings) (December 2009)
  • You Can Haz Cheeseburger, by Brunchbox, two grilled cheese as the “buns” (December 2009) and they have a brick and mortar and offer delivery so you can enjoy Brunchbox Breakfast Sandwiches
    You Can Haz Cheeseburger, by Brunchbox, griled cheese buns, texas toast grilled cheese, cheeseburger, Portland food cart
  • Korean Tacos and Sliders from Koi Fusion (July 2009)
  • Khao Man Gai, a Hainanese chicken and rice dish from Nong’s Khao Man Gai (July 2009)
    Khao Man Gai, food cart, Nong's Khao Man Gai, Portland Oregon

Breakfast Foods

Happy Hours / For Cocktails



  • I’m a big fan of LeChon which offers brunch, lunch, happy hour and dinner and is unique in that they offer South American grilled meats but also have plenty of vegetarian friendly option. I highlighted happy hour and some of the vegetarian options (July 2016)
  • A huge value for lunch is the lunch buffet at DarSalam Lazurdi but it’s also great for dinner and always any time of day for those desserts! (December 2015)
    Clockwise desserts at DarSalam you see Baklava, a Date Roll and a dessert called Dark & Honey
  • Great tea and desserts at Maurice, which is only serving their menu starting at 11 am (they open at 10 am but only serve their pastries and drinks then, not the food menu). Oh, those desserts! (January 2015)
    Some of the treats at Maurice on and in the case by the register counter Maurice Black Pepper Cheesecake with Salted Butter Ice Cream and a bit of strawberry leather A lovely chocolate banana cake box from Maurice, love the layers and the valrohna chocolate balls on top
  • A lunch at Tasty n Alder March 2013)- check out their takes Korean Fried Chicken with short grain rice and Bim Bop Bacon and Eggs as unique dishes in Portland (but don’t expect authentic Korean), but I was especially in love with their various bloody mary options. Brunch and dinner are also rocking. I’ve probably had their entire menu I’ve been here so many times, after my visit with Portland Food Adventures(Feb 2013).
    The Dockside Mary at Tasty n Alder with gin, kummel, tomato, old bay, and shrimp
  • Lunches at Lardo for their amazing sandwiches where they are bringing the fat back and celebrating the pork (February 2013), and also for their Chefwiches (July 2013)
    Double Burger, Dirty fries, Cascade natural beef and pork belly with the cheddar and lardo sauce, Lardo west, bringing the fat back, Portland restaurant, sandwich restaurant Lardo's signature porchetta sandwich with caper aioli, gremolata, Lardo west, bringing the fat back, Portland restaurant, sandwich restaurant Lardo, chefwich, Scott Snyder, Levant, Morroccan Lamb Meatball and black olive mayo, harrisa carrot slaw, feta
  • I love grabbing those swaddled baguette sandwiches from Addy’s Sandwich Bar that come in delicious combinations ranging from duck confit or country pate to vegeterain ones like chickpea spread, or cucumber and brie. Also offers pressed juices and smothies adn salads and yogurt parfaits, great to take on a picnic, on a hike, or on the go in general.
    I love how Addy's Sandwich Bar always cutely swaddles their baguette sandwiches. This was a sandwich special with brie, radish slices, mint parsley pesto on baguette. Simple but delicious, perfect to take to eat in the park, on a picnic, on a hike. They also offer great pressed juices and smoothies Addy's Sandwich Bar - country pate + cornichons + mustard I love how Addy's Sandwich Bar always cutely swaddles their baguette sandwiches. This was a sandwich special with brie, radish slices, mint parsley pesto on baguette. Simple but delicious, perfect to take to eat in the park, on a picnic, on a hike.
