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Portland Penny Diner

410 SW Broadway Send to Phone
503-228-7222 | Menu
A noted chef pays homage to the treats of his Manhattan youth.
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Local Deals: 120 * 90

Cuisine
Open
Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner Mon.-Sat.
Open late Fri.-Sat.
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Portland Penny Diner Restaurant Review

: When Vitaly Paley, chef/owner of Paley's Place, goes downscale, don't expect fast food. His Portland Penny Diner --- the name was inspired by the famous coin toss in 1845 between Asa Lovejoy and Francis Pettygrove to determine Portland's name --- is the counter-service domain of his two restaurants in the Hotel Lucia, A Provenance Hotel. (The other, the Imperial, serves Northwest-style food.) The atmosphere here is definitively hipster, with a lunchtime overlay of shoppers and office workers, and the menu shines when it sticks to retro comfort food. The house-made smoked chile and cheddar hot dog is dripping with grilled onions, pickle relish and sauerkraut. Cheeseburgers and fried chicken "oysters" hold their own with any in town, and waffle-cut fries paired with gravy and cheese curds satisfy. Trendier takes on familiar fare, such as the lamb neck confit with harissa and cucumber raita on frybread, challenge taste buds but generally succeed. Lighter options, however, such as the noodle salad and tofu lettuce wraps, don't seem to have much heart. Drink selections include a "make your own cocktail," where diners choose a base spirit and go from there. Even better: Skip the alcohol and indulge in a nostalgic chocolate phosphate or homemade cherry soda.

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