Nationally, Portland is second only to San Francisco in the number of restaurants per capita. Bring your appetite.
A few peculiarities are worth mentioning: Many dinner places listed here are closed on Mondays; Portland restaurant coffee will probably be stronger than what you’re used to if you aren’t from Seattle or San Francisco; and you can get away with virtually any mode of dress even in the most upscale establishments. What also might surprise newcomers to Portland dining is the large number of places that focus on breakfast.
Portland is a very neighborhood-oriented city, and restaurants also have strong associations with their locale. Restaurants tend to be located near other restaurants, creating mini-enclaves within dining neighborhoods that each offer distinctively different atmospheres. The restaurant scene—and dining experience—will be very different in the Pearl District than in the Mississippi Avenue neighborhood, for instance, though both offer top quality and selection.
The following dining selections are broken down into broad quadrants, along with a brief overview of that neighborhood’s dining hotbeds. You may find it as tempting to choose a neighborhood in which to dine as to choose a specific restaurant or type of cuisine, because many of the dining neighborhoods have a strong and appealing character of their own.
A number of websites and blogs chart the ups and downs of the Portland food scene; perhaps the best is www.portlandfoodanddrink.com, which, in addition to frequently impassioned confrontations between bloggers, also offers restaurant reviews and a handy “links” menu to even more foodie sites.
Farmers markets have become a major part of life for many Portland households. The most convenient market for visitors is the Portland Farmers Market, but in summer and fall, there’s an open-air market somewhere in town almost every day.
by Judy Jewell and W. C. McRae from Moon Oregon, 8th Edition, © Elizabeth & Mark Morris and Avalon Travel