Wind Horse Coffee & Tea is a cozy, personable coffee cabana catering to caffeine connoisseurs. Bolster the break of day with an energy-charging chalice of Caffè Umbria brand coffee ($1.55 for 12 oz), or soothe shot nerves from a night interrupted by the boogieman show choir with a latte ($3.20 for 12 oz). Beard wearers can decorate facial hair with dollops of cream from a milky mocha ($3.30 for 12 oz), and pastry pundits can pepper their morning horoscopes with crumbs from a fresh, locally prepared muffin ($2.35). Wind Horse also provides eaters a menu of noshable breakfast and lunch items, including breakfast toasties ($4.50) and paninis ($5.95).
The hills above Milwaukie bear many secrets, including a turn-of-the-century estate called Amadeus Manor with sloping roofs, heavy wood doors, and stunning views of the Willamette River and Portland skyline. This hidden gem—a three-story stone manor built in 1921—emerges from the bowed limbs of enormous trees and shrubbery, welcoming people inside for a romantic dinner of continental cuisine.
Its menu is culled from European classics, with a focus on the owner's home country, Austria. For the schnitzel Amadeus, the chefs trim pork tenderloin by hand, and for the steak au poivre Madagascar, they paint a grilled new york strip steak in a peppercorn cognac demi glace and pair it with mango chutney. Dinners sweetly conclude with a rotating menu of desserts made in house and a cup of house coffee served with luscious clotted cream.
Guests linger over the meals at tables set with fresh flowers while nearby, a fire roars in a stone hearth. Dusk is particularly enchanting when the setting sun illuminates iron-framed windows and the manor's glittering chandeliers twinkle in the soft pink light.
You might find Li Doyle up very early on a Friday, Saturday, or Sunday morning, making all of the breads and jams for Lili Patisserie's ever-changing breakfast, lunch, and dinner menus herself, combining them with cage-free eggs and local, organic produce whenever possible. Her challah bread becomes chicken club sandwiches or Cuban-style sandwiches, and her handmade ricotta gnocchi wind up on beds of sautéed spinach with san marzano tomato sauce.
In addition to fresh, seasonal items such as wild, line-caught coho salmon, Doyle prepares vegan and gluten-free options. Bright-red chairs and vintage-style furniture give the seating area a quaint european vibe, like the butter churn currently haunted by the ghost of Louis XIV.
Family owned for a little more than two decades, El Palenque treats guests to a range of regional fare, all handmade in accordance with time-tested generational recipes. Fresh ingredients populate a dinner menu crammed with savory Central American fare, such as the traditional chicharron pupusa (spiced pork, $10) and the hearty tamal (a corn dish with olives, potato, bell peppers, carrots, garbanzos, and feta cheese, $10), as well as Mexican mandible pleasures such as the palenque salad (meat, rice, beans, lettuce, avocado, and pico de gallo, $10). Many dinner items make guest appearances on El Palenque's lunch menu, mingling with creative co-stars such as the cheese and loroco pupusa (corn tortilla stuffed heartily with cheese and Loroco, El Salvador's most beloved and devoured tropical flower, $7) and the crispy chimichanga (accented with ranchera salsa, avocado, and sour cream, $10). Pair any plate with a cold glass of horchata ($3), a crisp glass of chardonnay ($7), or a well-fermented mug of imported cerveza ($4), the Spanish word for fiesta.