Best Brunch Spots in Portland, Oregon
Portland, Oregon has had a rough year. I mean, we’ve all had a rough year: but Portland has had a REALLY rough year, for many reasons. And many of Portland’s amazing restaurants have had to shut down, either permanently (such as Isabel’s, Toro Bravo, & Meriwether’s) or temporarily (Mother’s), in response to these issues. But the forgotten truth is: Portland is a glorious, food-lover’s haven, & in my ongoing effort to spotlight great restaurants around the globe ~ I wanted to highlight something that Portland really does right: & that is brunch. Here are some of the best brunch spots in Portland, Oregon…
**Author’s Note: Article updated as of December 2022.
Mother’s is a downtown Portland INSTITUTION for brunch! Note; it’s temporarily closed, but does plan to re-open.
Best Brunch Spots Downtown
I’m organizing this Portland brunch tour by section of town, starting with downtown, which encompasses Northwest, the Pearl District, & true downtown (where the high-rises are). Note: if any restaurants are currently shut down but have plans to re-open, I’ll note that.
When I think of Portland brunch: Mother’s is the first place that comes to mind. If you have friends or family coming into town & want to show off, you take them to Mother’s. With its chandeliers, draping ferns, & delicious comfort food (breakfast is their specialty): you have everything you need at Mother’s for a great brunch spot. The downsides: there’s no outdoor patio & almost always a wait here.
Note: Mother’s is temporarily closed until further notice, even for take-out & delivery.
This place is happening. Like Mother’s, there’s usually a wait (unless you get here early or in the afternoon), but they typically get through it pretty quick ~ & they’ve added outdoor, heated cabanas this year! The reason Cheryl’s is so popular for brunch is because they serve breakfast every day until 4PM. YUMMM. So even the late-risers have a chance here. Decor is upscale urban, & they’re right on the corner of 12h & Washington with friendly umbrellas, making them hard to miss.
3. Brix Tavern (Pearl District)
When you have a big group ready for a rowdy Sunday brunch: head to Brix. Their HUGE indoor space lends itself to large parties, & this place gets packed on the weekends. It can definitely be a “scene,” so dress accordingly. I can’t count how many times I’ve been here on a cold, rainy day sipping Spanish coffees with friends. Brix’s near-perfect location in the Pearl District makes it the place where everybody somehow just ends up at. They also have a few outdoor tables.
4. Papa Haydn (Northwest)
If you’re looking for a little more intimate & romantic than Brix: head over to NW 23rd (my favorite street in Portland) to Papa Haydn’s. Though they’re currently only offering take-out & delivery, they have a lovely corner location with outdoor seating ~ great for people-watching. Food is delicious & the atmosphere is upscale French bistro, in an accessible way. They also have a location in Sellwood which has patio seating available right now.
5. Besaw’s (Northwest)
Besaw’s is arguably the most popular brunch spot in NW Portland: get ready to wait! They’re currently offering outdoor dining on their heated patio, as well as take-out & delivery. They’re known for brunch & serve it ALL DAY, making them a go-to in the breakfast space. Cocktails are also delicious….& yes, you can get a great Spanish coffee here!
6. Stepping Stone Cafe (Northwest)
This is more like an old-school diner: don’t expect fancy, just good, greasy breakfast food! Open 7AM-3PM daily, they’re known primarily for breakfast, & this is a good spot to go when you just want an unpretentious breakfast joint to roll into.
Best Brunch Spots on East Side
7. Screen Door Restaurant
Screen Door is arguably the most popular breakfast spot on the East Side, with its unique Southern & Cajun influence. They’re currently only open for take-out, but let some of these breakfast items stoke your fancy: praline bacon, crispy fried oysters, bananas foster French toast, fried chicken, Eggs Benedict. Bottom Line: Come here when you’re HUNGRY!! This is good old-fashioned Southern cooking at its best.
The name kind of says it all: this is a breakfast joint! And vegan-friendly to boot. With daily hours from 8AM-1PM, you can get your breakfast on every day of the week here. Like Screen Door, they’re only open for take-out right now, but when they re-open ~ Hawthorne is one of THE most fun streets in Portland, jam-packed with cool bars & restaurants, movie theaters, & shops. This is a great place to come check out the true Portland vibe….& consider taking home Jam’s cute Bloody Mary or Mimosa “Kits.”
Just off NE Fremont St. sits the Little Griddle, a charming little breakfast spot with a killer menu. Open 9AM-2PM daily, they’re only offering curbside pick-up right now. But, as breakfast is ALL they do ~ this is a great spot to get your breakfast fix in….every day of the week!
Check out their “To-Gosa’s,” aka To-go Mimosas….
I’m lumping these three restaurant together because they’re literally all in a row on the very hip Alberta Street. If one is too busy or has a wait: simply head on down the street! Petite Provence has a French bistro vibe, is open from 8AM-3PM daily, & is currently open for take-out, dine-in, & delivery. Proud Mary is known for their killer coffee & smoothies, plus breakfast, with daily hours from 8AM-4PM ~ open for take-out & delivery right now. Pine State has got comfort food galore & is open for take-out & outdoor dining.
Best Breakfasts Around Town
There’s more to Portland than just downtown & the East Side. To that end, here are my favorite breakfast spots all around town….
- Best Greasy Spoon in South Waterfront: Hands-down, the legendary Buffalo Gap. When you’re hungover, there’s NO better place to go for breakfast than Buffalo Gap ~ their portions are huge, food is unfussy, greasy, & good.
- Best Breakfast Spot in Sellwood: Head to Grand Central Bakery or good old-fashioned Bertie Lou’s Cafe.
- Best Breakfast Spot in Multnomah Area: Check out Maplewood Coffee & Tea for cozy brunch vibes with great coffee.
- Best Breakfast Spots in Lake Oswego: There are two MAJOR breakfast institutions in Lake Oswego (that I know very well): La Provence & Babica Hen’s. Both are on Boone’s Ferry Road & I love everything about these cozy breakfast spots….delicious! And always busy.
Best Brunch Spots in Portland
What great PDX brunch spots have I missed?? Add to the conversation in the comment section below! And if you know of any other great Portland restaurants that have shut down permanently, please let me know in the comments.
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