Sunday, August 19, 2007

Half a dozen diverse restaurants in one block, SW Morrison, between 10th and 11th

For months as the No. 15 bus turned west at SW Morrison on my way home from work, I have noticed the juxtaposition of two restaurant signs and pondered on them, not in a culinary way but in a geographical sense--India House on the corner, Perian House down the block, right here in Portland, Oregon. Neat.

So the other week when I walked that block after my trip to the Central Library, I decided to look closer, once this MAX Blue Line slid by bound for Hillsboro, a suburban city like Brandon, Clinton, Madison, Pearl, and Ridgeland.

Imagine my surprise when I realized that six separate restaurants populate the block! And they're easy to get to, with a Smart Park garage down at SW 10th and Morrison, plus the nearby MAX and bus stops. I wonder what the block looks like at lunch time as well as dinner time? Oh, let me make it clear that I've not yet dined in any of these diverse eateries; I'm just impressed that there are six in one single block and thought you Jacksonians would be, too. I well remember how much Jacksonians enjoy a meal out, be it breakfast, lunch or dinner. Or is that breakfast, dinner and supper? Or breakfast, lunch and supper? Are you hungry yet?

Now you're looking west towards the bus stop I often use after my trip to the library. It appears other parking exists to the south, too.

Back at the corner of SW 10th and Morrison the first restaurant on the south side of Morrison is a Mexican one. I didn't go back around the corner to get a photo of it's front, so I don't know it's name. Any of you Portlanders reading this know? I'd love it if you'd share it. I do know that one young man often on my homeward-bound bus when I catch the No. 18 says the food there suits him.

Glowing reviews for Habibi Lebanese & Mediterranean Cuisine exist at Citysearch. What do you think about those reviews? Do you use them as guides for your dining pursuits? I like those green umbrellas; they're interesting, in an eccentric sort of way. And the font used for the restaurant's name esthetically appeals to me.

Just what is casual Italian, as the round sign for La Capanna states?

Persian House's sign goes on to explain that the menu is continental in addition to Persian. Their Web site says Spanish, Italian, French, Greek, and Middle Eastern recipes. I must admit, that broadness makes me wonder about the attendant quality.

Here's India House at the opposite corner from the Mexican restaurant. Those umbrellas stand out, too. I suppose midday diners need them, especially if they don't have any sunglasses.

Directly across the street from India House is this Big Town Hero Sub Sandwich Shop, born in Corvallis. Their slogan on the Web site: an army travels on its stomach.

I'm hoping my Mississippi buddies will share names and details of their favorite dishes at any and/or all of these ethnic restaurants. One of these days I'd like to stop for a bite or two, but I'd like to go in with some knowledge. Also, any Portlanders reading this willing to share your knowledge about these restaurants, feel free to comment.


Mads said...

Those restaurants actually get quite full on weekends even though they're all right next to each other.
The Italian restaurant is 'casual' because you have to go up to the register to order, pay for your food, and grab your silverware and drinks.

Lynette said...

Thanks for the information. And that makes perfect sense about the 'casual.' Do you have a favorite among them?

Faye Pekas said...

Awhile back I was in Portland for a training, I think around Broadway and Salmon. One thing I noticed was that all the restaurants in the area had outdoor seating, mostly right out on the sidewalk. I think it was interesting. Its not something we see in Roseburg.

You'd have to hang around a long time to try all the restaurants just on that one block :)

Lynette said...

I too am fascinated by the outdoor seating at so many restaurants in Portland. Having just moved up here last June from Mississippi where we only ate outside on the occasional summer holiday or once in a while in the early, early evening so as to avoid mosquitos, we thoroughly enjoy a outdoor meal at several restaurants near our apartment. I especially am impressed by the foresight of the sidewalk-designers, to make them so wide probably years before folks started putting tables and chairs out front.

Yolanda said...

I'm a fellow Mississippian that moved here last summer to. I live in McMinnville.

Lynette said...

Thanks for your comment. Mama and I have driven by McMinnville on our way to play the penny machines at Spirit Mountain. Or is that sort of through McMinnville? How did you fare during the rainy weather? We didn't mind it one bit ourselves.

Rob said...

Hey, you're in my neck of the woods! I love that Italian restaurant. I can't recall what it's named because they recently changed names, but I'm not sure if much else changed. On a rainy day, that's a great spot to enjoy dinner with a date. Also, the India House, at the corner of the block, is another favorite.

A downtown life in Portland is pretty sweet if you ask me.


Lynette said...

I couldn't agree with you more about the downtown life, Rob.

dot said...

OH no! One photo would partically download and I got the red x on the rest of them. I'll check back later.