A Food Guide: Portland, Oregon


There’s nothing I’m asked more often, aside from what camera I use, than what to do when visiting Portland. There is SO much to do here, but Portland is famous for having incredibly diverse and high-quality food options. Honestly, even living here I’m going out to eat at least 4 times a week and constantly finding new spots. I’m a huge foodie, even though I don’t always post my meals on social media - my love for food developed even more after moving to Portland.

I’ve had this ongoing note in my phone where I add restaurants I love so I don’t forget the names - if I’m in a certain neighborhood, I can always glance at this to figure out where to eat. If I’m showing someone the city, I know all the must-hit spots to take them. And now, my extremely curated index of Portland’s finest eateries is seeing the light of day and being shared with the universe. Protect this list with your life… and happy eating.



jam on hawthorne - mothers bistro - pine state biscuits - tasty n alder - moberi - st. honore - kure  - coco donuts - blue star donuts - papa haydn - greenleaf juice - lovejoy bakers - breken kitchen - olympia provisions - proud mary - hey love - cheryl’s on 12th - figlia americana

I always recommend Tasty n Alder and Pine State to people who are visiting Portland for the first time - definitely a real PDX experience. Mother’s and Jam are fabulous for a traditional brunch, but be ready to wait in a LONG line on weekends. Breken and Olympia are a lot more lowkey, and great for coffee dates and weekdays. Definitely check out Proud Mary if you love beautifully plated food and a good Aussie accent. Kure and Moberi are tied in my book for best acai/smoothie places!



luc lac - vivienne - bullard - XLB - departure - urban farmer - siri indian cuisine - por que no - screen door - sizzle pie - grassa - lardo - bamboo sushi - Santa Fe - imperial - paley’s place - rosa rosa - pepino’s - killer burger - little big burger - garden bar - noraneko - hem 23 - afuri - boxer ramen - poke mon - quickfish - guero no.1 tortas - baan thai - boke bowl - swagat - tusk - cheese & crack - montage - virtuous pie - kachka - hem23 - paadee - shalom y’all - thai peacock - marrakesh - prasad - harlow - montesacro - bunk sandwiches - hat yai - stella taco - the whole bowl - grilled cheese grill - delores - nong’s khao man gai - jackrabbit - sea sweets poke - luce - besaw’s - andina - paragon - pok pok - langbaan

Portland has so many absolutely fantastic options for global cuisines, and all of the ones I’ve listed here are awesome. Check out XLB for a curated Chinese street food menu, Grassa for fresh pasta, and Por Que No for the most raved-about tacos in PDX. Shalom Y’all is a trendy new Israeli spot, known for their hummus and lebneh. Vegans are in luck in PDX - restaurants like Garden Bar, The Whole Bowl, Prasad, Virtuous Pie, Harlow and Stella Taco (get the fried avocado tacos!) are all vegan-friendly. Portland also has a lot of highly-rated Asian options - see Departure, Bamboo, Pok Pok, Hat Yai, Nong’s, Thai Peacock and Paadee. I also always take people to Afuri (SE Portland location) and Montage for the atmosphere - both of these are great for large groups.



tea bar - barista - public domain - good coffee - zero degrees - tea chai te - heart coffee - bubble n tea - smith tea room - townshend’s tea - coava coffee - case study coffee - stumptown coffee - upper left - never coffee -water ave. coffee co. - maurice - kozy bar - presso coffee

Coffee shops in Portland are a dime a dozen, but there are certain ones that are a cut above the rest. Barista and Good Coffee are my faves, and aside from quality roasts they’re spacious and great places to sit and get some work done. I spend most of my time at Tea Bar, which is a coffee shop minus the coffee - they do tea lattes, matcha, boba and everything else tea. Upper Left also has a cute small bites menu, and Stumptown is the classic Portland brew you have to try.



rontoms - multnomah whiskey library - teardrop lounge - circa 33 - angel face - brix tavern - river pig saloon - mcmenamin’s back stage - barlow - momo’s - pepe le moko - departure - jackknife - opal bar - west

Rontoms has to be my favorite bar to take friends - the drinks are cheap, they have a chic interior and ping pong tables and a patio out back and it’s perfect in the summer. Brix and River Pig are also awesome for groups, especially if you want food as well. I love Angel Face, West and Pepe Le Moko for smaller groups or dates - super cute candelit hideouts. Back Stage is a fun one if you’re into pool and want a very Portland-y vibe, and the speakeasy at Circa 33 still makes me excited every time I go!

Check out these recommendations and let me know what you think (you can follow me on Instagram) - and if you have any recommendations for me, definitely shout them out! :)

Travel: Oahu, Hawaii


I’ve been chasing summer this whole year, and December is no different. About a month ago, I got a cheap flight alert - PDX to Honolulu round trip for just $280. I sent a screenshot to my friends Candace and Dillon, and we were all kinda like… wow, what if we just booked that and went to Hawaii? So we did.

