Long before Portland became Foodgasm Central, home of artisan food worship and countless breathless articles written by the national media, there was the 1970s. Mustaches, feathered hair, smoking, orange decor, and wood paneling ruled the day.
In honor of Memorial Day, here’s a salute to the groundbreakers who gave their all to help set the stage for the modern day Portland dining experience.
10/25/13 update: This has proven to be one of the most popular posts ever on Lost Oregon! I encourage you to read the comments – a bit jumbled – but some great memories there! Here’s one example (from Ross Pullen – he’s a goldmine for local food history):
Asparro’s on SE Grand was a fixture for years. I believe it had a Greek style menu, but I may be mistaken on that. (Union Avenue Social Club was the name given after he sold it)
HOLMAN’S at SE 28 TH and Burnside is still open and operating last I checked.
The “German restaurant on 82 ND and Burnside that Jim Darke mentioned was actually a Swiss place called THE MATTERHORN and operated until early 2000s when it was sold and they built a Walgreen’s.
Disco dancing and backgammon?! Slabtown still rocks.
The Kon-Tiki was around much later than I had thought.
Digger O’Dell’s on SE Grand offered an oyster bar, freshly baked cornbread and accepted Carte Blanche credit cards.
They also offered sidewalk seating “whenever weather permits.”
Some things never change.