Portland Neighborhood's Blog

Portland Neighborhood Website : Blog Home : February 2006

February 1, 2006 08:14 - Missing Portland, Oregon

My fondness for Portland is recharged whenever I visit another city.  No matter how much I enjoy myself, I find myself constantly comparing city x to our lovely Portland....Here I am sitting in sunny Phoenix, Arizona where it hasn't rained for something like 130 days.  I'm loving the sunshine, the balmy weather and the newness of a city that is not my own, but I'm super surprised how much I long to be home (already!). 

I came to Phoenix to watch a hockey game (Vancouver Canucks vs. Phoenix Coyotes).  The game was awesome, as I expected it would be.  The only downfall was that the arena was soooo far out in the boonies.  Makes me appreciate how our Portland arena is nestled conveniently right across the river from downtown, easily accessible from pretty much all Portland areas and right off the light rail-- very tourist friendly!  Can anyone tell me why we don't have an NHL team??

Other thoughts and revelations?  Where's the coffee?  I find it difficult to find coffee when I'm visiting another city (especially a city that's not in the NW).  I drive and drive and drive and end up at a Starbucks (sigh...nothing against Starbucks but I love those indie coffee houses).  I'm sure there are some here, but how would I find them without a PhoenixNeighborhood.com?  :) 

Where everything in Portland is green, everything here is brown...or a light yellow.  The only green I've seen is the grass at my hotel.  I even miss the moss!  Yes, yes, I know...this is a desert-- hot, sunny and Portland probably gets more rain in a month than Phoenix does in a year...but wow, if you're used to a green world, this is quite the adjustment.

There are a few cities that remind me of Portland in terms of that unique neighborhood community feel, downtown options and architectures and just the general vibe of the city:  Seattle, San Fran and NYC stand out to me as being exceptionally interesting cities with a distinct "old city feel" coupled with a very deep community emphasis.  Keep in mind, I've not traveled everywhere...So I'd be interested in your favorite cities-- drop me a line or comment!

To sum it up, I'm having a great time.  Phoenix is enormously unique in its own way. I am really looking forward to a drive into the desert tomorrow, spotting lizards over an outdoor lunch and growing dizzy counting palm trees and cactuses.  This is a great place to visit and I can see why folks love it, but I yearn for my mossy Portland...I will, however, try to steal the sun and bring it home...

Have a great day!

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 2, 2006 08:10 - Portland Event Venues

A Portland neighbor wrote us and asked "I am currently looking into finding an event
space downtown that is unique, affordable, and large enough to host approx 100
guests for a going away/graduation party. I was curious if you are aware of any
such sites (beyond just the hotel meeting rooms) or know of others who may be
of help. Thanks for any info you could offer!"
 
This is a great question for the Portland Concierge!  So, we went digging to see what we could find, and compiled a list.  Here are some downtown (or close) event venues to consider for your next party or reception:

Pearl District & Downtown Restaurants

bluehour - 1220 NW Everett
Specially designed by owner, Bruce Carey, L'Heure Bleue offers guests an elegant and unique private dining experience. Custom menus are designed by Chef Kenny Giambalvo and can be catered to fit anyone's needs. Meetings and presentations are ideal in our space. 45-60 people for a sit-down dinner and 75-100 people for a cocktail reception. Contact: Kari Young Giambalvo 503.226.3394

Paragon Restaurant - 1309 NW 12th
Paragon is an American brasserie featuring farm fresh NW ingredients and local fare. The Gallery Room, which accommodates up to 100, has its own private entrance and access to an outdoor raised patio and features artwork from area galleries. Our Banquet Room, perfect for smaller events of 20-60 people, is located within the restaurant. The entire restaurant, available for a buyout, will accommodate 200. Contact: Diane Moreau 503.833.5060

Ristorante Fratelli - 1230 NW Hoyt
An intimate space with a casual effect. Our award winning restaurant keeps the focus on the food, emphasizing fresh, local and organic products. We can accommodate small groups to as many as 65 people in Fratelli; Outside seating in summer. Off-site catering is also available for groups up to 100 people. Contact: Tim Cuscaden 503.241.8800

Sungari Pearl
- 1105 NW Lovejoy
Regional Chinese cooking in beautiful, airy space. Named as one of America's Best Restaurants, Gourmet Magazine, October 2003. Accommodates 40-70 sit-down or 100 for reception. Contact: Blaire Ottoboni or Sunny Shin 971.222.7327

Galleries

Yoshida's Fine Art Gallery
206 NW 10th Contact: Erika Yoshida Phone: 503.223.9463

New gallery shows every month; contemporary impressionistic art in all mediums featured with Asian antique furnishings. Wine bar & bistro located inside gallery. On and off-site catering available. Private event capacity: 300. Private party minimum: 20
www.yoshidagallery.com
 
Lawrence Gallery - Located in the trendy Pearl District, The Lawrence Gallery provides a modern flexible space decorated with beautiful artwork.  Rental of the space includes a entrance through the sculpture garden, several smaller galleries allow for intimate gatherings, a downstairs Tuscan wine cellar, and a large open area for seating, music, A-V presentations, or ceremonies.  The site can accommodate a maximum of 400 for a standing reception, 250 for a seated event, and up to 30 in the wine cellar.  The Lawrence Gallery can be found on the web at www.lawrencegallery.net.
 
Paolo in the Pearl - 1031 NW 11th Ave
A stunning contemporary gallery space featuring award-winning custom furniture for loft living and rotating wall and floor art by local artists. Paolo in the Pearl captures the essence of the Pearl District especially when lit at night for mixers and charity events. Both casually elegant and black-tie ready, the space is adjacent to many Pearl restaurants that can be reserved for private evening events. We welcome charities and their fundraising events in particular. 20-100 persons. Contact: Kate Kauffman
(503) 223-2222

Breweries, Wineries

BridgePort Brewing Company - 1313 NW Marshall
BridgePort Brewing
Company is Oregon's Oldest Craft Brewery. Our historic century-old building has a BrewPub and two private rooms that are available to rent. We offer delicious casual fare, and refreshing house-brew ales. Our banquet facilities can accommodate from 5 to 200 people for private parties. Contact: Rebecca Sturges 503.241.7179 x210
 
McMenamin's offers a variety of unique and historic venues located in and around the Portland metro area. Elaborate theatres, lush gardens, historic hotels, "floating" dance floors, and rustic barns compose just a few of our event spaces, accommodating groups from 10 to 300. Catering services are available. 503-492-2777 (p), salesed@mcmenamins.com.

Urban Wineworks - 407 NW 16th at Flanders
Urban Wineworks is a winery, tasting room, and event space decorated with painted barrels, providing a unique, warm, and relaxing environment for your next event. Whether tasting wines, blending a custom cuvee (create your own custom label) for a special event, or attending a class, you and your guests will have a distinctive and memorable winery experience. Groups up to 150; with the parking lot tented, up to 250; sit-down dinner up to 80. Contact: Leslie Thompson 503.550.9969

Vigne Wine Bar & Merchant - 417 NW 10th
Vigne Wine Bar features a sleek yet comfortable mid-century modern design. Vigne offers an expanded appetizer menu, pours 40 wines by the glass, and offers over 900 wines by the bottle. We pride ourselves on the classic approach, placing wine first in a relaxed and informative atmosphere. Entire space is available for private parties for 60 person maximum. Semi-private backroom available for reservation for up to 15 people. Contact: Brian Martin 503.295. 9536

Other Spaces

Studio Ten Fifty Event Space, 50 SE Yamhill St, Portland, OR, (503) 239-9499
 
In Good Taste Cooking School
231 NW 11th Ave at Everett Contact: Ron Glanville Phone: 503.248.2015
New gallery shows every month; contemporary impressionistic art in all mediums featured with Asian antique furnishings. Wine bar & bistro located inside gallery. On and off-site catering available. Private event capacity: 300. Private party minimum: 20 www.ingoodtastestore.com  As Portland's finest cooking school, we offer demonstrations and hands on classes, and provide team building classes. Our store features 4,000-plus bottles of wine with a focus on local wines, top of the line cookware, cookbooks, and catering facilities. Private events or parties from 14 to 100 persons at the Cooking School. Off-site catering also available for up to 500 persons. www.ingoodtastestore.com
 
