Tag: Brunch

Restaurant Review: Brunch at Expatriate in Portland, OR

Expatriate for Brunch | Serious Crust by Annie Fassler

Expatriate for Brunch | Serious Crust by Annie Fassler
Expatriate for Brunch | Serious Crust by Annie Fassler

Brunch in Portland is an event. Choosing a place, deciding whether the wait is worth it, picking a dish off the often expansive menus. So I always appreciate finding restaurants that aren’t packed and have smaller menus where every dish looks like a star.

Such was the case when, on a sunny Sunday, Jonah and I decided to walk to Expatriate. Usually a bumping late night cocktail spot with Asian-influenced small plates, the vibe is a bit more laid back during their weekend brunch. For just four hours on Saturdays and Sundays you can start your day with what was, in my opinion, one of the tastiest and most unique brunches I’d had in quite some time. There was no huge laminated menu, just seven dishes whose descriptions all made my mouth water.

The show-stealer for me were the the hash browns, “covered and smothered” in pho sour cream, cheddar, aromatics, thinly sliced eye of round (like every good bowl of pho), and hoisin tamarind sauce. These were crispy, saucy, and packed with flavor, so much so that I had a hard time sharing! But splitting dishes was worth it because the rice waffle and hot fried chicken strips were easily the best variation of the now-ubiquitous dish. The rice waffle was exactly how I like my waffles: airy and crispy and not too sweet, and it went perfectly with the lightly spicy chicken. The honey and chili butter swirled together, melting in the pockets of the waffle and perfectly smothering the chicken.

I may be biased, but between the Asian-inspired dishes, the proximity to my house, and the somehow-secret status of this brunch, I will most certainly be back for Expatriate’s brunch.





It’s time to FEAST!

Nong's Khao Man Gai | Feast PDX | Serious Crust

Tea Bar | Feast PDX | Serious Crust
Ice cream & Wine | Feast PDX | Serious Crust

It has begun. My Instagram is being inundated with photos of delicious bites displayed on tiny wooden plates. It’s time for Feast PDX! I’m easing into it this year, and just attending two events: Night Market and Brunch Village. But that doesn’t mean that there will not be indulgence and excess all. weekend. long.

My dad and stepmom are coming down for the weekend, we decided take the opportunity to also show them some spots that we don’t usually get to hit up when they’re here. The plan is to hit up some of my Portland favorites between events, while also fitting in a hike in the beautiful Forest Park (exercise, please!).

So today we’ll be hitting Nong’s Khao Man Gai, a Portland staple, for lunch. Chicken and rice may not sound exciting, but holy smokes it’s so dang good, not to mention being topped with the best gingery spicy savory sauce ever. After that, it’s time to cram in the last minutes of work before the party really begins, so I’m taking my stepmom to my favorite tea shop, Tea Bar, for a work date.

Tonight is Night Market, which I have been dying to go to for years, and this year the scheduling stars have aligned to make it happen. With the vibe of an international urban street market, and dishes inspired by food from around the world, this is my jam. Keep an eye on my Instagram if you want to see what I’m eating while I’m there.

Blue Star Donuts | Feast PDX | Serious Crust
Tomatoes with Jacobsen Salt | Feast PDX | Serious Crust

Tomorrow is our day off from Feast, but it doesn’t mean we’re taking a day off from eating. My dad has requested a stop at Blue Star Donuts, and who am I to say no? My favorite is probably the matcha cake donut, so I’ll have one of those to myself. After breakfast, we’ve planned a hike in Forest Park to help us feel better about all the food and drink we’re imbibing. It’s supposed to be a perfect fall weekend, and it’ll be nice to get active for a bit.

Saturday night, we are going to try our luck at the Multnomah Whiskey Library before hitting up Boxer Ramen for dinner, and then, thanks to the influence of the NYT 36 hours piece on my parents, we’ll spend the rest of the evening whacking ping pong balls at each other at Pips and Bounce.

We’ll round out the weekend with Brunch Village on Sunday morning. This, of course, is something Portlanders can get excited about. Bloody Mary’s, eggs, biscuits, eggs, pastries, eggs… What a perfect way to start the day, and finish the indulgent weekend!

Are you going to Feast? What are you excited to eat? Don’t forget to follow the weekend by checking out #feastpdx on social media!

Weekend Finds 3:22:14: Seattle Favorites

I write about Seattle all of the time, because it’s where I’m from and I go visit my family an awful lot because, you know, I love them. You can find bits and pieces throughout this blog of things I’ve done when I’m there, or things I like to do, but I thought it might be nice to compile them all in one place. Now, you can’t go watch movies at my mom’s or cook dinner at my dad’s, but you can partake in some of my other favorite places. Scroll down to see some of my favorite things to do and eat and drink.

