My family and I spent several days in Portland on a college tour, staying in the downtown area. Portland is a great city and the March weather was mild and sunny, although quite chilly in the early morning and later evening hours. I wanted to thank all the Portland CH'rs for their advice, we ate at a few of these places as well as places we thought might be good, all in all a very nice visit.
First dinner was at Dan and Louis Oyster Bar. Now I'm the first to admit being a sucker for historic eateries, and a place that has been in business since 1907 has to do something right. We walked in about 8:00 pm and the place had just a few tables with customers which gave me pause, as it's a good sized restaurant. We ordered chowders, salads, crab cakes and a mixed broiled seafood plate. Everything was nicely done and delicious. The chowders were rich and creamy, the salads, fresh, crisp and attractively presented and the crab cakes were tasty. My mixed seafood came with roasted red potatoes and fresh asparagus and was perfectly cooked with lemon butter, moist and tender. A very good experience. We were too full to stop at Voodoo Doughnuts after dinner though, maybe next time.
Tried the food carts at SW Alder the next day, mine were $1.50 carne asada tacos from El Rodeo. What a great deal, the tacos had nice slices of juicy, slightly charred beef, with cilantro and onions which I really enjoyed. This was the cheapest lunch on our trip. Dinner that evening was at Masu Sushi, a CH recommendation and a very good one. A nice space with high ceilings and good service, very crowded the night we were there. Everything was well prepared from the broiled fish to the sushi rolls and nigiri sushi. My wife commented how surprisingly fresh the fish was, everyone left satisfied.
Lunch the next day was a family affair, meeting relatives at Henry's Tavern. My turkey, bacon, avocado sandwich with fries was delicious. My wife had a chicken pesto pizza and son had a burger with cheddar soup which he said was excellent ( I'll have to take his word as he wouldn't share a taste with anyone).
Our final dinner was at Basta's Trattoria (another CH rec), a great neighborhood restaurant, packed on a Saturday night. We shared caesar salads, son had the pizza which was perfectly cooked, with just the right amount of char, my wife had the seafood risotto which she said was creamy and al dente. I had the osso buco with risotto and spinach. The veal shank was a generous serving with a nice tomato sauce, tender and moist, a very satisfying dish. This is a place we need to return to for a great meal on our next visit.
Lastly we loved Public Domain, we were there everyday for the wonderful coffee and pastries. Their berry brioche was fantastic! It went so well with hot coffee and their blueberry muffins were also terrific. Wish we had a branch in our town. Thanks again for all your helpful comments.