Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Portland Eating, part II

After a fairly big day of finding and walking our way around what is really a tiny part of the city of Portland, we were ready to stay close to our hotel room for dinner Saturday night.  Since the hotel restaurant was closed for remodeling, and there were no other restaurants for blocks around, staying close meant staying in.  We'd never ordered room service before, but the menu was affordably priced, and we decided to give it a try.

The choices were limited, but we each found things we'd like.  

Hubby ordered their burger, and not wanting any more bread after our sandwich lunch, I ordered the steak.  I really had no idea what to expect, not knowing exactly what a Colette Steak was, and a Google search wasn't any help.  But the person at room service assured me it was good, so I went for it.

She was right.  The steak was amazing.  I could cut it easily with my fork, it was cooked perfectly, and had great flavor.  Hubby said the same for his hamburger.  He prefers a sturdier bun, but was very impressed with the meat and other inclusions in the sandwich, which is what counts most.  

My fries had some interesting additional toppings, like garlic, parmesan, and porcini powder.  (I'd never heard of porcini powder, but this blog explains it well and makes interesting suggestions for its uses.) Our only complaints were that the fries were a bit salty, for our taste, and I felt that at least my dinner lacked a veggie or some garnish.  But the main event of each plate was certainly great.

The only meal we hadn't had out that weekend, thus far, was breakfast, and I was really in the mood for a hearty one the morning we left.  I did an internet search for Portland Sunday brunches, and eventually decided that The Original: A Dinerant, which was fairly close by, sounded interesting.  It is described as a "hipster" spot, sort of like a diner, but a definite step up.

This place was super busy, so we had to wait quite awhile for a table.  This was only frustrating, because in downtown Portland, they don't charge for parking until 1 PM on Sundays.  We parked at 11:50, and there is no way to pay ahead.  We had a several blocks' walk to get back to the car by 1:00 to, either, leave or make the required payment.  

Anyway, we were happy to be taken to our booth.  I wish I could've gotten a head-on photo of the seating area we were in, because it was pretty cool with its curved, red, velvet banquettes. Sort of retro-60s, I guess?  

Again, choosing our meal from the yummy-sounding brunch menu options was a challenge.  Creme Brûlée French Toast, Cornmeal Bacon Waffles, Biscuits and Gravy, Eggs Benedict, several types of omelets, and so much more... all sounded good!  I knew I needed some protein, but also couldn't pass up Polenta Cakes, which neither of us had ever had before.  We decided that Hubby would order an omelette, and I'd order the Polenta Cakes, and we'd split and trade.  Hubby wasn't about to share half of his hash browns, so we ordered an additional plate.  (Yep, I had polenta cakes and hash browns... A little carby, but an omelette needs good hash browns!)

Our omelette choice was their Cobb Omelette with bacon, chicken, tomato, avocado, and blue cheese.  It was very good.  The hash browns were comparatively and disappointingly unimpressive.  We just expected diner potatoes to be some kind of wonderful.  

Having never had polenta cakes, we didn't have anything to compare to, but these were the one thing I've really been craving since we got back home.  They were so delicious!  My new favorite comfort food, I think.  It didn't hurt that they were served with candied bacon!  I was glad to eat only one of the 2 cakes, though, and have the hearty egg dish to keep my blood sugar off the roller coaster.  

In case you were waiting in suspense, we ate at a relaxed pace, and got back to our car just a minute or two before 1:00.  As usual with worrying, it was for nothing!

I think I'll have to figure out how to make polenta cakes, which I don't imagine should be difficult.  I'll share when I get something close to what we had.

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