Ecotrust Building, The Billy Frank Jr. Conference Center - 721 NW 9th
Vibrant event space available for educational programs and workshops, celebrations, lectures, fundraisers and other business events. Featuring green building techniques and lots of natural light, our 1800 square foot Conference Center is equipped with state of the art AV and workshop style furniture. We also offer atrium space for receptions and meetings, and a 3rd floor outdoor terrace with views of the Pearl District. Spaces accommodate 12 to 200 people. Preferred list of organic caterers. Contact: Sydney Mead 503.467.0767

Pearl District & Downtown Restaurants

bluehour - 1220 NW Everett
Specially designed by owner, Bruce Carey, L'Heure Bleue offers guests an elegant and unique private dining experience. Custom menus are designed by Chef Kenny Giambalvo and can be catered to fit anyone's needs. Meetings and presentations are ideal in our space. 45-60 people for a sit-down dinner and 75-100 people for a cocktail reception. Contact: Kari Young Giambalvo 503.226.3394

Paragon Restaurant - 1309 NW 12th
Paragon is an American brasserie featuring farm fresh NW ingredients and local fare. The Gallery Room, which accommodates up to 100, has its own private entrance and access to an outdoor raised patio and features artwork from area galleries. Our Banquet Room, perfect for smaller events of 20-60 people, is located within the restaurant. The entire restaurant, available for a buyout, will accommodate 200. Contact: Diane Moreau 503.833.5060

Ristorante Fratelli - 1230 NW Hoyt
An intimate space with a casual effect. Our award winning restaurant keeps the focus on the food, emphasizing fresh, local and organic products. We can accommodate small groups to as many as 65 people in Fratelli; Outside seating in summer. Off-site catering is also available for groups up to 100 people. Contact: Tim Cuscaden 503.241.8800

Sungari Pearl
- 1105 NW Lovejoy
Regional Chinese cooking in beautiful, airy space. Named as one of America's Best Restaurants, Gourmet Magazine, October 2003. Accommodates 40-70 sit-down or 100 for reception. Contact: Blaire Ottoboni or Sunny Shin 971.222.7327

Galleries

Yoshida's Fine Art Gallery
206 NW 10th Contact: Erika Yoshida Phone: 503.223.9463

New gallery shows every month; contemporary impressionistic art in all mediums featured with Asian antique furnishings. Wine bar & bistro located inside gallery. On and off-site catering available. Private event capacity: 300. Private party minimum: 20
www.yoshidagallery.com
 
Lawrence Gallery - Located in the trendy Pearl District, The Lawrence Gallery provides a modern flexible space decorated with beautiful artwork.  Rental of the space includes a entrance through the sculpture garden, several smaller galleries allow for intimate gatherings, a downstairs Tuscan wine cellar, and a large open area for seating, music, A-V presentations, or ceremonies.  The site can accommodate a maximum of 400 for a standing reception, 250 for a seated event, and up to 30 in the wine cellar.  The Lawrence Gallery can be found on the web at www.lawrencegallery.net.
 
Paolo in the Pearl - 1031 NW 11th Ave
A stunning contemporary gallery space featuring award-winning custom furniture for loft living and rotating wall and floor art by local artists. Paolo in the Pearl captures the essence of the Pearl District especially when lit at night for mixers and charity events. Both casually elegant and black-tie ready, the space is adjacent to many Pearl restaurants that can be reserved for private evening events. We welcome charities and their fundraising events in particular. 20-100 persons. Contact: Kate Kauffman (503) 223-2222

Breweries, Wineries

BridgePort Brewing Company - 1313 NW Marshall
BridgePort Brewing
Company is Oregon's Oldest Craft Brewery. Our historic century-old building has a BrewPub and two private rooms that are available to rent. We offer delicious casual fare, and refreshing house-brew ales. Our banquet facilities can accommodate from 5 to 200 people for private parties. Contact: Rebecca Sturges 503.241.7179 x210
 
McMenamin's offers a variety of unique and historic venues located in and around the Portland metro area. Elaborate theatres, lush gardens, historic hotels, "floating" dance floors, and rustic barns compose just a few of our event spaces, accommodating groups from 10 to 300. Catering services are available. 503-492-2777 (p), salesed@mcmenamins.com.

Urban Wineworks - 407 NW 16th at Flanders
Urban Wineworks is a winery, tasting room, and event space decorated with painted barrels, providing a unique, warm, and relaxing environment for your next event. Whether tasting wines, blending a custom cuvee (create your own custom label) for a special event, or attending a class, you and your guests will have a distinctive and memorable winery experience. Groups up to 150; with the parking lot tented, up to 250; sit-down dinner up to 80. Contact: Leslie Thompson 503.550.9969

Vigne Wine Bar & Merchant - 417 NW 10th
Vigne Wine Bar features a sleek yet comfortable mid-century modern design. Vigne offers an expanded appetizer menu, pours 40 wines by the glass, and offers over 900 wines by the bottle. We pride ourselves on the classic approach, placing wine first in a relaxed and informative atmosphere. Entire space is available for private parties for 60 person maximum. Semi-private backroom available for reservation for up to 15 people. Contact: Brian Martin 503.295. 9536

Other Spaces

Studio Ten Fifty Event Space, 50 SE Yamhill St, Portland, OR, (503) 239-9499
 
In Good Taste Cooking School
231 NW 11th Ave at Everett Contact: Ron Glanville Phone: 503.248.2015
New gallery shows every month; contemporary impressionistic art in all mediums featured with Asian antique furnishings. Wine bar & bistro located inside gallery. On and off-site catering available. Private event capacity: 300. Private party minimum: 20 www.ingoodtastestore.com  As Portland's finest cooking school, we offer demonstrations and hands on classes, and provide team building classes. Our store features 4,000-plus bottles of wine with a focus on local wines, top of the line cookware, cookbooks, and catering facilities. Private events or parties from 14 to 100 persons at the Cooking School. Off-site catering also available for up to 500 persons. www.ingoodtastestore.com
 
Ecotrust Building, The Billy Frank Jr. Conference Center - 721 NW 9th
Vibrant event space available for educational programs and workshops, celebrations, lectures, fundraisers and other business events. Featuring green building techniques and lots of natural light, our 1800 square foot Conference Center is equipped with state of the art AV and workshop style furniture. We also offer atrium space for receptions and meetings, and a 3rd floor outdoor terrace with views of the Pearl District. Spaces accommodate 12 to 200 people. Preferred list of organic caterers. Contact: Sydney Mead 503.467.0767
 
Northstar Ballroom, http://www.northstarballroom.com/, The Northstar Ballroom can serve your many needs. With over 4000 square feet of event space, we can accommodate a wide range of activities including...weddings & receptions, performances & classes, holiday & private parties, fund raisers & auctions, business meeting & workshops, or any other community event needs! For details about the Northstar and prices, please visit our Virtual Tour page.  Call for hourly rates: Jane Graybill, Manager,635 North Killingsworth Ct., Portland, OR 97217, (503) 806-1546
 
Nothwest, CoHo Theater - The CoHo Theater is a beautiful new facility located 1/3 block off NW 23rd Avenue, a centrally-located, hip, and vibrant area of Portland.  The Theater features an intimate 99-seat auditorium, a theatre lobby area, and a warm art gallery all available for special event rental.  While frequently in use Thursday through Sunday, the CoHo Theater is perfect for lectures, music and stage events, or for receptions in the art gallery and lobby Monday through Thursday and selected weekends.  Contact the CoHo Theater for availability at Rentals@CoHoProductions.org.
 
Downtown, The Old Church - The Old Church has been a Portland landmark since its completion in 1883.  On the National Register of Historic Places since 1972, it no longer is a dedicated church, but serves Portland as a unique community facility.  The Old Church no longer serves congregational needs.  It operates as an independent historical society and maintains no religious affiliation.  This enables each couple to select the officiator of their choice, whether it is a pastor from your home church or a family friend.  This Carpenter Gothic structure features classic cathedral ceilings with the original Povey Brothers leaded stained-glass windows. The hand-carved oak and fir pews seat 300 guests and are divided by a 30-foot center aisle that forms a semicircle around the ample altar area. Kinsman Hall, adjacent to the church proper, serves as an ideal backdrop for elegant receptions.  This Victorian-style ballroom with its brass chandelier, hardwood floors, 25-foot ceilings, stained-glass windows, grand piano and antique furniture, accommodates 200 guests for a standing buffet or 80 seated at tables.
 
Willamette River Boat - The Portland Spirit,  Portland Spirit , 110 SE Caruthers St, Portland, OR 97214, 503-224-3900 (p), 503-231-9089 (f), sales@portlandspirit.com
 
Portland Art Musuem, ballrooms and more. For more information about booking weddings, receptions, corporate parties and any event you'd like to make very special, please contact Patti Nemer at 503·276·4291 or by email at patti.nemer@pam.org or faxed to 503·226·4842. Business hours are Monday through Friday, 9:30 am to 5 pm. On weekends, please contact Doug Froman at 503·276·4203 or doug.froman@pam.org

 

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 3, 2006 13:29 - The Oregon Seafood and Wine Festival!

New Page 3

Oh, my love for seafood is indescribable.  I just realized we have a very important event and its practically happening right now!  That's right-- the Oregon Seafood & Wine Festival is upon us! 

"This winter event is a celebration of all things Oregon , but most specifically our wonderful Oregon seafood and wines.

Scheduled in the quiet of winter, and smack dab in the middle of the Dungeness Crab season, it promises to be a popular event in Portland , the gateway to the Oregon coast and the Oregon wine country.

The event will be a very upscale yet festive event at the Oregon Convention Center , promising a climate-controlled facility with lots of on-site and surrounding parking.  Over 90,000 square feet of exhibit space will allow for lots of room to wander the event while stopping to sit and enjoy the good food, drink and live music throughout the event.

The festival is open...Friday February 3, from 3pm to 10pm, & Saturday February 4, from 11am to 10pm. 

Music and fun continues until 10 PM both days.  The first 750 people each day through the gates receive a commemorative wine glass to use at the festival and then take home with you.  A $10 admission cover charge will be donated to charity for the event.  All food and wine is available for purchase... Wine sampling starts at .50 and prices for menu items varies from $2 to $15.00."

Interested?  Me too!  It appears the "who's who" of Portland seafood will be there along with a few dozen wineries.  Make sure to check the event schedule and know that I will be firmly planted in front of whatever table has the "World’s Largest Crab Cocktail " ;-). 

See you there, Portland!

 

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 4, 2006 17:25 - Featured Local Businesses & Restaurants

This week, we continue to add fresh content and tweak the "look and feel" of our website, all in an attempt to make this the best local website about Portland, Oregon on the web!  We've made some updates to the Nob Hill, South Burlingame, and Sellwood pages, featuring some local businesses worth mentioning.  Read excerpts from our write-ups, below. Thanks to Portland Neighbors Andrew S., Benj T. and Misty F. for submitting information on their favorite Portland neighborhoods!  If you'd like to tell us what you love in your neighborhood, fill out the form on the "Contact Us" page!
 
Northwest
For some NW exercise, locals tell us they love walking up the hill to Pittock Mansion via the sidewalk staircases up through the west hills, then walk down through Forest Park to Lower MacCleay park on Upshur.  It’s a good 2+ hour hike and it’s like urban mountain climbing. 
 
Check out Mavericks Fitness to get and stay in shape. www.mavericksfitness.com, 2025 NW Overton
 
Also, be sure to visit the underground improv theater, The Brody (in the basement of the Bull Ring restaurant building.) 1904 NW 27th Ave.
 
Northwest neighbors also enjoy, St. Honore Bakery - A French Bakery located at 2335 NW Thurman St., and Square Deal Wine Company and Steve's Cheese shop are between 23rd and 24th on Thurman, at 2321 NW Thurman St.
 
South Burlingame
Doggie Central  is located 1 block from Papaccino's, next to the Starbucks at the corner of SW Terwilliger & SW Taylors Ferry Rd. This is where I take my beagle for his doggy daycare and he loves it. The owner, Jill, is a wonderful lady who loves dogs. They carefully screen every dog for temperament, and require current vaccination records for every dog. Dogs are grouped by size in large indoor pens with rubberized mats. Toys & treats are provided and they have a person in each play area at all times. Costs are very reasonable.  Highly recommended!
 
A popular spot for Lewis & Clark students is the Tryon Creek Bar & Grill with it's $5 burger & brew nights (Wed) and other specials. Featuring 4 pool tables, loads of TV's, reasonable food, and an entertaining bar staff, you may find it a place worth frequenting (though it can be a little smoky).
 
Also very good is the Market of Choice at 8502 Terwilliger (also on the corner of SW Terwilliger & Taylors Ferry) which share a wall with Chez Jose's. This neighborhood market is a step up from Zupan's with hardwood floors. You are immediately warmed by the smells of the deli with it's pizza oven, salad bar, olive bar, desserts, and breads. I'd recommend stopping here to check it out if you find yourself in South Burlingame.
 
Sellwood
If you haven't tried the wonderful goodies at Grand Central Bakery (7987 SE 13th St), stop by on your way downtown and grab something better than a doughnut. Located at 7987 SE 13th Street in Sellwood (note that address, as it isn't in most phone books yet), it is just a two blocks north of Tacoma Street. The Sellwood location has only been open since May 2004, but it is one of my favorite places to have breakfast. It has the delicious breads, cinnamon rolls, jammers (a biscuit with the jam built in), coffee cake and croissants of their other locations. Hidden in back is a kid friendly room with a low table for the young and two regular tables for adults. Toys, books and a chalkboard are available for the children's entertainment while you sip on a latte and read the paper. Chalk isn't always available, so you might want to bring your own colored chalk, and if you are like me, leave some behind! Don't forget to grab a loaf of bread to take home. Try their olive, como or any of the other delicious varieties. You can get the loaf whole for a fancy dinner, or have them slice it for easy toasting and sandwich making.
The employees at the bakery are friendly and wonderful, and while I don't know the official policy, you regularly see people with their favorite 'brand' of coffee eating the baked goods. Don't let that dissuade you from trying their coffee or espresso as it is all excellent. The bakery is open for lunch and has a variety of sandwiches. Combine lunch with a trip to the Sellwood-Moreland Library down a block and you have an excellent afternoon.

Grand Central Bakery Sellwood
7987 SE 13th Street
Sellwood OR 97202
503.546.3036

Monday - Friday 7:00 am - 7:00 pm
Saturday - Sunday 6:00 am - 6 pm

Happy Saturday, Portland!

 

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 5, 2006 11:32 - Portland...Are you ready for Valentines Day?

Howdy Portlanders...

Valentines Day is only a little over a week away-- are you ready to shower your sweetie with some tokens of your love?  I don't know about you, but I am a total procrastinator (not quite the one that buys blue carnations at the supermarket on "D Day", but close...)  So, in the spirit of being prepared, thoughtful and best of all, incredibly romantic, here are some Valentines Day ideas.

Flowers...Cliché maybe, but very possibly expected.  I really like the Old Town Florist located in the Pearl- very nice, original work! 

Chocolate...Ah, if flowers aren't the way to your lover's heart then well, its quite possible that a pile of luscious chocolate is.  A few of my absolute favorites:  Moonstruck Chocolate, Dagoba Chocolate and the ever mighty Brigittine Monk Chocolates...

A couples massage sounds like a perfect way to spend Valentines afternoon. The Aequis Spa experience is truly unlike any other. You'll want your living room to look just like the exotic, artistic den where you will have your feet washed in a copper bowl, enjoy a foot and leg massage and then pad off to a quiet room for an earth moving total body massage experience. 

Wine...Let's sink further into relaxation coma and sip some fantastic local wine.  Everyone knows I am more than partial to Eyrie Vineyards but I am in *love* with Sineann Vineyards.  The Jezebel is, in a word, heaven. 

Dinner...How about cooking your sweetie a romantic meal at home?  We'll post a few "love recipes" over the course of the next week-- stay tuned...For those of you who don't want to spoil the day by dirtying the kitchen, here are a few of my favorite restaurants for falling in love (again):  The Ringside in downtown Portland.  Neck and neck with El Goucho for great steak (but usually better!) and awesome atmosphere-- very romantic.  Paley's Place provides an intimate setting and a bistro style meal you will rave about for weeks.  Next nod is to Assaggio for excellent Italian food, wine and mood. Great place, great food and a sure thing for an excellent evening.

