Oregon: This green state is gorgeous and we got to see a bit of it by car, but our focus was the city. Portland is a gritty city filled with delectable desserts, interesting characters, and a fun motto: keep Portland weird. Luckily for everyone, this motto has been internalized by the locals.
Food: I definitely ate my way through this city: VooDoo Doughnuts, Blue Star Doughnuts, Waffle Window, Salt and Straw, Portland City Grille, and Pok Pok.
My personal opinions: I don’t really like doughnuts, but the maple bacon doughnut from VooDoo is the most delicious doughnut I’ve ever had. Blue star serves us more posh, fresh doughnuts, which are good and preferred by most of the locals I talked to.
The Waffle Window was a little bit out of the way, but well worth it. A couple of good friends recommended it to me (Thanks Brice and Shelby) and I’m glad they did. Finding the small window was easy, and the savory waffle I ate for breakfast (forget I had a couple bites of 4 doughnuts) was amazing. I highly recommend stopping here, especially if you’re looking for something savory instead of sweet.
Pok Pok was for lunch. It’s a local favorite for Thai food and was recommended endlessly by locals and online. Still, I was not a fan. The chicken wings tasted like fish, bees terrorized my friend and I during our lunch, and our main dishes included all parts of a chicken and were very greasy. Many, many people love this place- and the service was good- but after it was all eaten and done, I was not a fan.
To wash out the Pok Pok, we gorged on ice cream from Salt & Straw, which was SOO GOOD. I absolutely recommend waiting in line for this. Their seasonal, quirky flavors, creamy ice cream, delicious waffle cones, and amazingly patient service was worth the trip.
Finally, we went to the Portland City Grille for dinner. It was a gorgeous view and a delicious dinner. Overall, a nice high end restaurant. The selling point for me wasn’t the food, but the view.
Views: My personal favorite part of Portland was the greenery that lives there and in the surrounding areas. I got to see the rose garden, the Japanese garden, the lovely neighborhoods surrounding it, and the LDS Temple in the nearby city of Lake Oswego. The neighborhood surrounding Lake Oswego has some of the cutest houses I have ever seen and the Portland Temple was absolutely gorgeous.
Taking photos in the Japanese and rose gardens was a blast because capturing the mossy green and pretty plants made me truly see that weird things are beautiful in their own way.