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Paley's Place - 100 Reviews - 1204 Nw 21st Ave, Portland, OR 97209, Portland, OR - Restaurants Reviews - Phone (503) 243-2403

Paley's Place

1204 Nw 21st Ave, Portland, OR 97209 (at Northwest Portland (Including the Pearl District & Nob Hill))
Portland, OR 97209
(503) 243-2403
Incorrect info? Correct your listing


Paley's Place - Portland, OR
Paley's Place - Portland, OR
Paley's Place - Portland, OR
Paley's Place - Portland, OR
Paley's Place - Portland, OR
Paley's Place - Portland, OR
Paley's Place - Portland, OR
Paley's Place - Portland, OR


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We had reserations for four with another couple who had dined there previously. I really enjoyed the food. I order the Escargot, beets, sauted gree, Lemon Verbena Ice Cream and ...


Paley's Place is quite a nice and cozy place. We ordered appetizer, entree, and dessert. The appetizer was a salad, which was quite appetizing. The entree (halibut) was decent...

reservations about reservations 12/3/2010

After reading all of the recent polarized, mixed reviews, I was anxious to try Paley's again to form my own opinion. I had eaten there years ago, and I found it OK, (B+, maybe three and a half stars). So, about a week ago, I made a reservation for tonight. Unfortunately, I just received a phone call from Paley's in which I was told ""there's a lot going on at the time of your reservation, and we can't honor it. Can you come later in the evening?"" So, when I write a review of a restaurant in which I actually eat, perhaps I can comment on the quality of the food... more

Great French Food 8/30/2010

We had reserations for four with another couple who had dined there previously. I really enjoyed the food. I order the Escargot, beets, sauted gree, Lemon Verbena Ice Cream and a spectacular Lemon Drop. The Lemon Drop was very good. It competed with Jakes Lemon Drop that I love. more

Hopelessly over-rated 8/24/2010

Talk about disappointment of the first degree - we went to Paley's after we read this was one of the few AAA 5 Star rated eating establishments in Portland. AAA got is wrong in my opinion - not even close. Cramped tables, owners didn't even make an attempt at decent decor, extremely limited menu and, at best, ordinary food. We tried several apetizers, salads, and main plates.... I'm not that good of a cook and I can honestly wip a better meal from Trader Joe's. The service was exceptional, but I would like to have a bit more to show for the $180 we paid for a dinner for two. more

First Review of Paley's Place 5/16/2010

Have been meaning to try Paley's place for a LONG time, just hasn't worked out until last night. This review is as accurate and objective as it can be. Seated right upon arrival, 10 mins. before our 6:00 PM reservation. Everyone there greeted us with a smile and a great attitude. Loved the initial atmosphere, dark wood furniture, tables etc. and the spacing of the tables was perfect for their efficiency and our comfort (not too close). Service was extremely attentive but not nagging, perfect mix in my opinion. My water level was never below half and you could tell that the staff worked as a team to ensure guests were taken care of. Menu was just a bit confusing, but nothing that couldn't be figured out. My wife had the Borscht starter and I had the Organic Spinach salad. The Borscht is a cold starter soup made with beets and was refreshing and very good. The spinach salad was extremely fresh, ample and already had the dressing mixed in ... but at a perfect ratio. My wife ordered the pork shoulder and I had the rib eye special that is only on Saturdays. Her pork is made to order and can take up to 45 mins. ... which the server mentioned. Bread came shortly after ordering and was refreshed quickly when we finished the first basket. After the wait for the pork, which was perfectly acceptable, we got both entrees. Her pork was served with asparagus and a butter bean salad. Pork had great flavor and it was a nice mix with the bean salad and asparagus. The pork had a bit too much fat for her, but I thought it was fine and added to the flavor of the meat. My ribeye was good sized, marbled perfectly to the point where there was virtually nothing left when done and the flavor and the sauce were tremendous. It came with a few potatoes and a small mixed grill of a couple vegetables, inc. shallots (i think). It was great! We also ordered a side of the braised greens. They did a perfect job of braising the greens to the point where they were hot, tasteful yet not soggy or overly wilted. Would have liked maybe a bit more, but it was enough considering the dinner. Great flavor. For desert, wife had the creme brulee which is the biggest I've seen served. I had the chocolate souffle with vanilla-honey ice cream and hazelnuts. It was incredible. The souffle melted in my mouth and was still steaming in the inside, and was perfectly paired with the ice cream and hazelnuts. Both deserts were phenomenal ... thanks Lauren! was the dinner! The only thing that took away from the great atmosphere and service, was that there was obviously some well known individual that was sitting at the end of the bar. He was joined by another couple at the bar. The staff new him and many new him so maybe he was the owner or someone else of note. Either way, as our dinner progressed, the increasing decibels of the conversation aside, the constant dropping of F-bombs became an annoyance and really took away from the nice ambiance, music and service. It gave it a more sports or pool bar feeling. I don't hold this against Paley's place unless it was the owner or someone involved with the restaurant as I would hope he would understand this detraction. If it was just some other regular, perhaps a reminder or calling attention to it may be in order. For diners though, I am sure this is just luck of the draw and not something to hold against the restaurant. Can't wait to go again to see if the already great experience could even get even better. Nice job!! Pros: Excellent Service and Food Cons: Atmosphere? more

