All the talk Downtown was the emerging food/beer scene in Sth East (SE) Portland. Over the past week I garnered opinions from random strangers (including a homeless man who was happy to guide me in the right direction for a fistful of copper).
Armed with a series of badly scrawled names and a near-expiring steeet car ticket I did what many Portlanders dread, I crossed the river. It fills them with a feeling of despair, I suspect because they are lazy… fear of the unknown.
Top of the list was Bollywood Theatre, an Indian joint that is the darling of the local street media. It was the best Indian this side of Mumbai, the only problem being my phone battery was like Mary Tyler Moore – on the way out. So no photos of the spicy vindaloo. No Bollywood dancers either.
I was able charge my phone whilst digestive juices worked their magic. Second name on the list (and a mere 59 metres down the road) was the highly acclaimed Thai place, Pok Pok.
As it was busy and I they got a hint of my accent I was racially profiled as being an alcoholic and offered a seat at the bar. is is where I encountered the American phenomenon of wait staff giving you so many options. Whenever this happens I remember the last thing the say and repeat like a parrot. Fortunately for this parrot the last thing was Som Tum, otherwise known as green papaya salad. Then there was the option of drinks.
“Blah, blah, blah…. Two Headed Dog…” Sounded like it wouldn’t kill me, so I stopped them there. Was then given some water and peanuts with lime leaves and chillis to get my taste buds in the mood.
For some reason there is a lump of cabbage on the side of the plate (still don’t know why) but the salad was tasty and being America it comes with some kind of pork and rice. The Two Headed Dog had gin, campari, lime, honey. Don’t know how it got it’s name but more than one of those and I would be lifting my leg on every second tree on the way home.
Whilst I enjoyed the meal it was disappointing. Expectations were high but I think the local Thai back home would have its measure.
Given the fact that I had eaten a couple of meals in quick succession I walked the 40 city blocks back towards home base. The other side of the river has its own foodcarts.
Only a couple more days to go, assuming I can leave the country. Just heard that the airports have turned chaotic due to overrnight immigration changes.
You are a brave man!!! I crossed the river and only just made it back with my life – just avoiding a gang fight in a park. I have to admit though the lure of Bollywood may have tempted me….
Not brave, hungry and inquisitive.