Wednesday, August 25, 2010


525 SW Morrison St.
Happy Hour 4- 6 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday

Departure isn't the typical Portland bar/restaurant. Nothing about it is makes me think of Portland, but I guess that is the point. At the top of The Nines hotel, Departure is a rooftop bar that is set up to make you feel like you are leaving the city. Upon arrival you feel as if you are walking down a runway to a plane. When you do actually get to the restaurant, there are waitresses dressed up as retro flight attendants. The rooftop seating has a great view, and everything feels very chic.

The swanky atmosphere does come with a price, but it wasn't too bad. Maybe a little bit more than I wanted to spend for happy hour, but to be fair I ended up ordering some items that weren't on the HH menu.

Departure has daily drink specials for $5 each, including beer, red and white wine, sparkling wine, shochu, sake, and a cocktail special. I started with a glass of white wine. This was a standard Chardonnay, but it really hit the spot on such a hot day. Later on I also got the daily bubbles special, which was Prosecco.

My friends were all able to find something that appealed to them on the happy hour menu, but I guess I was being a little picky. I ended up ordering two items off the regular menu since nothing really appealed to me. The first was a very interesting salad ($7). This salad might not be for everyone, but I really enjoyed it. It has carrots, avocado, ginger, sweet pickles, croutons, and some sort of delicious vinaigrette. If I was on a date I might be worried about the little black seeds getting stuck in my teeth, but since I was with my girlfriends I just asked them to tell me if my teeth were in the clear. (Please remind me to tell you about the time that I went on an Internet first date for sushi and realized when I went to the bathroom at the end that I had sushi rice stuck in my teeth the whole time. And I think that's why he didn't ask for a second date. Whoops, I just told you the whole story!)

My second item was a citrus salmon roll ($9). This was very delicious and fresh. Sushi almost always looks pretty when it comes out, and this roll was no exception. I enjoyed it a lot.

My friend ordered the chicken samosas ($6) and the wok fired mushrooms ($5) from the happy hour menu. As you may be able to see from the picture, these items were pretty small. I didn't taste the samosas, but she said they were spicy. The mushrooms were pretty good (I tried a small one), but I don't know that I would want more than a few.

Unfortunately, $26 dollars plus tip later, I was still hungry. Don't worry--a pretzel at the mall solved that problem!

Food: Meets
Drinks: Meets
Service: Meets
Ambiance: Meets
Value: Does Not Meet


Departure on Urbanspoon

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