Some old friends came out to visit the northwest recently and we enjoyed giving them a quick tour of the city we love so dearly. We were not sure if the agenda would include hiking through the majestic Columbia Gorge or heading into the city, so we recommended they stay at the McMenamin’s Edgefield to keep both options open.
McMenamin’s is a local chain of brew pubs that often reclaims old, historic and forgotten buildings. I know many a historic preservationist that would scoff at their definition of “preservation”, but for most of us it seems pretty cool. They paint murals everywhere, have interesting junk-turned-art, tuck small pubs into every nook and cranny and turn the larger buildings into European-style hotels where there is a shared bath on each floor. They are usually pretty cheap to stay at and easy, since there are places to eat and drink on site.
We spent the evening with them eating at Edgefield at their nicer restaurant, the Black Rabbit, and then took a sunset stroll through the grapevines. Our friends have a two year old, which was good practice for us to get used to dining out with kids.
The next day we did a short tour of fun touristy and not so touristy things to do in Portland. We rode the MAX light rail train to Saturday Market, spending more time near the waterfront where there tend to be more craft vendors like potters, etc. We ran up to the no-longer-independently-owned-Stumptown so they could see Portland hipsters in action (which we may or may not be a part of) and refueled with a good cup of coffee.
They were heading back on the road that afternoon so we stopped for a quick lunch in the Pearl District at the Deschutes Brewery. What an excellent place for kids (at least during the day). There were a few tables around us with little ones and everyone seemed to take their turn being fussy for a short bit. It’s only the second time I’ve eaten there and I thought it was really great, especially since I’ve been finicky about food lately.
Oh Portland! For less than twenty-four hours in the city, I think we showed our friends a good, short tour of what the city has to offer. Our secret plan is to make everyone we love fall in love with Portland and move there It seems to be working…