Saturday, July 3, 2010

Metro Portland Restaurant Scene...McMenamins at it's best & Worst!

St. Helens, OregonImage by Always at Home via Flickr Artwork at St. Helen's location.
Want to know what I LOVE to do more than anything else?  I love to eat at a beautiful restaurant in the evening.  I want to get dressed up and be treated as though I really matter to the waiter.  He (always a he in my dreams) needs to look deeply into my eyes and ask we how I want my martini.  I dream about it a lot.

Alas, in reality, we eat at brewpubs!!! On the plus side, Portland has a gajillion of these pubs so finding a nice location is not that hard.  We ate at the Cornelius Rd. McMenamins (former blogs)  this last week with family.  This is so ideal because on a warm day the children can play on the grass while adults visit at long tables.  On this particular evening it was chilly and raining so we were seated upstairs by an understanding host...we came in last and were seated first!  There was lots of room for a busy two year old to mess around.  People in Oregon are generally not bothered by children scurrying here and there. 
Gas Light!  Historically McMenamins!
These people are so creative and their restaurants reflect the owners hippy heritage.  The upstairs seating features a small nook right next to the stairs that overlooks the kitchen.  I stepped over to take a picture of the way they had hung the lights.  This is where a gas flame burns 24/7.  The flame is a nod to their Rock Creek Tavern location that burned several years ago.  That old pub was still lit with gas light and had moss growing a foot thick on the roof.  Flowers grew out of the rain gutters.  They did rebuild the location but it will truly never be the same...great but not the same.  Anyway,  the gas flame just speaks to those of us from the area.  The pipes that held the conduit for the lights were decorated with every kind of pipe fitting I have ever seen.  Those as the small details that just keep me looking around everytime we go in. 

The Kitchen...look at that floor!
As for the kitchen...well I made the mistake of looking down.  You need to understand that I am by nature clean...not tidy (much to my husband chagrin)...but clean.  I just don't know how you can look in a restaurant kitchen and still want to eat the food!  I am just closing my eyes.  The food tastes great and it has never made me sick!  Good enough for me.

We ate out at Syun's Izakaya Restaurant again last night.  This sushi izakaya restaurant is the best in the area.  We had a meal with our family (adults) that was fit to feed an emperor.  Fitting it seems!

Oh by the way...Happy 4th of July...we love America's Birthday!

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