Hello fellow wanderers!
As if I haven’t mentioned it enough, one of the greatest things about living in Seattle is how accessible so many other adventures and cities can be! Last weekend Hung and I decided to go on a wonderfully semi-spontaneous day trip to Portland. Now, don’t get me wrong. I love Seattle. Especially right now, the land is lush and warm with varying shades of green prancing around the landscape, but sometimes (a lot of the time) I need a change of scenery… just because.
It was Saturday night and Hung and I were deciding on what our plans would be for Sunday. Typically we’re on the same page with just about everything so I have no clue who’s idea it was that we would escape to Portland for a day. Sunday came and the weather was humid, muggy, and too hot for me to function (side note: Anything over 67 degrees and with a humidity level higher than the Utah deserts is too hot). I checked the weather for Portland since it’s about 2.5 hours south of Seattle, of course it was going to be even more unbearable. Great, mid-80’s. Why didn’t we decide to go up to Vancouver, B.C. instead?
Next I knew, we were off on our road trip to Portland. The idea was to shop for some bike gear for Hung. We had recently sold his Acura and invested in a nice bicycle for him to help us reduce living expenses (minus one auto insurance, one gas tank, and one parking space fee per month please!). So our adventure to Portland began.
Hung drove as I read us a finance book. Next we knew, we were in Portland at about 4pm. Our first stop was a WONDERFUL bike shop called Rain City Bicycles. We couldn’t believe the customer service we received! They were so helpful and friendly and we weren’t even making a large purchase. (Our shock mainly came from our lack of impressive customer service from a large Seattle bike shop in Bellevue and Lynnwood where we purchased both of our bikes.) We were able to escape Rain City Bicycles without too much damage to the bank account. To be honest, I’ve become the biggest comparison shopper whenever we’re out and about. So some of the items that we found at Rain City Bicycles I ended up looking up on Amazon on the spot and found better deals.
We ran around downtown Portland and Washington Square in Tigard to do some more shopping for other random items. Most of our excitement around heading south to Portland for the day is that we’d heard so much about this chicken and rice shop called Nong’s Khao Man Gai. Once we were done with all of our shopping around town Nong’s was our next stop.
Nong’s restaurant (not the food stand) is on the Northeastern side of the city. It’s seemingly isolated from other restaurants and since I’m not a local is hard to miss and in the middle of what looks like nowhere. The parking was easy to find on the streets. As we entered the lively, bustling, and warm restaurant we made our way to the front after reviewing a short menu selection by the door. We decided to stick with the regular Nong’s Kaho Man Gai, Hung got the larger portion served with liver on the side.
At first glance, first bite, and after consuming the whole plate … it was amazing. I crave it every day. If you’re a local to Portland, send me some! 🙂 I’m in love with this place, Yelpers are in love with this place, and some friends. One of my coworkers mentioned she’d had better from her family in Singapore and Hung said his mom’s Vietnamese style chicken and rice is unforgettable. That being said, I wasn’t raised eating chicken and rice and this could be my next big thing. (If you’re interested, Nong’s has their recipe on their site!)
Our next stop was Salt & Straw. I’d heard raving reviews about this place from friends, on Instagram, and on Yelp. I’ve been dying to try it and this hot day called for something sweet and cold. The problem, it was still muggy and the line stretched around the building. With determination, we stood, and waited…waited, and then waited some more. Finally after walking into the cool air conditioned parlor we were greeted and asked if we wanted any samples. Take note, Salt & Straw is known for the odd, weird, and local chef combination ice creams. I tried the more realistic ones and Hung tried kimchi and rice. Then we placed our orders.
We tried the ice cream flight (you get to choose any four!), we had the double fold vanilla, coconut with Petunia’s salted caramel bars, strawberry honey balsamic with black pepper, and chocolate gooey brownie with the added addition to the root beer float. This is my new favorite ice cream shop. Why can’t they be in Seattle too?!
Finally our time had come to an end. It was time to head back into Seattle. The weekend had come to an end and work was near. Albeit only a short day trip, I found some new favorites and can’t wait for our next trip back!
Do you have some Portland favorites that I need to try? If so let me know #WanderingMillennial