clock menu more-arrow no yes

The 12 Best Restaurants for Dining Solo in Portland

View as Map

Image of Nostrana courtesy Avila/EPDX

2008_10_hasmaps.jpeg

On Friday, Eater asked readers to name their favorite Portland restaurants with tables for one, and the tipline was flooded with suggestions from thoughtful solo diners. Whether you're lonely-hearted this Valentine's Day, traveling to Portland by yourself on business, or are generally feeling unsociable for the evening, here are 12 favorite spots to get dinner for one. (Recurring theme: a boisterous chef's counter.)

The map follows, and if your favorite solo spot is still off-the-radar, do shout it in the comments.


Read More
Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Nostrana

Copy Link
1401 SE Morrison St
Portland, OR 97214
(503) 234-2427
Visit Website
The bar and pizza counters at Nostrana get high marks for their friendly staff and seats filled with fellow solo diners. One commenter writes that his M.O. is to "course a few plates and take half home." According to another, "the team at Nostrana is entertaining without ever being intrusive and the food is consistently more delicious than you expect pizza or pasta to be."

2. Biwa

Copy Link
215 SE 9th Ave
Portland, OR 97214
(503) 239-8830
Visit Website
The counter at Gabe Rosen's industry hangout Biwa offers a great spot for dining alone — at all hours, with its late-night menu available until midnight. According to several reader votes, "Biwa is great for solo dining."

3. Evoe at Pastaworks

Copy Link
3735 SE Hawthorne Blvd
Portland, OR
The diminutive restaurant inside Pastaworks' SE Hawthorne location features acclaimed chef Kevin Gibson manning the counter, over which he hands diners small plates, sandwiches, and snacks perfectly portioned for one. As one reader writes, the spot serves "some of the best food in Portland. It's casual, and you can shop at Pastaworks after lunch." [Photo]

4. Fuller's Coffee Shop

Copy Link
136 NW 9th Ave
Portland, OR 97209
(503) 222-5608
For morning/lunchtime solo diners (or those who bury themselves in the newspaper when eating alone), Old Town's Fuller's Coffee Shop maintains that old-school, every-man-for-himself vibe, with diners bellying up to the central U-shaped counter. Says one reader, "Everyone [in there] is solo, almost." [Photo]

5. Navarre

Copy Link
10 NE 28th Ave
Portland, OR 97232
(503) 232-3555
Visit Website
Solo diners can sneak in and grab a stool at John Taboada's Navarre, where even parties of one can feel a part of the convivial atmosphere. Says a commenter, "Navarre is delicious, mellow, and the menu is flexible depending on your appetite (the super wines by the glass variety doesn't hurt, either)." [Photo]

6. Ava Gene's

Copy Link
3377 SE Division
Portland, OR 97214
(971) 229-0571
Visit Website
SE Division's newish Italian spot Ava Gene's already has its share of rabid followers, several of whom enjoy dining solo at the chef's counter. One commenter offers a tip: "Wear short sleeves... it's warm, but well worth the service and a front-row seat to the kitchen." [Photo]

7. Radar

Copy Link
3951 N Mississippi Ave
Portland, OR 97227
N. Mississippi's newish small plates spot Radar features ample seating at the chef's counter — for major face-time with chefs — and larger-than-expected "small" plates. Says one reader, "The staff is so friendly that we chatted with them throughout our meal, and were soon including the gentleman at the bar who was dining solo. I know some people dine alone because they want to be alone, but if you happen to be wanting conversation, this place was great. Feels like a real 'neighborhood' place."

8. Aviary

Copy Link
1733 NE Alberta
Portland, OR 97211
A couple votes in for NE Alberta's Aviary, with readers praising two different solo experiences. For those looking for human interaction, one commenter recommends the dining-room counter, where "you will get to chat with the ultra friendly [chef] Kat [Whitehead]." For a more solitary experience, another prefers the back bar: "Good light, good vibe."

9. Le Pigeon

Copy Link
738 E Burnside St
Portland, OR 97214
(503) 546-8796
Visit Website
The 10 seats at Gabe Rucker's chef's counter are hotly contested (and available to walk-ins only), but for those eating alone, it's the perfect front-row seat to the Le Pigeon experience. One reader writes that "Chef Rucker is very genial," while another simply prefers "the bar at Le Pigeon, with a burger in my mouth."

10. Via Delizia

Copy Link
1105 NW Marshall St
Portland, OR 97209
(503) 225-9300
Visit Website
Unassuming Pearl District spot Via Delizia offers casual Italian fare — and a laid-back European atmosphere to match. Says one commenter, "I go to Via Delizia to read and eat. Just the right amount of attention vs left-alone time." [Photo]

11. Ping

Copy Link
102 NW 4th Ave
Portland, OR 97209
(503) 229-7464
Visit Website
It's currently closed for renovations, but the old iteration of Ping, anyway, featured a lengthy counter great for dining solo. One commenter offers a three-step suggested approach: "Embrace your noodle bowl. Embrace the friendly help. Embrace beer from Asia." [Photo]

12. Tasty 'N Sons

Copy Link
3808 N Williams Ave.
Portland, OR 97213
(503) 621-1400
Visit Website
The sprawling menu is best navigated with a large group, but readers voted for Tasty as a solo dining spot presumably to skip the long line — and snag a lone seat at the long bar.

