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  • Writer's pictureKayla Brock

Brunch on a Saturday Morning

I was basically in heaven trying food that ranged from Korean to ice cream.

This Saturday was filled with tons of savory, sweet food that melted on my tongue. I was basically in heaven trying food that ranged from Korean to ice cream.

After living in Portland for over a year, I finally walked along SW 12th Street and put my name on the wait list for Tasty N Alder. A restaurant owned by chef John Gorham, who also owns six other restaurants in the city.  I knew this place was popular but when I walked in at almost 10:30 a.m., determined to finally try it out, there was already an hour and 45-minute wait for a three-person table!

So what do you do instead of wait around for brunch? You grab cake!

Right across the street from Tasty N Alder, located at 610 SW 12th Avenue, stands Petunia’s Pies & Pastries, a gluten-free and vegan baking shop. The owners, Lisa Clark, opened their brick and mortar shop four years ago decorating it with high and low white tables for seating. I had their pumpkin crumble cupcake which had a very crumbly top giving it a dry crunch taste but the top was separated by a moist pumpkin bottom layer. It's a little small for a big group but its a great place to just talk with a friend over coffee (probably not to do work in).


Tasty N Alder finally gave us a call that our table was almost ready and I practically ran back across the street. As soon as we walked in they directed us to a table near the window and the bar. They informed us that the restaurant was family-style meaning food came out when it was hot and ready so you didn't have to wait for all the dishes at your table to be done.

A group came in and sat along our row and immediately one gentleman started up a conversation. Before we knew it, he was recommending different dishes on the menu and telling us how great of a place it was.

📷In all honesty, the restaurant definitely needs to be expanded only due to the fact that sooo many people want to enjoy...evident by the long wait times.

The inside of the restaurant felt like a library, but also a club (bare with me!). The interior was dark and moody and oddly other people's voices didn't sound too loud or overwhelming. Over the speaker's rap music was playing such as Rappers Delight 'Hip Hop Hippy' and Juvenile's 'Back that A** Up'....all while you were eating brunch. Personally, I loved it. I thought it was fun and kind of entertaining to wait and see what song would be played next.

Now, the library aspect of it was the sky-📷high columns and rows of alcohol bottles along their back wall. They even had a ladder. It was basically the adult version of Belle's library that the Beast gave her when she was held captive...if you don't know what I'm talking about then you need to get on your Disney movie game.

After questioning what I was going to order and taking the man's suggestions into consideration, I finally settled on the Bim Bop. I could only assume that the chef was taking a classic Korean dish, a bim bap, and making it his own.

A bim bap is one of my favorite Korean dishes. It comes out piping hot in a cast iron type bowl, filled with veggies such as carrots and cabbage, kimchi, a type of meat and a sunny-side egg on top. It is stirred together well before eating.

The Bim Bop received an A-plus from me, after stirring like crazy, I could just see the steam rising out of the bowl. The rice at the bottom had a delicious crunch, the bacon was juicy and sweet, and there was a  spicy kick from the dish which I normally hate but it was slight and something I could handle.📷

It was a good amount of food that I didn't even finish the whole dish.

📷Toward the end of our meal, the waitress brought us a complimentary Auntie Paula’s French Toast that is topped with pear maple and whipped cream. It sounds like it would be crazy sweet but it was pretty mild and the french toast was soft but not soggy from the syrup.

I'm so happy I finally got to try this place out and hope to go back and try other things on the menu. I have a feeling you can't go wrong with anything at this place.

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