I haven’t been back to Hawaii since I was about 12, when I went to Kaua’i with my family. I remember playing with geckos in the beach house we stayed at, watching the summer olympics and eating shave ice with my dad, attending a local luau and best of all, snorkeling. That Hawaii trip was a total highlight of my childhood, and it made me so excited for this trip! I was wondering how Oahu would be different, and what kind of experiences Hawaii had to offer for no-longer-kids.

Where To Stay:
For the first 4 nights of our trip, we got an Airbnb on Waikiki Beach. It was super cheap and the location was incredible - a 5 min walk down to the ocean, right next to tons of amazing food spots and the main strip of shops there. However, the Airbnb property itself was kinda underwhelming. It was fine, but I think we only put up with it because we were gone all day every day.

The last day we were in Honolulu, Dillon had left so Candace and I decided to splurge a lil and ditched the Airbnb for the Surfjack Hotel + Swim Club down the street from our first place. We found this place on IG and it looked SO cute! The rooms were amazing and it’s got a chic little bungalow type pool area, plus a trendy coffee shop called Olive + Oliver and upscale restaurant, Mahina and Suns, on site. I also loved that they bring in local artists and musicians every day to sell their work or provide entertainment. It really gives that Hawaiian vibe and I love seeing larger businesses support their community.

Some other lovely hotels in the area are the Laylow, the Modern Honolulu, the Alohilani, the Mariott Waikiki Beach, and the Royal Hawaiian. Hotels in this area honestly are not cheap (why we went with an Airbnb for a few nights) - the best deals we saw were definitely for the Surfjack and the Modern on HotelTonight.

Shameless plug, but if you use code “NEDANAN” on HotelTonight, it saves you $25 off your first booking. No, this isn’t sponsored, I wish it was haha. Just a little traveler tip, since some of the best deals are on there!

What To See:
There is SO much to do on Oahu. Although we did quite a bit of baking on the beach, we made an effort to see as much of the island as possible. The first day there, we hung out on Waikiki Beach, wandered around trying some of the local food spots near our place, and seeing what was cool for photos. The second day, we checked out Hanauma Bay on recommendation of an Uber driver and we were not disappointed! The nature preserve there is stunning and really popular for snorkeling because of all the reef wildlife, and it was probably one of my fave beaches we went to.

Dillon also got up at 5 am and hiked every morning. He did Koko Head, Diamond Head, and Waimea Falls! I was not a part of these hikes but I support his athleticism lol. The photos were amazing, and if hiking is something you’re into, Oahu has tons of good ones.

We rented a car and drove up to the North Shore the next day, stopping along the way at Ho’omaluhia Botanical Gardens. This is a must-see! The views here are just breathtaking, and you can get that iconic middle-of-the-road IG photo (although there are literally signs everywhere saying no photos on the road, so don’t get caught!). These botanical gardens are home to thousands of rare tropical plants and trees exclusive to Hawaii, and they’re surrounded by this gorgeous mountain range.


Once on the North Shore, we beach-hopped and ate everything in sight. For beaches there, we stopped by Laniakea Beach to see the turtles (we saw some in the water but an annoying tourist in, you guessed it, cargo shorts, scared them away), and then laid out and spent our day at Kawela Bay Beach Park. The beaches here are so serene and quiet, definitely a welcome change from the bustle of Honolulu. Besides us, the only other people around really were surfers.

For breakfast we got açai bowls at Sunrise Shack, which is a cute lil spot in Haleiwa - really popular with the surfers. After the beach, we did açai bowls literally again at Haleiwa Bowls, which was better in my opinion! We also got the famous fresh poke bowls at the grocery store Foodland for the drive home.

Where To Eat:
I already mentioned some of our favorite picks from the North Shore and the restaurant in our hotel, but there was no shortage of amazing food in Honolulu. Arvo is a cute little Aussie coffee shop in the art district area, serving up lavender lattes, charcoal lattes, matcha and the like, as well as avo toast, smoked salmon toast, and any number of cute breakfasty items with a floral accent. Absolutely loved the food and coffee here - I wish we went back! It’s also in a cute shopping center with other local businesses like a boba shop, a florist, and a vintage Hawaiian shirt retailer.

Maguro Spot is an unsuspecting hole-in-the-wall poke restaurant that you can NOT miss. The poke here was insane - the type of fresh that melts in your mouth! We found it from it’s rave reviews on Yelp. Across the street is Musubi Iyasume Cafe, which was the best spam musubi I’ve had in a long time - again, crazy good Yelp reviews led us here. Aloha Kitchen is a lovely little breakfast spot with an island twist on traditional diner items - think Kahlua pork benedict and coconut souffle pancakes. Island Vintage Coffee - get the honey latte and the lilikoi açai bowl here! - was also a great breakfast/lunch stop and reminded me of Urth Caffe :) Rainbow Drive-In was the best traditional Hawaiian food we found. Love some good old fashioned shoyu chicken with 2 scoops of rice and creamy mac salad.

Also, if you’re looking for a chic bar, check out the Laylow’s outdoor bar Hideout Waikiki - super cute drinks and great service.

This trip was such a welcome vacation from all the work I’ve been doing and the stress I’ve been under lately. Sometimes you really just need to convince your best friends to go to Hawaii with you and take photos and veg out on the beach. Ugh, I can’t wait to go back.