Jay Lake (jaylake) wrote,
Jay Lake

[food] I may have a new favorite restaurant...mmm nom nom ZOMG

the_child, calendula_witch, tillyjane and I went hiking this morning. At the last minute we redirected from the Leif Erikson Trail to Kelly Point, where the Willamette flows into the Columbia. We spent an hour and change out there, then dropped tillyjane off at her place. After that, the_child and calendula_witch briefly hit a couple of resale shops while I loitered in the Genre car. Then we headed over to Foti's on East Burnside for a gyros-and-fries lunch.

One problem. Foti's isn't open on Sunday.

Right across the street was a pub we'd never heard of, the EastBurn. Not wanting to drive further for lunch, we wandered in.


The decor is hip with an emphasis on interesting rather than self-involved. (The basket chairs at the front of the main dining area fascinated the_child and gave me a serious 70's flashback.) The menu is innovative, strikingly so, nouveau American with a northern European inflection. The service was pitch perfect, just the right amount of waiterly attention without being up in our grill.

We ordered Brie tempura with marionberry jam and sliced apples for an appetizer. That may have been the best fried cheese I've ever eaten. (It could have come with half a dozen more baguette slices, but this is a quibble.) the_child and calendula_witch both had steak salads, which included cranberries and diced apples amid the copious greens, very nicely dressed. I ordered the "Über Sondvich": char-grilled Carlton pork medallion, potato pancake, scallion sour cream, caramelized onions and bourbon-apple chutney on grilled ciabatta. With their trinity fries on the side (sweet potatoes, russets and leeks fried together).

This is what people in Texas call "granny-slapping good", meaning food so good you'd slap your own granny away from the plate. I think that was the best sandwich I've ever had.

The rest of the menu ranges from quirky to fascinating, including items on the Happy Hour menu such as pork-and-elk meatballs, and spaetzle sautéed in duck fat with pancetta, shallots and fontina. Loads of regional microbrews, for them what drinks, an ambitious wine list, and some rocking lemonade for those of us currently eschewing alcohol. All priced quite reasonably, only slightly more than a burger-and-fries at your neighborhood bar.

We are so going back. If you're anywhere in greater Portlandia, I suggest you make haste to the EastBurn. I know I am in restaurant love.

Tags: calendula, child, family, food, portland
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