Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Best Places for Breakfast in Portland

Having just returned from a weekend getaway in Portland, I can give you the inside and tested scoop on great places for breakfast.

Hash in Sellwood at 8728 SE 17th gets props for upstart originality. Friendly staff serve press pot coffee, aebleskiver, construct your own omelets and……hash as you can see to the right.   I had a chantrelle (the ingredient of the day), arugula and manchego omelet garnished with poached pear and suave caramel sauce.  Jam is homemade.

Pine State Biscuits, formerly a food cart, serves anything with a biscuit, mostly fruit, sausage gravy or fried chicken in a variety of combinations including with mustard and honey.  All ingredients are piled chest high.  The biscuits are crispy, not Pillsbury dough boy soft. With only 12 chairs in the house, seating is communal and you bus your own table. All staff remains behind the counter working the stove and cash register. Great place for an "experience".

At the other end of the formality spectrum, breakfast at the Heathman Restaurant in the Heathman Hotel is a safe and predictable white table cloth affair.  Waiters wear ties and starched white shirts.  The smoked salmon omelet and eggs benedict were both very good. Go here if you just need things to be as expected.

We return over and over to the Everett Street Bistro, "a European style charcuterie", in downtown Portland. The spinach scramble is laced with parmesan and garlic and the coffee, served by accomplished and approachable wait staff, is dark and welcome. They also serve aebleskiver and cocktails if your morning calls for it.

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