Weekend Finds: Seattle Edition // Serious Crust by Annie FasslerWeekend Finds: Seattle Edition // Serious Crust by Annie Fassler


Weekend Finds: Seattle Edition // Serious Crust by Annie FasslerWeekend Finds: Seattle Edition // Serious Crust by Annie Fassler

Eating & Drinking


Weekend Finds: Seattle Edition // Serious Crust by Annie FasslerWeekend Finds: Seattle Edition // Serious Crust by Annie Fassler


Weekend Finds: Seattle Edition // Serious Crust by Annie FasslerWeekend Finds: Seattle Edition // Serious Crust by Annie Fassler


  • The Blind Pig for a very creative meal. If you can swing it, I recommend doing a tasting menu and trying every dish on the board.
  • Bar Sajor for another beautiful meal. Definitely try the smoked yogurt!
  • Joule
  • Revel
  • The Whale Wins
  • Artusi
  • Delancey for quite possibly the best pizza in town.
  • The Walrus and the Carpenter for an oyster bar meal. But it has oh so much more – The Walrus and the Carpenter made Bon Appetit’s top restaurants in the country last year.
  • Rainier BBQ for a crazy good, authentic korean barbeque.
  • Bake’s Place is in Bellevue, technically, but they always have great bands playing, and the food is pretty darn good too.
  • La Bête

Weekend Finds: Seattle Edition // Serious Crust by Annie Fassler


  • Canon for an incredible dealer’s choice cocktail.
  • Liberty for an awesome liquor and cocktail and really unique cocktails. The Seattle Sour is one of my favorites. If you get a chance, sit at the bar so you can watch the bartenders work their magic, and ask them questions. If you get hungry, you can order some sushi.
  • Knee High Stocking Company for the speakeasy feel – you have to text to make a reservation, and ring a doorbell to get in.
  • Essex
  • Rachel’s Ginger Beer for some amazing ginger beer, which they use to make awesome cocktails, including possibly the best hot toddy I’ve ever had.

Weekend Finds: Seattle Edition // Serious Crust by Annie Fassler

Restaurant review: Brunch at Ataula

Brunch at Ataula // Serious Crust by Annie Fassler

Brunch at Ataula // Serious Crust by Annie Fassler
Brunch at Ataula // Serious Crust by Annie Fassler

I am writing this post while on hold with my health insurance company. I just thought you should know that. And it’s snowing outside. Little bitty flakes, nothing like the giant snowball-like flakes that fell for approximately 10 minutes yesterday here in Portland. But still. Snow.

A couple of weeks ago, when my dad and Darla came to town, we had to have the famous “where will we eat” discussion. Brunch was a big deal for us because I work on weekends, so brunch was the kind of normal meal we could eat. (We ate other normal meals, they were just very late, much later than normal dinnertime.) I had heard great things about Ataula, a new-ish tapas restaurant in NW Portland, and after glancing at their brunch menu, decided we should try it.

Having heard great things about Ataula, I expected it to be full – I mean, you know Portland at brunch. Or maybe you don’t, so I’ll just say that sometimes people wait an hour and a half or two hours for a good brunch. Seriously. Anyway, I was surprised and a little saddened that upon arrival at around 10:30, there were plenty of open tables. I nabbed one, and while we waited for Dad and Darla to arrive, we admired the space. The room is very open, and very bright thanks to two big skylights. I loved the decor, particularly the light fixtures – it felt like a kind of funky little bistro. Once my parents arrived, we got down to examining the menu. (Please forgive the crummy iPhone photos.)

Brunch at Ataula // Serious Crust by Annie Fassler

Brunch at Ataula // Serious Crust by Annie Fassler
Brunch at Ataula // Serious Crust by Annie Fassler

We started healthy, with a light salad, and then moved onto the croquetas, or salt cod fritters, with aioli. The salad was dressed perfectly, and a great little start to the meal. The croquetas were lovely – really salty and fishy, perfectly crispy on the outside, and the aoili brought a nice touch of heat to the bite.

We got two “tortillas,” which were like a small frittata: one potato for the vegetarian among us, and one chorizo. Both were delicious, but I certainly preferred the chorizo, as I found the potato to be a little bland. The chorizo was better, with some spice and lots of flavor. I also really enjoyed the toasted bread rubbed with tomato that the tortillas came with.

We also enjoyed a sausage dish with catalan beans, shoestring fries, and pickled onions. I am not generally a big fan of sausage, but I really liked this dish. The sausage was cooked well, not too fatty, and very rich. The beans were delicious – I could’ve eaten a whole bowl of them, and the fries and onions were a nice little touch on the side.

Lastly, we went for something on the sweet side: churros with dipping chocolate. The churros didn’t have the crunch I usually like, and could have done with a bit more frying time. But the combination of the warm doughy churros with the dark, almost bitter dipping chocolate with fleur de sel was a great way to end the meal.

While I certainly enjoyed some aspects of the meal – namely the sausage dish and the croquetas – a few of the dishes seemed like they could benefit from a little more seasoning. I’m not sure I would go back for brunch, especially with the plethora of options in Portland for that weekend meal, but I would certainly like to try it again for dinner.