Just got back from four days in Portland and my friend and I (being in the food industry) tried to eat as much as possible. Here's a not super detailed but long anyway review:
Paleys: Great service, we shared the crab salad which we both loved and the escargot with bone marrow which was good but the escargot were a little chewy. Then we also shared the fish special (can't remember which one, sorry) which was excellent. Dessert was tasty too, I'd definately go back.
Carlyle: Appetizers, happy hour. Great friendly service. The unfortunate thing about happy hours is that you don't get the best food, hey it's half price!
But the atmosphere and the staff, the wines by the glass all make up for it. Great place to stop by. Rice balls stuffed with pancetta and cheese were very good. Oysters good but the sauce was a little odd. Not as thrilled with the apple crisp.
clarklewis: Lunch, no table service. We were all thinking that it would be a good idea to have table service as there are plenty of people and they do everything except take your order. We shared a frisee salad and the endive salad both were excellent. We split the salmon again excellent. Dessert was a crisp, cookies and panna. The difference with this restaurant was that the food really sang. Something my boss likes to say, "it's got the love". I would highly recommend this place.
Ciao Vito: Dinner. Excellent server, Greg. We split the spagetti agli olio and the mushrooms in parchment for starters. Both were very simple but stunning dishes. Entree was the pork chop with braised greens and glazed carrots and turnips. So satisfying! Dessert was a pot de creme? It's all blending together. Their wine by the glass was really good, and the prices were soo reasonable. Again, highly recommended.
Carafe: Lunch. Nice service. Food was good. The kind of place I would go to if I worked nearby. But it didn't zing. I had the steak and salad. My friend had the burger, great fries! The chocolate cake was very rich and yummy.
We had a great time and didn't even get to some of the places that we were interested in. Luckily, my friend lives up there, so I'll be back!
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