North PDX

Eat St. Johns (As Told By the Locals)

Just a quick two-mile jaunt from University Park sits St. Johns – a quiet, unassuming Portland neighborhood. As a UP student, chances are, you’ve found yourself frequenting the Starbucks for a long afternoon of studying, taking a visit to the Safeway (when Fred Meyer produce isn’t cutting it anymore) or checking out the St. Johns theater for a cheap matinee.

What was once a shipbuilding and mill town, circa 1904…

Screen Shot 2015-03-29 at 8.58.48 AM
Source: PDX History

…is now booming with all types of eateries, activities and more!

neighborhood
Source: Neighborhood Notes

If St. Johns has been feeling a little “been there, done that” for you lately, check out these local favorites, guaranteed to shake up your next visit.

TULIP PASTRY SHOP

oregonian
Source: The Oregonian

The Tulip Pastry Shop knows their pastry. This family-owned joint has been serving up old-school treats and eats for the last 60 years. From custom cakes and pies, to melt-in-your-mouth cookies, this shop provides locals with a taste of nostalgia and sugary sweet treats.

What the locals say: According to a Yelp review, Kerry L. says that Tulip hasn’t changed since her childhood. “The décor is vintage, fun and clean and not overwhelming. The owner is great to chat with and very affable.” She adds, “He obviously enjoys his business and people!”

What I say: Though I haven’t actually visited the bakery myself, I have tasted some (emphasis on the some) of their delicious chocolate chip cookies. Light and airy, but full of chocolate chip chunks, these cookies were the perfect compliment to a homework-filled night.

Order a: Made-from-scratch maple bar and throw in a coconut twist for later.

Visit: 8322 N. Lombard St.

Call: (503) 286-3444.

Hours: Open Tuesday-Thursday 7am-3pm, Friday 7am-5pm, Saturday 8am-5pm, Closed Sunday and Monday.

DUB’S BBQ

dubs
Source: Kristi Does PDX

Hidden away in the Ranger Tavern, an unassuming dive bar on North Lombard, sits Dub’s – a local favorite for filling brisket, barbeque and good ole’ fried chicken. If you’re in the mood for comfort food, Dub’s is the place to be.

What the locals say: Says St. Johns resident Susan Rudolph, “Dub’s has the BEST food! My favorite item on the menu is the sloppy burger. They deliver now, too, and it’s quick.”

What I say: Though I haven’t actually sampled Dub’s grub, I do like the thought of a dive bar churning out some home cooked food. A lover of the chicken and waffles combination myself, Dub’s is on my post-graduation bucket list.

Order a: “Sloppy Soul” sloppy joe burger like Susan, or sample the chicken and waffles – the original source of Dub’s fame.

Visit: 9520 N. Lombard St.

Call: (503) 998-8230.

Hours: Open Monday-Friday 12pm-9pm, Friday-Saturday 12pm-10pm, Closed Sunday.

PROPER EATS MARKET AND CAFE

proper
Source: Proper Eats

Part grocery store, part restaurant, this vegan/vegetarian eatery encompasses the charm of St. Johns and features one of the best specialty bulk food sections in Portland.

What the locals say: According to her Yelp review, Sandy S. says the friendly staff keep her coming back time after time. “The staff are super nice and the service has been excellent every single time. I’m a sucker for a side of blackened tempeh and any of their salads – but the soups are always yummy, too.”

What I say: A once-a-month vegan myself, this place is somehow able to make the absence of meat, unnoticeable. I tend to stay away from the cashew cheese and faux chicken, opting for a vegetarian burrito or quesadilla, instead.

Order a: Side of blackened tempeh, like Sandy, or try their Spicy Black Bean Quesadilla and a house-brewed kombucha.

Visit: 8638 N. Lombard Ave

Call: (503) 445-2007.

Hours: Open Monday-Sunday, 9AM-10PM.

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1 reply »

  1. This was a great article, loved how you found the pic of old st johns and compared it with the new one. It would’ve been better if in the section where you said something that you could’ve gone to those places. but great job!

    Liked by 1 person

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