18 October 2009

A Night for Soup: Alameda Brewhouse

Cup of Whisky Crab Bisque, $3.95 and a Small Side Salad, $4.95. Total: $8.90

NE Fremont has a few staple restaurants that every family in the Neighborhood frequents: Amalfi’s, Staniches, McPeets, Alameda Café, Red Fig and then at the end of restaurant row sits Alameda Brew Pub. Growing up only blocks away from these little eateries, I have acquired a standard meal or two at each one. Today we will discuss the Whisky Crab Bisque at the Pub.

I don’t know a thing about beer. I like Sessions and Coors Light, but besides that, I’m pretty clueless. I do however know a thing or two about soup and Alameda Brew Pub has the most amazing bisque I’ve ever tried. Note: you will find it under, Homemade Soup of the Day, which is funny considering it’s the soup of the day everyday—stated on the menu as being available 350 days a year. Hmmm, interesting. The tomato based soup is strewn with plump crab meat and spiced with the perfect kick to keep you on your toes; finished off with a sprinkling of chives. The best part of the meal: soaking the warmed French bread into the soup.

I like to pair the bisque with their small side salad, which technically is a large salad, since its served on a large dinner plate. Their homemade blue cheese dressing is a few notches down from Amalfi’s garlicky blue cheese dressing down the street, but still a competitor.

Oh, I hear they make their own beer here too—I’ve just been too busy with my soup to care.

Alameda Brewhouse on Urbanspoon

12 October 2009

Skip the Corn Maze—Eat a Caramel Apple Instead: Kruger’s Farm

Carmel Apple, $3.00

Apples picked from trees only yards away. Carefully placed in wooden buckets and brought into the farm. One by one they are washed and dried. Then the farmer, wearing jean overalls and a straw hat takes a wooden spike and sticks it into the bottom of the apple. He then dips the glowing red apple into a near boiling pot of homemade caramel sauce. It’s turned multiple times to make sure the caramel dries evenly and smooth. Small children wait patiently.

In a mere 20 minutes, you too can be out of the city and enjoying one fall’s greatest pleasures: the caramel apple. Kruger’s farm knows just how to make these, with giant apples and soft, creamy caramel. These aren’t the caramel apples mom used to buy at Halloween that just about ripped your baby teeth out. I would say skip the creepy corn maze and come to Kruger’s to enjoy a nice fall afternoon.

On the weekends Kruger’s bar-b-que’s excellent Zenner hotdogs, Polish dogs, pulled pork sandwich, burgers and an incredible veggie burger. Step inside the farm to find your caramel apples, pumpkin pie and other goodies. Don’t leave without saying hello to the frightening cow sized pig in back.

Kruger's Farm
17100 NW Sauvie Island Road
Portland, Oregon 97231
(503) 621-3489

Open Hours:

Sunday - Thursday: 9 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Friday + Saturday: 9 a.m - 10 p.m.

01 October 2009

Its the Real Deal, It's the Whole Bowl

Small Whole Bowl, $5.00

Ok, I get it, we are in an economic crisis. Apparently that means all of Portland is cutting costs as both business owners and consumers and only eating out of these things called, “carts;” which are these fake little restaurants that sit in random places around town and somehow the little people inside of these “carts” are able to make all this really good food. I don’t know how it’s done and kind of don’t believe that these places aren’t illegally preparing food in their homes and selling from these two wheeler cars. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not at all against food carts, I’m just a little apprehensive to know what’s really going on in there.

I’ve been hearing all about this place called the Whole Bowl. When I hear the word “whole” I think of Whole Foods, which also makes me think of whole wheat, which makes me think of really bland food and then I start thinking about those really healthy crackers that taste like cardboard. So you can imagine why I put off trying this place. Then I heard it was in a “cart” and I really felt hesitant about trying cardboard that someone cooked at home and brought into a motorless vehicle.

Long story short, I decided to try it and found out they had a small cartless version of the restaurant up on Hawthorne, past all the people and places that make Hawthorne so annoying. In a quaint little alcove on 44th and Hawthorne sits a very small shop. The bowl was whole alright and wonderfully flavorful with layer after layer of fresh brown rice in a special secret sauce, red and black beans, melted cheddar cheese, olives, avocado, salsa and a dollop of sour cream and sprinkling of cilantro. This crammed pack bowl of protein was healthy and yet flavorful enough to eat on a regular basis. I also love the simplicity of their concept: one thing to order, no big decisions. Big bowl or small bowl. I was shocked to see yellow colored rice—however, it didn’t taste at all like curry.

I can see why workers around Portland are flocking to this place and why waiting in a long line is ever so worth it when you get to go back to work with such a happy stomach. Plus, for $5, you can’t get a better deal. If only I could figure out what their secret “Tali” sauce is made of . . . any ideas?

The Whole Bowl on Urbanspoon

The Whole Bowl on Urbanspoon

The Whole Bowl on Urbanspoon