Well, for no particular reason, the wife and I decided to take the family (us, our daughter, and the parentals) out to breakfast today.

There are only three or four places on my list of superb breakfast/brunch places in Portland. The Alameda Cafe, The Tin Shed, and Fat City Cafe are all on that list. But I also have a pretty firm attachment to what has become the old standby, Roux.

Roux is a great place for pseudo-Louisiana cuisine. Not quite Cajun, not quite Creole, but certainly it manages to capture that culture's tastes well in its food (or so my caterer/chef friend says).

Usually while I'm there for breakfast, things are pretty predictable. Beignets for a starter, followed by Pain Perdu (AKA French Toast) for my wife and one of the many delightful Benedicts (often the smoked oyster) for me. Usually somewhere in there are some homefries.

Today I went out on a limb and tried a smoked trout hash that they had on the menu this week (the menu is tweaked on a regular basis). The fish was excellent, the eggs were well-prepared, the horseradish-tinged creme fraiche was tasty, but disappointingly the sum was not the equal of the parts. I don't quite know how the meal missed its target, I just know that it did.

My daughter, who's 18 months-old and thus is very compliant in sharing her food, had a pancake (it's cheap for a side pancake, and it's as big as a plate), and it was well-executed, as always. My mom had a crawfish omellette which came with a side of tasso, which is a big sausage that looks much like a Polish sausage but tastes different. Spicy and smoky, it's a nice idea for a back-yard barbecue but a bit heavy as a side. A couple people ordered the white cheddar grits as a side, and from what I was able to glean when I stole a bite, it was really, really tasty.

I stuck to coffee today, but they have an excellent Bloody Mary (called the Plantation Mary there) with house-pickled veggies which you should try at least once.

Brunch for five and a half people came up to $73, which is pretty reasonable given the quality of the food and the serving sizes. The service is always friendly (if not always speedy) and the place is always kept clean and pleasant. And, if you use the restroom, check out the wall decor, which includes book pages with old Cajun axioms. Pretty fun.

Roux is a fantastic place to take the family on a Sunday morning. They open at 10 and will greet you with warm smiles, great food, and a very enjoyable experience.

1 comment:

tmg2003 said...

Love Love Love Roux!!

A fantastic experience in every way. I was trying to find a location that could seat between 20 and 30 people in the middle of December on a Saturday at a decent dinner time frame for a birthday - not an easy task, I discovered...

From my very first interaction with Dwayne Beliakoff, I was incredibly impressed. Dwayne was very flexible and he seemed to be genuinely interested in making sure that we had a wonderful time.

Melissa Lehmkuhl made the most wonderful cupcakes ever! Everyone raved about the Apple Spice - it was the favorite of our group.

The atmosphere was very nice, the staff was incredibly attentive, gave great recommendations and were very knowledgeable about the menu offerings. The food was out of this world! We were able to order off the main menu (another miracle per the calls and calls and calls made in an attempt to book a dinner for so many on a December Saturday evening...) and our table ordered all over the spectrum (rabbit, chicken, steak, ribs, etc.) while there was not one person there who didn't absolutely love their meal. The Crawfish Pie was heaven!!

We will definitely be back (repeatedly) and have been recommending this restaurant to everyone who will listen. We felt very welcome, well taken care of and pleasantly full after our evening at Roux. Thanks Dwayne!