Tuesday, April 5, 2011

The Bunnies Visit Stumptown

A diligent postdoc would probably be reading papers right now while her slides are incubating but I'm just not feeling it.  In my opinion, reading is more efficiently and more pleasantly accomplished in a coffeeshop and if there were any nearby, that's where I would be.  But alas.  So I might as well discuss the Bunnies' visit before I forget all the details.  (Please note, picture taking on my part was sporadic.  Once Bunny has a post up, you can go there for the tasty delicious pictures.)

The Bunnies arrived late afternoon so I dashed home early to do one last quick vacuum and clean (Tony tracks both litter and fur like no one's business).  Being blessed with remarkable navigating abilities, they didn't need my instructions to get to my apartment, but I sent it off anyway, just in case.  Immediately after arrival, we scurried out the door again to catch the bus to Southeast Portland for dinner.  Bunny and I were eager to try Screen Door for two reasons: 1) it garnered great reviews on yelp, and 2) we didn't want to go back to Pine State Biscuits (Mr. Bunny really likes chicken and biscuit for breakfast but I think it's too heavy) so we found this southern food substitute.  And man oh man was it good.

Root beer for the Bunny

Salads to start (I picked off their plates)

Hush puppies

My favorite thing here, fried oysters.  DIVINE!

Shrimp and grits for me

Fried chicken and mashed potatoes for Mr Bunny

I think this was Bunny's pork chop?

Shared chocolate cake with coffee ice cream for dessert
After dinner we tottered a few blocks down to Laurelhurst to catch Black Swan and grab another round of drinks.  This was my second time seeing the movie and I enjoyed it just as much.  The Bunnies were more critical, but what do they know?  It's possible when we got home that we somehow made room for a little bit of my homemade ice cream, but I'm not going down on record as saying we did.

Now that the Bunny is starting to show (it's so cute), it was imperative that we find some appropriately sized clothing.  Since she's taken a firm (and odd) stand against maternity clothes, we focused on her mainstay brands, with an eye toward drawstrings and elastic waistbands.  We were actually quite successful in this regard and managed to find a bunch of things for her at all price points (H&M vs anthropologie).  And most importantly, I also found two summer dresses.  Mr Bunny had taken himself off to the Nike factory store and he also scored big, although I paid little attention to his finds since I have little interest in men's clothing and none at all in athletic wear.  We puttered away a bit at home until Mr Bunny decided to go to a nearby bar to watch basketball (I have about 5 channels) and the Bunny and I went grocery shopping.  She wanted to learn how to make zhong zi, so we picked up some pork from Fred Meyer and I got some more ice cream ingredients (can't get enough!).  The evening passed happily, with cooking, eating and a rousing game of Munchkin.  Bunny took the honors there.

Although the PSU farmer's market reopened mid-March, I hadn't managed to go yet so the Bunnies' visit was the perfect excuse.  We walked downtown and spent a pleasant morning inspecting produce and nibbling on free cheese and meat samples.  I had fiddleheads for the first time and was completely enchanted.  I think it was probably a good thing that we were short on cash because I'm sure I would have gone completely overboard.  Every cheese tasted better than the last and there were some insanely delicious smoked meats.  I looked a little askance at the $6/dz cartons of eggs, but I am a little curious and might splurge on those sometime this summer, just to see what they're like.  As it was nearing lunch, we combined our single dollar bills and purchased two orders of bagels and smoked salmon from one of the stands.  This was shared between ourselves and eaten standing up in a patch of sun.

We then wandered off to knit purl because I wanted to buy yarn for baby booties and a sweater I was interested in knitting.  Could not find the right yarn for the sweater, but found exactly what I wanted for the booties.  Although this will be a separate post, it turns out that booties are extremely fast and easy to knit up.  After I ran my grubby hands through many balls of yarn, we walked over to Stumptown.  I insisted the Bunny try their cappuccino since I'm positive it's the best I've ever had.  Mr Bunny does not drink coffee so he ordered a large mug of beer and we hung out there for a while, taking in the scene.

Back at home, the Bunny and I occupied ourselves with domestic pursuits (aka. knitting) and Mr Bunny took himself off to meet his new friends (I'm super impressed he can go to a bar and make friends with random people) and watch more sports.  We reconvened on the corner of 2nd ave and Adler to catch a bus back to Southeast Portland.  I'll spare everyone the details of what followed, but after much ado, we managed to get a table at Bamboo.  A valuable lesson about making reservations for Saturday night dining was learned by all.  Bamboo ended up being completely fantastic, we gorged on sustainable sushi (spicy scallop and sweet shrimp nigiri, and a few of the specialty sushi rolls) and shared a particularly remarkable appetizer - some kind of ridiculously tender crispy-battered white fish cooked in a sweet soy sauce glaze.  It was such a good dish.  Mr Bunny got a flight of shochu and I got a pear gimlet while the Bunny took tiny sips from our glasses.  There is always a critical moment during a meal out when you want to order more food because everything was so delicious, but somewhere in your head you know this would be an extremely bad idea.  As a group, we overcame this moment, and bused home.  Not to say we didn't have dessert, more homemade ice cream was enjoyed by all (coffee and ginger ice creams).  Our busy, yet relaxing day ended with a movie (the other guys) and another game of Munchkin (Mr Bunny finally wins a game!).

I think this might be the longest post I've ever written.  Onward!  After much eating the night before, I always find it incredible that I can grow hungry again for more food, but that is what happened on Sunday.  To rectify this, we went to an amazing brunch place downtown, Veritable Quandary.  Let me just say, there is no quandary or question about whether I will be returning, everything was absolutely delicious.  It sounds crazy, but my favorite thing there was the apple cinnamon steelcut oatmeal.  I can still almost taste it on my tongue.  We shared a bowl of this, alongside some housemade sausages.  I got the johnny cakes, Bunny got the crab benedict (omg so good) and Mr Bunny got the blackened catfish (also very good, but more lunch than brunch I think).  

On the way home, we popped into a few stores for fun, looking at comics and figurines and apple products.  At 2:30, we marched to Onyx Salon, located two blocks away from my apartment, to keep our manicure (pedicure for Mr Bunny) appointments.  Once normalized to cost, this manicure would not be considered the best I've had, but it's been a couple of days and there's no chipping so far.  What grieves me a little are the bubbles in the topcoat on my left hand.  It's not at all noticeable from a distance, but I know they're there!  I'm quite fond of the color though, I got a dark plum while Bunny got a lighter winey red.

After our brunch, we all agreed that it was best to just eat a light dinner at home before the Bunnies go catch their flight home.  This resolution was completely abandoned at 4:45pm when Mr Bunny drew our attention to Kenny and Zuke's, only a few blocks away.  I was grabbing my coat before the words "homemade pastrami" were fully out of his mouth, and we quickly dashed over.  My god, this place did not disappoint.  I got a simple pastrami on rye, with potato salad on the side.  Everything, but especially that pastrami, was so very good.  Even the pickle.  So so so good.  I'm honestly considering getting some more pastrami this weekend, I might be addicted.  YUM.  

Mac n Cheese

Crazy delicious pastrami

I wish the Bunnies could have stayed longer (or better yet, move!).  This was definitely one of the best weekends I've had in 2011 and hands down the best eating in maybe a year.  Can't wait to see them again in a month!


  1. that sounds very pleasant. most of it anyways...that post was so long i kinda skipped the parts about yarn and you having boils on the top coat of your hand or whatever.

    also, only portland would have "sustainable sushi"

  2. yaaaaay what a great post. i miss you already (and portland and all the good eating). love you!