I’m still basking in the goodness that was my parents’ first visit to Portland. (Among a couple other firsts for them.) Last week, I went from a two-day offsite meeting at the heavenly Allison Inn in Oregon wine country to meeting Jeff and my parents for a five-day adventure. It came and went so quickly but we sure packed in some good stuff!
After my parents arrived around noon on Thursday, Jeff, Mom and Dad jumped right into Portland culture with lunch at the downtown food carts, including “Give Pizza a Chance.” They squeezed in a Michigan State Big Ten Tourney game, and then met me at work as I was getting dropped off from my offsite expedition. Like with any visitors, we swung by the Nike Employee Store, where my dad got a little shop-crazy. (We ended up making two trips there over the weekend!) That’s when our whirlwind restaurant/bar/winery hop of Portland began.
Friday was our “explore the town” day. Luckily we got a beautiful sunny day, which almost allowed us to see Mt. Hood from the city. Luckily we all had our Nikes on, because we walked everywhere. We went to Kettleman Bagel Company, took a quick walk in the hills, we rode the streetcar to the Pioneer Square Mall, we discovered the best views of the city from the 30th floor Portland City Grill, we got some beers at Henry’s, we walked the riverfront…then we tried to catch the Michigan State Big Ten Tourney game at Blitz Pearl with no luck. (They won, luckily!) We headed home to get a meat-free Italian meal home-cooked by Jeff. Then euchre! We always take advantage of our Midwestern visitors knowing how to play euchre.
Saturday was the big winery tour day. Oregon, maybe surprising to some, is not only big-time microbrew country but also big-time wine country. Oregon has 15 approved winegrowing regions and more than 300 wineries producing 72 varieties. Most notable are their Pinot Noirs. My parents generally lean toward sweeter wines like Rieslings, but we all tasted our share of amazing vino at Argyle Winery, Domaine Drouhin, and the venerable Archery Summit, in addition to a stop at the rooftop bar at McMenamins Hotel. We headed home, and capped off the night with some good ¿Por Que No? Mexican food and “The Fighter” (viewing #2 for Jeff and me) at the super cool Mission Theater & Pub.
After those 2.5 days of action, we relaxed a bit on Sunday. Yes, we still managed to visit Grand Central Bakery for some pre-church breakfast, Little Big Burger for a fabulously greasy lunch, and dinner at Bridgeport Brewery. You think we ate out a bit during their trip? 😉
Overall, it was so great having them in town and getting to see our new stomping grounds. It was sad to see them go but in a few short months we’ll be home for Macy’s baptism!