Shay's Grill and Bar is now open in Monument Square. We stopped in last night to give it a try. The room is warm and comfortable with some red leather booths (leftover from Michaela's? I can' remember), tables and maybe 8 bar seats. It was full by the time we left. Same owners as the coffee shop The Crooked Mile. I don't know if its just me but the room seemed bigger than when it was Michaela's. I'm not sure why, maybe the lighting?
The menu offers a nice variety from starters, soup/salad, sandwiches, pasta dishes and grill items. This is definitely the Blue Spoon dinner price range and the portions were generous. The most expensive items were $15.95, Ribeye and Pork Loin. Everything else was much less.
I had the house salad with blue cheese vinagrette ($2.75) and the bruschetta ($6.95). I really liked the salad, the dressing was terrific. The bruschetta was good, very simple -- I would have preferred the cheese cooked more on top, but I'm picky about that.
My companion had the grilled salmon caesar salad ($9.95). The salmon was prepared with a terriyaki sauce, medium rare with homemade croutons. This was a generously portioned salad and he took some home!
They have a full bar and we tried a nice $5.00 Wolff Blass (?) Cabernet for by the glass. The wine list looked pretty good from a quick glance and there were four beers on tap.
They also had a desert tray that looked amazing! It included a creme brulee cheesecake, a tollhouse bar with coconut crust and some kind of chocolate sauce, an apple tart (?) with ice creme and pear sauce, and an apple crumble type dish. I may not have that just right and I'm sure it changes.
I'm terrible at descriptions so you should check it out. If the quality remains high and at this price point, this place will be hard to get into in no time.
I look forward to hearing other peoples impressions. Also, they will begin lunch service in a couple of weeks. Beware, it will be packed.
Shay's will make an excellent addition to Portland, even if its already too small :)
BTW, has anyone tried the food at the newly opened West End Pizza Gallery? It's located right next to West End Grocery and they did a really nice job with the space. They have soup, salads, pizza and sandwiches. I had a premade chef's salad from the cooler. Good deal for $4.00! The owner was behind the counter and was friendly, informative and engaging. I wish him well.
Let us know if you give this place a try!