It’s raining these days and a girl has to keep her strength up.
Lunch yesterday with a dear friend found us at Clyde Common, 1014 SW Stark St, Portland (lunch Mon-Fri, dinner every night, “domestic and foreign cooking”). It’s in the Ace Hotel, which looks a bit like an upscale hostel, and is right across the street from a place I used to go dancing during the early ’70s called the Riptide. (It’s not there any more; don’t ask.)
I visited Clyde Common once a couple years ago and had a delicious lunch of sauteed organic chicken livers. Finally made it back. It is still wonderful and eclectic. Communal dining, canvas wall dividers the color of craft paper, open kitchen, and lots of big deals going down at the tables and bar.
Food: Mussel sandwich for me–crispy mussels and paper thin deep-fried lemon slices, shredded fennel, and green goddess dressing all piled on a hoagie roll, salad on the side. I think this resembles a Po’ Boy although I have never had one. It was yummy. MaryFrances chose the Clyde Common burger, a serious hunk of medium-rare ground beef with a roasted tomato salsa on the side. Other lunchtime temptations: Pork terrine and ham sandwich with green tomato jam; cauliflower soup; salad of mizuna, pear, fennel, pistachio with cava vinaigrette; tagliatelle, chanterelle, shallot, thyme and grana padano plate; french fries with creme fraiche and harissa.
We were too stuffed to try the Chocolate ‘baked Alaska’ w/Elijah Craig 12 y.o. whiskey ice cream. Maybe next time. The place was packed, big surprise. More space is available at dinner time as the mezzanine is open.
There are a few dinner crossovers, many additional snacks and starters (pork rillette w/grilled bread, crispy confit lamb belly w/aioli, ricotta gnudi with roasted and pureed cauliflower and truffle vinaigrette) and a bevy of appealing entrees featuring locally raised meats and slow-cooked fall vegetables. Lunch plates average $9; dinners are around $20; many small plates are available. I can’t wait to go back.
Clyde Common’s bar is one of the handful of places in town that offer an extensive palette of whiskies–a great place to sample and compare some of the harder-to-find bottlings.
Thai cravings have taken Pat and me to Chaba Thai on NE Sandy Boulevard and 57th. It’s been a favorite lunch spot when my good friend Bette and I get together. However, dinners here really rock. Last two visits we ate fresh Dungeness crab–with noodles, in a soup, in fried rice. I’m not going to list all the goodies Chaba has been putting on plates recently. I will say it’s standing room only during dinner hours and still a well-kept secret.