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Hey everyone! The man and I are leaving for vacation in just 1 week. We are spending 9 days in Portland and Seattle. It’ll be my first time in either city!! Other than a wedding on the first day, we have absolutely nothing planned. So where should we go? What should we eat? I’m particularly interested in the unique foodie spots – the place that’s serving a must-have bacon donut, the food truck with the Egyptian-Mexican fusion tacos, the bar serving up bell pepper martinis. You know. That kindof stuff. But really, any food recommendations would be much appreciated. Please leave your thoughts in the comments below. Thanks so much!!
By the way, I’ll be posting all of my travel adventures on Instagram. Come say hello!
Image Source: A Week or a Weekend0
Averie @ Averie Cooks says
Have fun! I spent 2 weeks in Seattle when I was about 22. I could tell you about the bars 🙂
Seriously though, SUCH a pretty, vibrant, hip city!
Brandon Matzek says
Haha thanks Averie! Yeah I can’t wait to explore.
If you like sushi, definitely check out Shiro’s. If you’re lucky, Shiro-san himself will be there – ask for the omakase! There’s also a popular Taiwanese restaurant called Far East, in Bellevue. Have a great trip!
Brandon Matzek says
Thanks for the suggestions Jinxi. Jorge loves sushi, so we will have to check out Shiro’s!
[email protected] says
If you are looking for a bacon donut + every other crazy combination you’ve never thought of, Voodoo Doughnuts in Portland is what you’re looking for! If you’re a coffee snob, Stumptown Coffee roasters has free coffee tastings, which is actually much stranger than it sounds. There’s this whole tasting process called ‘cupping’ which is equal parts awesome and ridiculous. I also loved brunch at Tasty and Sons. Last but not least is a newer Urban Winery (only in Portland…) called Southeast Wine Collective.
The blog Design Sponge also has a ton of amazing city guides created by locals which are my go to when I travel: http://www.designsponge.com/category/city
Brandon Matzek says
Hi Kelly!! Thanks for the awesome suggestions! Yeah we need to hit up Voodoo Doughnuts for sure. And that coffee tasting sounds like fun ;). Totally forgot about the Design*Sponge city guides!! I’ll check there too.
If you’re looking for novelty absolutely go to Voodoo Donuts. Now if you’re looking for a great bacon donut a foodie would love don’t waste your time at VD, head over to Blue Star and don’t forget to pickup one of their Blueberry Basil Bourbon donuts – you won’t regret it. I have a ton of recommendations that I’ll email you.
Tonja Linson says
There is a great coffee shop in Downtown Seattle called Belle Epicurean. You will get an amazing cup of coffee and some wonderful French pasteries.
Food wise, I recommed a Tom Douglas restaurant most of which are situated in close proximity to each other. If you love gourmet pizza, check out Serious Pie. You can check out all his restaurants. One word…Amazing.
I haven’t spent much time in Portland, but you gotta try VooDoo Doughnuts http://voodoodoughnut.com/index.php
and McMenamins. Two brother buy historical places and renovate them. Each one is different, but they tend to have a bar and restaurant with fantastic food.
Enjoy your vacation!
Brandon Matzek says
Thanks Tonja! I looooove coffee, so I want to check out as many hotspots as possible.
steph @ stephsapartmentkitchen says
i JUST got back from a vacation to these two spots!
Portland: Tasty n Sons or Tasty n Alder are great brunch spots. Highly recommend them. Stumptown is great, but there are plenty of other great coffee spots to go to so walk around and check them out. If you’re into shopping, check out Portland Outdoor Store for great Filson / Pendleton goods. They have a cool saddle room on the top floor. Definitely swing by Voodoo, but there is a less-busy one on the East Side of Portland where you won’t have to wait in line. Pok Pok (also East Side) is a must! If you can rent a car and get out of the city, try doing the Fruit Loop. Lastly, if you’re there on a weekday, go to Portland Penny Diner for delicious (and warning, non-paleo) breakfast sandwiches.
Seattle: Check out Monorail espresso. It’s owned by a little Italian guy who is clearly very passionate about his espresso. Pike Place is a must and seconding Shiro’s for amazing sushi. Get the omakase.
My pictures of Portland are here: https://stephsapartmentkitchen.wordpress.com/2013/07/08/vacation-part-1-portland-or/ and the next entry is of Seattle. Sorry for the novel – I’m just so jealous of your trip. Have so much fun!!!
Alyssa (Everyday Maven) says
How fun!! I live in Seattle.
The absolute best coffee in Seattle is Vivace. There are a couple locations in Capitol Hill and one in South Lake Union. Amazing. https://www.espressovivace.com/
Poppy Restaurant (walking distance of one of the Vivace locations) has wonderful food and is unique and frequented by local foodies. http://poppyseattle.com/
Mamnoon is a newer spot – modern middle eastern. beautiful and fabulous. http://www.mamnoonrestaurant.com/
If you want really good Mexican (hard to find in Seattle), this is your place – http://www.lacartadeoaxaca.com/ plus the Ballard neighborhood is really cool.
Two excellent and unique lunch ideas are Little Uncle Thai – http://www.littleuncleseattle.com/ and Marination Station http://marinationmobile.com/station
As for Portland, I have only been there a handful of times but for an amazing meal, I recommend BEAST – make reservations. And definitely check out their awesome food cart scene. Have a great trip!
Kim - Liv Life says
A part of the country I’ve never visited either… I’m eagerly awaiting your return and photos!!
Kiran @ KiranTarun.com says
Have fun! I hope to visit Seattle someday. It’s a foodie haven 🙂
Amen to Vivace for amazing coffee. Also hit up Cafe Ladro for their Medici, a mocha with fresh peeled orange rind!
