Exploring Portland – Mainly the Food, Drink and a Tiny Tiny Park!

On Sunday we headed for Portland again. I still love heading the three hours down the coast and getting such a different feel from a city, it’s slightly dirtier, edgier, cooler than Seattle, and there’s so much to eat! So apologies, I expect this post will be mainly frustratingly Instagram style top down photos of food!! But don’t miss the photo’s of the worlds smallest park… at 425 square inches it’s worth a visit!

We stayed at The Nines in Downtown Portland, we were upgraded when we arrived (good old Starwood Preferred Guest! :)). I quite liked the hotel, it was friendly and had a good feel to it, the rooms were comfortable. The tram in the morning was a little noisy, but we did have a city view rather than an internal room, so can’t really complain about that!

The rooftop bar gets quite a lot of coverage, and whilst the gin and tonic and the view were good, it didn’t really do much for me! I’m more of a fan of the grittier bars! 😉



After a bit of shopping (Wildfang is still one of my favourite stores to hunt out in Portland, the West store rather than the Downtown one though!). We popped by Dig a Pony for  quick drink and a bit of planning for our upcoming coastal adventure with friends next month (watch this space!). I still love the dive bar scene in the US, we don’t really do it as well in the UK! And discovered a fab new Portland IPA :).

Then off to Trifecta for oysters, cocktails and dinner! As someone who only experienced an oyster once before moving to the US (and it was almost not a very pretty sight!!), I’m getting in to the idea of trying oysters from different areas along the coast, whilst these oysters were good… for me they weren’t a patch on our previous oysters from Ballard Annex Oyster House back in Washington.

I’d read about the worlds smallest park (no idea why or where!!) and felt strangely compelled to check it out! At 425 square inches it’s pretty tiny. As I arrived there were two other people in the middle of the road taking photo’s of it.. so I walked round the block, I was a little embarrassed to be there for the same reason as them! Apparently it was originally meant for a lamp post, back in 1948, but it was never installed. Then an Irish chap, Fagan, told stories of the leprechauns who lived in the park (he was obviously the only person who could see the chief leprechaun). It was also temporarily relocated in 2007 due to roadwork, then put back, phew! I will put out a word of warning if you are also compelled to visit the park… once you push the button for the pedestrian crossing then stop in the middle to take a few photos, you are then stranded in the middle of a 4 lane road! There isn’t another button in the middle to activate the crossing… luckily Portland doesn’t seem as strict as Seattle with jaywalkers!

The drive back to Seattle from Portland can be notoriously busy (often taking 6 rather than 3 hours), so to skip the rush, we stopped for dinner at Bang Band PDX (yup, more food, sorry!). But this place is a gem, super fresh curry bowls, excellent Thai tea and brilliant pork and crab spring rolls with spicy cashew and home made Sriracha sauce. I’ll be back!!

Until next time Portland!


I’ve also been to a lot of design talks and inspiration recently, so if you’re looking for more design (and less food!) based posts, head on over to www.sophhorton.co.uk, and see what I’m doing when I’m not eating!


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