Sunday, April 29, 2012

Madison's Grill

1109 SE Madison
Happy Hour: 3 - 6 PM

Madison's was the start to an evening of birthday celebrations but it's honestly one of those places that you could stay for HOURS. The place is ridiculously inviting, the seating super comfy (inside and out), and the service is fantastic. They're not the kind of people who are going to rush you through your meal to free up another space. Whether it's breakfast or happy hour, you can easily plant yourself for hours and no one would say a thing.

I also LOVE the food. I've been a number of times for breakfast, maybe once for dinner, and now for happy hour and every taste has been terrific. Their breakfast food is amazing, they have "almost bottomless" mimosas and Bloody Marys with varying spicy degrees, and once I remember being treated to a special "we're trying something new" fresh-from-the-oven scone sample. Plus, there's never a wait. (And in Portland, breakfast is almost always served with a long wait time.)

Happy hour at Madison's means better pricing on all of their appetizers. And their appetizers could easily serve as dinner options. We tried three off the list that day: nachos, quesadilla, and tacos. It's not all Mexican food, I promise. They have chicken, and meatballs, a hummus plate, onion rings, and even fish and chips. It's a pretty well-rounded menu. And all of the prices are between three and six bucks.

I ordered the quesadilla because it was stuffed with roasted vegetables.I love vegetables and with the spicy sour cream, this quesadilla made for the best "after school" snack I'd had in a long time. It just needed some salsa.

My fiance ordered the nachos which proved to be TOO BIG for one person. He added chicken to the mix, but I was able to locate a few bites that were meat free. Super cheesy.

And on the other side of the table, a plate of carne asada tacos came perfectly presented with cherry tomatoes on either end of the skewer. Smart, I say. They are both effective and stylish. All three of our dishes came with the same spicy sour cream. Like mine, this one also needed salsa. Or something similar.

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


Madison's Bar and Grill

Sunday, April 08, 2012

The Leaky Roof

1538 SW Jefferson Street
Happy Hour: 3 - 6 PM, Daily

The Leaky Roof is one of those places that offers dinner for cheap, three hours a night. They call it happy hour...but it's not like a lot of other places. Their happy hour food menu is double-sided. That means they offer variety. And the portions are big enough to fill you up. I went on a work night, but that doesn't mean you have to. They offer discounts on food and drink every single night of the week.

The place filled up quickly and as tables of people moved out, more moved in. I'm guessing that lots of people know about the dinner-sized happy hour portions. That, or they really do love the bread pudding as much as our server claimed and were only there to get through dinner and make it to yet another taste of the yumminess. He didn't use the word yumminess (I did after having a bite), but he did mention something about an addiction. (Be warned.)

I started the evening with a vodka gimlet. (I know, I know. Always, right?) It was made with both Rose's and fresh lime juice. A compromise, I say. It was much, much better than those made with nothing but the Rose's but not so good that I'm going to do away with my recipe. (And when I say recipe, I mean a splash of this, a squeeze of that, and a spoonful of powdered sugar. They turn out differently EVERY time.)

For dinner, I ordered a vegetarian burger (served with fries) and a salad. The only salad on the happy hour menu was a Caesar, but the server was glad to switch it out for the garden salad. The portions were perfect, the fries were delicious, the salad was crisp and filled my need for veggies...but the burger was something quite unusual. The menu claimed something about a black bean handmade something or other. It resembled a patty. (It was served on a bun.) And I saw black beans in the mix...but it was most definitely FRIED. Why? I do not know. How many vegetarians are so completely unhealthy that they want their burgers fried? Maybe it was a one-time thing. Maybe it was a mistake. All I know is that it crumbled all over the place, and every little piece that landed on my lap left a huge grease stain on my pants. And it's not that I'm a ridiculously messy eater. It was a ridiculously messy food. Ugh!

Across the table, my friend was happy with her choice of a quesadilla. It didn't make much of a mess, and it apparently had the perfect ratio of saucy flavor, pulled pork, and cheese. The one pictured seems a bit dry...but that was only due to a request for no salsa.

Despite my disappointment for the black bean burger, I will most likely be back someday. The prices are great and the portions are perfect. (I just won't order the same thing.) Plus, the bread pudding is pretty good. Maybe even a bit addicting. It's not like I need it right now...but if I were there, it'd be hard to say no.

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


Leaky Roof