Friday, November 12, 2010


Restaurant: Dante's
Location: 350 West Burnside, Portland OR 97209
Date: November 6th, 2010
Ordered: 1 slice Pepperoni Pizza
Cost: $3.50

Dante's is a bar just on the west end of the Burnside Bridge that has many faces; it's generally not a kid-friendly place with a choice of entertainment for every adult. When I was there this last weekend, it was for a friend's birthday party and there was a Rolling Stones tribute thing going on, which meant loud rock music. Lots of fun, I assure you.

At some point in the evening I started to get hungry, and I eyed the pizza that was being made in the kitchen on the corner of the building. Giving into temptation, I ordered a slice of pepperoni. What was given to me for the bargain price of $3.50 was a delicious slice of New York-style pepperoni pizza that was bigger than my face. It was quite possibly the largest slice of pizza I've found in Portland (though Rocco's, just up the street, might be close) and it was dripping in flavor.

Did I mention the slice was large? It handily eclipses the paper plate beneath it!

The trouble with Dante's is that it isn't a restaurant destination, per se. If you're already there for an evening's entertainment, the pizza will not be a bad choice. Otherwise, however, please note that the kitchen has an outside-facing order window and, if you're hungry in Portland late at night, it's a damn good place to walk past and grab a slice! I'm pretty sure I'll be there again.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Tsunami Thai

Restaurant: Tsunami Thai
Location: 2731 N Killingsworth St,
Date: October 28th, 2010
Ordered: Pad Thai
Cost: $9.00

Right next door to Mio Sushi is Tsunami Thai. I went there on a whim with some friends and, despite wanting Pad See Ew (which is one of my new favorites), I ordered my yardstick Pad Thai.

Perhaps it was due to the restaurant being less-than-busy, but my food arrived quickly. It was warm and oh-so-good smelling. I tasted it; the sauce was sweet (versus spicy), the noodles were perfect, and the accompanying vegetables were fresh. I know it sounds like I love Pad Thai every time I have it, but really, it just keeps getting better.

So what's my opinion on Tsunami Thai? I would definitely go back again. I'll just have to add it to the list of excellent Thai food in North Portland.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

New Old Lompoc - 5th Quadrant

Restaurant: New Old Lompoc - 5th Quadrant
Location: 3901 N Williams Ave, Portland, OR 97227
Date: October 3rd, 2010
Ordered: BLT
Cost: $7.50

Located in North Portland (aka "the Fifth Quadrant"), the New Old Lompoc is, interestingly, about as far as you can get from St. Johns and still be in NoPo. I was there for an early lunch at about 10:45 AM, which meant that I stood outside for 15 minutes until they opened at 11. At least they put that on the website so I could look up why the door was locked.

I sat with a large group of people and, shockingly, decided to order a BLT from our friendly server. Despite the group size, the food arrived with surprising celerity. It might have had something to do with us being the first customers of the day.

The BLT was really good, though it had too much "T" for my taste*. Easily remedied, I pulled off a layer of tomato and started to devour the sandwich. Not only was the bacon succulent, juicy, and perfectly cooked, there was a delicious sauce - not quite mayo - that really rounded out the flavor. I ended up eating the sandwich with such speed that I was disappointed when it was gone.

So how do I feel about the New Old Lompoc (5th Quadrant)? I enjoyed it. The food was delicious and the service was friendly. Will I go back? Most likely. Of note, however: I'm pretty sure the 23rd Ave location is closer to where I live.

*For the record, I really don't like tomatoes, and will only eat them because they're good for me. Given this, I won't eat double-stacked tomatoes. A single layer only, please.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Mio Sushi

Restaurant: Mio Sushi
Location: 2735 N Killingsworth St, Portland, OR 97217
Date: September 24th, 2010
Ordered: Combination Rolls, Tamago, Philadelphia Rolls, and a couple other rolls.
Cost: $36.65

There aren't that many places in North Portland to get sushi, so Mio Sushi is a pleasant surprise inasmuch as it keeps the bar nice and high. Fresh-made sushi awaits those who order there, and it's delicious. The restaurant is small but not cramped, it's clean, and well-kept.

On being seated, we were handed a menu and proceeded to order almost everything that sounded good.

In the end, we ended up with food for four. It was all delicious, but the danger in ordering sushi is everything is bite-sized and there's no real concept of how much food you're getting when you order four or five items.

