I was supposed to fly to Portland and land there 5/25 but because “Chicago closed due to weather” that didn’t happen. You can’t land but you can take off from Midway…Our flight got diverted to CLE. There was no announcement as if we had a say so when we landed I was like “Midway got worse I think” but I don’t really remember what it looks like on the outside anyway since it has been years since I have seen the outside of the airport. We land, they say we can get off the plane but don’t wander too far LOL. What in the hell? That is a terrible idea. Anyway as we were exiting the plane they axed that idea and we had to go back to our seats. This one chick didn’t understand why so she asked others and I was like really…you are at the wrong end of the plane for that type of questioning. We take back off and land in MDW and I look at the departures and my connection connected without me. If I didn’t want to sleep in the airport, my best bet was to fly to PHX. I said “sold”. At least in PHX, I knew people and I could crash for the night. Luckily, Bonnie’s fam (Britt – what’s up) picked me up from the airport and we got food, talked about relationships and crashed (at least I did) and rode the 20 mins back to the airport. Bonnie is my friend by the way. It was a great stop and I wanted to stay longer so I could visit with them but Southwest wasn’t having it with their uncomfortable seat having asses. After 30 mins in TSA (just an estimate – it could have been longer, definitely not shorter) and a quick boarding I was finally on my way to Oregon. Total travel time: a long ass time, all day for real.
First things first, marijuana is LEGAL (In my Oprah you get a car voice)!! My first stop was Growing Releaf in Beaverton, OR. I had to see it for myself because I couldn’t believe this was life…but it is. The staff is very friendly and knowledgeable. Prices are reasonable and the selection is the best I’ve ever seen…and also the only I’ve ever seen. http://www.growingreleaf.com/
Next stop was the bar atop 10 Barrel Brewing: Portland Pub in the heart of downtown. I have to say the best moment at this bar was when two of my friend’s coworkers came by where we were sitting to say hello and she didn’t introduce us…I am assuming it was because she didn’t know their names and I didn’t push because I wasn’t going to remember their names anyway. We ordered mimosas and some black beer that I can’t name because I am no beer aficionado but it was tasty. I realized on this trip that beer is so much better out of the tap…who knew. We ordered a chicken sandwich that was also delicious and makes me wish I took a better picture and remembered the names of the food we ordered. I will say the house chips were a bit overcooked and, they were to quote my father, “edible”. http://www.10barrel.com/#portland
We decided to sleep in and grab lunch at ABV. ABV was an absolute pleasure to patronize. When we walked in, the atmosphere says “party at 1PM, yes please”. Friendly staff and great music (it was so good we thought they had a DJ but it was a Pandora station – good for them) couldn’t have asked for more (maybe a real-life DJ)…but we did…food of course because we were hungry.
We didn’t order apps but we did order a flight of their vast library of beers on tap. They have so many beers on tap, you actually have to access the list from your phone. Fun fact: you can order a “taste” of 3 beers for free. I ordered the veggie burger with a side salad. Hands down the best veggie burger I have ever eaten. The ingredients didn’t read well on the menu but that didn’t stop my show and I am so glad. http://www.abvpub.com/
You can’t come to Portland and not visit the Nike Store. Luckily my lovely lady friend works there. You do have to get on the list it is not just a walk on in type of place. Once you are on the list, you check in at the front desk and walk into a Nike Wonderland. All things Nike at half the price…AMAZING. I didn’t go crazy!