Whatever you decide, Portland, know you must act fast!  Restaurants, good wine and spa openings book up and sell out quickly...Get in while you can! Have a great day! 

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 6, 2006 08:01 - Weekend Walking in Portland

I have a new weekend routine that I just love!  I live in the Eliot neighborhood in NE Portland.  Recently, on weekend mornings,  I take a stroll over the Broadway Bridge into the Pearl District and have coffee or breakfast, then I walk to Powell's Bookstore or the Pearl District art galleries, and then walk or take Tri Met MAX back over the bridge to Lloyd Center, and walk home.  I accomplish three things: 1) Exercise! Depending on where I go, this is a 2-5 mile roundtrip walk.  2) I get to eat breakfast at a great restaurant, bakery or Portland coffee house, and 3) Every time I choose to walk instead of drive my car, I discover new things about Portland that I might not have noticed. This weekend on my Saturday morning walk, I came across the new Everett Street Bistro (1140 NW Everett Street).

Billed as a European Style Charcuterie and Classic Cocktail Bar, Everett Street Bistro is tucked into the Pearl and pays homage to the historical setting with a classy, old-fashioned ambiance, with pressed tin ceilings, and crystal beaded wall sconces.   The long dining room is comfortably cozy, and lined with windows which bring in great natural light even on a soggy Saturday morning in Portland.  I ordered up the Black Forest Ham, Tillamook Cheddar, and Carmelized Shallot Scramble, which comes with tasty red potatoes, and toast served with homemade jam.  Oh, yes....the eggs were tasty and the flavor combination was perfect!   Also on the menu were several types of quiche, hash, and brandied French Toast--yum, I can't wait to try them all!  I will be strolling by the Everett Street Bistro more often!  I plan to return soon and give them a try in the evening to see how the atmosphere and menu changes.

On Sunday morning, I awoke to discover the sun was out!  Yaaaahooo!  So, off I went for another morning stroll.  This time, I stayed on the East side of the river and headed south through the lovely Irvington neighborhood, down to Broadway and Sullivan's Gulch.  I had breakfast at Grand Central Bakery (1444 NE Weidler) where I over indulged on tasty breakfast food once more--a pepper bacon and fried egg on buttery croissant...and shared half of a fresh-baked cinnamon roll with my sweetie. Along the walk, I discovered many Portlanders happy to be outside during the respite from winter rain.  I found several crocus blossoms just beginning to bloom (poking through the lush growth of winter moss!), as well as a few daffodils just about to begin their show.  I certainly feel lucky to live in an area with such a great variety of places to walk, as well as many excellent restaurants, all within reasonable distance from my house.  So, tie on your walking shoes Portland, and go explore your neighborhood!

 

 

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 7, 2006 08:10 - Portland Theater Pubs

As a film enthusiast, one of the things I have always loved about Portland is our collection of theater pubs.  There is just nothing like kicking back in a sofa, drinking a cold beer, munching on some pizza and watching a movie.  Sound like I'm describing a video rental and a night on the couch at home?  Nahhh...Portland has several theater pubs offering these amenities (and more) and if you haven't been, you're just not enjoying all that Portlandia has to offer.  A definite option for a low-key Valentines Day! 

Laurelhurst Theater & Pub
2735 East Burnside Street, Portland, OR 
Admission: $3

"The Laurelhurst Theater became part of Portland's cultural and architectural history when it was built in 1923, one of the first art deco style buildings of the period. What was once a successful family theater lost out to the multiplexes of the late eighties. At the start of the twenty-first century, months of renovation brought the theater back to stand again as a proud icon to Portland's history and future. Now you may enjoy microbrews, wine, Pizzicato pizza and above average theater concessions in the lobby where the old sectional mirror from the original 1923 interior once again reflects Portland's friends and families. All of which may be brought into the auditoriums to enjoy at your table while you watch your movie."

The following theater pubs are owned by McMenamin's- see website for listings:

Bagdad Theater & Pub
3702 SE Hawthorne Blvd., Portland, OR 
Admission: $3

"Built in 1927, the Bagdad Theater is listed on the National Register of Historic Places in Multnomah County. Originally, it was a key venue for both first-run movies and vaudeville shows and brought a middle-eastern flavor to the city with its interior and exterior designs. But when television edged out vaudeville in the 1940s, the theater switched to a film-only schedule with only one screen. In 1991, the McMenamin Brothers restored the theater and added a pub, making the Bagdad a popular Portland venue once again. The Bagdad now shows second-run movies for only a few bucks."

Mission Theater
1624 NW Glisan, Portland, OR
Admission: $3

"The Mission's mission began in the early 1890s as a place of worship and spiritual fervor for the Swedish Evangelical Mission. It was the site where missionaries of the church planned pilgrimages to the Far East, and music from the Swedish Bell Ringers rang out across the city. The church later moved to a larger space and the building became a meeting place for the Longshoreman's Union. Then in 1987, McMenamins renovated it and changed its mission to bringing nightly entertainment to the denizens of Portland. The Mission Theater is a popular venue for beer drinking, popular second-run movies and sporting events. On Saturday afternoons, cheer on your favorite college football teams, and catch Monday Night Football on the big screen, free of charge."

Kennedy School Theater
5736 NE 33rd, Portland, OR
Admission: $3

"This Italian villa was founded as an elementary school in 1915 and, when school was not in session, acted as a popular gathering spot in Northeast Portland neighborhood. Then after a 17-year absence, McMenamins bought and restored the old school to its proper place as a community gathering spot. In addition to second-run movies and a pub, the place also acts as a hotel with 35 guest rooms, The Courtyard Restaurant, a brewery and meeting and event spaces."

Powerstation Theater at Edgefield
2126 SW Halsey, Troutdale, OR
Admission: $3

"The Edgefield estate was originally built in 1911 and served as the Multnomah County Poor Farm, where people who were down on their luck could work for room and board. Edgefield is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and its renovated rooms still send travelers back in time. In addition to the theater showing second-run movies, the estates also features a vineyard and wine tasting room; brewery; distillery; 18-hole, par-3 golf course; restaurants; specialty bars; gardens and a gift shop. "

Compass Room Theater at Grand Lodge
3505 Pacific Ave., Forest Grove, OR
Admission: $3

"In 1922, Grand Lodge began in Forest Grove as a Masonic and Eastern Star Home for the aged, infirm, poor and/or distressed Master Masons and their widows and orphans. (Although, because of clashes between the orphans and the elderly, the orphans were moved to outside families in 1927.) In 1999, the Masons moved to a new office and meeting facility, and McMenamins became the new owner. After renovation, the newly refurbished Grand Lodge opened to the public in 2000. In addition to the second-run movie theater, Grand Lodge also offers lodging, specialty bars, a day spa and tasting rooms."

St. Johns Dome Theater 
8203 N. Ivanhoe, Portland, OR
Admission: $3

"McMenamins' latest addition to their theater-pub chain is St. John's Pub, which opened November 16, 2002. This compact palace with its impressive cupola and pillared portico began its colorful history in 1905, when tens of thousands of World's Fair-goers flooded the auditorium to experience motion pictures for the first time. In 1906, the dome bobbed down the Willamette River on a huge barge as it was relocated to its new home at St. John's. It then became the First Congregational Church, then later became St. John's Lutheran Church. It continued its transformation from American Legion Post #98, to a scandalous bingo hall, to a venue for "rollicking wakes conducted by local Gypsies" and finally Duffy's Irish Pub in 1988. The building has undergone so many physical transformations, that the dome is the only part of the building reminding us of its turbulent past. Now in the hands of McMenamin's, the theater-pub is still a popular spot to knock back a brewsky and watch popular second-run movies."

 

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 8, 2006 07:37 - Valentines Day Dessert

alentine's Dessert Idea

For Valentine's Day (or any day for that matter), if you want to whip up something truly special for your sweetie, this recipe wins hands down as my favorite.  I first had Boccone Dolce at Portland own Papa Haydn's restaurant in Northwest (if you're not in the mood to cook--go to the restaurant!).  I then searched on-line until I found the recipe, which I have since made several times, so I can attest that it is absolutely delicious.  Here is is, Boccone Dolce from WhatsCookingAmerica.net.