  • Little Bird offers lunch, happy hour, and dinner from Gabriel Rucker (owner and chef of the famous Le Pigeon). The famous Le Pigeon burger is available here (as I tried in June 2011), as well as marrow bones as appetizers and this excellent chicken fried trout (Dec 2013)
    Little Bird Bistro's Chicken-Fried Trout, gribiche, fines herbes, radishes, pickled carrots
  • Kenny and Zuke’s (February 2014). Great bagels, great pastrami, and yum pastrami fries
    Kenny and Zuke Deli, Delicious pastrami brunch with pastrami cheese fries
  • For a little bit of an appetizer for a date night/progressive dinner, enjoy a cheese flight of your choice or omakase where the wise cheesemongers pick out a flight to go with a drink at Chizu (March 2015)
    At Chizu, you can gaze at the artfully arranged cheeses in the cases at the cheese bar and order whatever cheese you'd like a la carte similar to sushi and sashimi
  • H50 for Portland Dining Month (June 2013) for very modernist cuisine right along the waterfront  Closed
  • Steaks at Urban Farmer (December 2011) in a hip instead of the usual dark wood atmosphere
  • Clyde Common: Happy Hour and a Dining Month Dinner (June 2012) has amazing crafted cocktails but communal tables for dinner, and I particularly am a fan of their lumpia (July 2015) as chef Carlo Lamagna brings a few touches of his Filipino heritage into the menu here or there, they are quite a power lunch spot.
  • Gruner, alpine cuisine where I love the spatzle (June 2011) and also visited for lunch as part of Burgerquest (September 2011) but I didn’t love the service when I went there for another visit (August 2012) Closed
  • Santeria, delicious Mexican  best eaten across the street at Bailey’s Taproom (March 2011)
    Mole enchiladas with tinga in brown mole sauce, Santeria, mexican
  • Luc Lac Vietnamese Kitchen (December 2011) which used to be Pho PDX which even then offered vegetarian take (February 2011) and the best tofu rolls
    traditional spring/salad roll with tofu, Pho PDX, now Luc Lac Vietnamese, Portland, Oregon
  • Nam Khao… at E-San Thai Restaurant (July 2011) is an unusual Thai dish that you cannot miss here
  • Grassa for pasta, another outpost of Rick Gencarelli (July 2013)
    Bucatini wtih hazelnut pesto, zucchini, mozzarella crema and Radiatore with tomato braised chicken, crisp skin, ricotta, basil, from Grassa by Rick Gencarelli
  • A Imperial: a dinner, 2 happy hours (Aug 2013) reveals I thought the dinner was good but happy hours are amazing, make sure you get something that was wood-fired!
    A Radish Walks into a Bar cocktail, ransom old tom gin, carpano antica vermouth, radish gastrique, lemon, and cracked peppercorns, Imperial PDX, Vitaly Paley happy hour salad of Grilled Romaine with cherry tomatoes, Israeli feta, salsa verde, Imperial PDX, Vitaly Paley
  • If you want seafood, then head to Headwaters for lunch or a brunch with reservations at Paley’s other downtown restaurant (2017)
  • A dinner at Ringside Fish House for Seafood(August 2011)
  • Japanese curry at Kale (December 2011), it’s all he offers in his restaurant, so you know it’s his specialty
  • A dinner at Nel Centro  the restaurant of Hotel Modera (November 2011) and they also offer an excellent happy hour (June 2016) and are one of my secret recommendations for an amazing al fresco meal and drinks with their fire pits outside
  • Karam Lebanese Restaurant (January 2011)
  • Vegetarian House, an all vegetarian Asian restaurant in “Chinatown” (January 2011)
  • Little Bird Bistro, a more accessible Gabriel Rucker restaurant than Le Pigeon. I gave a mixed review from a few different meals (June 2011). I like sitting and eating at the bar.
  • Stanford and Newport Seafood Grill by the Lloyd Center
  • A nostalgic turkey lunch at Huber’s (February 2010) that takes you back to the 80s.

