Posted tagged ‘Portland’

Finger food in Portland

August 19, 2011

It is no secret that I often turn to “The Best Thing I Ever Ate” as a source of inspiration.  If I am traveling somewhere, I will look up which restaurants have been featured on that show and will try to plan my itinerary around those places – if it’s something I’m interested in.  If something sounds really good when I first see the episode, I will make a mental note of it and will remember it is a must the next time I am in that city.

That is exactly why it is so pleasantly surprising to see a place I visited on my own, featured on the show.  It’s even more special when something I ate there is on the show as well!

Rahm Fama chose Ike’s Vietnamese Fish Sauce Wings from Pok Pok in Portland as his favorite finger food.  Guy Fieri visited this place on DD and D.  The chef, Andy Ricker, creates his recipes based on his travels through Asia.  It is described as fresh natural chicken wings marinated in fish sauce, garlic and sugar, deep fried, tossed in caramelized Phu Quoc fish sauce and garlic and served with Vietnamese table salad on the menu.

Chef Andy mixes garlic, salt and water together then strains it through a cheese cloth.  If actual minced garlic is on the chicken wing, it will burn when fried.  Genius!  He then adds fine sugar and fish sauce to the garlic water and marinates the chicken overnight.  He dredges the wings in rice flour and some tempura flour and deep fries them.  They are then topped with the “wing caramel” which is fish sauce, water and sugar.  He adds some chili paste and fried garlic to it and you’ve got some spicy-sweet Vietnamese chicken wings!

We went to Pok Pok with our dear friends Elisa and Matt, who live in Portland and hosted us that trip.  Everything we tried had wonderful flavor to it and our plates were licked clean.  I’d definitely want to go back the next time we are in town!

3226 SE Division St.  Portland, OR 97202

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Voodoo Doughnuts

March 12, 2010

What is a trip to Portland without going to Voodoo Doughnuts??

I’ve been on this writing hiatus because work has been busy.  I never wrote about one of our most significant stops in Portland.  We had to go to the Voodoo.

We stood in line for what felt like forever.  Doughnuts were supposed to be our breakfast but ended up being more of a lunch because we didn’t make it inside until past noon!

I already knew what I wanted to get before we went.  I got the “No Name” doughnut.  It’s so good that they couldn’t come up with a name for it to do it justice.   Chocolate rice krispies and peanut butter anyone??  We ordered SEVEN doughnuts between the four of us and guess what… we ate ALL OF THEM.   Aaron thought his “Old Dirty Bastard” choice was hilarious.  Matt got the “grape ape” but after one bite each, we thought that was enough.

Of course, we had to get a traditional Voodoo Doll Doughnut!  There is a pretzel stabbing the heart of this doughnut and strawberry jelly oozes out of it…

22 SW 3rd Ave.  Portland, OR

Pok Pok

February 10, 2010

I don’t have time to go into detail about how scrumptious the food was at Pok Pok but I’ll let the pictures and menu descriptions speak for themselves.  It’s not your traditional Thai restaurant.  There is no pad thai on the menu and the cook is a white guy but the food was awesome.  It’s tiny so make sure to go early!!  We got there at 4:50 PM (they open at 5 for dinner) and snagged the last indoor table.  We then had to roll ourselves out of the restaurant after consuming all of this food…

Kai Yaang  (Whole Bird): Roasted natural game hen rubbed with lemongrass, garlic, pepper and cilantro served with a spicy sweet and sour dipping sauce.
Muu Sateh: Carlton Farms pork loin skewers marinated in coconut milk and turmeric, grilled over charcoal and served with peanut sauce, cucumber relish and grilled bread. Yes, bread really is the normal accompaniment.
Phat Phak Ruam Mit: Stir fried mixed vegetables and wild caught prawns with garlic, fish sauce and oyster sauce. Not all Thai food is spicy.
Khao Soi Kai: Northern Thai mild curry noodle soup made with our secret curry paste recipe, natural chicken on the bone and house-pressed fresh coconut milk. Served with pickled mustard greens, shallots, crispy yellow noodles and roasted chili paste. Chiang Mai specialty, with Burmese origins.
Ike’s Vietnamese Fish Sauce Wings: Fresh natural chicken wings marinated in fish sauce, garlic and sugar, deep fried, tossed in caramelized Phu Quoc fish sauce and garlic and served with Vietnamese table salad. Our daytime grill cook Ich Truong’s recipe from his home in Vietnam.
Jasmine Rice
Coconut Rice
Thai Iced Tea

3226 SE Division Street  Portland, OR

Ken’s Artisan Pizza

January 25, 2010

We tried to go to Ken’s Artisan Pizza for lunch only to find out we were at Ken’s Bakery instead.  We headed over to Ken’s Artisan Pizza only to find out they are only open for dinner from 5 to 10 PM.  Since Matt wanted to watch the Raven’s game at 5:15, we watched the game at Henry’s and headed over to Ken’s after that.  Somewhere in between was when Boyfriend lost his cell phone and we waited and waited for a table.


