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Behold Portland's 12 Iconic Greasy Spoon Breakfasts

From diners to hole-in-the-wall cafes, here's where to find the bacon

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Portland loves its breakfast and brunch, and some of the best chefs in town are now after our business: Especially on the weekends, when the whole town is covered with exotic and fancy dishes from various cuisines made with farm-fresh ingredients.

And that's all fine. But sometimes you just want some breakfast, right? You want to sit down to a pile of hashbrowns and eggs and meat, and you don't really care where it came from. So here's your guide, newly updated, to 12 must-eat greasy-spoon breakfasts in Portland. (The points on this map guide are not ranked but organized geographically).

—Brought to you Portland's resident breakfast expert, Paul Gerald, with an assist by Chad Walsh

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

The Decoy

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[Photo: TripAdvisor/RoccoStBruno]

Nite Hawk Cafe & Lounge

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[Photo: Yelp/Duane P.]

Pattie's Homeplate Cafe

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Every time you walk into this market/gift shop/diner, old dudes at the counter have lifted their heads to look you over. St. Johns used to be its own little town, and in Pattie's you might think it still is. A trip here is going back in time, to when the café was the town gossip center, you knew (and watched) the chef, and the butter came in little plastic tubs. [Photo]

John's Coffee Shop

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[Photo: Yelp/Robert G.]

Fuller's Coffee Shop

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Fuller's isn't old-fashioned; it's just old. It's been around since 1941, and when you slide under the W-shaped counter your knees will tell you that folks were shorter then. The food is so basic you really could cook it at home, but the ambience and shared conversation around the counter makes you glad something so old has survived in this part of town. [Photo]

Fat City Cafe

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Best known for being where a mayor once fired a police chief, Fat City is also the heart of the little "town" of Multnomah Village — and by heart, I mean the one filled with old-timers and the one plugged with cholesterol. But you can't expect healthy eating in a place famous for huge cinnamon rolls and a dish called the Fat City Sizzle, a shovel-sized pile of hashbrowns, ham, green peppers, onions, and cheddar with two eggs. [Photo]

Original Hotcake And Steak House

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Some of the best free entertainment in town is going to this 24-hour place by the Ross Island Bridge right after the bars have closed. (It used to have a security guard on weekend nights.) It's much more casual by day, with some very fluffy pancakes, an amazing array of meat selections (cube steak, anyone?), and specials on Post-It notes. [Photo]

Paradox Cafe

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Is there such a thing as a tempeh-spoon diner? The Paradox is (mostly) vegetarian and organic, and that's supposed to be healthy, but the vibe here is totally hipster diner. Even if you're a meat-eater, you'll still love the almond gravy, tree hugger hollandaise, and corn cakes. Plus, they remodeled not too long ago, doing away with those spring-in-your-ass booth seats. [Photo]

Diane's Restaurant

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[Photo: Yelp/Jim M.]

Gateway Breakfast House

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Probably off the radar for most Portlanders until President Obama dropped in for a 2012 campaign lunch, the Gateway has been known for some time as having probably the biggest portions in town: It's like they're trying to kill you with food. Obama's people probably chose it because it's working class and a genuine ethnic melting pot. [Photo]

Cameo Cafe

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You might remember the old Cameo Café in Northwest? Its sister restaurant lives on, at NE Sandy and 82nd, in what may be one of the stranger breakfast places around. It's got ceramic chef statues, signed PR shots from beauty pageant winners, and STRONG BREAD (written just like that). Also look for Korean twists like a Pindaettok, a pancake with vegetables, beans, spices, and ground rice, added to a "flavored" batter. [Photo]

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The Decoy

[Photo: TripAdvisor/RoccoStBruno]

Nite Hawk Cafe & Lounge

[Photo: Yelp/Duane P.]

Pattie's Homeplate Cafe

Every time you walk into this market/gift shop/diner, old dudes at the counter have lifted their heads to look you over. St. Johns used to be its own little town, and in Pattie's you might think it still is. A trip here is going back in time, to when the café was the town gossip center, you knew (and watched) the chef, and the butter came in little plastic tubs. [Photo]

John's Coffee Shop

[Photo: Yelp/Robert G.]

Fuller's Coffee Shop

Fuller's isn't old-fashioned; it's just old. It's been around since 1941, and when you slide under the W-shaped counter your knees will tell you that folks were shorter then. The food is so basic you really could cook it at home, but the ambience and shared conversation around the counter makes you glad something so old has survived in this part of town. [Photo]

Fat City Cafe

Best known for being where a mayor once fired a police chief, Fat City is also the heart of the little "town" of Multnomah Village — and by heart, I mean the one filled with old-timers and the one plugged with cholesterol. But you can't expect healthy eating in a place famous for huge cinnamon rolls and a dish called the Fat City Sizzle, a shovel-sized pile of hashbrowns, ham, green peppers, onions, and cheddar with two eggs. [Photo]

Original Hotcake And Steak House

Some of the best free entertainment in town is going to this 24-hour place by the Ross Island Bridge right after the bars have closed. (It used to have a security guard on weekend nights.) It's much more casual by day, with some very fluffy pancakes, an amazing array of meat selections (cube steak, anyone?), and specials on Post-It notes. [Photo]

Paradox Cafe

Is there such a thing as a tempeh-spoon diner? The Paradox is (mostly) vegetarian and organic, and that's supposed to be healthy, but the vibe here is totally hipster diner. Even if you're a meat-eater, you'll still love the almond gravy, tree hugger hollandaise, and corn cakes. Plus, they remodeled not too long ago, doing away with those spring-in-your-ass booth seats. [Photo]

Diane's Restaurant

[Photo: Yelp/Jim M.]

Gateway Breakfast House

Probably off the radar for most Portlanders until President Obama dropped in for a 2012 campaign lunch, the Gateway has been known for some time as having probably the biggest portions in town: It's like they're trying to kill you with food. Obama's people probably chose it because it's working class and a genuine ethnic melting pot. [Photo]

Cameo Cafe

You might remember the old Cameo Café in Northwest? Its sister restaurant lives on, at NE Sandy and 82nd, in what may be one of the stranger breakfast places around. It's got ceramic chef statues, signed PR shots from beauty pageant winners, and STRONG BREAD (written just like that). Also look for Korean twists like a Pindaettok, a pancake with vegetables, beans, spices, and ground rice, added to a "flavored" batter. [Photo]

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