Boccone Dolce

"I adapted this recipe from A Treasury of Great Recipes by Mary and Vincent Price. This is a classic northern Italian dessert. The combination of strawberries and chocolate in a meringue is enough to send you right out of this world!

Meringue Layers (see recipe below)
6 ounces semi-sweet or bittersweet
chocolate pieces
3 tablespoons water
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
3 cups heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 pint fresh strawberries, sliced*
2 pints strawberries, sliced; sugared
Chocolate curls (for garnish)

* I also like to use mixed berries, such as fresh raspberries and blackberries.

Make Meringue Layers. Melt over hot water the chocolate pieces and water. When perfectly smooth, remove from heat and cool (but don't let harden).

In a large bowl, whip the heavy cream until stiff; gradually add powdered sugar and then vanilla extract.

Slice two pints of strawberries: One is used between cake layers, the other is sliced, sugared and refrigerated to produce more juice. The sugared berries are served as a sauce. Save several whole berries for garnish. Perfect Slicing Tip: Use your egg slice. Stem the strawberries first, then slice just like you would a boiled egg. Much quick than using a knife.

To assemble, place a meringue layer on a serving plate, rounded side down. Spread a VERY THIN coating of chocolate over it. NOTE: GO EASY on chocolate - too much will make it impossible to cut cake!

Top chocolate with a layer (about 3/4-inch thick) of whipped cream. Top cream with a layer of sliced berries. Place a second layer of meringue on top of this, and repeat filling. Top with final meringue, rounded side up, and frost sides and top smoothly with remaining whipped cream. Additional cream may be used to pipe a design onto sides and top of cake.

Refrigerator at least 4 hours or overnight. Garnish with several whole strawberries and chocolate curls.

Makes 8 servings.

MERINGUE LAYERS:

Check out my Hints and Tips for Making a Perfect Meringue.

4 egg whites, room temperature
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup superfine sugar

Preheat oven to 225 degrees F. In mixer, beat egg whites, salt, cream of tartar, and vanilla extract until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in sugar and continue beating until meringue is stiff and glossy.

Line baking sheets with parchment or waxed paper. Trace three, eight-inch circles on paper.

With a rubber spatula, spread meringue evenly and equally over top of the circles. Bake approximately 2 hours or until meringue becomes bisque colored. NOTE: The low temperature will prevent them from browning too quickly. Then turn off oven, open oven door and let meringues "rest" in oven another 15 minutes. Remove from oven and carefully peel off parchment or waxed paper. Put cake on racks to dry until thoroughly cool.

Once cooled, meringues may be wrapped in saran and frozen. NOTE: I wrap each meringue in several saran layers, then stack (gently!) in a large plastic container for freezing. Remove from freezer at least an hour before assembling."

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 9, 2006 07:03 - Portland's Le Bistro Montage (& La Merde, too!)

Dear Portland-- I must confess, I am in love with the Montage.  Those of you who know the place know why.  Southern style, Cajun food with just the right amount of spice, attitude and creativity.  Le Bistro Montage has been a staple in my diet for nearly a decade and for several reasons:

i. Awesome food.  I have never been disappointed with my chicken jambalaya (yes, I'm a creature of habit).  H-u-g-e servings that cannot be eaten in one sitting which is perfect as they always house your leftovers in super artistic "to-go-sculptures" usually inspired by the patron's personality (or so it seems).  Tonight we left with a 4 foot long Excalibur sword and a 2.5 foot shield.  Wait, what does this mean? ;-)

ii. Great prices.  You can order an old time favorite, the Spicy Mac (as in spicy Mac-n-cheese) for less than $7.  Pretty much everything on the menu is fairly priced to down right cheap.  They've even been rated as one of Portland's best places to 'eat on the cheap'.  I agree!

iii.  Big, long tables you get to share with complete strangers.  Sound scary?  Nah!  A great way to meet and mingle with your fellow Puddletowner's.  The place is vivacious, loud, fun and exceedingly eccentric (the artwork is indescribably awesome).  Often playing fantastic tunes, sometimes barely audible over your waiter's scream from across the dining room to the kitchen: "TWO OYSTERS!!"  (aka "Oyster Shooters, please")

iv. The new little "side bar"...La Merde...This place is literally attached to the back of the Montage and is a super swanky, cute little bar all done up in nice dark wood with bookshelves (and books!), nice subtle mood lighting and very cozy feel.  I bet no more than 30 people could comfortably fit in here and I look forward to being one of them real soon. 

Le Bistro Montage and La Merde are located at:  301 S.E. Morrison St., 503-234-1324, 4 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. Monday-Friday, 5 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. Saturday & Sunday

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 10, 2006 08:50 - Portland Humor

Today, a little humor from an email forwarded to me from my mom, who lives in sunny Florida.  These are Pacific Northwest jokes from comedian Jeff Foxworthy.  I would have to agree with them all, with the exception of #1.  I am pretty certain Oregon’s state flower is actually Moss.  I have plenty of it growing on and around my house right now to prove it!

 

The PacificNorthwest According To Jeff Foxworthy.
1. You know the state flower (Mildew)
2. You feel guilty throwing aluminum cans or paper in the trash.
3. Use the statement "sun break" and know what it means.
4. You know more than 10 ways to order coffee.
5 You know more people who own boats than air conditioners.
6. You feel overdressed wearing a suit to a nice restaurant.
7. You stand on a deserted corner in the rain waiting for the "Walk" signal.
8. You consider that if it has no snow or has not recently erupted, its not a real mountain.
9. You can taste the difference between Starbucks, Seattle's Best, and Veneto's.
10. You know the difference between Chinook, Coho and Sockeye Salmon.
11. You know how to pronounce Sequim, Puyallup, Issaquah, Oregon, Yakima and Willamette.
12. You consider swimming an indoor sport.
13. You can tell the difference between Japanese, Chinese and Thai food.
14. In the winter, you go to work in the dark and come home in the dark while only working eight-hour days.
15. You never go camping without waterproof matches and a poncho.
16. You are not fazed by "Today's forecast: showers followed by rain," and Tomorrow's forecast: "Rain followed by showers."
17 You have no concept of humidity without precipitation.
18. You know that Boring is a town in Oregon and not just a state of mind.
19. You can point to at least two volcanoes, even if you cannot see through the cloud cover.
20. You notice, "The mountain is out" when it is a pretty day and you can actually see it.
21. You put on your shorts when the temperature gets above 50.
22. You switch to your sandals when it gets about 60, but keep the socks on.
23. You have actually used your mountain bike on a mountain.
24. You think people who use umbrellas are either wimps or tourists.
25. You buy new sunglasses every year, because you cannot find the old ones after such a long time.

26. You measure distance in hours.
27. You often switch from "heat" to "a/c" in the same day.
28. You design your kid's Halloween costume to fit under a raincoat.
29. You know all the important seasons: Almost Winter, Winter, Still Raining (Spring), Road Construction (Summer), Deer & Elk season (Fall).
30. You actually understood these jokes and will probably forward them.

Have a great day, Portland! It's gorgeous and SUNNY out there!

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 11, 2006 13:54 - Looking for some fun in Portland?

New Page 6

Today's blog is courtesy of a local Portlander, A. Semon, who sent PortlandNeighborhood.com the following submission about his favorite local martial arts guru.  It was so good we just had to share!

"Normally martial arts training would be something that I would pass over faster than a do-it-yourself cat grooming service, but a few restless co-workers looked into Within Arms Reach close quarter combat training, just down the street from work.  Heck, it's still winter-ish here and I'm guilty of being more than a little restless, so why not try something new?  Four of us cube dwellers met up with the instructor, Dan, for an orientation and introduction to his training and we were instantly impressed; with his ability, and even more so, his training style.  To give you an idea of where we are starting from.. we are cube dwelling computer people 40 hours a week who are more likely to move into an errant punch then dodge it and the last time we were in a "fight" we were at recess, so it's safe to say that Dan was starting with newbies at Square One. Dan is an experienced mixed martial artist.  Deceptively quick and strong, but patient and quick to smile.  He teaches to your ability, starting with the basics (strikes, combinations, sparring) and progressing as far as you care to go.  He offers small group instruction (up to 4 adults), private instruction, men's grappling, and kids martial arts (ages 6-17). A good instructor makes all the difference and I can't praise Dan highly enough.  Check it out at no risk, the first lesson is free!"

