Bar

Park Kitchen

Ok, so it was mom and dad’s anniversary and we didn’t make any plans and then last minute decided we wanted to go out.  We took the dudes to one of our favorite dinner spots, Park Kitchen.  Aidan got the “House Squirt” and Lolo got a custom made limeaid from the bar.  We all decided we would do the Chef’s Tasting menu so we could be surprised.  First out were smoked prawns – two thumbs up from the dudes.  Second was the cod fritters, Lolo gave them two thumbs up, but Aidan said they tasted too much like potatoes and not enough like cod.  Then pork terrine sliders.  Big hit with the dudes.  Of course.  Lolo pointed out that they were better than mom’s pulled pork sliders.  Then the snap pea soup which was outstanding but apparently too green for the boys.  Did their one obligatory taste and that was it.  Beet salad with blood orange, pistachios and goat cheese – good, but not a hit with the dudes.  Then duck sausage with grits and broccolini.  Best dish EVER (according to Aidan and Lowell).  Finally, some beautiful cod and pork, but frankly, even though the two dishes were awesome we were all getting stuffed and so the excitement was fading.   Then desert.  Lolo loved the chocolate cake salted caramel hazelnut ice cream desert, and the rhubarb donuts were a hit with Aidan.  The sorrel panna cotta, well, it was very nice, but mom was the only one that ate it.  Really reasonable for 2.5 hours of amazing food and great service for $65/head!  Kid friendly?  Yes, but not in the kids menu run amuck kind of way.  You have to have kids that love food and can stay in their seats and keep the volume down, but if you do, this is the place!  They were so nice to the boys and treated them like little adults!  Oh, and if you like Moscow Mules they make a killer non-ginger beer version.  It’s all about the fresh ginger!

http://parkkitchen.com/

IBU

So we finally made it to the IBU. It used to be an Italian restaurant, a burger place, the Melting Pot, and so on. This place is awesome for families. Kids can be as loud as they want and nobody will hear them. They’ve got TV screens all over the place which the kids become glued to letting the adults have a little time to talk. The beer selection is vast, and frankly, much to our surprise the food is pretty good! Aidan got the elk burger which he devoured, Lolo got the “What Burger” which he ate half of, which is good for Lolo – it was a giant burger (I wish i had gotten it). I got the lamb burger, which was great, but not nearly as exciting as the “What Burger”. The dudes gave it a thumbs up and we will return. If you have a large crowd with a large appetite this is the place to be. Oh, and the service was great too!

Casa Vaca Taqueria, Part II

So, the dudes have blogged about Casa Vaca before, but this was before they started serving brunch on the weekends.  Of course we had to try it!  Lowell got the eggs Benedict, which looked absolutely amazing – he even devoured the spinach! Mom got the breakfast enchiladas which were to die for, and dad got the huevos rancheros which were also amazing. But the winner was Aidan’s Tres Leches French toast. Oh. My. God. This one I made sure to try even though I was stuffed and it was the best thing ever created. It was decadent, delicious, all around perfect.  But adults beware, you may need to wear your stretchy pants to this one. Their mimosas are pretty darn good too!  Finally, as always, everyone there is super nice and it is so family friendly and easy to go with kids!!  We love Casa Vaca!!!  Their brunch menu is on their website.  http://www.casavacapdx.com/menu

Broder Soder

   
   
This place is the best thing to happen to Southwest Portland in a decade.  Amazing food that you probably haven’t had before, wonderful staff, kid friendly but relaxing for the grown ups too, and for us Southwest Portlanders, we now don’t have to cross a river to enjoy it!  Aidan got the “hot dog” – the true name is more than my brain can handle (Tunnbrodsrulle).  OH MY LORD!  It was basically a hot dog in a wrap filled with a shrimp salad and a potato pancake, and yes, not only did it work but it was delicious!!  (Aidan’s pick). Lolo got the crepe, which is more his style and which he thoroughly enjoyed, dad got the Smorrbrod (sandwich trio), which he said were very good as long as you are willing to expand your horizons a bit.  Not flavors we are used to.  I tried to get everyone to share some cream herring salad with me, but I was all alone on that one.  It was a giant hit!  We actually went there awhile back but mom’s been behind, but now has to update the dudes’ blog because we are due to go again!!  

Smallwares

Aidan:  “it was super good. The chicken pot pie sticky bun was super good.”  Lowell’s  favorite was the smoked potatoes with horseradish and egg.  They both loved the Ramen, but many of the dishes were just different enough that they weren’t quite sure what to make of them. Even their homemade root beer threw the dudes for a loop (cloves maybe?).  But this is what made mom and dad love it.  We’ve had our fair share of Carlton farms pork and all the other stuff on every other Portland menu- this was a wonderfully unique dinner.  Mom and dad will be back, and hopefully Aidan and Lowell will soon!

  

  

  

  

Blackbird Wine Shop and Atomic Cheese

Aidan: 

It’s good and the cheese is really good
The blue cheese was Aidans favorite although it was actually yellow in color.  Lowell:  I would go back for the cheese.  But seriously, this place is awesome. They don’t mind kids in there, they are very friendly and you can hang out with your kids and share a cheese plate or meat plate and have a glass of wine. We will definitely be back!  

 
 

Renner’s Grill

Well, the dudes can now finally blog about Renner’s in the Village.  That’s because Renner’s Grill is an awesome bar, but because it is a bar, there are no kids allowed.  Aidan and Lowell still have 15 years to wait to get in, but today, thanks to what they are calling the “French Quarter” on the corner of Multnomah and 35th, the boys’ were able to finally eat Renner’s food, near Renner’s.  They are serving food and cocktails there each weekend.  Today they were serving up Creole food (apparently Josh can cook anything!).  Aidan and Lowell both got the red beans and rice, which was amazing (they frequently order better than us).  My etoufee was pretty darn good, and dad enjoyed his Muffaletta, which he said was pretty darn authentic and tasty – just needed a little more bread for all the meat and olive salad.  It was yummy and we were happy the boys finally got to try it!  The whole French Quarter thing is pretty fun too.  It’s really family friendly – vendors selling all sorts of stuff, crafts and face painting for the kids, music, the Flying Fish Truck, the Pho truck, and of course, our beloved Renner’s!

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