Eatin’ and a Drinkin’
Of all the recommendations friends sent, Pok Pok was by far the top of the list from everyone. This food cart turned restaurant (with multiple locations) serves up food from Thailand and Southwest Asia with a bit of a modern twist. I love a unique whiskey sour and Pok Pok’s Tamarind version left me dreaming of it for DAYS. I want one NOW! We then split the Betel Lead Wraps, Papaya Pok Pok, Mushroom salad, and the Crispy Broken Crepe. If you’re like me and you get a travel cold or allergies easily, head to Pok Pok because the spices with flush those sinuses better than a Neti Pot. BELIEVE.
Multnomah Whiskey Library
One of the great things about traveling is meeting up with friends from the internet (and not getting murdered). Our awesome social team member, Jamie Campbell just happens to live in Portland and she just happens to be a MEMBER of a super high and exclusive Whiskey Social Club called the Multnomah Whiskey Library. Oh hundreds of whiskeys curated by trained whiskey pros, poured and mixed table side, you say? SIGN US UP! We tried the Whiskey Sour, Old Fashioned, and a few more I can’t even remember because they were mixed so well, we might have been a tad tipsy. Add in the snacks and food, drinking in comfortable living room type arrangements with over stuffed couches, and new friends from around the world, and this is a MUST visit.
Pine State Biscuits
After Pok Pok, this was was another “most recommended” restaurant on the list and WOAH. The pictures along should tell you to buy a plane ticket, book a hotel, rent a car, and head right to Pine State Biscuits. This bad boy is called the McIsley, it takes the idea of a Chick-fil-a sandwich, throws dynamite in it, deep fries it, and then blows it up. Bekah had the Veggie Reggie with veggie sausage (veggie sausage is always to be celebrated), and we shared a salad (lolz), fries, and another biscuit (oops) with Marion berry jam. Ya’ll, can we go back?
Originally I made reservations at Canard‘s big sister restaurant Little Bird based off a recommendation from a friend but when we found out Canard was about two blocks from our hotel and run by the same folks, we changed our reservation and it did NOT disappoint. Canard is a sort of French meets Pacific Northwest meets the South sort of restaurant with small plates and a great wine list. The Oeufs in Mayonnaise was seriously one of the best bites of food from the weekend. We also stuffed ourselves on Oysters, Endive and Nectarine Salad, Orzo, and the best part of any meal: DESSERT! And in this case Canard was serving up Peach Tea ice cream on peanut butter magic crack dipped cones.
Patton Valley Vineyards
After learning about Patton Valley at our Hotel, we jumped in the car and headed out to Gaston (yes, like Beauty and the Beast) Oregon for a wine tasting. Who knew Oregon’s Wilamette Valley is perfect for pinot noir grapes? We didn’t until David, the amazing tasting room and branding manager taught us. We tried multiple bottles of Pinot Noir, learned about natural wine (Rose in this case) and ended up signing up for their wine by mail program it was that good.
Shopping in Nob Hill on 23rd Ave
From Parachute Home to Will Leather Goods (where they offered to make us a coffee), and a gift shop called Three Monkeys, we spent a good part of an afternoon shopping up and down 23rd Avenue… they also have a Salt and Straw and Blue Star Donuts (better than Voodoo according to those in the know) to help curb any cravings and stave off the Hangry!
Where to Stay:
Kimpton Hotel Monaco
The Hotel Monaco, Portland is like someone threw together the aesthetic of the Mad Hatter meets your grandma’s estate sale, meets a trip to Morocco, meets “put a bird on it.” And I LOVED it. Kimpton’s are the best from service to amenities to the little extras they throw in like the nightly happy hour, the Peloton Bike in the gym, and the yoga mat in the closet. They were also holding wine tastings over the weekend and this is how we learned about Patton Valley.
The Jupiter Hotel
Think hipster roadside motel with an upscale twist and you have the Jupiter Hotel. Attached the the (LOUD) Doug Fir bar, the Jupiter is a place to be seen and to maybe get a little sleep courtesy of the ear plugs they provide in each room. They also provide branded condoms. Sooooo no worries about safe traveling and all. 😉
For the Twilight Fan in all of us:
The Cullen House
Fun Fact: Twilight was not filmed in Forks, it was filmed in and around Portland, Vancouver BC, and in Baton Rouge Louisiana. Yup, because we were eventually headed to Forks, we thought it might be fun to see a few of the Twilight filming sites in Portland. Armed with info from our pal at Twilight in Iowa who had visited the sites multiple times and gave VERY detailed info, we ventured off to find the homes of Edward and Bella. Given the remote-looking location of the Cullen house, you’d think it was way outside the city. NOPE. Surprisingly the Cullen house is pretty centrally located in Wilamette Heights, a very cute and ritzy neighborhood that is home to mostly Victorian and Craftsman homes and not modern architectural wonders. We parked our car and made the long and maybe a tad secondhand embarrassing walk up to the foot of the driveway. While no one laughed at us from the window, a corgi barked his shame but we got this and so it was worth it, CORGI!
Bella’s House on the other hand was about 45 minutes outside of Portland in a town called St. Helens, that is decidedly more working class than Wilamette Heights… real life meets fiction. If you’re on your way north, Bella’s house is an easy stop off the freeway and a nice trip down memory lane. Fun Fact: Bella’s House is in escrow to be sold to… a Twilight fan! Start planning your trips to their inevitable Twilight themed B&B.
If all this food and drinks and Twilight locations isn’t enough to make you want to visit Portland, Oregon there’s no hope for you! Now get to planning!