Helioterra Melon de Bourgogne

helioterra

It’s no secret that the Willamette Valley produces some of the world’s best Pinot Noirs. But the valley is also home to one varietal that’s still relatively under wraps, at least here in the U.S. The Melon de Bourgogne is abundantly grown in France, but scarce on our shores. Luckily for us, Oregon and Washington are the only states that produce it consistently. The dry, white wine is clean and crisp, and goes terrifically with seafood. Best of all, it’s available in our neck of the woods! And one of our favorites comes from Helioterra. Part of the SE Wine Collective, Helioterra is a small, artisan winemaker. And in this case, the best things do come in small packages.

Details: Helioterra at S.E. Wine Collective // 2425 S.E. 35th Place // 503.208.2061 // Mon, Wed, Thu, Fri 4pm-10pm; Sat 1pm-10pm; Sun 1pm-8pm or by appointment

Big Bottom Whiskey

bigbottom

At PDX Bliss headquarters, we’re split when it comes to whiskey. Some of us prefer blended Scotches, while others favor Bourbons. Thankfully, Hillsboro’s Big Bottom Whiskey has helped mend these booze-fueled fences with their American Straight Bourbon Whiskey. This 91 proof spirit is aged in new white oak casks and consists of 36% rye. It features hints of cloves, allspice, and honeysuckle that result in a long, smooth, and balanced finish. Perfect neat or as a base for whiskey cocktails. If you’re looking for something with a bit more kick, try the 111 proof version. And if rum is more you’re thing, sample some Aged Rum from Big Bottom’s cousin brand Calhoun Bros. Aged for 4 years, the rum spends part of its time stored in bourbon barrels, to create the perfect balance of sweetness and spice.

Details: 21420 N.W. Nicholas Ct, Hillsboro // 503.608.7816 // Tasting Room Sat 12pm-4pm or by appointment

Pacific Pie Co.

pacificpie

Sometimes when you crave pie, you want something sweet. Other times, you may be thinking savory. Fortunately, Pacific Pie Co. has you covered. Specializing in pies of all kinds, this eatery with locations in Southeast and Northwest offers everything from the Classic Chicken Pot Pie, a Beef & Stout Pie, and a Black Bean & Jack Cheese Pie to Key Lime, Chocolate & Peanut Butter, and Chocolate Bourbon Hazelnut (pictured) pies. Pacific Pie also offers a range of baked pastries, salads, and traditional and seasonal desserts. And a convenient cocktail menu to help wash everything down. Think of it as one-stop shopping for your pie hole.

Details: 1520 S.E. 7th // 503.381.6157 // Mon-Sun 11am-9pm // 1668 N.W. 23rd // 503.894.9482 // Sun-Thu 11am-10pm; Fri-Sat 11am-11pm

Tilt

tilt

Few things define comfort food more than a really great burger. And few local places do burgers better than Tilt. These are aren’t your typical bacon cheeseburgers. Think more Shaggy and Scooby sandwich — piled so high with premium fixings you can barely get your mouth around it. But once you do, you’re hooked. From the Woody Royale (pictured), which consists of a 100% natural chuck patty, topped with beer-battered onion rings, hand-carved prime rib, honey smoked bacon, cheddar, and jalapeno slaw, to the Freebird, a buttermilk dredged, golden fried chicken breast with bacon, Swiss and slaw, to the Fat Farmer, a corn meal and panko crusted veggie patty with avacado, lettuce, tomato and onions, there’s pretty much something to satisfy every burger lovers’ craving. Tilt also offers a range of hot and cold sandwiches, some tasty sides (bacon tots, anyone?), and a selection of salads. And if you’ve still got room after polishing off your main course, stick around for their home made pies and pastries.