Pearl District

Northwest Area

  • Bamboo Sushi offers sustainable seafood, and a great happy hour!
    From Bamboo Sushi's House Signature Roll section: Green Machine Roll (vegetarian) of tempura fried asparagus and green onions topped with avocado and cilantro sweet chili aioli. Amazing. Bamboo Sushi in Portland happy hour, Imo koroshi— 'potato killer' a roasted yam press box, garlic-soy-bu
  • Besides their delicious ramen, on Sat and Sun you can get dim sum service from carts at the NW location of Boke Bowl (January 2015). They have an amazing bloody mary garnished with a fried chicken!
  • Boke Bowl Duck ramen which is a winter special ramen, seasonal veggies are the Brussels sprouts and butternut squash. I upgraded the ramen with the add in of fried chicken with their orange dot sauce, pickled mustard seeds in an aioli base sauce Boke Bowl dim sum at Boke Bowl West, only on Sat and Sun 11 - 2, this cart is being pushed and serviced by Boke man Brannon Riceci himself Boke Bloody Mary with Baiju, fennel dashi, fish sauce, lime, tomato, fried chicken at Boke Bowl dim sum
  • Bent Brick where I had some happy hour food during my visit, including awesome duck jojos and a Hamburger Dog! My favorite dish though was the side of smashed chickpeas that had an earthy creaminess from the chickpeas but a light coolness yet something that brightened it from what turns out to be sour cream and Frank’s hot sauce.
    duck fat jojos from the bent brick, portland, neighborhood tavern, drinking food Hamburger Dog with cheese, bent sauce, and relish from the bent brick, portland, neighborhood tavern, drinking food
  • Urban Fondue (June 2012) for a 3 course meal of fondue – cheese, broth, and a dessert that could be chocolate/caramel whatever. They have very interesting flavor combinations… and great cocktails too (they are twinsies essentially with Bartini next door!)
  • Wildwood lunch in the NW23rd Nob Hill neighborhood, and they have their own parking lot (January 2010)
  • Slabtown Ribs & BBQ – Get the Ribs (March 2012)