Contact Dan Duvall at Nelson's Nautilus Health Club 8333 NE Russell (NE 82nd & Russell) 503-890-1515


In other news, Valentines Day is *still* just around the corner!  ;-)  What are you doing for your sweetie?

How about giving the love-of-your-life something a little outside the norm of long stemmed roses and chocolates?  How about giving something a bit more "full of life"?  Something that can be grown, loved and cared for-- something that will bring a smile to the face of your sweetie for months to come!  I love to receive potted plants and bulbs and what's more, I love to give them because nearly everyone loves them as much as I do!  So here's a link to a great site that I really enjoy.

order your spring bulbs

Have a great day!

 

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 12, 2006 12:31 - An Excellent Brunch in Portland

Simpatica Brunch

Simpatica Brunch

This weekend, I continued my walking exploration of Portland.  Today I walked to Simpatica Dining Hall, on a word-of-mouth referral from a friend.  Simpatica is a combination catering/dining event rental/brunch restaurant, secretly tucked away into an old building at 838 Ash Street.  The kitchen is one block South of Doug Fir, or one block West of the SE Ash/SE Sandy intersection. You won't find it advertised on a sign (just a little sandwich board out front on the sidewalk) and I am sure the local neighbors will be mad at me for blowing the cover on their little secret brunch spot. 

Today I tried the sunchoke frittata with red potatoes, and my partner had the beef hash with scrambled eggs.  The food was very delicious, and the was service friendly.  Simpatica calls itself a dining "hall", and while there is indeed at least one long table (used for serving community-style dinners) the dining room is actually quite small and cozy.  So, go early to avoid the crowds.  Check out the Simpatica website for additional information:

"Simpatica cooks Brunch every Sunday from 9AM to 2PM. All of the meats are sourced from our shop, Viande Meats and Sausage, and the menu changes weekly. If the smells don't lure you, just one taste is all it takes! Although the menu is dependant on the season, here are some regulars on the menu:"


Merguez Sausage and Potato Hash
with Seasonal Vegetables and 2 eggs easy

Savory Crepes with Butternut Squash, Bacon and
Fromage Blanc. Side Salad

Belgian Waffles with Orange Maple Syrup and Bacon

Biscuits and Gravy with Roasted Potatoes

Buffalo Philly Cheesesteak Sandwich

Cubano Sandwich with Prosciutto Cotto, Capicola and Sweet Pickles

Young Artichoke, Asparagus, Bleu Cheese Frittata with Roasted Potatoes

Housemade Sauerkraut with Boudin Blanc and Braised Tasso

Thanks Simpatica, for an excellent brunch!  I'll be strolling back your away again, soon.

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 13, 2006 07:42 - Snow in Portland this week?!

Happy Monday to ya, Portland!  For some of us, there's only 5 days to go before we head off into a 3-day weekend (Presidents Day is next Monday).  Yee-hah!  Hope you enjoyed the great weather yesterday-- it was amazing, amazing, amazing!  What's even more amazing is our 10 day weather forecast-- snow this coming weekend!?!  Hmmmm...I'll believe it when I see it (it is Portland, after all!)

Here are some interesting Oregon facts-- my favorites in bold. 

  • Oregon's state flag pictures a beaver on its reverse side. It is the only state flag to carry two separate designs.
  • Crater Lake is the deepest lake in the United States and is formed in the remains of an ancient volcano.
  • Oregon and New Jersey are the only states without self-serve gas stations.
  • Eugene was the first city to have one-way streets.
  • Pilot Butte, a cinder cone volcano, exists within the city limits of Bend.
  • At 329 feet the Coast Douglas-Fir in Oregon is considered the tallest tree in the state.
  • At 8,000 feet deep Hells Canyon is the deepest river gorge in North America.
  • The hazelnut is Oregon's official state nut. Oregon is the only state that has an official state nut. The hazelnut is also known as the filbert.
  • Oregon's state birthday is on February 14, Valentine's Day.
  • The state park system has 159 yurts located in 19 parks. Yurts are a circular domed tent suitable for camping.
  • Navy blue and gold are Oregon's official state colors.
  • The Chinook salmon is Oregon's official state fish.
  • The Willamette River was discovered in 1792.
  • In 1858 the richest gold find in the Cascade Mountains was discovered in the Bohemia Mining District at Sharp's Creek near Cottage Grove.
  • In 1876 the University of Oregon opened in Eugene. Deady Hall was the first building on campus and still exists.
  • In 1880 a sea cave was discovered near what is now known as Florence.
  • Sea Lion Caves is known to be the largest sea cave in the world.
  • The nation's most photographed lighthouse is the Heceta Head Lighthouse located in Lane County.
  • Oregon's second highest waterfall is Salt Creek Falls in the Cascade Mountain range. It drops 286 feet.
  • Eugene is rated by "Bicycling Magazine" as one of the top ten cycling communities in the United States.
  • There are nine lighthouses standing along the coastline. Five are still being used; the others are designated historic monuments.
  • High above the city of Portland the International Rose Test Garden features more than 500 varieties of roses cultivated continuously since 1917.
  • At 11,239 feet Mount Hood stands as the tallest peak in Oregon. Mount Hood is a dormant volcano.
  • Silver Falls State Park is the Oregon's largest state park. It features 10 waterfalls and contains a wide variety of forested hiking trails.
  • Crater Lake is the deepest lake in the United States. It was formed more than 6,500 years ago. Its crystal-blue waters are world renowned.
  • Discovered in 1874 the caves located in Oregon Caves National Monument are carved within solid marble.
  • Tillamook is home to Oregon's largest cheese factory.
  • Florence is known as Oregon's rhododendron capital.
  • The Oregon Legislature designated the Oregon Grape (Mahonia aquifolium) as the Oregon state flower by resolution in 1899.
  • Oregon's capitol building is located in Salem. Earlier capitals include the cities of Oregon City and Corvallis.
  • The Columbia River forms most of the northern border between Oregon and Washington.
  • The Snake River forms over half of the eastern boundary with Idaho.
  • A treaty between the United States and Spain established the current southern border between Oregon and California. The treaty was signed in 1819.
  • The Tillamook Naval Air Museum is housed in the world's largest wooden clear-span building.
  • Haystack Rock off Cannon Beach is 235 feet high and is the third largest coastal monolith in the world.
  • The Seaside Aquarium was the first facility in the world to successfully breed harbor seals in captivity.

Credit to: Pike Street Industries, Inc.,Out West Newspaper, Convention & Visitors Association of Lane County Oregon, Roy Daw, Lana Rose, Ken Lambert, Peter LaPorte, Reid Sanford, David Blanchard

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 15, 2006 08:13 - Portland's Noble Rot

Last night my sweetie and I had a special Valentine's Day treat at one of my favorite local wine bars, Noble Rot.   "Noble Rot is the nickname for Botrytis Cinerea, the beneficial grape fungus that transforms ordinary grapes into furry little critters that produce intense, viscous, sweet wines. The most famous region for these wines is Sauternes, in southwest France. Noble Rot, the bar opened in May 2002. It is housed in a new, award-winning building in southeast Portland, minutes from downtown. Noble Rot has a casual, European atmosphere: a glass garage door rolls open to reveal a long fir bar and cozy booths in the front and a wine "cellarish" dining room in the back. The 20"-long bar is one piece of old-growth fir salvaged from a ship that sunk in Willapa Bay, Washington in 1921.  The best way to plunge into Noble Rot is through the five wine flights offered each day. A wine flight includes three wines with a common thread such as region, grape varietal or producer. And while owners Kimberly Bernosky and Courtney Storrs take wine seriously, they feel that not all wine is serious. For that reason, they offer several simple $4 house wines along with over 30 rotating glass pours. Noble Rot also displays a 450-bottle selection. All the wines are available to go."

Noble Rot isn't just a favorite for their awesome wine selection--they have terrific food!  Last night they hosted a special event upstairs in the private dining room, which is available for rental for your small special event.  My dinner featured an appetizer of avocado with balsamic, a first course of jumbo asparagus with sauce maltaise, the second course was artichoke, bresaola, celery and white truffle salad, and the main course consisted of roasted NY strip with scalloped potatoes and grilled bok choy.  The grand finale was a chocolate covered chocolate torte with hazelnut brittle and coffee anglaise.  And of course, we had a sparkling wine, the delectable Roederer Estate NV Brut, from Anderson Valley, California.  Mmmmm, what a fine meal, in a great Portland restaurant.  The perfect Valentine's Day romantic meal.  I highly recommend Noble Rot any day, not just for special occasions.  Give them a try.