Details: 1355 N.W. Everett // 503.894.9528 // Mon-Thu 7am-11pm; Fri-Sat 7am-12pm; Happy Hour Daily 3pm-6pm // 3449 N. Anchor // 503.285.8458 // Mon-Thu 8am-8pm; Fri 8am-9pm; Sat 9am-9pm; Sun 9am-8pm Happy Hour Daily 3pm-6pm

Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider

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Hard apple cider has been around since someone figured out that fermenting apples = party! But cider has come a long way recently, especially here in Oregon. Reverend Nat’s is one of  several local cider producers that have opened up in recent years, and they’re creating some spectacular conconctions. Among Nat’s are the best-selling Hallelujah Hopricot and Deliverance Ginger. The former combines classic American apples, coriander, bitter orange peel and paradise grains, fermented with a French saison ale yeast. It’s finished with pure apricot juice and Oregon-grown Cascade or Amarillo hops. The latter begins with batches of cider, then adds gallons of pure squeezed ginger juice, hundreds of hand-cut fresh lemongrass stalks, fresh-squeezed lime juice and lime zest, and bark of the Peruvian cinchona tree; the wild form of quinine. Reverand Nat makes several other ciders, all worthy of a try at his Northeast Portland Taproom. And he really is a certified reverend, so if you’re getting married anytime soon, he can not only provide the reception beverages, he can also officiate the ceremony.

Details: 1813 N.E. 2nd Ave // 503.567.2221 // Thu-Sat 5pm-10pm, Sun Noon-5pm

SakéOne

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It’s no secret that Oregon is one of the world’s leading craft brewing hubs. But usually beer comes to mind. For more than 20 years, SakéOne in Forest Grove has been doing its part to add to our state’s brewing lore. Founded in 1992 and renamed to SakéOne in 1996, it’s the only saké brewing facility in the state, and one of only six nationwide. When you go, employees will quickly let you in on a few basics, such as saké should always be served chilled, can be drunk in a simple wine glass, and has several quality grades and styles. Most of the ones produced at SakéOne adhere to pure saké category, made from only rice, water, yeast and Koji. We recommend the G line (pictured). The G Joy has bold, rich, full fruit and earthy flavor tones with hints of ripe melon, pear, plum, cinnamon and cardamom. The G 50 is complex yet smooth, with subtle notes suggestive of grape, pear, and mint. And both come in at around 18% alcohol, so you can enjoy a glass or two without feeling it the next day.

Details: 820 Elm Street, Forest Grove // 503.357.7056 // Daily 11:00am-5pm

Tips: St. Patrick’s Day

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St. Patrick’s Day is quickly approaching and PDX has plenty of places to get your Shamrock on. If you’re looking for something a bit different than the typical Guinness guzzling this year, we have a few recommendations.

 

Besaw’s in Northwest will be serving two special cocktails: the Irish Twins, made with Bailey’s, 2 Gingers Irish whiskey and Water Avenue coffee topped with whipped cream, and Ye Olde Tonic, which combines bubbles with an apple spinach tonic.

St. Patrick’s Day falls on Ned Ludd‘s Pizza Monday. They’ll be offering a special Emeral Isle pie featuring corned beef, Guinness mustard sauce, lightly pickled cabbage and Swiss cheese. Of course, libations will be available as well.

Details: 3925 N.E. MLK // 503.288.6900 // Monday, March 17: 5pm-close

 

Kern’s Kitchen in Northeast will be pouring pints of Celtic Punch and serving spuds this year. The original cocktail is a fruity blend of mango, lemon, bitters and Irish Whiskey and is paired with cornmeal crusted potato wedges straight out of the brick oven.

Details: 2935 N.E. Glisan // 503.477.7779 // Monday, March 17: 8pm-9pm

 

Who doesn’t love a hearty bagel on St. Patrick’s day? Portland’s best kosher bagel bakery, Bowery Bagels, will serve house cured corned beef on a light rye bagel.

Details: 310 N.W. Broadway // 503.227.6674 // Monday, March 17: 8pm-9pm

 

And neighborhood bakery Little T on S.E. Division offers up a green Matcha Latte: matcha tea steamed with milk. Earthy matcha is balanced with creamy milk to create a slightly sweet tea treat — a tea lover’s dream.

