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March 19th, 2008 SAUNDRA SORENSON | Special Section Stories
 

You Are Where You Eat

     
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IMAGE: Eben Dickinson

There is a theory often bandied about that we live in a society of subcultures. In Portland you can usually classify an “urban tribe” by the restaurants they frequent. Here’s a spotter’s guide to five local subcultures and their favorite places to graze.

Where does your Portland subculture eat?


Nation, 38

Species:Fringe artist

Plumage:

Altered clothing, visible tattoos, unmovably styled locks, running exhibit at Cannibals.

Habitat:

Il Piatto (2348 SE Ankeny St., 236-4997). “They’ve got an eclectic menu. And inside it’s shabby chic, dusty and gilted. Textured walls, chiffon—like my bedroom, but with food.”

Also spotted at:

Crush (1412 SE Morrison St., 235-8150). “Mediterranean and organic food. They’ve never treated me wrong.” Also: Sapphire Hotel (5008 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 232-6333) to get plowed on mimosas and “feel like Marilyn Monroe on ecstasy.”

Josh, 26

Species:Gay man about town

Characteristic

behavior:

“Gay men? My gay men? They have sex with guys.”

Habitat:

My Father’s Place (523 SE Grand Ave., 235-5494).“Unfortunately. Gay culture revolves around alcohol. Eating? Gay people don’t eat!”

Also spotted at:

Roxy (1121 SW Stark St., 223-9160). Never Silverado. “I go to drink all the time, but as far as food goes, I wouldn’t trust them.”

Anna, 30

Species:Vegan

Plumage:

Clear skin, homemade clothes, self-righteous glow.

Habitat:

Proper Eats (page 29). “To me, the holy grail of vegan dining is finding a good vegan Reuben.”

Also spotted at:

Paradox Cafe (3439 SE Belmont St., 232-7508), Food Fight (4179 SE Division St., 233-3910), Nicholas (page 27), Sweetpea Baking Company (1205 SW Stark St., 447-5916), Veganopolis (page 29) and “possibly nurturing a drunken stupor with a delicious vegan doughnut from Voodoo Doughnut(page 23).

Katherine, 32

species:

Lesbian.

Identifying

characteristics:Stylized hair. Prefers

comfortable shoes.

Dates women.

Habitat:

Zach’s Shack (page 24). “I like the veggie dog and veggie chili-cheese fries.”

Also spotted at:The deli of New Seasons Market (various locations, newseasonsmarket.com), Bay Leaf (4760 SE Division St., 232-7066), places with mood lighting and “something that’s a little more luxurious.” Example: Red Velvet Lounge (2411 SE Belmont St., 232-4458), with its seasonal menus and extensive wine list. Also: Haven Coffee Shop (3551 SE Division St., 236-6890) and The Egyptian Club (3701 SE Division St., 236-8689).

Erik, 26

Species:Techie

Tracks:Apple stickers on various surfaces, “There’s no place like 127.0.0.1” bumper stickers, entire seasons of Joss Whedon shows on DVD scattered around the house.

Habitat:

Backspace (115 NW 5th Ave., 248-2900). “This LAN center/techie hangout that’s got a cafe with sandwiches and snacks and salads. So many of my [equally tech-driven] co-workers hang out there all day.”

Also spotted at:

Zach’s Shack, Genies (page 9) on Sunday mornings, Cup & Saucer (page 12)—”I do love my Stumptown coffee, but who doesn’t?”—and ordering from Papa John’s.

 
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