Wednesday, May 20, 2009


So, my wife and I got a chance to drop by the Morningstar Cafe in downtown Portland -- that's Oregon -- for lunch. Run by J.D. Ray -- who has posted here a time or two over the last few years -- the place has just moved to a new space. They are mostly doing soup, salads, and sandwiches at the moment, the hot line awaiting city approval, but probably that'll be up and cooking in a couple-three weeks. It's worth going to visit just for the sandwiches, though.

And they have booze -- seven microbrews on tap --

Laurelwood Tree Hugger Porter
Hopworks Deluxe Organic Ale (D.O.A.)
Lompoc C-Note Imperial IPA
Alameda El Torero IPA
Amnesia Dusty Trail Pale Ale
Cascade Raspberry Ale

On guest tap:

Ninkasi Double Believer Red

Great stuff, unless you are one of those Nazi monk-pee beer snobs, in which case nothing will please you anyhow. And wine. And hard liquor, in case you want a zombie or a mojiito or like that.

I had a grilled turkey and cheese sandwich, the Felipe, my wife had half a veggie sandwich, the Tasty Treat, which was more than enough for a normal appetite. Came with a couple of orange slices, those thick Kettle-style potato chips, and we had iced tea, all for for less than fifteen bucks -- hard to beat that for a lunch with words like "organic" and "fresh olive bread" "stone ground mustard" and "cilantro" and such connected to it.

Service was great, the place was clean, bright, and the food was excellent -- outstanding, even.

We'll go back, which is for me, the highest form of praise.

If you are looking for a place to have a quiet drink -- they are open in the evening and they have a happy hour -- or a great sandwich at a reasonable price, check it. They are on the corner of Third and Washington downtown. Tell them I sent you


Edwin Voskamp said...

Yeah, but they're in Portland, which begs the question: do they have free WiFi?

Steve Perry said...

WiFi? What kind of person wants to play with a computer while s/he is eating good food or drinking good beer in public?

heina said...

*...sets down his drink and lunch to respond to your comment...*

"Um...*urp*...pardon. Nevermind."

*...finishes off lunch...*

Edwin Voskamp said...

Mmmmm, I don't quite know how to answer what kind of person I am, but would it suffice to say that I'd like free WiFi there?

I don't want to play with a computer while I am eating good food or drinking beer, but working the whole day from home gets old, so working from a nice place, and having some nice food and nice beer while I work, is definitely worth it.

Unfortunately, my health insurance won't pay to have my electronic interfaces implanted: maybe once I'm old and cranky (as opposed to just cranky).

J.D. Ray said...

Thanks, Steve, for the nice review. We worked hard on the place, and the positive feedback we're getting makes us proud of what we've done.

We evidently need to update the web site with the current beer list. Here it is:

Amnesia Slo Train Porter
Hopworks D.O.A.
Lompoc C-Note Imperial Pale Ale
Alameda El Torero India Pale Ale
Hopworks Lager
Laurelwood Free Range Red
Alameda Wilshire Wheat
Ninkasi Spring Reign

Seven of the eight are brewed within the city limits of Portland, with the eighth (Ninkasi) being the "out of town guest." They're from Eugene.

The state approved our modification of the exterior of the historic building we're in so we can put a hood vent in, and now we're just waiting out the public comment period the city requires. So, by the second week of June, we should have full breakfast, lunch and dinner menus. Our chef, Travis Wyant, is already producing some oven-based wonders, including elk meatloaf.

And yes, free WiFi is available. Furthermore, each of the seven booths have outlets to plug in laptops, making The Morning Star a great place to use as a remote office. We just ask that you respect the fact that we have to pay our bills, so if you're going to camp out, eat. Reasonable?

We look forward to seeing you.

Kai Jones said...

Third and Washington? I can walk there from work. I'll have to try it.