Saturday, May 22, 2010

Paccini - CLOSED

1717 SW Park Avenue
Happy Hour: 4 - 7 PM

There are quite a few establishments offering happy hour to the overworked (and most likely underpaid) students at Portland State University. Paccini seems to be the most popular. Walking through the main entrance might lead you to believe otherwise, but as you cross over into the bar area (or step onto the large patio on a sunny afternoon) you will quickly come to realization that this place is heavily populated by the twenty-one and over crowd currently enrolled at PSU.

Having been there for dinner, drinks, and a graduation celebration, I knew exactly what I was walking into. It's loud, but not excessively so. (It's also dark...too dark to take quality food pictures.) There's a fire place in the center of the bar, a pool table off to the side, and a chalkboard full of happy hour options. I wasn't too hungry, but with thirteen minutes left until the official end of happy hour, I knew that I couldn't pass up another opportunity to post a review.

I ordered a lemon drop for just four dollars off of the happy hour menu. They have great deals on beer and well drinks, but I was tempted to go for something sweet. It was a little icy and the sugar rim was obviously done quickly, but the price seemed to match the quality.

The service at Paccini is pretty efficient. They seem to be prepared for crowds and take care of most food and drink orders at the bar (or so it seems). We were given a number to place on the table while waiting for our food. The system fits the location, in my opinion, and wasn't offensive in the least. It's a bar, not a fine-dining establishment. Even the restaurant side of Paccini has a cafeteria-style feel to it. Or, perhaps, more like a deli. You can buy pizza by the slice or by the pie, salads, even tiramisu.

We ordered the bruschetta as a snack. It was served with a bowl of marinated olives. When it first arrived, we were very concerned that the black edges were burnt beyond enjoyment. The were black...that's not an exaggeration...but, they were still good. The bread was toasted, for sure, but still soft. It had a drizzle of balsamic vinegar covering the top and then a mountain of tomatoes. It made for a messy place setting, but was worth the extra effort.

There are at least a dozen other things waiting on that happy hour menu for me to try in the future. And, I'm sure that I'll be back before too long.

Food: Meets
Drinks: Meets
Service: Meets
Ambiance: Meets
Value: Meets



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