We just took the most amazing trip to the Pacific Northwest. This post went on for days so I broke it up into 3. Just in case you ever plan a trip out that way, maybe these posts will give you some good ideas one where to start and what to do.
We started off our trip visiting our cousins Morgan and Chris. Let me tell you all right now that you are going to wish you had a Morgan and a Chris too because they were most hospitable!
When Morgan picked us up at the airport we headed straight to Multnomah Falls. Morgan packed a great picnic with fruit, cheese, nuts and spreads but I was so hungry I forgot to take a picture!
We hiked several hundred feet to the bridge below and then hiked several hundred more to the top of the water fall. The view from the top overlooks the massive Columbia River. Worth the hike to the top for sure.
On the way home from the falls, to get ready for dinner, we stopped for a snack-time milkshake. They live right outside the city and the Skyline serves up a fantastic malt or milkshake. So good in fact that this was not our only stop here during the weekend. They split our vanilla malt in half so we could save room for dinner.
Our hosts felt silly for taking us to a Southern restaurant when we were so far from home but we are glad this didn’t stop them because the Screen Door was fantastic. The vibe of this restaurant was very laid back and they had a great main menu with a specials list that changes frequently.
We had a little bit of everything.
Beet Salad with Goat Cheese
Fried Green Tomatoes
Shrimp and Grits
This fried chicken deserves southern praise. It was boneless!! And some of the best I’ve ever had which I feel like says a lot considering where we live.
No that wasn’t everything we ordered and yes there were only 4 of us.
The next morning we were up early so we could to head to Willamette Valley for some wine tasting. But don’t worry, we ate a big breakfast before we left.
It started out with some of the best coffee to ever hit these lips at Stumptown. They opened in 1999 and I hope they never ever close (i see no reason they ever would) because I have to have this coffee again.
Next we headed to a trendy spot for Breakfast/Brunch named Mother’s Bistro.
This from scratch spot serves up classics in a fancy way.
Yummy, nutritious and a great way to kick start your liver before wine tasting!
Traditional Benedict (the staff at this restaurant are so nice that they let you get 1/2 orders if you just can’t decide)
Biscuits and Gravy. 1/2 order.
This stack was huge and had layers of blueberries between cakes. The pancake monster at the table managed to polish them all off too!
A short drive (and well worth it) from downtown Portland, Morgan and Chris whisked us off to Willamette Valley.
Our first stop was Bergstrom Winery where C & M are members.
This is the barn that they tasting patio overlooks.
Eric was our wine expert. He was informative and really made you feel at home without being pretentious.
At Bergstrom we tasted a Rose, a Chardonnay and 3 different types of Pinot Noir. Then we got to taste a few members only wines since we were with members. They were a real treat too. Our favorites were Cumberland Reserve and the de Lancellotti. It was also my favorite Rose I have tried.
If you are ever in the area I would highly recommend this winery.
We also stopped in at Colene Clemens Winery where we enjoyed another tasting and a delectable picnic basket.
Followed by Penner Ash which had the best views of the day.
Guess what we did then? We ate! Dinner that is at Toro Bravo.
Toro Bravo is a Spanish inspired tapas restaurant, which I love because I would eat appetizers every night for dinner if I could.
Let’s see…..Bloody Mary? Check. Wine? Check. Beer? Of course! Didn’t want to leave out beer. It just wouldn’t be right.
Octopus al a Plancha
Scallops with Romesco.
Chris’ job brought he and Morgan to Portland late last year. The morning we left we were lucky enough to get tour his work campus. NIKE!! Swoosh.
I cannot imagine working at a place this beautiful and with this much creative energy.
You can tell Chris really loves what he does too.
How pretty is this!?!?
All the buildings on the grounds are named after different Nike athletes. For example: John McEnroe, Tiger Woods and Lance Armstrong.
There are also banners of Nike athletes all along the sidewalks. Larry Fitzgerald, one of my favorites!
Just a very cool place in general.
We were getting really sad to leave Morgan and Chris but before we left we squeezed in a trip to Pine State Biscuits.
The worst thing about this place was deciding which biscuit to order.
I decided on this monstrosity. And yes, I finished every bite. Hold your applause.
So long Portland. We will be back!