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Oregon’s cuisine takes the cake

By Frances Figart

Visitors to Portland can sample its diverse culinary scene on Portland Walking Tours’ unforgettable Epicurean Excursion. We tasted cocoa beans and bittersweet dark chocolates at Cacao; tomato-orange soup courtesy of Flying Elephants Deli; Bosnian pita and other cuisine samples from street vendors’ food carts; baguettes, croissants and sourdough “Levains” made at the famous Pearl Bakery; and Courier Coffee’s Kenyan, Guatemalan, Honduran, Indonesian and Colombian roasts.

Our group enjoyed memorable breakfasts at the artistic Voodoo Doughnut, the sustainable Cup and Saucer Cafe and organic trend-setter Slappy Cakes, where we created our own pancakes on a hot griddle right at our table.

For lunch or dinner, Huber’s, Portland’s oldest restaurant, is a comfortable treat, as are the casual yet chic Original; the straightforward, traditional Jake’s Grill; and the magnificently gracious Pazzo Ristorante.

A perfect day of whale-watching at the nearby Pacific Coast gets even better when the evening meal is out of this world.

“Bistro Maison in McMinnville was extraordinary and quite an unexpected surprise,” said Linda Holm, travel coordinator for Texas First Bank, Texas City. “We were served by the delightful owners, and both food and wine were fabulous.

“It truly was one of the loveliest places I’ve ever eaten and definitely a highlight of the trip.”