We're planning a 5 night trip to Portland and I was hoping to get some recommendations from the Portland chowhound cognescenti. The trip will primarily revolve around good food (what could be better?) We love great, flavorful, well-prepared food and care less about whether its fancy or a hole in the wall. If we're spending big dough, we also expect good service. I am deeply passionate about wine and will turn over any stone to find great values on older wines (particularly Rhone, Bordeaux and Spanish - either retail or at restaurants). I'm not very knowledgeable about NW wines but am open to suggestions on where to find good ones at great prices.
Places that we're considering going (have heard good things about on/offline) include in no particular order:
It seems like there are an embarassment of riches to choose from. We live in SF where this is also a problem. We don't want to eat at formal, fancy places every night (maybe twice?). Is Couvron worth the money? Is it going to be a truly imaginative, memorable meal? If you had to choose among Wildwood, Higgins, and the Heathman with the emphasis being on innovative, deeply flavorful food and incredible, well-priced wines which 2 would you pick?
We'd love to have great seafood in Portland. Are any of the above restaurants truly remarkable? Is Saburo's worth the wait for sushi or is there somewhere else you'd recommend.
We'd also appreciate reactions to Le Bouchon, Cafe Azul and Tapeo. They seemed like good mid-range restaurants.
Thanks for your guidance.