After we added one more friend to the bunch, Luci, we head to American Dream. I don’t have many kind words for American Dream pizza. Where do I begin, oh yeah, the table we sat at. Apparently, the customers are to clean up after the previous patrons because the staff didn’t won’t bother. Portland is big on self-service water stations which is a great idea only if the cups are clean. American Dream’s water station was just above the trash can and the plastic cups were not clean and could be replaced. But I hadn’t given up all hope. The food hadn’t arrived yet. I ordered a caprese salad, simple and also a bad idea at this pizza shop. The salad was a salad by definition only. The tomato and mozzarella cheese was cut up into cubes, a travesty. The “dressing” and I use the term lightly was balsamic vinaigrette with a layer of olive oil on top. There was no attempt to emulsify the two. This restaurant’s attitude of “do it yourself” was a big turn off as the reason I am here is I don’t want to do any of this shit myself. If I didn’t have such an aversion to already chewed food, I would just swallow. I had all I could stomach of this joint and threw my food in the garbage. Maybe I should have just ordered the pizza and called it a day. http://adpizza.com/
Next…The Jones in Chinatown…I wasn’t aware I was in Chinatown so….The crowd was a little sparse but the DJ was just warming up so it wasn’t a big deal. I danced for about an hour before I needed to get some air. I am not sure what Portland’s music scene is but the DJ was playing some really old music but I think that is a west coast thing anyway. While I was getting some air, I met a couple of guys Ismail and Mani. Two gents from Saudi Arabi living life!!! They cracked me up! After my air break I attempted to re-enter The Jones and the bouncer decided he wanted to “bully” the black girl and I was not having it as I have been delivered from my mouth and arguing with him wasn’t worth the entrance into the club. I wait for my friends in the Subway on the corner and we meet up and walk to The Boiler Room. Let’s talk about The Boiler Room. It has everything: a full bar, plenty of seating, pool tables, a dance floor and my favorite…KARAOKE!! It is definitely a must visit if you are looking for a really good time. http://www.boilerroomportland.com/
After dancing and yelling “it’s Britney bitch” a few times, I walked across the street to the grand opening of #Browns (pronounced “Hashtag Browns”). A food tent that serves hashbrowns scattered, smothered and covered with your favorite toppings. A great late night eat for those starving and drunk.
Quick stop at Target for some essentials. Pamper town with mani and pedis!
After our moments of luxury and a beginner lesson in vietnamese from our nail tech (pardon my spelling):
Hello = xin chao (pronounced “sin chao”)
Thank you = cam on ban (pronounced “cam un bun)
Goodbye = tam biet (pronounced “tam bit”)
We went next door to CT Bistro located in Sunset Mall. CT Bistro is a Vietnamese/Thai restaurant that is out of this world. Never in my life have I had such delicious food. I ordered the Tom Kha soup which is a spicy and sour hot soup with coconut milk. Bomb.com! The flavors were so present; the soup blew my mind. Order a small unless you want leftovers…the small portion looks like a large portion. I also ordered the red curry with chicken. I couldn’t eat it in the restaurant because I was full from my Tom Kha soup. If you are ever in the Beaverton area and have a serious craving for Thai food, let this place be your plug. http://www.yelp.com/biz/ct-bistro-portland
Nightlife, a place so nice we decided to go twice, The Boiler Room and it was lit. We made sure to got there early enough to get our names on the longest karaoke list I’ve ever seen. We had a two hour wait but it was so worth it. We passed the time with shots shots shots shots shots shots and a lot of dancing. The locals were so friendly and quickly accepted us as their own. Once our names were called, we went into full concert mode. If my friends were doing their jobs, they would have recorded my “flawless” rendition of Beyonce’s “Flawless”. We turned The Boiler Room into a full blown concert and it was mind blowing. When 2am rolled around, the crowd yelled for an encore, it was a ball! Stop by The Boiler room if you are ever in Portland you won’t be disappointed.
Recoup was in full effect. Movies and naps but after we took Luci to ABV because she needed to have the same culinary experience we shared a couple days prior and she loved it just as much as we expected.
Also on my Portland bucket list was to do stand-up comedy and I didn’t disappoint. There is a comic workshop called “Critical Comedy” hosted by The Brody Theatre and if you are new to comedy like I am this isn’t a bad place to start. The comedy workshop starts at 9:30pm every Monday advanced signup is required. Contact them on twitter @CriticalPdx.
The final stop on my journey led me back to PDX where I wasn’t ready for my Portland adventure to end. I stopped into Henry’s Tavern for lunch and again my mind was blown. I ordered the Turkey Club with avocado and substituted the may for a garlic aioli. Great idea! I also ordered their gorgonzola fries and actually wish I could eat some as I write this. To wash it all down, I ordered a cucumber gin livation (Eastside Elderflower) that has my all-time favorite alcohol ingredient, St. Germain and made sure I had two before the day was done. http://www.henrystavern.com/location.php?c=portlandPDX
If you have time between waiting for your flight and catching your flight, across from the tavern is a massage spa. Get your feet rubbed or something.
To view Portland and my life by Snapchat, click the links below: