where i went: the pacific northwest

required reading: to the bridge by nancy rommelmann

where i stayed 

  • the state hotel (downtown seattle, wa): this was a ideal downtown location. we were in walking distance of most of the sights we wanted to see. extremely clean and there was a rooftop for great views of pike place market.
  • the inn at haystack rock (cannon beach, or): in walking distance to the downtown area and to haystack rock. minimal amenities but extremely clean cottage-style room and it was perfect for us for one night in cannon beach.
  • air bnb (mcminnville, or)
  • dossier hotel (portland, or): another great downtown location in walking distance to pioneer square and shopping.

where i ate/drank 

  • lecosho (downtown seattle, wa): after waiting for a our luggage at baggage claim at Sea-Tac for 2.5 hours, we were starving when we arrived to seattle. we walked to lecosho from our hotel and ordered beef short ribs, wild boar & beef bolognese, and the manila clams off of their late night menu. everything was delicious and just what we needed after a long day of traveling.
  • le panier (downtown seattle, wa): french pastries, baguettes, sandwiches, and coffee.
  • beecher’s handmade cheese (downtown seattle, wa): grilled cheese sandwiches and french onion soup. we got to watch them make cheese!
  • optimism brewing company (capitol hill, seattle, wa): various brews – we ordered a flight.
  • delaurenti food & wine (downtown seattle, wa): 3 words – charcuterie. to. go. this market was perfect for stocking up on sandwiches, snacks, and drinks.
  • biscuit bitch (downtown seattle, wa): this place was entertaining and served delicious food. they were blasting rap music and greeted me with a sassy, “what can we get you, bitch?”
  • dough zone (international district, seattle, wa): dumplings and hot tea. made for a perfect lunch spot after walking around all day.
  • fremont brewing company  (fremont, seattle, wa): various brews – family friendly/dog friendly.
  • rockcreek seafood and spirits (fremont, seattle, wa): one of my favorite meals of the trip – we ordered fresh raw oysters, sourdough bread with bright herb butter, mussels, octopus, and baja gold spot sand bass fish and shell stew, clams, mussels, roasted tomato broth, parsley, basil, bruschetta, olive aioli.
  • astoria coffeehouse and bistro (astoria, or): cute lunch spot to break up our drive from seattle to cannon beach, or.
  • insomnia coffee co. (cannon beach, or): really good coffee spot. we grabbed lattes and walked around in downtown cannon beach, or, which has cute shops and art galleries.
  • golden valley brewery (mcminnville, or): we were famished after hiking ecola state park and then driving to mcminnville. our airbnb host recommended golden valley brewery for dinner and he was spot on. we had a couple of beers, loaded tots, and burgers. health is wealth. i ate the tots as a breakfast hash the next morning and it was perfect.
  • union block coffee (mcminnville, or): we loved this coffee shop in downtown mcminnville. they had great pastries and bagels too.
  • red hills market (dundee, or): we stopped here between vineyards during our wine tour in willamette valley. they had great sandwiches, chips, drinks, and local goods.
  • bamboo sushi (portland, or): i will be dreaming about this sushi for a while. we ordered sushi, nagiri, shishito peppers, and cauliflower. we really enjoyed sitting at the bar and watching the sushi chef prepare our food. all of the fish is sustainably caught and tasted insanely fresh.
  • salt & straw (portland, or): offering unique and delicious ice cream. i ordered a scoop of honey lavender and felt like i was eating a spa. in a good way.
  • canard (portland, or): this was a great dinner spot. it is typically walk-in only. we had a short wait but got seats right in front of the chefs at the bar. we ordered raw oysters, pot de canard, garlic fries, tamarind glazed scallops, foie gras dumplings, and butterscotch pie. everything was delicious. writing this is making me hungry.
  • fried egg i’m in love (portland, or): perfect breakfast for our last day of the trip. they have a creative menu of fried egg sandwiches on sourdough bread.

what i did 

  • pike place market (downtown seattle, wa): check out the guys throwing fish back and forth to each other (i don’t really get it, but it was cool). there were a ton of vendors selling unique local goods.
  • gum wall (downtown seattle, wa): this was really gross but i felt like we should see it.
  • olympic sculpture park (belltown, seattle, wa): a perfect place to take a walk and take in views of the city. and to pet other people’s dogs.
  • volunteer park (capitol hill, seattle, wa): here, we toured a conservatory filled with lush plants and flowers. we then walked to a nearby water tower where we climbed to the top and caught panoramic views of seattle.
  • the elliott bay book company (capitol hill, seattle, wa): in addition to a warm and inviting atmosphere, elliott bay book company is home to seattle’s first bookstore cafe.
  • marymoor park (remond, wa): we saw one of our favorite bands, death cab for cutie, perform at this mellow venue. we brought a blanket to sit on and enjoyed wine/beer stations and food trucks nearby.
  • space needle (seattle center, seattle, wa): breathtaking views of the city from the seattle landmark that was built in 1962 for the world’s fair.
  • chihuly garden and glass (seattle center, seattle, wa): glass museum with beautiful indoor and outdoor exhibits celebrating the work of seattle native, dale chihuly.
  • uwajimaya (international district, seattle, wa): there was a really cute bookstore in here featuring international goods and literature and lots of great asian food options.
  • drove U.S. 101 to cannon beach, or – on the way:
    • cape disappointment state park (ilwaco, wa): we stopped here for a short hike to the north head lighthouse.
    • downtown astoria (astoria, or): small coastal town with some fun history (parts of the film the goonies was filmed here!)
  • haystack rock (cannon beach, or): a very photogenic spot on the oregon coast with a cute downtown nearby.
  • ecola state park (cannon beach, or): we stopped here to do a quick hike on our way from cannon beach to mcminnville. we learned some history about the area and hiked through a rainforest to the beach.
  • wine tasting in willamette valley, or:
    • stoller family estate (dayton, or): great way to start the tour. gorgeous views and helpful staff.
    • durant vineyards (dayton, or): this location had a casual, laid-back feel. we enjoyed sitting in adirondack chairs and enjoying the views.
    • white rose estate (dayton, or): the tasting room here was very cool and distinctive. it was dark and old-school feeling.
    • de ponte cellars (dayton, or): we found a sleepy calico cat on the porch here. she and the vinter were both very hospitable.
  • powell’s books (portland, or): the largest bookstore IN THE WORLD.
  • pioneer square (portland, or): the ninth circuit court of appeals is located here. this area also boasted a ton of great shopping, restaurants, and bars.