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Portland Picky Diners

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Okay... not picky really, just not adventurous. I need a salad, pasta, steak, chicken restaurant (you know the kind) that can be enjoyed by both me (adventurous eater) and my conservative dining companions ("don't pick anything weird"). Prefer downtown Portland or NW area. I'd prefer to avoid chains if possible but I'm wondering if Jake's, McCormick's, Newport Bay, etc are my only choices. There's something else, right? No brewpubs - we want a little more upscale. Suggestions?

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  1. Papa Haydn on NW 23rd is probably your best bet (see http://www.papahaydn.com/menus.php ). I was also going to suggest Sammy's on NW 23rd, as that was where we would go when we had company that was similarly unadventurous -- but a quick check of Citysearch indicates they closed last year. You might also check out Red Star Tavern downtown at the Hotel Monaco.

    1. Red Star is a good idea, also consider Higgins, Wildwood, Pazzo, Ten01.
      I'd recommend Papa only for dessert.
      Jake's is a tourist trap.

      1. Red Star Tavern and Roast House is just what you're looking for. For Italian, you're looking for Pazzo's.

        1. Fife, except that it's in NE Portland, and Country Cat, except it's in SE. Both of these are great in that they have food that meat-and-potatoes eaters will like, but they won't disappoint foodies.

          1. Basta's and Caffe Mingo are Italian joints that are high on my Chow scale without necessarily having to be daring and adventurous. Both are on NW 21st. Also Ten-01, Veritable Quandary, Bluehour, and Gilt Club, all of which are in Downtown/Pearl.

            3 Replies
            1. re: SauceSupreme

              Thank you everyone for all of the suggestions. I think we're going to try Basta's - Red Star would be perfect but it leans a little towards just beef and I've been there a few times. I'm going to be selfish and try a place that I haven't been to since no one else in the party will care - as long as there's something they'll eat. I knew the 'hounders would come through for me again!

              1. re: Sushiqueen36

                The steak and the pollo crocante at Basta's are both usually really good as is the carpaccio and the caesar salad. That they have a parking lot in that neighborhood doesn't hurt either. ;o)

                1. re: JillO

                  The carpaccio caught my eye when I was looking at their menu - thanks for the recs!