Southwest Area

Southeast Area

  • The first place that always comes to mind for me is Kachka, which offers Russian food (June 2015).
    The famous Kachka PDX dish of the Herring Under a Fur Coat, a 7 layer dip but russian. and actually a salad, with herring, potatoes, onions, carrots, beets, mayo, eggs.At Kachka PDX, feel luxurious and fancy with one of the Caviar & Roe dishes - the most affordable one is the house cured steelhead, but during my visit we went for the prettier beet cured whitefish. All the Caviar & Roe dishes are served with yeasted blini, challah, chive, butter, and sieved egg to make your little piles of bite sized vehicles for the caviar.Kachka PDX Hot Zakuski of khachapuri, which is smoked sulguni cheese wrapped in pillowy dough -- like a crunchwrap and a cheese calzone had a lovechild.Kachka's tvorog vareniki, a dish of scallion and farmer’s cheese filled dumplings that are just melt in your mouth, and also on the happy hour menu!
  • Renata was given the title of Restaurant of the Year by the Oregonian only a few weeks into being open, but I have to admit their starters and pastas are spectacular. I think they have the best pasta in Portland. And, great cocktails. See more details at my blog post with my first look at Renata  (June 2015) and also their Aperitivo Happy Hour (April 2016).
    Renata cocktail Fortune Teller, with amaro ciociaro, lemon, marionberry, cacao, and gingerRenata cocktail of Trevi Fountain with aperol ice cream, volstead vodka, luxardo maraschino and chinotto sodaFrom the Bites section of the Renata menu was this perfect Crispy Trotters with Salmoriglio and Calabrian chiliIsabelli Scarpinocc with porcini mushrooms and pine nuts at Renata
  • Great sushi and ramen on Mirakutei. My post explains how I prescribe a visit if you have a cold! (December 2014)
    Sushi at Mirakutei, I ordered the Buri Belly, Fresh Salmon, Salmon Belly Aburi, Tuna, Unagi, Uni, and Yellowtail Genki Ramen at Mirakutei, which is white miso based and has shredded ground char siu and scrambled egg
  • You can also find amazing sushi and ramen and specialty of the restaurant fired skewers at Afuri (July 2017)
  • Fried Chicken? I think of Basilisk (November 2016)
    Basilisk Fried Chicken Sandwich with fried chicken thigh and house pickled cucumbers, shredded cabbage and special sauce that needs a knife stabbed through the middle to keep it together
  • For Korean I love Han Oak where you don’t have to worry about what to order – brunch comes as a whole set on Sunday and their dinners come as 3 courses though you can order additional snacks – more details on my Brunch Recap (July 2016) and then my Dinner Recap (November 2016)
    Han Oak presents a Korean brunch on Sundays offering 2-3 main dishes and then several banchan and rice on a tray so you get a little bit of everything Han Oak Dinner Ssam course with Ember Smoked Hanger Steak with lettuces, perilla, chrysanthemum, cabbage slaw, and ssam-jang and then Koji Marinated Slow Roasted Pork Belly and Coppa with rice noodle sheets, pickled daikon, and scallion salad
  • Fifty Licks Sorbet Cocktails and more (Nov 2013) to start before Burrasca (or after- or anyplace on SE Clinton or Division or Powell). Besides offering ice cream flavors and sorbets you can also get Fifty Licks sorbet cocktails and Cafe Cubano. So it can be your stop before and after dinner!
    Fifty Licks cocktail of The Furacão – Passion fruit with Sichuan Peppercorn Sorbet, Cossart Gordan Bual Madeira, Byrrh bitters.  Fifty Licks cocktail of The Velvet Shiso: fresh Shiso leaf and a scoop of Coconut Lemon Saffron Sorbet floating in a pond of Umeshu plum wine and sparkling AlexEli Riesling Fifty Licks, ice cream samples for our group in little sake cup tasters, this one is Jasmine Tea with Apricot with bee pollen topping
  • Ava Gene’s (Dec 2013) I wrote a menu guide to read the very Italian menu. Expect that when you go, it will be unfamiliar- just like I would imagine my or your first day or so if you were to visit Italy for the first time.
    burrata, chestnuts Ava Gene's Pane of squash, mint, ricotta salata, barrel aged colatura, carta di musica
