Have you ever been to the city of Roses?
That’s what they call it, apparently, because the climate is ideal for rose growing, and also possibly for doughnut making???
For, Portland, Oregon, is known by many, as the city of killer doughnuts!
… And it is also famous for being the American city with the most strip clubs per capita, it even beats Vegas, crazy hey?!
However, I had no idea of these many ‘perks’ when I signed up for the trip.
I had never been, nor had I given the city much thought or even any at all. I’d never stumbled upon Portland in my readings of the world, so it was definitely not on my list of cities/places to visit before I die, but it should totally be on yours!!
And not because of the roses, or the doughnuts, or the strippers, I mean those are totally legitimate attractions, but Portland has lots more to offer too! I don’t even like doughnuts! And since I went last week (in mid October), I missed all of the roses. The strippers (at least the girls at Sassy’s) were all tattooed, and VERY sexy, and totally ‘sassy’ in the best sense of the word, they actually seemed like they were having fun and were insanely talented both with their pole dancing skills and their entertaining and even comedic routines. 🙂
Across the street from Sassy’s there is a bowling alley, and from 9pm until 11:30 it is only 3 dollars per game!!!
And just up the street (Morrison st. ) we discovered the funkiest little cocktail bar called Light Bar which is a little more pricey than most bars in Portland, but their drinks are some of the best I’ve ever had. Each spirit is infused with something: fruit, flowers, camomile, oak. The bartender sat down with us and explained each drink and concoction in elaborate detail, his passion for his trade shone as brightly as the lights… epic!
And then there was the discovery of my favourite bar of all time on Mississippi Street, seriously, if it existed in Vancouver, I’d be there every weekend at least. It has hammocks in the back,
picnic tables in the front,
an upstairs attic with FREE pool and darts,
another separate games room with arcade games, and even a swinging table with real swings for seats.
If you are EVER in portland, seriously, go to BUNGALO BAR
The owner of Bungalo Bar is the sweetest, most accommodating man! Bungalo bar is not a gay bar by any means, but it is super queer friendly, and he made my girlfriend and I feel totally welcome, he even did his best to tell us about all the gay bars and gay attractions around the city, including a bar called Casey’s where they could make you rainbow shots!
Which of course, we had to go get.
At Casey’s: Bartender Brandon really wow’d us with these ones. Nobody believes us now, but he actually shook them up and poured them out of one shaker right in front of us! And he did it in under a minute, not like the slowpoke youtube demos. And hey, they tasted damn good too!
After another wild night of bar hopping, clubbing, and hitting up the many live music venues and shows in Portland, cure your morning hangover with the most delicious french brunch at la Petite Provence, like we did…
We tried two different gluten-free benny’s, one made atop the most succulent asparagus and bacon risotto cakes, and one made on yummy polenta stacks!
To drink, they give you a wide selection of specialty coffees including a White Russian Latte, which is really quite magical.
But if you’d rather something a little cheaper, and quicker, head down town for a scrumptious sandwich at Pork Belly’s, and one of their to-die-for $3 smoothies… My mouth is watering as I reminisce.
There are so many places to eat and drink and dance and watch live music all over this city. So make sure you pack your dancing shoes… and pants with a stretchy waist band 😉
And save your money by going going with McMenamins for accomodation! We stayed at the White Eagle, which was only 55 dollars per night!
And they have live music every single night, and the most delicious, gooey, mac n’ cheese balls, perfect for late night, drunk munching, as well as a wide selection of traditional american food like burgers, fish n’ chips, etc.
I will warn you though, the White Eagle is haunted, like a lot of buildings in Portland, but the ghosts are Portlanders and Oregonians… VERY friendly. Like the strangers on the street, no one in Portland is shy to give you a wide smile and a enthusiastic hello, possibly even a hug if you let them get that close!
The city itself is beautiful to walk around, there are gorgeous old buildings, bridges, parks… I wish I had time to see more, but I was only there for THREE DAYS! a very epic three days, indeed.
I know I’ll be back sometime, so maybe I’ll see you there!
Heidi J. Loos