I'm a NYC hound who will be in PDX shortly and--realistically--I only have time for 2 dinners, 2 lunches and a few breakfasts/brunches/happy hours/snacks. I've only been to your fine city once before and ate at Pok Pok (before we had one in NYC) and Tasty & Sons. I liked basically everything at Pok Pok and the Burmese pork stew dish at T&S.
This time around I'm traveling without my SO, so I'm looking for places with good, full-menu bar dining and/or places to catch up with old friends (mostly men, early 30s). Although I enjoy all of the following at times, I'm not looking for prix fixe-only spots, "date night"-type places, or anywhere that only serves pizza, southern food, or BBQ on this trip. I'll have a car so I'm happy to travel.
I was thinking of Evoe for lunch and Matchbox lounge for happy hour (+burger), but I really need your dinner suggestions. If there's somwhere in Portland similar to Momofuku Ssam or Roberta's in NYC, Cochon in New Orleans, Empire State South in Atlanta, or Barley Swine in Austin--that's the type of place I really don't want to miss...an unusual menu with food you don't usually see and that's at least somewhat based on local culture/ingredients, not too precious and not molecular gastronomy, casual atmosphere yet upscale ingredients and/or cooking technique, great food *and* cocktails/local beers. I don't mind loudness, waiting (as long as there's somewhere to wait indoors and you can get alcohol), or expense as long as you get what you pay for. I'm fine with a blowout one night and would prefer cheaper options for the other night and breakfast/lunch.
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