If you have a few people, try Revel in Fremont for awesome urban-Korean food. The dishes are great to share so you can try a ton of them, and they have outdoor heated seating!
Molly Moons for homemade ice cream and waffle cones, with flavors like lavender, and endless topping options. The smell of homemade waffle cones when you walk in will be enough to convince you.
Hot Cakes in Ballard serves mini molten cakes served in mason jars with inventive cocktails and boozy milkshakes.
Have SO much fun over here. Can not wait to see pictures!
Kevin Sperry says
Beast is a must go and also stop by the book larder. They can give you some advice on new places.
I also live in Seattle and I’m going to “+1” some of the recommendations that have already appeared: Poppy, Revel, and Hot Cakes.
I’ll add a few more Capitol Hill favorites:
Sitka and Spruce – incredibly inventive dishes to share, made with the very best of the season’s ingredients. Located inside the Melrose Market, filled with great vendors of cheese, meat, flowers, and wine. http://www.sitkaandspruce.com/
Spinasse – incredible Italian, the absolute BEST house-made pasta. http://www.spinasse.com/
Kedai Makan – walkup window serving the fantastic flavors of Malaysia. Operated by a really nice young couple who started out serving their food at a booth at the Farmer’s Market on Capitol hill, they got so popular they were able to open their own restaurant. No seating available for customers but you’re welcome to take your food to the bar next door, Montana, which is owned/operated by Rachel of Rachel’s Ginger Beer. http://www.kedaimakanseattle.com/
Todd @ HonestlyYUM says
Dunno if I’m late to the party here, but I was just up in both Seattle and Portland last month and I’d say for Seattle, Canon is a must for bars – http://www.canonseattle.com – as well as Kask in Portland – http://grunerpdx.com/kask. For donuts in Portland Voodoo is good, but I preferred Blue Star – http://www.bluestardonuts.com.
More donuts in addition to the ones recommended above.
1. http://rockingfrogpdx.com/?page_id=53: Made to order, served piping hot. I haven’t visited in a while, but I enjoyed their cinnamon sugar.
2. http://www.staccatogelato.com/: Gelato and donuts. Not sure if they make donuts every day but they have unique flavours (Guiness).
Other eats in addition to the recommendations above:
1. http://wafflewindow.com/: Sweet and savoury waffles.
2. http://bokebowl.com/: Ramen and Korean Fried Chicken on Thursdays. I loved their brussels sprouts/cauliflower salad. http://www.biwarestaurant.com/ is also good for ramen.
3. http://lepigeon.com/: For a fancier dinner, Le Pigeon is pretty yummy.
4. http://www.deschutesbrewery.com/locations/portland: Deschutes Brew Pub. Actually, there are a lot of gastropubs in Portland, most of which are awesome. http://rogue.com/locations/pdfs/Menu-PDX.pdf and http://www.bridgeportbrew.com/eat/brew-pub
5. http://cacaodrinkchocolate.com/: Excellent drinking chocolate (although it’s a bit warm now)
6. http://www.portlandfarmersmarket.org/: Saturday Portland’s Farmers Market. People like Pine State Biscuits http://www.pinestatebiscuits.com/. They also have a brick and mortar.
7. Pix Patisserie: http://pixpatisserie.myshopify.com/
If you find yourself at a grocery store, there are some local products that you might like to try:
1. Dave’s Killer Bread (not sure if they’re in your area). Sin Dawg is like a cinnamon roll and is very popular.
2. If you like Greek yogurt, Nancy’s Greek yogurt is very thick and creamy– not much tang.
If you’re driving to/from Portland/Seattle, there is a Mexican restaurant in Centralia that is supposed to be delicious (haven’t tried yet):
Seattle area, in addition to the ones above:
1. http://www.dintaifungusa.com/menu_sea.html. XLBs
2. http://www.ezellschicken.com/index.html: Fried chicken.
It’s been a while since I’ve entertained anyone, but these were the places I’d typically recommend.
Thanks for posting this. I am going over there on my honeymoon, a week from Monday. Though, Seattle area is the main place we are going. We’ll be heading up to Mulkiteo. The LAST time I was there, a friend took me to a place called Diamond Knot ale House (http://www.diamondknot.com/). You cook your food on super heated stones, in front of you. Very reasonably priced, and some good craft ales to go along with it.
The other advantage, is the Mulkiteo/Clinton ferry is right there. Nice short trip to Whidbey island, and that is a beautiful drive north, back to the bridge back to the main land.
Another place, in Seattle that I hope to make it to: http://thecrabpotseattle.com/. I have heard a lot of good about this place. Plentiful seafood 🙂
My fiance and I are also going to the Space Needle one night… just because, it is one of those things to do. 🙂
[email protected] says
OK, from the perspective of a San Diegan who just moved back form the Northwest – here are my suggestions:
Seattle – Matt’s in the Market for lunch, The Walrus and the Carpenter for dinner, and for schmancy with a Lake Union view – Canlis. It’s an absolute Seattle institution, you can go just for afternoon cocktails if you like!
Portland – PokPok for Thai food, Olympic Provisions for charcuterie, Paley’s Place for classic seasonal fare.
Just for starters…
I live near Portland, and I really want to second the recommendation for Tasty N Sons on Alder. It’s awesome and there’s a charcuterie in back where they smoke their own meat. Another place to check out would be Salt and Straw for small batch, uniquely flavored ice cream.
Adam Farnsworth says
Il Corvo and Tavern Law in Seattle, and Ned Ludd and Kask in Portland. For coffee, Slate in Seattle and Coava or Heart in Portland. Paseo in Seattle is also amazing.