Friday, January 4, 2008

Places I checked out in Portland

I'm including the hits as well as the misses for the sake of fairness.

First, the food:

Leonardo's - Delicious Italian food in a romantic atmosphere (too bad I was there with my cousin!). Leonardo was there, and he's a very funny guy. The waiter was funny too and teased us about licking the dessert plate clean (we didn't). I ate more at this meal than I usually eat in an entire day. Yummm. At left is the lasagna (foreground) and spaghetti (actually fettuccine because they didn't have spaghetti) with marinara that my cousin ordered.

Pho Green Papaya - One Friday night were trying to get into a comedy show at a nearby theatre, which seemed to be in a pretty crappy, desolate neighborhood. We put our names on the waiting list at the theatre, then went in search of food. Appearing at the opposite side of a desolate, rainy parking lot sat this little pho restaurant. It was just the ticket to restore warmth and happiness to what turned out to be a disappointing evening, as we didn't get into the comedy show and had to return the next night.

The cafe at Powells - I was so relieved to see that Powell's served lunch. Their tomato and cheddar grilled sandwich was excellent, and went down wonderfully with a searing hot chai latte. Also, I think this cafe would be a great place to pick up hot intellectual dudes.

Kornblatt's New York style bagel shop - During my shopping day in the Alphabet District, I was not having any shopping success and suddenly realized I was starving. Kornblatt's is the sort of place that you just know is famous from looking at it. It's all packed with excited people being served by cooler-than-thou New Yorkers. Anyway, I ordered a bagel with smoked Nova salmon, which was all right. I regret not ordering something hot because, well, it was a chilly winter day.

Two Thai restaurants whose names I can't remember - One we happened on by accident on Christmas Eve; the other was a very well-priced place my cousin frequents. Anyway, both were really good.

A breakfast/lunch/bar in the Pearl district - Had delicious French toast here with bananas and local hazelnuts. Searing hot coffee kept coming. Wonderful breakfast. Need to ask my cousin the name of this place.

Coffee and dessert:

Urban Grind - This place is located in my cousin's building, which is awesome. It has an arty, indie coffeehouse feel, really friendly baristas, and delicious, searing-hot coffee. Just the thing to fortify me before a long day shlepping around in the rain. They also serve cinnamon rolls the size of your head.

Pix Patisserie - Rich desserts (we ordered the Amelie), as well as fun and innovative drinks that I regret not sampling. Friendly employees who were happy to let me take as many pictures as I wanted, as well as a clientele that was a mix of hipsters and white-collar types.

Shopping:

Sloan boutique - Definitely the best boutique I found on my trip. Bought the same impeccably cut $49 cardigan in ivory, brown and black, because a girl can't have enough cardigans. Also tried on some other stuff I really liked, including a teal jersey dress and a black and white 60s-style coat with an oversize funnel collar. Loses points for employing a bleach-blonde girl who wears UGG boots, but at least she was friendly.

The Powder Room - Another great boutique with a very enthusiastic, helpful owner who called me "dear." Had lots and lots of great outerwear. I was amused that they carried hats from the San Diego Hat Company. Bought a wonderful black cotton trench there for around $50.

Lush - A place that makes and sells their own soaps and cosmetics. I wandered into this place because it looked intriguing, and I sort of regretted it. It stunk and gave me a headache. If strong scents and unidentified jiggly soap stuff is your thing, then you'll love this place. If not, avoid.

Blake - Awesome, painfully hip boutique. They carry clothes by Gentle Fawn, one of my all-time favorite brands, as well as stuff by other cool brands like Triple Five Soul. Didn't buy anything here, but definitely thought about it.

Gilt - I saw an ad for this place in the Portland Mercury (the hipster indie paper) and just had to check it out. They specialize in estate/vintage jewelry, which is totally my thing. I was sort of disappointed when I went there, though. Perhaps the inventory was picked over because it was right after Christmas, but very few things that caught my eye. I wasn't tempted to open my wallet in the least, and it was the sort of place where I felt uncomfortable for some reason. Sometimes I think that any store that specializes in engagement rings is automatically poisoned for single gals like me.

Three Monkeys - Impressive window displays, but inside I just found a lot of cheap crap made in China. They also have a room devoted to vintage-style doodads, which was cool but I'll take real vintage over fake vintage every day. Definitely didn't have the local Portland flavor I was hoping for. I hightailed it out of there pretty quickly.

Anthropologie - Right across the street from Powell's. My cousin told me I had to visit this store and was shocked when I told him it's a chain. Anyway, stuff seemed pretty picked over and the place was packed. I was only slightly tempted to buy a burgundy top and some earrings.

1 comment:

Christie said...

You've made me want to see Portland even more!