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Dec 16, 2011 10:36 AM

High value informal Portland suggestions

Hey guys. First, I have to thank you in advance for what I'm sure will be some great suggestions. I've had really good luck with Chowhound recommendations in many different cities, and I'm sure this will be no exception.

Eight or ten of us are heading down from Seattle tonight on the train to celebrate a friend's 40th birthday.

We'll be staying at Park Lane Suites 809 SW King Ave.

We're a fairly informal bunch, on the whole, and obviously a decent sized group.

I would love one or two walkable "high value" recommendations for

* late night big snack (9 PMish)

* breakfast

* lunch

* bar / drinking establishment

* nightclub / live music / dancing

By "high value" I mean places that feature really good value for the money... both in terms of quality and quantity of the food. i.e. my favorite places are honest straightforward food, prepared well, served hot, at fair prices. I'd rather eat at an 8 if the prices are a 4 than eat at a 10/10.

Bonus points for places that are somewhat unique.

Thanks again for your help!

-- Bob

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  1. Well, your definition of "walkable" may vary, but at the least, you are close to the MAX (light rail) and buses. The closest restaurant-heavy areas to you are the west end and 21st/23rd Aves.

    Late night: Because of Oregon's liquor laws (you have to serve a full menu if you serve liquor) 9 pm isn't really that late for a meal here. If you're willing to wait an hour, Masu Sushi has a late-night Happy Hour starting 10pm, though it's not *that* expensive at normal rates either. The Driftwood Room at the Hotel de Luxe also has a late night happy hour at 9:30 pm where everything is seriously cheap ($3-$8) and tasty. Otherwise, Basta's is one of the more underrated places on 21st and would be a short walk and open at 9pm for some Italian.

    For breakfast: Kenny and Zuke's is walkable and wonderful, but you may not find it meets your "fair price" point (really depends what you're coming from). Ken's Artisan Bakery on 21st is one of the city's best bakeries and is a good spot for breakfast or lunch.

    For lunch: if you're willing to walk/transit a bit down 23rd, Red Onion has great northern Thai food (order from the specials menu). If it's a week day, a lot of the higher end restaurants have really reasonable lunch menus. Clyde Common and Gruner in the West End, and Wildwood on 21st, are all top notch Portland restaurants and their lunch menus are a fraction of the price of their dinners. You could also head to the food carts on SW 10th and Alder. I'd recommend Nongs, Savor, People's Pig and Addy's.

    "Bar / drinking" is kind of non specific. Are you looking for cocktails? Beer? Dive? High end? You're within walking distance of both Clyde and Kask for great cocktails. Pope House just off 23rd is a good neighbourhood cocktail place with a great range of whiskeys and much less hipster than the other two. You could take the number 20 bus (or walk) straight down Burnside to Bailey's Taproom, which has one of the best local beer selections.

    Nightclub / live music / dancing: Depending on what you like and what's on at the Crystal Ballroom when you're here (a lot of the better touring bands play there), you might get lucky there. You won't find much else in the northwest. If you head down into Old Town, there are plenty of places from trashy nightclubs (Cuda, Dirty, Dixie) to live music venues (Ted's, Dante's).