Details: 2600 S.E. Division // 503.238.3458 // Monday, March 17: 7am-5pm

Serratto

serratto

The Northwest mainstay eatery Serratto isn’t new, but there’s a lot new to like on their menu these days. For more than a quarter century, Serratto has been serving up mostly Italian dishes. Now the menu has been expanded to include cuisine from other Mediterranean regions, as well as the Pacific Northwest, with ingredients sourced from local growers. The menu still features plenty of Italian goodness, like homemade Papardelle pasta with braised wild boar, Cavatelli with Dungeness crab and shaved fennel, and thin crust pizzas. And if you feel like venturing to other regions, try the Ahi tuna tartare “nicoise” with chopped egg and tarragon aiolo or the Tails & Trotters pork chop with Oregon chevre. Serratto also offers a daily happy hour menu, with food items ranging from $1 to $8 and $5 cocktail specials.

Details: 2112 N.W. Kearney // 503.221.1195 // Mon-Thu 11:30am-10pm; Fri-Sat 11:30am-11pm; Sun 11:30am-9pm; Happy Hour Daily 4pm-6pm

Imperial

imperial

Any place that serves both breakfast and happy hour is a-ok in our book. If that place is run by renowned local chef Vitaly Paley, you know you’re in for something special. Imperial, located in the Lucia Hotel downtown, serves up delicious food and drink from early morning to late night. From Goat Cheese Omelets and Pastrami Hash for breakfast to Smoked Trout Salad and Rotisserie Quail for lunch to Duck Meatballs and Grilled Kauai Prawns for dinner — if you’re hungry, chances are you’ll find something to satisfy you at Imperial. And if you need a little something between meals, a generous happy hour menu has you covered, with items ranging from $1 (Parker House Rolls) to $10 (Stan’s Meat Plate). To help wash everything down, try a drink or two from their imaginative cocktail menu, which includes the New Money (pictured), made with bourbon, nardini amaro, smoked vermouth, and bitters, and the Trailblazer, featuring Ransom Old Tom Gin, stone pine liqueur, lemon, sage-peppercorn syrup, and egg white. But wait… we feel like we’re missing something… Brunch! Yes, Imperial also serves brunch on the weekends until 2pm. So no matter how late you stay there Friday night, you should be able to make it back with time to spare on Saturday.

Details: 410 S.W. Broadway // 503.228.7222 // Breakfast: Mon-Fri 6:30am-11am; Lunch: Mon-Fri 11am-2pm; Dinner: Sun-Thu 5pm-10pm, Fri-Sat 5pm-11pm; Brunch: Sat-Sun 8am-2pm; Happy Hour+Late Night: 2pm-6pm, 10pm-12am

Lardo

lardo

When you enter a restaurant named partly after fatback, expect plenty of meat on offer. In truth, Lardo doesn’t just offer meat, it celebrates it. Born as a food cart in 2010, Lardo has grown to two Portland eateries; one Westside and one East. The menu reads like a carnivore’s dream: Pork Meatball Banh Mi, Korean Pork Shoulder, Pork Belly Gyro (pictured), and more — all generously-sized sandwiches that don’t cut corners with their cuts of meat. And while pork and beef are the stars at Lardo, veggies make up a solid supporting cast, with items like the Chickpea Burger, the Roasted Poblano, and the House Kimchi. Of course, every good sandwich needs a side, and though Lardo has many to choose from, we recommend the Dirty Fries: pork scraps, marinated peppers, fried herbs, and parmesan all lovingly mixed into a mound of hand-cut fries. Yeah, we use the term “side” loosely in this case. To top it all off, Lardo features a large rotating beer list, as well as a generous cocktail menu. In other words, once you arrive, you may not want to leave.

Details: 410 S.W. Broadway // 503.228.7222 // Breakfast: Mon-Fri 6:30am-11am; Lunch: Mon-Fri 11am-2pm; Dinner: Sun-Thu 5pm-10pm, Fri-Sat 5pm-11pm; Brunch: Sat-Sun 8am-2pm; Happy Hour+Late Night: 2pm-6pm, 10pm-12am