Portland, OR – Day 2 – Part 3
The rain was not too bad, so we decided to walk from Hawthorne to Division to have lunch at the very very famous Pok Pok then dessert at Salt & Straw. Both were on my must go to list.
3226 SE Division St
Portland, OR 97202
By the time we got to Pok Pok, it was pouring. I wonder if it was because of the rain but we only waited 10 minutes to get seated in the little covered patio area outside.
I thought it was actually kind of interesting to see that so many people are talking about Pok Pok in Portland. There are quite a few Thai restaurants in the city and quite honestly I don’t remember seeing very many Asians (I guess I’m comparing it all to California). It really made me wonder how authentic can this be. After reading the rather long description of the wings, V and I felt that this could be a very Vietnamese dish (I guess it’s all South East Asia).
And then we got 2 orders of the chicken wings, 1 that is spicy and 1 that is not spicy. It’s not the small little wings you would expect at many restaurants when you order wings. Instead you get the whole thing and yes the bones are all in there. And served with a little salad on the side.
And honestly we were all rather disappointed. The wings were too salty for us, and because of that we ordered a side of sticky rice as well as a side of rice. The rice was just bad. The regular jasmine rice was very dry. I’m usually to a nice moist Jasmine rice and sometimes that’s what you order to see how good the food could be at an Asian restaurant. The sticky rice was ok, but not the best I’ve had.
Maybe, we should have ordered other things to eat along with the wings. There are quite a few other dishes on the menu with exotic names and long descriptions, but we just weren’t very hungry after our big brunch at Sweedeedee, the donuts at Blue Star Donuts, and cider at Portland Cider Company (and of course we needed to save room for ice cream at Salt & Straw).
LOCAL TIP: If you are only going to Pok Pok for the wings and don’t want to wait for a table, walk across the street (-ish) to Whisky Soda Lounge (3131 SE Division St, Portland, OR 97202) and order the wings there. Plus I’m sure the wings would be amazing with some beer.
Salt & Straw Ice Cream Shop
3345 SE Division St.
Portland, OR 97202
I was super excited for ice cream after eating the rather salty chicken wings from Pok Pok. We actually walked passed this place on our way to Pok Pok and knew that is a long line here too.
When you walk in, you really wouldn’t guess that this is an ice cream place. You don’t see any glass freezer things with tubs of ice cream inside at all. But the again, I guess all of the people holding cups and cones hanging out inside would give it away.
We immediately jumped in line and spent that entire time trying to decide on what flavors to get and I guess what flavors to try.
When it was our turn to order our ice cream we took our time and tried quite a few different flavors. We never felt rushed though I did feel a little bad knowing how long we had already waited and didn’t want the people behind us to wait too long.
Plus, taster spoons are not the sad plastic disposable ones. We were given real metal spoons and when we were done with each little taste, we just deposited back somewhere in the counter.
BH and I jokingly wanted to try to Arbequina Olive Oil ice cream, and ended up getting a scoop of it. I’m a sucker for creamy ice cream. The olive oil ice cream was really good (the first 5-10 bites) and then the flavor just got a little overwhelming. By then I really wanted some boring vanilla ice cream to calm my confused pallete.
Over all it was fun experience with good ice cream. I think I’ve had one too many tubs of store bought ice cream that I kept in my freezer for way too long and suddenly discovered getting ice cream that is not old and stale. haha. Ever since then, I’ve craving yummy ice cream all the time. Plus why not try ice cream with fun and some what scary flavors.
We spent a little more time people watching inside of Salt & Straw waiting for Sebas’s friend to pick us up and take us to Downtown Portland to check out the amazing Powels Book Store, then dinner.
INSIDER TIP: If you don’t want to wait in the long line, you can actually go directly do the freezer and pick up a tub of ice cream. You don’t have to get in the long long line to pay for your ice cream. I would probably do that next time, but the tasting and selecting is all part of the experience.
Also note that both of these places have Los Angeles locations as well (and I have not been to either).