Noble Rot - 503-233-1999, open 5-midnight, Monday - Saturday

At 2724 SE Ankeny, located one block south of Burnside on 28th and SE Ankeny St.

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 16, 2006 19:41 - Portland's Alberta Street Oyster Bar

Last night I made it over to a N

Last night I made it over to a NE Portland favorite, the Alberta Street Oyster Bar.  The event was a secret birthday bash and the Oyster bar was the perfect place to bring a dozen people together to toast, laugh and celebrate life.  We were ushered in and seated at a quiet table in the back and treated like royalty (I'm told the service is always exceptional).  The restaurant has a soothing and happy feel-- I love the bright red walls, matching red lights, bold artwork (Tony Price's "Forest Park Series") adorning the walls and the ever occasional exposed brickwork beam. 

The food was mmmmm....fantastic.  I had the braised beef short ribs with potato gnocchi and root vegetables with braising jus, my ever-so-significant one had the trout stuffed with Dungeness crab (wrapped in pancetta with cabbage and a Meyer lemon caper brown butter), several others oohed and ahhed over the curry and Thai basil mussels (I adore mussels and suffered from tremendous bouts of food jealousy even though my dish was mighty fine).  I know what I'm getting next time!.  I should also mention that yet another member of the group tried the Alberta Street Burger and declared it one of the "best burgers ever"!  Check out their menu options here and no matter what, promise yourself the treat of the delightful Mojito Martini (Bacardi Light rum, Fresh Mint, Sugar and Lime served up topped with prosecco.)

This excellent oyster bar (and more) is located over in the fabulous Alberta Arts District and would be a perfect way to start or conclude your "Last Thursday" prowl.   Open every day but Tuesday, 4:30 till 11:00 pm.  Happy hour 4:30-6 and 10-11 at the bar. 

See you there!

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 17, 2006 15:53 - Brrrrrrrr!! Crafty ways to stay warm in Portland this weekend!

It's Cold Out!

Whoa!  What happened to the weather?  Last weekend I was walking along, enjoying the pre-spring feeling in the air and admiring the happy new crocus and daffodils that are blooming everywhere (I even spotted some pink cherry blossoms on the trees in Northwest!) and the next thing you know I am scraping ice off my car windows again!  Ugh. 

So, we're approaching another weekend and I am looking for some indoor ideas to keep me warm and cozy.  For this, I often turn to craft making.  How about candles?  Candles are one of my favorite ways to warm up the ambiance of  my house.  And, you can either buy them ready-made at one of Portland's great candle shops (like Illuminations in Northwest Portland), or you can make them yourself.  Learn more about candle making, the benefits of aromatherapy fragrance and more at this Candle website.(www.lovescentedcandles.com).  Be sure to check out the articles on the "Candle Making" page for more helpful information.  If you want to buy candles from the site, I personally recommend the soy blend Scent-Sations Mia Bella Candles.

If you haven't tried candle making, it's actually quite easy.  You can pick up some basic candle making supplies at any craft store, but one of the best selections of candle molds, waxes, and fragrances here in Portland is at Georgie's Ceramic and Clay (756 NE Lombard • Portland OR 97211 • 800.999.CLAY).  If you're not in the mood to make candles, a visit to Georgie's will inspire you because there are lots of other cool craft ideas in their store.  Check them out and find yourself a fun project for the weekend.

Happy crafting, Portland and stay warm!

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 18, 2006 14:15 - Portland's Rose City Rollers (Roller Derby!!)

New Page 6

A. Gorman dropped us a line and reminded us that we forgot to add the Rose City Rollers, Portland's Women Roller Derby League, to our sports page. Never heard of Roller Derby or Portland's own Rose City Rollers?  If not, here is some interesting info, courtesy of the Rose City Rollers

"How did the Rose City Rollers get started?
The Rose City Rollers were founded in August ’04 by a small band of gritty, gutsy, nostalgic gals who decided to dust off their ole quad skates and hit the rink.  Since
then, the League’s endured quite a metamorphosis, changing composition & location multiple times.   “The Rose City Rollers will prove to be a lethal combination of
brains, brawn, budding skill and spirit. . .oh, and a bit of PBR,” said Roller Girl November Pain.

How many girls are in the Rose City Rollers league?
60+

How many teams make up the Rose City Rollers?
Currently, 4, but we may create a more.

What other teams do the Rose City Rollers play?
We compete in the National Womens Derby Flat Track Association.

How much do games cost?
$10

Who are the Rose City Rollers?
Sassy 21 to 50 year-old Portland gals on quads.

Where can I go to see a game?
The Expo Center is currently where we are having bouts. Check out our event's page for upcoming bouts.

Can I join a team?
Currently we are not accepting new people at this time. There haas been an influx since our first bout in October. check out the Join page for further news as this may change.

What’s so great about the Rose City Rollers?
We are a group of strong, good-natured dedicated women who skate fast, spill hard & get up smiling. We work hard, but play as hard as we work.

What are the rules?
According to the rules set forth by the Texas Rollergirls. The first thing you need to know are that there are three positions:

Pivot: sets the pace for the pack and is the last line of defense

Blocker: tries to stop the jammer, knocks around the opposing team's blockers

Jammer: sprints through the pack, scoring points by passing members of the opposing team

The pack starts with a pivot from each team in front, 3 blockers from each team in the middle, and a jammer from each team in the back. When the whistle blows, the pack takes off, and on a second whistle, the jammers start fighting their way through the pack in an attempt to be named "lead jammer. "The jammers lap the pack and when they re-enter the pack, they receive one point for each member of the opposing team that they pass.

"A jam" lasts a maximum of two minutes, but the "lead jammer" has the right to call off the jam at her discretion. It sounds simple, but it's not ... 'cause there are two little things called "falling" and "fighting" that fill some jams with mayhem, violence, and penalties.

How is Roller Derby now different than it was when it started?
Roller Derby used to be somewhat scripted.  Our plays are all real and so is the blood... unfortunately.

Is Roller Derby dangerous?
Without protective gear, Roller Derby can be quite dangerous. You have a better chance at not being seriously injured if you wear wrist guards, elbow & knee pads, a helmet and a mouth guard. We require that the aforementioned gear is worn at all times during our practices. We do rock bruises and scrapes quite frequently.

What are Roller Derby games called?

Bouts.

How many girls are on one team?
5 girls on the track at a time, 10 - 15 girls per team.

How many girls play in a single jam?
5 per team.

How is the winner determined?
Total scored jammer points"

The Rose City Rollers inaugural season started just a couple of weeks ago and they will hosting public bouts through October. I plan on checking out a bout sometime very soon.  A few friends of mine went recently and said it was simply "Amazing! Crazy and amazingly high paced fun!"

 

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 19, 2006 13:52 - Portland Sports Bars

Howdy Portland,

It's an awesome sunny day-- now only if the weather were 20-30 degrees warmer!  Oh well, its just that time of year...  I've spent a large part of today cozied up with my laptop watching the Olympics. At one point I started to wonder what sports bars in Portland might have the Olympics on a big screen (I get a little stir crazy after awhile).  So, I whipped up a quick list of sports bars in the Portland area and thought: "Wait!  This might be useful for our readers too!"  So, here it is--  the new Portland Sports Bars page

Will you do me a huge favor?  Will you check to see if your favorite sports bar is listed?  If its not there, let me know and I will happily add it. Also, would you be willing to share with me why you love a particular sports bar over another?  Send me some feedback and I promise to immortalize you via the web ;-) 

That's it for today, all!  I'm off for a random drive, destination = some place pretty to walk the dogs.

