Officially, Portland boasts only two major league sports: soccer and basketball. But any resident will tell you there’s a third game in town — brunch. Faithful believers queue up for tables in lines so epic they’ve been fodder for the hit IFC show Portlandia. Try one of these popular spots for a morning meal worth the wait.
Mother’s Bistro & Bar
Comfort food is the mantra at Mother’s Bistro & Bar. Enjoy beloved standbys from crunchy French toast to house-made lox. If you visit on the weekend, try their rich eggs Benedict with a Bellini for a decadent brunch pairing. And for something special any day of the week, order a recipe from the featured “Mother of the Month.”
It all started with a sunny little café serving traditional and playful takes on Nordic fare in the Division-Clinton neighborhood of Southeast Portland. But once people tasted Broder’s delicately baked eggs, aebleskivers (crispy pancake puffs with lingonberry jam), and bords (breakfast charcuterie boards), demand brought about even more locations. And don’t miss a chance to end your meal with an age-old Scandinavian digestif; they’re proudly serving the largest selection of aquavit on the West Coast.
Even with two locations, the wait can be daunting at this perpetually packed standout. Fortunately, Screen Door’s down-home brunch menu rarely fails to please guests. Try their braised pork shoulder eggs Benedict, or enlist a friend to help tackle the jaw-dropping plate of crunchy fried chicken breasts stacked on a sweet-potato waffle. On the lighter side, rotating seasonal specials highlight fresh ingredients like heirloom tomatoes and peaches. Whatever you order, pair it with a side of praline bacon or cheesy grits.
Tin Shed Garden Café
Tin Shed Garden Café is an Alberta Arts District breakfast staple. This funky little shack is notable for its rib-sticking provisions such as fluffy biscuits drenched in apple-wood-smoked bacon gravy and crisp potato cakes topped with free-range eggs and a veritable riot of organic veggies. The cozy garden seating has an outdoor fireplace and is dog-friendly, adding to the convivial feel.
Pine State Biscuits
Every morning, rain or shine, locals line up for North Carolina-style buttermilk biscuits and gravy at Pine State Biscuits. The ultimate treat here is the Reggie Deluxe, a biscuit sandwich of fried chicken, cheese, egg and bacon smothered with sausage or mushroom gravy. But with steaming biscuits this fluffy and buttery, all you really need is a side of jam. Growing from a beloved Portland Farmers Market pop-up, they now have four locations city-wide.
The Original Pancake House
While you’ll find over 100 franchises of this chain across the U.S., this Portland site is the original. Founded in 1953 and lovingly maintained to look the same today, they’re still using real butter, house-made whipped cream, and fresh fruits in its fluffy pancakes and waffles. Try their delicious and enormous Dutch Baby or their mouth-watering cinnamon-glazed, Granny Smith-topped apple pancake.
Embracing Portland’s DIY culture, Slappy Cakes has installed griddles at each of their tables, allowing eaters to make their own pancakes with a selection of batters and toppings, including everything from berries and lavender honey to chocolate chips. Fun and filling, this kid-friendly brunch spot’s only downside is that the items on its full menu are so good it can be hard to save room for your own creations.
Was this page helpful?