  • Accanto (June 2012) is the more casual enoteca sibling to its next door neighbor, fine dining prix fixe and historic Genoa. You may think Accanto is like any other moderate Italian neighborhood stop, but that’s where you would be wrong. They really take advantage of unique, perhaps even previously never heard of ingredients and bring them to your tastebuds to help you explore how much more is out there. Example: capellini with samphire, garlic, chili, and fennel seed, and Burrata with strawberries, favas, wrinkle crinkle crumple cress when I went to brunch
    Accanto: capellini with samphire, garlic, chili, and fennel seed Accanto PDX, Burrata with strawberries, favas, wrinkle crinkle crumple cress
  • I loved Boke Bowl modernist take on ramen, now their own brick and mortar location, even when it was still only a popup at Oba’s digs in March 2011 and at popping up inside Decarli’s in April 2011
    Boke Bowl ramen, Portland Oregon
  • For Thai, my current love is Paa Dee (June 2014) which tastes very authentic. I also like Pok Pok but Paa Dee is a little less written up so easy to get in without the rush with all the people who know Andy Ricker’s name and don’t yet know Earl Ninsom. I also find it more vegetarian friendly. They also have LaangBaan in the back if you want to even get more adventurous, a smaller secret kitchen restaurant in the back that has multicourse prix fixe. They also have amazing fried chicken…
    PaaDee Thai comfort food พาดี, Peek gai tod, fried wings glazed in Sriracha fish sauce. If you come here, you must get this, happy hour or not. PaaDee Thai comfort food พาดี, Kanom gui chai (3) ขนมกุ่ยช่าย -pan fried chinese chive cake, sour soy sauce
  • Ken’s Artisan Pizza is a Portland Pizza powerhouse for the past 10 years because of their perfect pizza dough and offering classic combinations that are simple with excelent ingredients. I wrote about them and several of their pizzas when looking at the recently launched cocktail program (October 2016)
  • Andy Ricker’s famous Thai Pok Pok (Mar 2009), then a Pok Pok lunch in (January 2011)
    Pok Pok, Ike's Wings, Vietnamese Fish Sauce wings, Andy Ricker, Thai restaurant
  • Andy Ricker again, Sen Yai – Dinner and a Breakfast (May 2013) which focuses more on noodles and Thai breakfast in the morning for a few hours (see photo earlier on this page)
  • Roe – a seafood dining adventure (March 2013). Some of the creativity really wowed us, others didn’t work for me but reading the ingredients I agree they sound intriguing to put together so I understand where they were coming from.
  • Nostrana Italian, from Cathy Whims- a gnocchi night (December 2011) and they often have special events, such as Handmade Pasta night at Nostrana, by Francesca Tori(October 2012)
    Nostrana, Cathy Whims, House charcuterie plate, crispy pork trotter, lamb liver and fresh herb pate, porchetta di testa, apple mostardo, coppa di testa, smoked ham, pickled radish and pattypan squash Handmade Pasta at Nostrana, by Francesca Tori, Caramelle candy-shaped pasta filled with Red Kuri squash, nutmeg, parmigiano, and sage butter, Cathy Whims  Nostrana, Cathy Whims, Pizzeria Mozza's butterscotch budino with salted caramel
  • For brunch (with reservations) that can take you back to Israel, or dinners where you can get it family style and fill you table with lots of plates just like you were there, consider Cafe Castagna (January 2015)
    Cafe Castagna brunch item of malawach, served with tomato sauce, zhoug, hard boiled egg. A Malawach is a thin folded pastry that is fried, sort of a mashup between a pita or naan and phyllo dough Cafe Castagna, coming soon to the menu a Rabbit Ballotine with a combination of Middle Eastern flavors and French technique with a crisped fried rabbit, a forcemeat with rabbit and lamb ham, and Persian Wedding Rice
  • Portobello’s + Beermongers (August 2010) for fancy vegetarian cuisine followed by lots of beer
  • You can check out Bunk Bar where I had roasted summer squash with romesco and ricotta (September 2012) to try some of the sandwiches from Tommy Habetz, Portland’s sandwich king, I tried another seasonal vegetarian sandwich (November 2011) this time of Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Apple Chutney, Gruyere & Horseradish sandwich. I’ve eaten several of the meat versions but somehow ate it with no pictures and so have no blog posts about it!
  • Genoa 5 course prix fixe (August 2011) is one of the few fine dining destinations of Portland
  • Horse Brass Pub (July 2010) has an amazing selection of beers and English pub food, I loved the Ploughman’s Platter
  • Country Cat Dinner (July 2012) offers a northwest seasonal take + southern food

