Major week for Portland restaurant coverage: In addition to WWeek's annual Restaurant Guide, which hit newsstands yesterday, Portland Monthly's annual November restaurant issue is now live on the interwebs, naming 35 spots to its Best Restaurants 2011 list (but not crowning a Restaurant of the Year). Instead, the issue separates its "best meals" picks based on category (like Best Hidden Breakfasts, Maximal Meat, and Comfort-Food Favorites) — of the format, editor Karen Brooks explains in the package introduction that "New York dining is serious. LA is wild, and Austin is, well, barbecued. Portland’s restaurant scene is something else: the land of personal experiences."
Of the more bold proclamations, however, comes the list for the year's Best New Restaurant, which names St. Jack (which "turned out better than anyone expected"), Little Bird, the recently revamped Bluehour, Salt & Straw (for "challenging expectations of what an ice cream parlor might look like"), Wafu, and Castagna as contenders for the title. Brooks also names her "Ultimate Portland Feast," which includes 48 hours of eating at stalwarts Gruner, Pok Pok, Le Pigeon, Paley's Place, and Beast.
· Best Restaurants 2011 [Portland Monthly]
· All Previous PoMo Coverage [Eater PDX]