I love Portland!
As an avid fan of the show Portlandia I was intrigued to see what the real city was like. I had scheduled myself four days here and was very glad that I did. The drive up from Crater Lake was a couple hours so I ended up arriving in the afternoon sometime. After trying to catch up on some photo editing/loading and this site I headed out to find one of Portland’s wonderful restaurants.
After doing some research into what Portland’s favorites are I headed to Pok Pok Noi. Pok Pok Noi is the sister restaurant to Pok Pok, created by famed chef Andy Ricker. Inspired from Thai street food Pok Pok Noi is known for the fish sauce wings and drinking vinegars.
I had six of the wings and a turmeric drinking vinegar. Everything lived up to the hype. The wings were a perfect combination of spicy and sweet flavors, each bite dripping sauce. The drinking vinegar was unlike anything that I had had before, bitter yet refreshing and tart. I had had my first wonderful Portland meal in the funky Northeast area.
The northeast area around Alberta Street is one of the funkiest spots in Portland, filled with unique shops, food, and beautiful street art.
“You are confined only by the walls you build yourself”
Of course if your a Portlandia fan in the northeast district of Portland you have to visit the feminist bookstore. The feminist bookstore is a staple of the show and an actual place! The best part about visiting the bookstore was that the bookstore is almost exactly like the sketch.
The next stop was Salt and Straw ice cream. Another Portland staple Salt and Straw is one of the Food Networks top 5 ice cream parlors in the US. Salt and Straw has flavors like Olive Oil, Garam Marsala and Cinnamon Cauliflower, and Honey Lavender.
Digging some Strawberry Honey Balsamic with Black Pepper in this shot. I can only dream that one of these will be located near me one day.
Most of what I did in Portland was eat. For good reason, Portland is a massive foodie town, and the inventor of the food truck concept.
Portland is famous for its doughnuts. The most well known place is Voodoo doughnuts, located in the Southwest area of Portland. Made with over the top toppings, and crazy shapes Voodoo was almost too sweet for even my massive sweet tooth.
The line for Voodoo is constantly out the door even into the late night hours.
The other doughnut staple of Portland, and my personal favorite, is Blue Star doughnuts. Made with a French brioche recipe these doughnuts are dense and moist and made with all local ingredients. With four different locations in Portland Blue Star is easy to get to. I tried the maple bacon doughnut and I was in heaven.
Continuing to look at all the food that I ate, here is a shot from Por Que No, a phenomenal taco place that I miss already.
I did take a quick break from eating to go check out Multnomah falls, located about 30 minutes outside the city. Multnomah falls is the second largest waterfall in the USA, second only to Yosemite falls.
It is a short couple miles to the top of the waterfall, but the hike doesn’t offer much of a view down the actual falls. I recommend getting to the falls early since it is a major tourist area, and was very crowded when we arrived midday.
For our last dinner in Portland we went to Ataula, a tapas style Spanish restaurant in the NW region. I made new friends at the hostel who were kind enough to let me choose the restaurants, after learning that I had been cross referencing websites to find the best ones.
One of the tapas that we ordered was Nuestras Bravas, tiny slivers of potato stacked on top of one another and cooked to perfection.
Next came the Paella.
My stomach is growling looking at all these pictures now. Portland is a food heaven.
One of my goals for the road trip was to get a tattoo. I knew Portland had a huge tattoo scene with lots of fabulous artists so I set my sights on getting one while I was there. Lucky for me the amazing Trina Lee at Silver Quill Tattoo had a cancellation and was able to get me in! She was nice enough to take one of my sketches and work with me on the design. I felt completely comfortable and at home in their studio. I could not have asked for a better artists for my first tattoo. So cheers to Portland and Trina Lee for the permanent souvenir and reminder of this journey.
Looking back now I think Portland was my favorite city of the trip and I can’t wait to be back someday soon! (maybe for another tattoo)
Keep Portland Weird,