Portland is truly blessed with some amazing food, and the South Waterfront neighborhood is no exception. In fact, you might say that the culinary prowess of Portland is beginning to concentrate in this promising neighborhood. At Osprey, we feel truly spoiled. In the South Waterfront, you can throw a football and hit at least 1 or 2 out-of-this-world restaurants that’ll provide you with an experience unlike any other. The only problem is, if you’re hungry in the South Waterfront, how do you choose where to go? Variety is the spice of life, but sometimes too many good choices can be tough to sift through. Don’t worry – Osprey’s got your back. We’ve done our homework and come away with the ten best restaurants in the South waterfront of Portland. Here it goes:
One of the best restaurants in the South Waterfront isn’t even a restaurant! Ash serves up – you guessed it – wood-fired pizza that changes the way you might think about a pizza food cart. Featuring handmade sourdough crust that’s made fresh by hand every day, the Pizza at Ash is celebrated for it’s organic, rustic flavor. They never use commercial yeast, and they proudly change their menu every week using only local and seasonal ingredients provided by the best farmers and foragers they can find in Portland. Here’s a link to their weekly menu!
Aquariva is known as one of the finer dining experiences in the South Waterfront. Just South of Osprey, located right next to the River’s Edge Hotel & Spa, Aquariva offers an upscale breakfast, lunch, and dinner, along with an astounding happy hour and a very popular Sunday Brunch. Many come to Aquariva, but end up staying for the bar, which offers an impressive assortment of cocktails.
We in the South Waterfront are particularly lucky because we have Portland’s most celebrated Hawaiian restaurant right in our backyard. The Bamboo Grove Hawaiian Grille holds up to their name by providing mouthwatering Hawaiian-style meals that you CAN write home about. They also provide full-service catering; live music every Friday and Saturday, and they provide seriously massive portions. Forget being the best Hawaiian restaurant in the South Waterfront, if you’re looking for Hawaiian eats anywhere in Portland, now you know where to go.
Bambuza Vietnamese Bistro is quintessentially Portland. Bambuza offers up traditional Vietnamese food with a modern, elegant touch. The restaurant is proud to utilize an open kitchen, allowing patrons to see all the food that goes into each and every dish. Additionally, they source ingredients from local farms and producers, make all sauces, broths, and marinades from scratch, and they use eco-friendly packaging. The team at Bambuza believes that you don’t have to sacrifice health and taste for speed and convenience and that principle is reflected in each of their dishes.
Right around the corner from Osprey is Cha Cha Cha, certainly the most celebrated Mexican restaurant in the South Waterfront. They pride themselves on providing traditional Mexican cuisine that celebrates both authenticity and sustainable practices. Like many other restaurants in the South Waterfront, and throughout Portland, they source their ingredients from local and organic sources whenever possible. But beyond that, their food is awesomely delicious, and the Happy Hour is incredible – an absolute must if you’re after a margarita.
Back on our blog yet again, Elephants on Corbett, just a few blocks from Osprey, is one of the locations for Elephant’s Deli, a local chain that was started back in the 70’s. Elephants on Corbett is a deli where you can get basically anything. They do brunch, have a full-on grill lunch menu, have a bar with a happy hour, they do sack lunch delivery, Thanksgiving Dinner delivery, Pizza & Salads, Wine Tastings…you name it, you can get it at Elephants, and that’s why we’ve featured them in our blogs about our favorite Happy Hours and bars in the South Waterfront! Whether you need something quick to take home, or you’re looking for a place to relax and sit down for a great meal, Elephants on Corbett is your spot.
Let’s Eat Thai made an appearance on Osprey’s blog in the past, but it bears repeating because it’s truly exceptional. Even though they’re a food cart, Let’s Eat Thai honors their namesake well, cranking out Thai eats that’ll rival any brick and mortar close by. The cart moves around the area a bit, but you can google map its location via their website, and they’re always located in South Waterfront. If you’re after a quick, inexpensive, healthy, and delicious meal in the South waterfront, Let’s Eat Thai might be your best bet. They also proudly offer vegan and vegetarian options for most of their dishes as well. Make sure to keep an eye out for their secret menu!
Little Big Burger has a few locations around Portland, but if you’re after a burger in the South Waterfront, this should definitely be your first choice. LBB serves up a variety of classic hamburgers, each made with a ¼ pound of cascade natural beef, with very few frills and a lot of incredible flavors. They also locally source their buns, cheese, veggies, and ketchup, everything is compostable and recyclable. Just take a look at their site and menu, and you’ll see why we at Osprey consider this to be the end-all be-all of South Waterfront Burgers.
Certainly, the best Peruvian restaurant in the South Waterfront, Paiche provides another fantastic upscale option. Named for a giant mythic amazonian fish, Paiche focuses on and utilizes ingredients from the Sea, providing family-style Peruvian food that’ll knock your socks off. In fact, it has frequently made best restaurant lists for Portland – people just can’t seem to get enough of what they do. Certainly one of the best restaurants in the South Waterfront, it is equally lauded all around Portland. If you like fish and you’re looking for something both different and delicious, Paiche is your best bet.
Three Degrees is a legitimate triple threat: bold and iconic Pac-Northwest flavors and ingredients, memorable hand-crafted cocktails, and awe-inspiring views of the Willamette. Three Degrees is an extra bit of a journey from Osprey, right next to Portland’s Downtown Waterfront park, but it’s totally worth it. Three Degrees provides a warm and lively social atmosphere where folks can enjoy impeccable eats in a totally serene and beautiful setting. If you’re looking for a relaxing yet refined experience overlooking the river, Three Degrees is the spot for you.
Is your mouth watering yet? If not, it must be because you’re on your way BACK from one these ten incredible South Waterfront eateries. The beauty of the South Waterfront, and of Portland in general, is illustrated in the diversity and eclecticism of its restaurants. You don’t have to go far to experience top-notch cuisine that originated from somewhere far off on the globe, which enriches not only your palette but your outlook on the world and your place within it. If you’re interested in living in the South Waterfront, where beauty and flavor from all over the world is readily available, consider life with us, at Osprey.