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Pollo A La Brasa ~ Las Primas March 6, 2014

Pollo a la brasa

Pollo a la brasa

I have tried a few items at Las Primas but this was my first sandwich and fries and boy was it filling and delicious.  This one is called pollo a la brasa ($8.75) which is house marinated, slow roasted chicken, spicy pepper sauce, creamy dressing, lettuce and tomato.  The fries are crispy and ridiculously good when dipped in their homemade sauce which I can’t remember the name of but it’s the only white one in their self-serve sauce section (possibly the creamy pepper sauce).  I take several “to-go” if I can’t eat there.  I’ve also tried the alitas ($5) a house marinated slow roasted chicken wings, drizzled with a creamy pepper sauce which is tasty but greasy, a basket of papas fritas (fries, $5), their empanadas ($3.50 each) and their slow roasted chicken plate ($11).  

Overall very good and the fries and sauce will keep me coming back for more.  Their happy hour looks intriguing but I have not had a chance to try their drinks yet.

Location: 3971 North Williams Ave Portland, Oregon 97227

Website: http://lasprimaskitchen.com/

Las Primas on Urbanspoon

 

Oh My French Fry Part 5 ~ Duck Fat Fries at Branch Whiskey Bar October 8, 2013

Recap of my mission:  Sharing some of the locations with the best fries in town because it’s important to know these things!! 

Next stop: Branch Whiskey Bar on 29th and NE Alberta St, Portland Oregon

Oh my duck fat fries

Oh my duck fat fries

A basket of fries is a mere $5 for happy hour and just $6 all other times.  These fries are incredible and I’m sure we have the duck fat to thank for that.  Sage and salt are sprinkled on the fries and it comes with aioli dipping sauce and lemon wedges (don’t be afraid of the lemon, it elevates the fries to a new level!). I’ve eaten at branch a couple of times and their food and drinks are solid but holy heck they need to hire more staff to keep up with customers.  The bartender can’t make drinks, take your food order and then bring everything out for you and keep up with the tables even with the bare minimum help of another staff or two.  Service is slow there and god forbid you want some ketchup or something else because it will take a while to get someone to come around to check on you.  The fries will keep me coming back despite the slow service.

Website: http://branchwhiskeybar.com/

 

Cuban Happy Hour ~ Pambiche September 8, 2013

Pambiche makes one of my favorite chicken dishes (pollo criollo) and the best version of tres leches cake in Portland (in my humble opinion).  I was very excited to try the happy hour here and was not disappointed by the food or drinks.  We ate so much and ordered too much that we couldn’t even think about dessert. Please note: We did not nor could not finish all the food in the photo below.

pambiche1

Pros:

  • Happy hour starts at 2 pm! and runs until 6 pm (M-F) then 10 pm to midnight (Fri and Sat night)
  • Great food and beverage choices.  The flavors are incredible and so much better than pub food and in most cases, cheaper too!
  • Our bill was about $25 per person which included 3 drinks each plus all the food above (we ordered 2 more items after that photo was taken so there was actually more food!).

Our sampling:

  1. We ordered 3 empanadas because apparently we ordered with our eyes and not our stomachs.  We picked a couple of potato and cheese (papa con queso) as well as a spinach and 3 cheese (espinaca con queso) and all were  flaky and delicious ~$3 each
  2. Cod fish and potato croquetas (bacaloa con papa) ~ $4 plate (4 pieces).
  3. Yuca Frita ~ yuca fries $3.50 
  4. Moros & Cristianos – black bean and rice – $2
  5. Pollo Frito ~ Chicken marinated in creole seasoning then deep-fried -$3.50
  6. Masitas – Adobo seasoned pork that is deep-fried – $5 (one of my favorite items).

Cons:

  • Parking is limited so be prepared to walk (this can be a problem for lazy people).
  • Most of the dining space is outdoors (this can be a positive in the warmer months but they have heaters when it gets chilly).
  • No vodka?  Rum is the spirit of choice but I’m glad I tried something new! I drank a few of the “las tunas teas” ($5) made with their own house made tropical tea which is shaken with raw honey and rum.  I absolutely love this drink and can’t wait to drink it again!

pambiche2

Website: www. pambiche.com

 

Oh My French Fry Part Four ~ Cassidy’s Pecorino Cheese And Rosemary Salt May 8, 2013

Pecorino Cheese and Rosemary Salt

Pecorino Cheese and Rosemary Salt

The fourth installment with my search for great fries in Portland takes me to Cassidy’s Restaurant.  (Previous french fry posts featured The Observatory, Swift and Hawthorne Hop House).  I’ve only been here a handful of times but each time has been a good experience.  It’s conveniently located next to the Crystal Ballroom so eating there before a concert is convenient plus you can see how long the line is getting if you sit by the windows.  The place also accommodates large groups fairly quickly even on a busy Friday night when every other place in town can’t seat a party of 8.

Their delicious hand-cut fries are topped with grated smoked pecorino cheese and sprinkled with rosemary salt ($7).  Oh my gosh they are so good.   Even if you are not hungry you will eat a few of these if you like french fries.  I turned down sharing these fries with a friend until I smelled them and then proceeded to eat half of them anyways.

