Hungry Tiger Too in Southeast Portland was one of my favorites, so I went back with my friend Jess for brunch on Saturday (because the whole weekend is for brunch) and got one of the best tofu scrambles I’ve had in a long, long time with a vegan cheese sauce and biscuits and gravy. The gravy was so good I am obsessed with gravy now, even though I never really thought about it much before. I also got an awesome vegan Bloody Mary at Hungry Tiger Too, I daresay the best I’ve ever had…it’s only half filled because Jess and I split it.
Best vegan Bloody Mary ever, and they had lots of other awesome cocktails too.
Another place I went to not once, not twice, but three times during my week trip was Back to Eden Bakery in Northeast Portland. They had lots of cakes, pastries and a few savory items, plus coffee…but what really caught my eye was the vegan sundae menu. Here is my vegan chocolate-vanilla swirl soft-serve ice cream with vegan caramel sauce, walnuts and Dandies. Yes.
I was working a bit for my job during my trip to America, so this gave me an excuse to check out some nice cafes to get some work done. It made me realize I really need to find MY cafe in Berlin. You know, somewhere with the right amount of tables, outlets, good coffee and atmosphere to sit around and be productive in. Berlin has so many cute cafes, but it’s rare they have all of these things and frequent, reliable free wifi hasn’t quite caught on much outside of Starbucks. Anyway! This coffee was from the Albina Press in Northeast Portland. I think it was brewed with Stumptown coffee, which I actually wasn’t a huge fan of as I found it a bit bitter, but it was still yummy, nice and big with lots of tables and a couple vegan baked goods.
Another cafe recommended by my friend Jess that I really liked during my quest for a good working spaces was The Fresh Pot. I went to the one in Northeast Portland on Mississippi Ave. You can get French press coffee by the cup, if you buy one you get a free refill and they had a couple vegan baked goods, played good music, enough tables and outlets, etc. I didn’t get to go here again, but I would have.
Here is the hot sauce selection at Sizzle Pie in Downtown Portland. They have a lot of vegan pizza options. I got the Vegan Angel of Doom after my friend Lilly’s recommendation and it was good, but not mind-blowing for the CRAZY HIGH price. A medium pizza was $18! I spent it because I was on vacation and wanted to try out the eats, but ouch. I also got a vegan Caesar salad that was very yummy, but this place was too expensive to go to again.
I only went to Sweatpea Bakery in Southeast Portland once, but that was only because it was on the opposite side of the city from where I was staying in the Northeast. In my head I went there many times, and it was my favorite of the three vegan bakeries I went to (yes, really, the third was Dovetail Bakery in the Northeast). This is a Cappuccino doughnut that was spectacular. Jess and I also shared a Peanut Butter chocolate cheesecake that was to die for and peanut butter and chocolate square. They also have free wifi and tables and lots of coffee, maybe also brunch on Sunday? I would have come here to work, there were just too many places to eat in Portland and not enough time. Oh, and this is in the “vegan mall” so there’s also Food Fight Grocery, Herbivore Clothing Company and a vegan tattoo parlor right next to it.
This is my meal from the sandwich shop Brass Tacks Sandwiches in the Northeast. This is a woman-owned deli with a good mix of vegan and non-vegan sandwiches that you order by filling out a checklist or choosing a ready-made option. This is The Velveeta Underground, which was a ciabatta roll, agave smoked “ham”, smoked cashew cheese, caramelized onion, dijon, aioli, lettuce. It didn’t blow my mind, but I liked this place in general to come back. They also had vegan cole-slaw and cookies. I really like sandwiches.
This was my FAVORITE meal in Portland and it came with the best coffee I had as well (cold-brewed iced coffee) at Paradox Cafe in Southeast Portland. I don’t know if it was that I had eaten so many vegan novelty foods that I was craving vegetables or what, but this coconut bacon avocado BLT wrap was AMAZEBALLZ. I am still dreaming about it, and will need to rediscover my Vegan Coconut Bacon recipe to recreate it now. This place had a very vegan diner feel and loads of vegan options, including vegan poutine, as well as free wifi. Though it wasn’t the kind of place you go to do work, being very diner-y, I ordered some food and camped there with the free wifi for awhile anyway and nobody bothered me, so why not?
My second favorite meal in Portland and the best vegan, or any, Mexican food I’ve ever had in my life was from Los Gorditos Taqueria in Southeast Portland. I got the Vegan Chile Relleno, which was battered and fried vegan cheese-filled chile rellenos, topped with salsa, with choice of vegan meat on the side. They even had a salsa bar. It was epic.
Here’s a really bad picture of a vegan Reuben I got from Vita Cafe in Northeast Portland. The chocolate peanut butter cake below was from there as well, I believe. I also got a vegan Caesar salad here and they even had vegan mozzarella (Daiya) to melt on the Reuben. Yummy.
Other places I went, but didn’t take pictures at:
The Bye and Bye – a full vegan bar in Northeast Portland, that also has bar snacks like collards and black eyed peas and food. I got an awesome cocktail here and some yummy snacks while chatting with my friend Claire from university.
Sweet Hereafter – another full vegan bar from the same owners in Southeast Portland. I may have attended this on the very same day as the above for drinks with my friend Lilly. I got vegan coconut kale with avocado on top and it was super yummy and a vegan White Russian. I don’t think I’d ever been to a vegan bar before…is Portland real?
Places I really wanted to go, but didn’t get to because there is only so much one can fit in one’s stomach in a week:
Potato Champion – It was recommended I check out this food cart in Southeast Portland because they make a mean vegan poutine and also vegan crepes, wiffies (I don’t even know what that is!) and fried pies. I walked passed it when it was closed once, alas. I will have to go back now. Update: I finally went here, see my second Portland post!
Homegrown Smoker Vegan BBQ – This was another food cart I just didn’t get around to in Northeast Portland in Mississippi Marketplace. Vegan BBQ, need I say more? They have southern style comfort food and it was recommended I get the chili mac. Next time?
Portabello – Supposed to be super awesome, albeit moderately priced amazing vegan Italian food in Southeast Portland. The only reason I didn’t go here is because there’s already an awesome vegan Italian place in Berlin and I had to prioritize. I was told to get the Tiramisu.
Townshend’s Tea – A tea place I was recommended, for the tea lovers among us. I walked past this place a lot and it looked super nice, apparently they have free wifi too, but I just didn’t get around to it!
Apex Bar – In Southeast Portland, right next to Los Gorditos. A beer bar that’s supposed to have lots of selection, looked pretty awesome, another I didn’t get to. Browsing the menu online I see a Ghost Chili Golden beer, want!
Ground Kontrol – A classic arcade with a bar and vegan junk food in Downtown Portland. This looked super cool, but again, didn’t get around to it. Portland was kind of spread out and so it was a bit further from me.
There you have it! If you go to Portland, I hope this makes the really hard task of choosing where to eat a bit easier. Seriously, I have never been somewhere with SO MANY vegan options. It was totally overwhelming! I would need there live there a year to try everything! Thanks to all my super awesome friends in Portland for hosting me and recommending places so that my brain didn’t totally explode from vegan choice overload. It was even worse than when I went to the vegan supermarket and found the HUGE vegan cheese fridge case.