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May 20, 2013 12:24 AM

Portland avec sprog: BC Hound seeks good grub with small person in tow

A challenge indeed, eating well but still catering to a five-year-old. We'll be in town for 2.5 days before the young lady joins us with her parental units, then there'll be four and a half of us for Friday, Saturday and Sunday, plus Monday morning. It'll be early June (yay, Rose Festival!). We'll have wheels. Dinners will be earlier than usual (6ish) for the weekend nights. Here's what I have so far:

Upright or Xico for Happy Hour Wed

Ox, Tanuki or Lincoln for dinner Wed

Coffee at Coava, Sweedeedee for corn cakes Thu

Burgatroyd for the Garden State burger, then Evoe lunch Thu

??? happy hour Thu

Uptown Billiards, Tannery Bar or DOC for dinner Thu

Coffee at ?? and snacks at Courier for breakfast Friday

Viking Soul Food for lunch on Friday

Matchbox for Happy Hour on Friday


Slappy Cakes, Dove Vivi or Sok Sab Bai for early dinner on Friday (with child)

Spints or Interurban for brunch on Sat (would these be child possible?)

Las Primas or Picnic for lunch Sat (with child)

Oro di Napoli for pizza frita for Sat aft snack (with child)

Slappy Cakes, Dove Vivi or Sok Sab Bai for early dinner on Saturday (with child)

Autentica for brunch on Sunday (with child)

Meat Cheese Bread or Morso for lunch Sunday (with child)

Slappy Cakes, Dove Vivi or Sok Sab Bai for early dinner on Sunday (with child)

Podnah's Pit for brunch on Monday (with child)

Back to Vancouver in convoy with snacks for the road in tow.

Thanks for any input you may have, particularly on whether the places I've noted with child are in fact suitable, and of course whether there are better places.

Excited to show off your beautiful city and its great food to my young friend!

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  1. You should go to the websites for these places and check things like hours/menus - some things will decide themselves...

    Podnah's only does brunch on Sat. and Sun.

    Slappy Cakes is not open for dinner.

    Personally, I would not do happy hour anywhere if I was going to dinner at Ox or Tanuki (there's so much food to eat at these places - I have a big appetite and am not a small person, and I would never be able to do it)...and to have those on the same list...well, I love them both but they are very different. Do you want to hang out in a dark dive bar with Japanese/Korean omakase and soft porn on the TV and classic pinball machines and a great sake list or do you want to have an upscale expensive steak dinner with kick-ass service, great cocktails and sides?

    I've seen kids in Spints for brunch, and I'd pick it over Interurban for almost any meal...though Interurban does have a nice outside seating area, if setting is more important than food.

    If you are going to Courier, why would you get coffee eslewhere?

    Again...dinner at a pool hall OR Tannery Bar (which is tiny and has a super small menu) OR an upscale small Italian restaurant...I don't know what to tell you - if it is about food, go to DOC, if it is about playing pool, go to the pool hall, if you are interested in cocktails and a few small plates go to Tannery Bar...

    Great dinner choices with a kid include:

    -Sunshine Tavern (great comfort food, pizza, burgers, steak frites, fried oysters; great cocktails; etc.) Owned by the smae folks who own Lincoln, btw.

    -Mi Mero Mole - different than you have had - this is a Mexico City guisados (stews) joint with great margaritas (a super tequila/mescal list, and great non-alcoholic choices), handmade tortillas, and AWESOME food (owner is a friend of mine, but I eat there (and pay full price for it) about once a week).

    Dove Vivi and Sok Sab Bai are both good, and both OK for kids.

    Have fun!

    5 Replies
    1. re: JillO

      Thanks for the corrections on Podnah's brunch and Slappy Cakes hours -- they were listed previously in Willamette Weekly as doing dinner on Friday and Saturday nights but obviously that has been discontinued. I'm disappointed because some of the made to order stuff sounded pretty good: specials like savory bread pudding and chicken tinga. At least they still have the pork belly benedict and the chicken fried bacon! I'll prolly try for that one on Monday morning instead as pancakes are a huge favourite of the small person's.

      Keen to try Spints but one of our group loves to eat outdoors so that might tip the balance in favour of Interurban if the weather behaves -- thanks for the caveat.

      What would you think of an early dinner at Podnah's for her? She is a major carnivore.

      Sunshine Tavern is an excellent call -- I've been wanting to check it out myself and the menu will suit the whole party.

      Realize that our dinner options before child arrives seem a bit schizophrenic -- will make game day decisions based on what we're feeling like since they are mostly non-reso places anyway : -).

      I love the food at Courier but the SO finds the coffee a bit on the mild side, hence the doubling up.

      Adding MMM to the list of kid friendly places.

      Also thinking we will have to hit Cool Moon, Coco and Blue Star for some sweet treats.

      1. re: grayelf

        Also if anyone could point me in the direction of a site that explains where and when kids can be in liquor-vending establishments in Oregon, I'd appreciate it. Or is it best to just check with each place? For example, I just emailed Spints as I noticed they call themselves an alehouse and such a place at home would not allow minors.

        1. re: grayelf

          Well, the easy answer is to call and ask at each place.

          It depends on the establishment because some places have a separate bar area, and though minors may not be allowed there, they may be allowed in the dining area of that place. And some places have hours minors are allowed, and after a certain time, often 8 or 9pm I think, they are not allowed.

          I don't know what the deal is at Spints - but they do have a separate dining area and bar area, so I think that your chances are good. I think I have seen kids there at brunch, but I don't know if I have seen them there for HH or dinner.

          1. re: JillO

            I will inquire at each, easily done indeed.

            While I was doing more research I came across a newish taco cart called Guero (should be an umlaut in there). Any thoughts on it?

            1. re: grayelf

              Also would Bar Mingo be okay with a small? It seems like the draw there is pasta but how are the mains? The simply prepared fish of the day sounds appealing...

    2. *Smacking forehead* as I realize belatedly that it's the start of Portland Beer Week when we are going to be in town. Anything we really shouldn't miss between the 5th and the 10th?? So sad we won't be there for the wild/sour seminar. The fruit beer fest sounds great and I love that it is billed as family friendly -- only in Portland?!

      1. The line at Dove Vivi can be very long...Sok Sab Bai might be better... Las Primas has yucca fritters with savory and sweet sauce that will haunt delicious!!!
        Autentica..sure! The new Township and Range on Hawthorne seems very child friendly at all hours, but I haven't tried it. Are you going to take her to some food cart pods...I could see a child loving Viking Soul food.. Salt and Straw, and Bollywood Theater could be fun, too.

        1 Reply
        1. re: cheeseisheaven

          Nice tip on the yucca fritters, thanks. Viking Soul Food is on my own short list this time but hadn't thought of it for The Girl. We didn't swoon over Salt and Straw so thought we might hazard Cool Moon instead, what do you think?

        2. how about the PSU farmers market on saturday?

          3 Replies
          1. re: majordanby

            Definitely in the running for Sat am, though there is also a parade then that is competing for attention!

            1. re: grayelf

              i just came back from portland on my way down from seattle - i did toro bravo for dinner (not good for children), tasty n sons is good for brunch and perhaps pine state biscuits for breakfast or lunch.

              1. re: majordanby

                Thanks for that -- we are going to try our luck at Toro Bravo one night before the petite fille arrives as we really should see what the fuss is about. Wasn't a fan of Tasty'n'Sons brunch, alas, but Pine State hit the spot at PSU Farmers Market.

                Does anyone have thoughts about The Ocean, the food complex that houses Uno Mas et al? We had a few tacos there in March and thought the little complex might be a good option with a kiddly as there are lots of choices.