Websitehttp://cassidysrestaurant.com/

Address: 1331 SW Washington St. Portland Oregon

 

 

Falafel Addiction ~ Cedo’s March 1, 2013

Sometimes you have to park further away from your intended destination to find falafel heaven.  True story!

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Falafel appetizer ($6)

It happened to me as I was walking back to my car after an appointment and then the smell hit me…the spices used in Middle Eastern cuisine was drawing me closer to Cedo’s and I so wished I was hungry enough to order something because it smelled sooooo good! I remember reading something on the exterior of the building that said they had the best gyros and fresh falafels were made daily.  The latter is what I wanted and I’m glad I went back the next day to try it out. The falafel balls are crisp on the outside and not dry at all on the inside. Very flavorful and distinctly different from most falafels I’ve had so they are putting something else in there which sets theirs apart from the rest (no, I don’t have a clue what it could be, maybe crack but I’m not sure). They serve it with quite possibly the best spicy chunky sauce I’ve had which I’m hoping they sell but I keep forgetting to ask. (I finally remembered to ask and it’s $5 for a small container). The potatoes are ridiculously good but I have no idea what spices were on them. I was particularly hungry when I ordered that side item and didn’t bother to get a good look at them before devouring them. Hey, it happens. They are super nice too!  The line and wait can be somewhat long (10-15 min) so if you are in a rush call ahead.  My food is always ready when I walk in and still hot when I get back to work to eat it.

Thank you Cedo’s, you make a mighty fine falafel ball.  I’ll even go so far as to say they are the best ones I’ve had yet.

Address: 3901 NE Martin Luther King Jr Blvd Portland, OR 97212  (503) 719-7344

Cedo's Falafel and Gyros on Urbanspoon

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Falafel sandwich with a side of potatoes ($9)

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Falafel sandwich ($8)

 

Oh My French Fry Part Deux ~ Poutine At The Hawthorne Hophouse October 8, 2012

Fried cheese curds and poutine. Don’t eat this alone!

The Canadian in me is compelled to revisit the quintessential artery clogging dish we all love and yet regret eating, the mighty poutine.  Yes, I’ve already covered it in a previous post but it has to be on my french fry list that I’m slowly compiling.  It is pronounced poo-teen and the traditional kind only has 3 ingredients: fries, cheese curds and gravy.  The toppings nowadays are a bit ridiculous but I like to keep it classic and only order what I grew up eating because additional toppings like bacon and foie gras might send me straight to food comatose which I only reserve for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners.

Now most Portlanders will say the Potato Champion makes the best poutine but I just can’t stomach the taste of their gravy.  I’ve had both the vegetarian and regular one just to make sure and I have to say I don’t really like either.  A bit too tangy for my taste and my fellow french fry lovers who ate them with me didn’t like it either.  They have great fries but the gravy leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

So where does this Canadian go for some killer poutine?  The Hawthorne Hophouse is tucked away in a tiny strip mall and they have so far won my heart with their version of poutine.   Their fries are hand cut and fried to perfection and the bonus is their gravy is vegetarian and you won’t even complain about it because it is so good.

If you want to clog more than just your arteries, try eating it along with a plate of fried cheese curds like I did.  Those balls of fried goodness must be portioned out or you will regret it like nothing else.

I’m always on the hunt for great poutine so send me a message with your suggestions!

Website: http://oregonhophouse.com/

Address: 2 locations 

Hawthorne Hophouse 4111 SE Hawthorne Blvd.,  Portland, Oregon 97214

Fifteenth Avenue Hophouse
1517 NE Brazee St., Portland, Oregon 97212

Hawthorne Hophouse on Urbanspoon

 

All Hail The Nutella BeaverTail August 8, 2012

The beavertail is the Canadian equivalent to the American elephant ear but way better.  Don’t get me wrong, fried dough in any form is usually good no matter how you make it but this particular kind of deep-fried deliciousness is off the charts yummy.  It’s crispy on the outside yet soft and chewy on the inside and thick enough to handle whatever you throw on it.  The dough is stretched into a resemblance of a beavertail (hence the name) then fried up perfectly until it’s ready to be topped with even more unhealthy goodness.  I swear a bit of regret comes over me each time I eat it but I always  share this so the guilt doesn’t linger too long.

My order is always the same.  Straight up nutella.  They finish off the tail with a dusting of confectioners sugar before it’s ready to devour. Mmmm Mmmm.  Is your mouth-watering yet?   Because it should be! I always ask them to cut it up so it’s easier to eat and this way if you are the sharing type, you know exactly how much everyone is getting.  Seriously,  counting of pieces each person is allotted has happened and you’ll understand why if you’ve ever had one.  You gotta protect your share of the beavertail right?   I purchase this wonderful creation at Beavertails Inc. located in North Vancouver (Canada) inside the Lonsdale Quay.   Check their website for all their locations.  My hips are so grateful this is 6 hour drive for me.

Location: 123 Carrie Cates Court, North Vancouver,British-Columbia V7N 3K7

Website: www.beavertailsinc.com

Beaver Tails (Lonsdale Quay) on Urbanspoon