My friend Kitty had warned me to go early otherwise we’d wait for a loooong time for a table.  And wait we did!  It was a blessing though because I was so full from our earlier escapades that it gave my stomach a chance to want food again.  We ordered three pizzas for the four of us and had a couple slices leftover.  Matt asked where the pepperoni was on the menu. ; )  We ordered an olive pizza, an Amatriciana – roasted tomato sauce, housemade pancetta, red onions and Pecorino, and a butternut squash with basil pizza.  They were all excellent but I liked the butternut squash one the best.  Great thin crust pizza but make sure to go early otherwise you’ll end up waiting an hour like we did.  I think we finally ate around 9:30 PM!!

304 Southeast 28th Avenue   Portland, OR

Saint Cupcake

January 22, 2010

Ummm, did I mention we also ate cupcakes this day?!?

Saint Cupcake on Belmont was a quaint little place.  You feel like you stepped into someone’s house with a bunch of antiques and cupcakes are sold in the back.  So cute!

I got a hot fudge with vanilla cake and  Boyfriend got the peanut butter / chocolate cupcake.  Elisa and Matt got red velvet and said it was the best of them all.  They probably weren’t the best cupcakes I’ve had but I loved the store they were sold in!  The cake was a little on the dry side but I loved the frosting to cake ratio.  Other places have too much frosting.

We did have one negative experience here.  We parked at Zupan’s across the street and did a little shopping.  When we came out, there was a young couple who asked us for money because they needed gas.  We quickly put our head down, mumbled an apology and walked across the street.  The whole time we were in Saint Cupcake, Elisa felt guilty for not giving them money.  The couple moved and stood right outside of Saint Cupcake so Matt mentally decided to give them a couple bucks.  As we were shopping in the store, we noticed the couple had come inside.  The girl walked out right in front of us carrying a big pink box from Saint Cupcake!!!  When we walked out, the couple were a few steps away but the girl deliberately turned and came back to ask us for money again!!  All while holding her box of cupcakes!!  How can she look us in the eye and ask us for gas money while holding a box of cupcakes she had just bought?!?  Unbelievable.

3300 SE Belmont @ 33rd  Portland, Oregon

Unnecessary afternoon snack!

January 21, 2010

Would you believe that after our “lunner” at Bridgeport, we moseyed on over to Henry’s Tavern to watch the Ravens game?   They have over 100 beers and hard ciders on tap with the majority of them hailing from local breweries.

Even though we weren’t hungry, it’s a rough drinking without something to munch on so Boyfriend ordered waffle fries with gorgonzola cheese melted over it.   I’m not usually a fan of gorgonzola but when it’s melted, it’s much milder.  And of course, it was smothered on top of french fries which I love.  Matt bought Elisa and I Moroccan coffees and the pomegranate and raspberry martinis pictured above so I didn’t even try the beer there!  We weren’t able to find four seats at the bar but Elisa and Matt pointed out to us that there is ice all around the bar to set your drinks on so they don’t get cold *edit* warm.  Genius!!

10 NW 12th Avenue   Portland, OR

St. John’s Theater and Pub

January 19, 2010

It started out innocently enough.  Elisa and Matt asked if we wanted to grab a drink after they picked us up from the airport Friday night.

We went to St. John’s Theater and Pub which is one of the McMenamins locations right around the corner from Elisa’s place.  We sat right over the kitchen on the second floor and the heavenly aromas wafted up to us.  It happened to be their late night happy hour and I happen to have this love for fried potatoes and that’s how I came to order the cajun tots.  That entire basket of tots was $1!!  It was slightly spicy tator tots with ranch to dip in.  My ruby beer (which dangerously tasted like juice) is featured on the left and Boyfriend’s beer is on the right.

And so began our weekend of over indulging.  I know I just wrote in my last post that I’m trying to be healthier and lose weight but I was on vacation!  Please. Don’t. Judge.

8203 N. Ivanhoe   Portland, OR


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