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Mar 24, 2008 03:25 PM

First time Portland visitor - from NYC - the must sees?

Hey there -
I'm coming to Portland for the first time over a holiday weekend. I'm starting to research the "not to be missed" places and would love to local suggestions. I'm from New York City so I'm not opposed to one pricey meal -- but would love to keep the rest at locations with entrees under $20. I'm open to all kind of cuisines. I'll be able to squeeze in three lunches and three dinners and many bars \ lounges :)

I'm told I'll be staying "downtown on SW Jackson Street" if that helps at all.

We're really excited! I know Portland is well known in the foodie world and I'm thrilled to be making the trip,

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  1. You are at the south end of downtown near Portland State U. Easy access to downtown and beyond via free (within downtown) bus on 3rd & 4th or streetcar.

    Why don't you do a little research on this board and get back to us with questions and tell us about your tastes? Posts such as yours come up constantly and there have been numerous generous informative replies over the past few months.

    You are very close to the Portland Farmers' Market on Saturday, 8:30 - 2. The only definitive "not to be missed". Named among top5 farmers' mkts nationwide by some national magazine, I forget which.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Leonardo

      Thanks -- I will take a look. I started a fresh posting since sometimes searches are outdated and you miss some of the new must sees.


    2. There was a NYT article last summer gushing about Portland. That'd be a good start. But I agree with Leonardo: search is a handy tool.

      While I'm here, lemme give a congrats to for being a James Beard nominee. Huzzah!

      1. The closest, best restaurant to where you are staying is Higgins. One of the pioneers of the "new" portland cuisine. The restaurant is pricy but there's an attached bistro with an abbreviated menu and a fantastic bar that has lower prices.
        Down the street from you is Carafe, (on 2nd and Market), a true french bistro run by a Parisian. Great cheap set menu.
        Good Bar/lounge (and trendy) is Clyde Common. Won't break the bank. Other bars/lounges: saucebox, Solo (for the scene, not the food!). Tastes here are so personal I'm not sure what to recommend.
        For lunch I recommend the carts that are around the downtown: My favorite is Tabor -- their Schnitzlewich is a lot of fun.

        1 Reply
        1. re: hlhutcha

          Excellent post. Tracy, pay particular close attention to this one, because these are all great places close to where you are. I would second Clyde Common, and would add Southpark for great oysters, and an all-round nice Northwest-focused meal. It also has a cool bar. Also fun that's close to you is an old bar called the Lotus, which also serves a casual but good lunch and dinner. Inside it has a nice old-time Northest feel.

        2. I am an East coaster who visits because my son and wife live there. Here are some highlights:

          Simpatica Dining Hall--family seating, reasonable fixed price-- special. I hear their brunch is great but have not been there for that.
          Paley's Place--a little pricey but not too
          Le Pigeon--orgastic bistro
          Pok Pok for Asian
          Gravy for breakfast
          Doug Fir for rinks and music

          1 Reply
          1. re: julesgarcia

            Problem with all these places is none are downtown, which is where you are staying, Tracy! There are so many great establishments within a walk from you (see other posts). But if you do want to stray, you might anjoy Toro Bravo (off-hours to avoid the rush), in addition to the above list of solid, if trendy, establishments.

          2. Here's the NYT article. A lot of the one's mentioned here are among my favorites: Le Pigeon and Clyde Common, especially.