PDX Breakfast Blog

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Screen Door

Screen Door

2337 E. Burnside


After opening in 2006, Screen Door has quickly become a favorite amongst locals for it’s Southern food and friendly service. If you are ever in the need for some comfort food, this is the place to be. Their dinner menu is meat-heavy, however it does have a few delicious side dishes for the vegetarians. I was very impressed with the options on the breakfast menu, which contained a “build-a-breakfast” section, scrambles, biscuits & gravy, grits, benedicts, French toast, pancakes, etc. It seems that no matter what you are craving for breakfast, Screen Door can make it for you.

Screen Door always seems to tempt me with their special chalkboard menu items. I glanced over and noticed “homemade cinnamon rolls” written down as one of today's specials. Okay, fine. I took the bait and ordered one for myself. It was very delicious, yet not as gooey as I would have preferred. Kara agreed.

For the main menu option, I decided that the tofu & egg scramble (w/ onions, peppers, spinach, mushrooms, and cheddar) was calling my name. This is quite possibly one of the best scrambles I’ve ever had. When restaurants know how to cook tofu properly, it’s a beautiful thing. Their potatoes are very delicious and seasoned to perfection.

Mandy ordered the biscuits w/ vegetarian gravy. This is kind of a big deal because Mandy normally hates gravy, but Screen Door is an exception. I’m not normally a biscuits & gravy kind of gal myself, but I took one bite and was won over. It’s delicious, but very filling.

Kara and Katie both ordered the mushroom & egg scramble (w/ caramelized onions, fresh herbs, and gruyere). Katie ordered a side of cheese grits and Kara went with the potatoes. They both had zero complaints and were very pleased with their meal.

Alicia ordered the tofu hash. When asked about her meal, she said, “No complaints.”

My only complaint of the day might have been the waiting time, but it was well worth it in the end.

Wait Time Inside: 33 minutes

Wait Time For Food:
15-20 minutes
Very friendly
no complaint from anyone!
Options: Lots of options for meat and veggies. See menu above!
Price: $7.95 – 8.95

Southern hospitality in PDX

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Bijou Café

Bijou Café

132 SW 3rd Ave

Date: 1/2/07
Arrival: 8:00am

My first breakfast of 2007 was spent at Bijou Café in downtown Portland, two doors down from my current place of employment. This was a very important breakfast because I was meeting up with three of the people that I would be interviewing with later that morning for a position that I really wanted. I had already gone through round one of the job interviewing process, and I was really excited when they invited me to breakfast before round two. Obviously if anyone wants to win me over, a free breakfast is the easiest route. Due to the importance of this meal, please note that I did not take any of these photos in this review (they were found on the internet)! Although, it would have been hilarious had I brought my camera and started snapping photos of their food while trying to have a conversation about their organization. Oh well, maybe next time.

The last time I was at Bijou Café was in the summer of 2002, I believe. I vaguely recall having some fruit, but that’s about it. I have worked two doors down from Bijou Café for the last two years, but my current co-workers are not big breakfast fans. What a shame! The people I ate with this time were all regulars of Bijou and could point me to the most delicious options on their menu.

While they all went with pancakes and Bijou’s famous oatmeal, I decided to go with the Brioche French Toast. It was fancy and delicious. I highly recommend it. Their oatmeal and pancakes looked very good, too. I may have to try that next time.

I was very happy with my meal at Bijou. Unlike Southeast, downtown Portland is not known for having a lot of breakfast locations. Please keep Bijou in mind, especially if you work nearby.

Wait Time Inside: 0 minutes
Wait Time For Food: 15 minutes
Service: Friendly
Food: delicious
Options: see menu above!
Price: $9-11
Atmosphere: Classy & friendly

Utopia Café - Part Deux

Utopia Café

3308 SE Belmont St.

Date: 12/31/06
Arrival Time: 11:00am

Wow, I am so behind in my breakfast blogging! I am going to have to take a DeLorean back to the year 2006 in order to write about my very last breakfast of that year.

It was Sunday December 31, 2006. I was so young and full of energy back then. Natalie was in town from Austin, TX, and I wanted to pick one of my favorite breakfast restaurants in honor of her visit and the last day of the year. I was craving pancakes, she was craving waffles, and so I thought that the perfect place to go would be Utopia Cafe. We arrived at around 11am to find a huge crowd and a long waiting list. As I’ve mentioned in previous reviews, this is pretty typical of an 11am crowd anywhere in town, which meant that we joined the crowd and waited for about 20 minutes. Not bad at all.

Unfortunately after looking at the menus, we quickly discovered that Utopia does not have waffles! Ack! I felt bad for Natalie, because I was certain that they had them on their menu. She ended up going with their buttermilk pancakes and a scramble containing bell peppers, bacon, and cheese. I believe she was happy with her meal, but very disappointed in the lack o’ waffles.

For my last meal of 2K6, I of course chose Utopia’s blueberry pancakes. Yes, I realize that I have already written about them in this blog, but they are good enough to write about again. They were even more delicious than I remembered. I dare anyone to find a better pancake in the great city of Portland.

Unfortunately Utopia did not have their wonderful potato cakes this time! Last time they were a special item featured on their chalkboard. I was so sad that I couldn’t eat them again and I had to go with a side of eggs instead. C’est la vie.

Wait Time Inside: 20 minutes
Wait Time For Food: 17 minutes
Service: Friendly

Food: their pancakes are heavenly
Options: lots of scrambles and pancakes, but no waffles!
Price: $7-9
Atmosphere: Cute, very busy, small café