Have a great afternoon and evening-- and for those of you who don't have to work tomorrow, have a great second-Saturday night!  hehehhe

 

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 20, 2006 13:47 - This week in Portland

What to Do in Portland This Week

Ok, it's getting nicer outside again, but it's still a little cold, so you may be looking for some indoor ideas (besides the Olympics) this week.  Here are a few happenings in Portland this week:

Sports this Week at the Rose Garden

 Trail Blazers v. Bobcats Wed. Feb. 22, 2006 7:00 pm
Trail Blazers v. Celtics Fri. Feb. 24, 2006 7:00 pm
Harlem Globetrotters Sat. Feb. 25, 2006 2:00 pm
Harlem Globetrotters Sat. Feb. 25, 2006 7:30 pm

Music

Il Divo, Thursday, February 23, 2006 at 7:30 pm -  tickets

Location: Rose Garden
Ticket Prices: $45, $60 & $75; prices do not include service charges.
Stage: Theater of The Clouds - Seating Chart

Mississippi Studios Live Music Events - This Week's Line-Up

Aladdin Theatre and Crystal Ballroom Events:

Theatre & Performing Arts

Portland Center for the Performing Arts - Events this Week:

THIS WEEK'S EVENTS:
The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow
presented by Portland Center Stage
..........................................................................................
Tom McCall Forum
presented by Pacific University
..........................................................................................
Winter Program
presented by Oregon Ballet Theatre
..........................................................................................
Monkey King
presented by Tears of Joy Theatre
..........................................................................................
Latin Jazz with the Mambo Kings
presented by Oregon Symphony

Radiant Theatre Presents: Aliens Stole Bush's Brain!

Start date: Friday, February 24, 2006 -  End date: Sunday, March 5, 2006

Start time: 8:00 PM End time: 10:00 PM

311 N. Ivy St, Portland, OR  97211More info: http://www.radianttheatre.org

The Drammy Award winning theatre company Radiant Theatre announces "Aliens Stole Bush’s Brain" (By Douglas Watson)
A hilarious mock symposium of satirical monologues reflecting upon whether or not Bush exists. Different voices with different perspectives with 101 Reasons Why None Of
This Is Bush's Fault! Cost is $5-20 sliding scale

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 21, 2006 13:40 - Portland Real Estate News

New Page 1

Today's blog is courtesy of Bill and Sharon Berger, Hasson Company Realtors.  Bill and Sharon have a monthly newsletter and the latest edition had some numbers that caught my eye:

The Month in Review:  January

Market activity in the Portland Metro area slowed for the month of January.  When compared with the month of January 2005, there were only 1.1% more listings, but pending sales and closed sales both decreased 3.2% and 4.5% respectively.

Average Price by County-- 2005

  • Clackamas     $335,800 (up 16.5% from 2004)
  • Columbia       $199,600 (up 15.8% from 2004)
  • Multnomah     $271,700 (up 14.0% from 2004)
  • Washington    $282,000 (up 16.7% from 2004)
  • Yamhill           $223,800 (up 12.2% from 2004)

Residential Market Highlights

2005

  • New Listings: 3,653
  • Pending Sales: 2,687
  • Closed Sales: 1,843
  • Average Days on Market: 57
  • Average Sales Price: $254,800
  • Inventory of Homes Currently on Market: 6,284

2006

  • New Listings: 3,692
  • Pending Sales: 2,601
  • Closed Sales: 1,760
  • Average Days on Market: 44
  • Average Sales Price: $297,700
  • Inventory of Homes Currently on Market: 5,629- 89.57%

Thanks again to Bill and Sharon Berger of Hasson Company Realtors for today's submission!  If you're looking to buy or sell a home, give Bill and Sharon a call-- they've got a "happy client list" about six-miles long and with 18 years of experience, they really know Portland real estate and that really matters!

Bill and Sharon Berger, The HASSON Company
Professional Realtors® since 1988
Phone: (503) 906-7118
Email: bergerb@hasson.com

 

 

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 22, 2006 11:07 - Finding an Apartment in Portland (and more!)

Portland Apartments

Portland Apartments

You asked, and we listened!  We have begun creating your Portland Oregon Apartment Rental guide.  Check out our new Portland Apartment page where you can find Portland apartment rentals, by area and neighborhood.  With all the rentals available in Portland, it will take us a while to get them all listed, but we've got a good start.  If we missed one, please Contact Us, and we will add it to the list.

Portland Apartment Rental Guide (by area)

Northwest

North

Northeast

Central

East

Southeast

Southwest

Also, be sure to check the page for other apartment rental links to help you on your hunt! Here are a few more handy resources:

Change of Address

Change your Address with the US Postal Service  - Fill out the form on-line.

Change Driver's License

Change your Driver's License Address with the DMV - complete their on-line form, or print and mail it in.

Utilities

MoveUtilities.com - Site allows you to put in all your information and assist you in moving Portland utilities like phone, water, gas service and more.  Also offers competitive packages on cable/DSL/dish TV and other services.

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 23, 2006 08:12 - Fetch Doggie Daycare in Eliot

New Page 2

Fetch Doggie Daycare in Eliot

I was taking a walk through Eliot when I came across the new Fetch Doggie Daycare, so I dropped in to learn more.  After all, who can resist a doggie in the window?  Fetch has been in the space next to Tiny's at 2021 NE MLK Jr. Blvd. for about four months now.  They offer Doggie Daycare on Monday-Friday, from 7am - 6:15pm. 

Doggie Daycare Services - "Drop your dog off for a a day of play! Our fun and caring environment is designed to provide your pup with the exercise, socialization and mental stimulation he/she needs for a happy healthy life. We have over 3600 sq/ft of play area for wrestling, running or just plain relaxing. We have balls, chew toys, play structures, a nap room and experienced belly scratchers. Whether your dog likes nonstop action or is just looking for a little love throughout the day, they'll find it here.  At Fetch, we are dedicated to providing quality supervised play in a safe, fun and stimulating environment. All dogs are treated with care and respect."

Fetch also offers a do-it-yourself dog wash, and their boutique has a selection of healthy dog food and treats. 

Dog Wash Self-Service: "Fetch has all the equipment you need to wash and dry your dog with no appointment and no clean-up. We have raised tubs, a variety of shampoos, towels, aprons, brushes, dryers and nail clippers. Go home with a clean dog and leave the mess behind!"

Dog Wash Full Service (for doggie daycare clients):  "If you'd prefer to have someone else wash your pup, leave the work to us. We will shampoo, brush and dry your dog. Additional services include specialty shampoos, ear cleaning and nail clipping."

Additionally, Fetch offers dog training, by Gina Micciulla from "Unleash Yourself Training Center".  This training method is known as "The Third Way" and uses neither of the two common types of dog training (negative or positive reinforcement), but instead is about getting your dog to perform all the desired behaviors on a voluntary basis.  This training system must really work, as Portland Monthly magazine awarded Unleash Yourself the "2005 Best of the City" award for dog training.

If you live in North/Northeast Portland and you have dogs, why not drop in and visit Fetch: 

Fetch Doggie Daycare - 2021 NE MLK Jr. Blvd. Portland, OR 97212, www.fetchdaycare.com

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

February 26, 2006 10:04 - Portland Home and Garden

New Page 7

Today is the last day of the Portland Home and Garden Show.  It's chilly and overcast with rain in the forecast so why not get out and dream a little dream about Spring? ;-)

"Over 1,000 Booths  The Portland Home & Garden Show is the largest show of its kind. Known simply as The Home Show, this is the one place where you can shop and compare, purchase new products and plan entire building projects all under one roof! We cover over 315,000 square feet at expo. Should you raise the roof, remodel or expand out the side? Bring questions because you are going to meet lots of experts. From the inside of your kitchen to your yard, garden & patio, get answers on how to "do it right." You'll find each exhibit staffed with people who will be happy to give you professional help. Don't miss The Original Home Show."

Admission
General Admission: $10.00
Children 6 - 12: $2.00
Free to members of the American Horticulture Society
Free to children 5 and under

Features
Plant Blow Out
Garden Seminars
CASA - Hope Peony
Valerie Bickford
Sustainable Living
Showcase Gardens
Flower Show
Garden Gallery
Orchid Show & Sale
Borders Books
Plant Sale
Hort. Resource Center
Housing Resource Ctr
Home Seminars
Children's Workshops
Preview Party
Wine Tasting

See you there!

To reference this particular blog entry, please copy this link: (Permalink)
br>

January 2006 «  » March 2006

 

 RSS
RSS Feed For This News

Blog Home | Archives | Links