Portland/Union Station

My Oregon adventure began with a scenic journey aboard Amtrak Cascades. In about eight hours, we pulled into Portland’s Union Station, moments from my downtown hotel for the night. I remember feeling ready to roll, as the train seats were much more comfy than an airplane’s.

Wifi signals from start to finish, I was able to check email and get a bit of work done, as well as some shut-eye (6:40 am direct departure from Vancouver).

Red Star Restaurant provided a great Pacific northwest dinner that evening. Executive Chef Kyle Rourke creates a thoughtful menu with seasonal ingredients. Chef Rourke likes to combine comfort food, regional cuisine, and local products in a relaxed atmosphere.

A variety of Portland craft brews are available on tap as well as wine and cocktails. Bourbon fans will want to check out the tavern’s bourbon wall, the largest and most comprehensive in Oregon. I enjoyed a pan roasted snapper with sautéed kale and mashed potato ($27), a slight variation from the menu offering (leeks, chanterele cream).

Portland/Kimpton Monaco Hotel

I slept like a baby at the Kimpton Monaco Hotel, a stylish boutique property in downtown Portland.

Portland/Kimpton Monaco Hotel

Each room has a unique collection of designer furnishings and accents.

Portland/Kimpton Monaco Hotel Portland/Kimpton Monaco Hotel Portland/Kimpton Monaco Hotel Portland/Kimpton Monaco Hotel

My favourite design element is this duck feet lamp on my room’s coffee table.

Portland/Mother's Bistro: Pumpkin pancake

Mother’s Bistro is a five minute walk away. A brisk morning stroll brought me back to one of my favourite haunts. Pumpkin pancakes were the day’s feature, and delicious! I added one onto my egg and toast breakfast.

Portland/Mother's Bistro/Eggs 'n' toast

The lineup at Voodoo Doughnuts was reasonable (we’ve had waits of over an hour), so I picked out a couple of doughnuts that were sold out the last time my husband and I visited Portland: the Maple Bacon Bar and Voodoo Doll for my two hour drive out to the coast.

Portland/Voodoo Doughnuts Voodoo Doll, Bacon Maple Bar/Voodoo Doughnuts Bacon Maple Bar/Voodoo Doughnuts

These are scrumptious, yummy treats, each and every one. And the interior is colourful to hang out in while deciding on your batch. Those pink boxes are coveted up and down the coast!

Portland/Voodoo Doughnuts interior Portland/Voodoo Doughnuts interior

Upon returning from the Oregon coast, I dined at Ringside Fish House with its second floor view and excellent seafood dishes. My lunch was an Ahi tuna and bacon burger (ground together in-house), served with a fried egg on top, grilled red onion, whole grain mustard aioli and thin steak frites ($14.75). A simple green salad ($4) completed the pre-train return meal. As for craft beer, I picked a Boneyard IPA from Bend, Oregon.

Portland/Ringside Fish House

My Amtrak Cascades return ticket, stay at the Kimpton Monaco and dinner at Red Star Restaurant were courtesy of Hotel Monaco and Travel Oregon. My lunch at Ringside Fish House was courtesy of Amtrak Cascades. Opinions, as always, are my own.

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