Open late Fri.-Sat.
* Click here for rating key
Trader Vic's Restaurant Review: Back in the day, when it was Richard Nixon's favorite restaurant, the Portland outpost of this Polynesian-themed restaurant chain offered mai tais in the Benson Hotel. That spot has been closed for a while, but it returned to a cavernous space in the heart of the Pearl District. Full-on island décor prevails, with tribal masks, tiki carvings, woven-grass wall coverings and other indigenous South Seas artifacts. The bar and the cocktails that made the Trader Vic's brand famous offer a mini tropical escape. On the edible side, the appetizers are the best choice. Barbecued spare ribs, crab Rangoon and crispy prawns make up the classic pupus. Yellowfin tuna, poke with avocado, and homemade taro chips complement the sweetness of the drinks. Entrées center around the Chinese wood-fired oven, offering fire-roasted pork, lamb, chicken, salmon and beef. For dessert, banana fans will lust after the trio: bananas Foster, a frozen chocolate banana pop and a banana fritter. Background sounds are --- what would you expect? --- a soothing mix of Dean Martin and his trio.