Oregon is home to a lot of restaurants and bars, but there are tons of hidden gems that the majority of Portlanders aren't unearthing. To help guide us to these potential discoveries, we've enlisted some of our city's many food players to share their recommendations for a weekly feature dubbed Dining Confidential.
Photo of JoLa Cafe courtesy Facebook
Jennie Peterson, general manager at RingSide Fish House and daughter of third-generation RingSide partner Craig Peterson, has been with RingSide almost her entire life. She worked at RingSide's Uptown steakhouse through high school and during college at University of Oregon, and earned a management position there before moving over to the Fish House. In her free time, Peterson enjoys spending time on the Oregon coast with her dogs, and experiencing Portland's diverse restaurants, including her neighborhood spot: JoLa Cafe in John's Landing. "My goal is to be able to join them for their new happy hour soon, but I'm usually spending happy hour at the Fish House," Peterson says. So for now, Peterson enjoys JoLa for its breakfasts, complete with Stumptown on tap.
Just around the corner from my house is JoLa Café in John's Landing. On warmer summer mornings, I head out with the dogs and can visit in full anonymity. JoLa has a laid-back vibe and a genuinely endearing staff, the food is simple and back to the basics. Consistency is incredibly important to me, even when I order something simple. I'm pretty predictable when it comes to my breakfast… I order the Greek yogurt, fresh fruit, and a 16-ounce Stumptown cold brew. The fruit is always of great quality and freshly sliced, topped with honey, it makes for the perfect start to my weekend! The tiny kitchen can pump out some seriously great items, like their breakfast sandwich, the Armstrong; poached eggs and bacon on a buttermilk biscuit covered in gravy. Too rich for me but I envy the person who gets it every time. Their scratch soups are a must-try too, and don't forget to try their coffee on a nitrous tap.