The only problem I have is with the menu. It's not intuitive when it comes to order and getting an idea of what the food is going to be; a few brief words, if you get even that, doesn't really cover it. Furthermore, there's the menu with the food and there's the menu where you mark down what you want to order; the two don't line up at all. It's frustrating.

Does the menu really prevent me from enjoying Mio Sushi? Of course not. The food is great, the service is friendly, and the atmosphere is pleasant without being stuffy.

So what's the verdict on Mio Sushi? Definitely worth checking out, and a great restaurant to have in North Portland.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Nob Hill

Restaurant: Nob Hill Bar & Grill
Location: 937 Northwest 23rd Avenue, Portland, OR 97210-3005
Date: July 5th, 2010
Ordered: Tacos ($.50 each!)
Cost: confidential

It was Monday night and my stomach was on the prowl for cheap Portland eats. Suddenly it popped in my head; I'd heard friends mention cheap taco night before and this was my chance to sample it.

Nob Hill Bar & Grill is an unassuming joint sitting on NW 23rd. It's a nice, clean bar with a pleasant atmosphere. On Monday nights, from 6 PM to 9 PM, one can order tacos there for 50 cents. These are not fancy tacos; you're handed a shell with warm, delicious meat in it; I'm going to assume it was seasoned beef. You're then directed to an area where you can add lettuce, cheese, tomatos, salsa, and other toppings. Like I said, nothing fancy - but man, it's delicious.

I won't disclose how many of these cheap tacos I ate, but I can tell you that four people ate heartily for less than $10. Would I go to Nob Hill again? Sure! Aside from 50-cent tacos, the rest of the happy hour menu (2 PM to close) looked pretty darn good. I can't wait to give it a shot.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Thai Terrace

Restaurant: Thai Terrace
Location: 700 SE Chkalov Dr, Vancouver, WA 98683
Date: March 12th, 2010
Ordered: Pad Thai
Cost: $8.50

I was talked into trying Thai Terrace (in Vancouver) the other night. Once we were seated and someone came around, I ordered - of course - my yardstick Pad Thai.

I should let you know that the service wasn't so great. It was a Friday evening, so the dinner rush was on, but the restaurant was small, noisy, and slow. Something to be aware of.

I must say that Thai Terrace has some great Pad Thai. Some of the most delicious I've tasted in a while. However, it is worth having to go to east-nowhere Vancouver for? Probably not. Fortunately, it appears that they have a North Portland location!

Monday, March 1, 2010


Restaurant: Aprisa
Location: Corner of SE 8th & Division, Portland, OR 97214
Date: February 24th, 2010
Ordered: Taco Salad
Cost: $5.40

Several of my coworkers and I decided to try Aprisa one day, as it's within walking distance of where I work. It's a surprising-looking place; it's entirely a drive-up restaurant that's roughly the size of a single-wide trailer. A cute-looking little place, but it doesn't scream "restaurant".

I ordered my favorite, taco salad. It came in short time, as ordered. The water I asked for, while ordering, however, didn't come as ordered and I had to ask for it. Notably, my friend's burrito, ordered without cheese, was delivered (with verbal assurance) without cheese. Or so he was told; it actually came with cheese, as he later, unfortunately, found out.

My taco salad, once I got a chance to eat it, wasn't all that great. It wasn't terrible, and was perhaps nicely authentic, but it wasn't all that great. The ingredients tasted fresh, but the proportions all seemed wrong.

Still, if you're in the mood for authentic mexican food, it's a place to try.

Thursday, January 21, 2010


Restaurant: EastBurn
Location: 1800 E Burnside St, Portland, OR 97214
Date: January 20th, 2010
Ordered: Steak Salad
Cost: $12

I had lunch with some coworkers at EastBurn the other day, the trendy little restaurant on the southeast corner of 18th & East Burnside. The inside is nice, though it was just us when we arrived at noon on a Wednesday.

Examining the lunch menu, and wanting something delicious but not TOO unhealthy, I opted to try the steak salad. It arrived 15-ish minutes later.

Now the salad was advertised to be a bed of greens with apple chunks, steak, and brie on it. I can tell you that, combined with the vinaigrette dressing they put on, it was a darn good salad. The greens were good, the apple was crisp, the steak was perfectly done... but the brie took the salad to the next level of yum.

My overall impression of the place was solid; it seems like a trendy place with really good food. My concern is the $12 price tag associated with the salad. Will I often pay that much for one? Unlikely... but if you're in the mood to, I suggest you try it!