Northeast Area

  • A Dinner at Ox (December 2012) and much better photos more recently (but less words) when I visited again May 2013 at this smoke and fire loving Argentinian take on grilled meats
    Ox restaurant Fresh Clam Chowder, Smoked Marrow Bone, Spring Onion, Jalapeño Ox restaurant Asado Argentino for 2 with Grilled Short Rib, House Chorizo, Morcilla Sausages, Skirt Steak, Sweetbreads Ox restaurant Dark Chocolate Cake, Malted Milk Chocolate Mousse, Toasted Peanut Anglaise, Malbec Marshmallow
  • Get to Radar Restaurant – a great cozy restaurant that has quite a list of regulars and a brunch that takes reservations and so much family legacy imbued inside its walls and food (October 2017)
  • Dinner at Tabla Bistro (December 2011), you cannot come here without getting some of their homemade pastas
    Tabla Bistro, Fall Vegetable Salad with turnip greens mousse, feta, market vegetables, mustard seeds  Dinner at Tabla Bistro, Tajarin with truffle butter, parmigiano reggiano
  • St Honore Bakery on Division offers the tastiest tarte flambees of the city, and the location here on NE also has lots of ciders and spaetzle
    St. Honoré Boulangerie, Cider Program Media Preview, Tarte Flambée, an Alsatian-style Savory tart baked to order, this one is LARDON ET L'OIGNON Bacon lardon, fresh onions, crème fraiche Spaetzle at St Honoré, house-made tiny dumplings with a cream sauce and Emmental cheese, baked to order. This version is LÉGUMES with Carrots, green peas, mushrooms and onions
  • For a fun coffee and sweet during the day, visit 180 for churros (January 2016). These are light and crispy, not the greasy ones of festivals and fairs.
    180's Xurros Rellenos, stuffed with Creme Catalana, Dulce de Leche, or Xoco Cream at 180 PDX. This is with Dulce Leche
  • Tasty N Sons, happy hour and dinner visits (July 2011) to try their world inspired medley of spicy, savory, salty, sweet flavors
  • Firehouse Restaurant – celebrating family with fire (September 2013)
    Firehouse Restaurant, wood grilled hanger steak with crispy potatoes, arugula and grana padano Firehouse Restaurant celebrating Polar Bear, the Fire House Maine Coon cat
  • Get the coffee and the story of the bean producers and farm fresh cuisine at Proud Mary, the first location outside Australia in the USA
  • Aviary offers a fun take on Asian fusion, as exemplified by this 3 course Portland Dining Month 2015 dinner (March 2015) I enjoyed that included an incredible Dungeness crab chawanmushi with bone marrow, sea urchin, Asian pear, snap peas and truffle vinaigrette. I also have some old photos of a dinner of small samplers at Aviary (February 2012)
    Aviary first course of Dungeness crab chawanmushi with bone marrow, sea urchin, Asian pear, snap peas and truffle vinaigrette for Portland Dining Month 2015
  • Amazing Basque Cuisine at Urdaneta where you can get a twist on tapas via pinxtos (April 2017)
  • EaT: An Oyster Bar… Baked Oysters! (January 2012), though they have other cajun and New Orleans style cuisine as well
  • Northwest Pacific farm to table cuisine with some of the best cocktails in Portland at Quaintrelle (March 2017)
  • Mac! Mac & Cheesery for Mac and Cheese options galore (July 2012)
  • The Tardis Room (September 2012) which used to be the Fish & Chip shop (February 2011) but is still serving mostly the same food, but with new geeky deco theme

Asian Food



Other (Travel!)

Check out both activities and food on My Food Travel Posts Index  that includes details for Las Vegas and also Sonoma California!

Oregon Coast

Seattle, WA Restaurant Recommendations

California Restaurant Recommendations

New York City, NY Restaurant Recommendations

New York highlights from March 2014 that I have blogged about:

Hawaii Restaurant Recommendations


Misc Other West Coast
  • Lunch at Chicago French Market (Dec 2013). This included a lobster roll from Da Lobsta, frites from Frietkoten Belgian Fries and Beer, and a Montreal smoked sandwich from Fumare.
    Da Lobsta stand at the Chicago French Market, Lobster Roll Montreal-style smoked meat sandwich from Fumare Meats, in the Chicago French Market
East Coast
  • Eating meats in Germany; Bread and cheese for breakfast in Israel and Germany (March 2012)
    Nurenberg sausages Dining in Nuremberg, Germany, a braised beef cheek Roast pork from Bavarian production with crackling in natural gravy with Spaetzle egg noodles at Hofbrauhaus (enjoyed with a Dark Radler, which is their Dark Beer with lemonade

Previous Example Food Event Coverage
For some examples of how I have covered food events before

And here are examples of special event dinners with pairings blogposts I have covered previously

Food tours

Other Events

Archives: So Old I’m sort of Embarrassed…



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