Loading comments...

1. Nostrana

1401 SE Morrison St, Portland, OR 97214
The bar and pizza counters at Nostrana get high marks for their friendly staff and seats filled with fellow solo diners. One commenter writes that his M.O. is to "course a few plates and take half home." According to another, "the team at Nostrana is entertaining without ever being intrusive and the food is consistently more delicious than you expect pizza or pasta to be."
1401 SE Morrison St
Portland, OR 97214

2. Biwa

215 SE 9th Ave, Portland, OR 97214
The counter at Gabe Rosen's industry hangout Biwa offers a great spot for dining alone — at all hours, with its late-night menu available until midnight. According to several reader votes, "Biwa is great for solo dining."
215 SE 9th Ave
Portland, OR 97214

3. Evoe at Pastaworks

3735 SE Hawthorne Blvd, Portland, OR
The diminutive restaurant inside Pastaworks' SE Hawthorne location features acclaimed chef Kevin Gibson manning the counter, over which he hands diners small plates, sandwiches, and snacks perfectly portioned for one. As one reader writes, the spot serves "some of the best food in Portland. It's casual, and you can shop at Pastaworks after lunch." [Photo]
3735 SE Hawthorne Blvd
Portland, OR

4. Fuller's Coffee Shop

136 NW 9th Ave, Portland, OR 97209
For morning/lunchtime solo diners (or those who bury themselves in the newspaper when eating alone), Old Town's Fuller's Coffee Shop maintains that old-school, every-man-for-himself vibe, with diners bellying up to the central U-shaped counter. Says one reader, "Everyone [in there] is solo, almost." [Photo]
136 NW 9th Ave
Portland, OR 97209

5. Navarre

10 NE 28th Ave, Portland, OR 97232
Solo diners can sneak in and grab a stool at John Taboada's Navarre, where even parties of one can feel a part of the convivial atmosphere. Says a commenter, "Navarre is delicious, mellow, and the menu is flexible depending on your appetite (the super wines by the glass variety doesn't hurt, either)." [Photo]
10 NE 28th Ave
Portland, OR 97232

6. Ava Gene's

3377 SE Division, Portland, OR 97214
SE Division's newish Italian spot Ava Gene's already has its share of rabid followers, several of whom enjoy dining solo at the chef's counter. One commenter offers a tip: "Wear short sleeves... it's warm, but well worth the service and a front-row seat to the kitchen." [Photo]
3377 SE Division
Portland, OR 97214

7. Radar

3951 N Mississippi Ave, Portland, OR 97227
N. Mississippi's newish small plates spot Radar features ample seating at the chef's counter — for major face-time with chefs — and larger-than-expected "small" plates. Says one reader, "The staff is so friendly that we chatted with them throughout our meal, and were soon including the gentleman at the bar who was dining solo. I know some people dine alone because they want to be alone, but if you happen to be wanting conversation, this place was great. Feels like a real 'neighborhood' place."
3951 N Mississippi Ave
Portland, OR 97227

8. Aviary

1733 NE Alberta, Portland, OR 97211
A couple votes in for NE Alberta's Aviary, with readers praising two different solo experiences. For those looking for human interaction, one commenter recommends the dining-room counter, where "you will get to chat with the ultra friendly [chef] Kat [Whitehead]." For a more solitary experience, another prefers the back bar: "Good light, good vibe."
1733 NE Alberta
Portland, OR 97211

9. Le Pigeon

738 E Burnside St, Portland, OR 97214
The 10 seats at Gabe Rucker's chef's counter are hotly contested (and available to walk-ins only), but for those eating alone, it's the perfect front-row seat to the Le Pigeon experience. One reader writes that "Chef Rucker is very genial," while another simply prefers "the bar at Le Pigeon, with a burger in my mouth."
738 E Burnside St
Portland, OR 97214

10. Via Delizia

1105 NW Marshall St, Portland, OR 97209
Unassuming Pearl District spot Via Delizia offers casual Italian fare — and a laid-back European atmosphere to match. Says one commenter, "I go to Via Delizia to read and eat. Just the right amount of attention vs left-alone time." [Photo]
1105 NW Marshall St
Portland, OR 97209

11. Ping

102 NW 4th Ave, Portland, OR 97209
It's currently closed for renovations, but the old iteration of Ping, anyway, featured a lengthy counter great for dining solo. One commenter offers a three-step suggested approach: "Embrace your noodle bowl. Embrace the friendly help. Embrace beer from Asia." [Photo]
102 NW 4th Ave
Portland, OR 97209

12. Tasty 'N Sons

3808 N Williams Ave., Portland, OR 97213
The sprawling menu is best navigated with a large group, but readers voted for Tasty as a solo dining spot presumably to skip the long line — and snag a lone seat at the long bar.
3808 N Williams Ave.
Portland, OR 97213

Related Maps