Tried to like it but... 5/11/2010

We were there for our wedding anniversary. (21 years :) ) My husband had champagne at the bar, I had a glass of white wine. Bartender and drinks were fantastic. The night dissolved from there. They placed us under a spotlight, making me look awful-- I'm usually not that vain, but this light made me wince all night. They refused to adjust. My husband sweetbreads were awful and chewy, wine was terrible and my pasta was a soupy mess. I understand that this is a NW institution, but I really don't want to back anytime soon. Pros: like the building Cons: Lighting, sloppy food, bad service more

Horrible experience 5/10/2010

I'm sad to report that I'll no longer be coming to Paley's Place. This is one of my favorite restaurants in town, and I've always had a good experience during my many visits. Last night, my wife and son and I went to celebrate Mother's Day. After being seated and ordering a drink, it took 35 minutes for the drink to come. We enjoyed our appetizers and salads. We asked if the outdoor heater above us could be turned down and it was turned off. Apparently, one diner asked for it to be turned back on, so the heater was turned on again. The hostess came to our table and told us the heater was staying on and was very rude and aggressive about it, and very confrontational. 90 minutes after being seated, with no entrees still and sweating from the heater, we left cash on the table to cover what had come so far and just left. Even when I went inside to tell them we were leaving, I stood at the hostess station for 10 minutes waiting and no one showed up. And who has an outdoor heater turned on high when it's 71 degrees outside? Pros: Excellent food, nice servers Cons: Rude, condescending hostess. Overly warm outdoor heaters. more

Consistent 1/20/2010

I have eaten at Paley's now about 6 times over the past 3 years. Have never had a bad experience. Pros: Never Had a bad meal more

Impressed our SF visitors 12/10/2009

We each had three courses with no dessert. Food was perfect temperature, delicious and very well presented with perfect portion sizes. Service was also outstanding. We moved here a year ago from SF and were entertaining foodies up for a visit. All agreed that it was the best meal we've had in Portland and in the top 3 for the whole year. Pros: Food was outstanding Cons: None last night more

Glad I kept an open mind 12/3/2009

I am not sure why there is such a rush of bad reviews recently about this place but I am glad I didn't let them sway me from going there. We met with some friends last night and I dont really have any complaints. The food is organic & sustainable #1 - there is going to be a higher cost for just the ingredients off the start. #2 - this is not your typical american ""feed lot"" restaurant. Food is ment to be enjoyed and savored not stuffed down your throat as fast as possible. From the time we were seated to the time we paid our bill around 2 1/2 hours had passed & I honesly never noticed the time. Each stage of the experience was timed well as to ensure that we were able to enjoy what we already had at the table without feeling rushed. We ordered a 3 cheese dish with 2 types of goat cheeses & 1 cow milk cheese - absolutely delicious. For the main course, I went out on a limb & for the first time in my life tried steak tartare. The presentation was appetizing and inviting & the flavor was not anything that I had expected. I read a bad review about someone who reccomended El Gaucho over this place - I have eaten at El Gaucho before & while the experience was incredible, the prices were literally double what we paid at Paley's Place. The main point however is that one doesn't even compare to the other. One (El Gaucho) is a premier steak house. Paley's Place is a testament to local organic food, sustainable grown/raised & delivered to the table in a gormet setting. Other complaints were about the portion sizes. Again - this is not a place to stuff yourself. Food is to be savored & enjoyed. Let me put it this way, I am 6'6"", 250lbs and I wasn't hungry when we left. I wasn't overly stuffed mind you, but I was pleasantly content. Pros: Great service, excellent food. Cons: A bit pricey, but you get what you pay for. more

Distasteful experience 11/23/2009

I took in town guests to this restaurant. What a disappointment! Though the food was acceptable, the service was terrible. We waited a long time to order and when I asked the waitress for help, she make a snide remark and left us to continue waiting. However, I won't make the mistake of coming to this restaurant again. I wrote a notice to the manager but did not get a satisfactory response. For the high price they charge for food, I should not be made to feel they are doing us a favor for having us. Pros: Decent food Cons: Terrible service more

Great???...Not really!!! 10/24/2009

I went there for dinner last night and totally concur with previous reviews....what is the big deal about Paleys place??? Pros: Service Cons: Food more

What a dissapointment! 10/23/2009

I can't believe that people really enjoy this restaurant. I have eaten there 3 times and was totally unimpressed. Went there for Thanksgiving a couple of years ago and it was terrible, Turkey was dry, stuffing was awful. There are so many better restaurants in Portland. Bluehour, Merriweathers, Papa Haydn's to name a few. Cons: Poorly prepared, underseasoned, bland food more

Such a huge disappointment 9/15/2009

I was so excited when a friend of mine invited me to dinner at Paley's Place. I sifted through the reviews and was looking forward to it. I found the food be be very average for the price. My particular entree, sweetbreads and pork belly, was so small I left the place hungry. This after having an appetizer and dessert. I totally understand the concept of European portions, however, for the price one pays, the portions are ridiculous. Much better restaurants in Portland. Pros: cute place Cons: tiny portions more

Not a Romantic Place at all 8/17/2009

We walked in and there was no sitting area while you wait for your seat. The table in front had power bars for sale, which to me is a turn off coming into a so called omantic restaurant. We were seated way in the back room which was like a closet. The atmosphere was very plain for romance, and so very very noisy. We ended up tipping the waiter and leaving before our drinks even came. We went to Ringside on Burnside and it was the best meal I have ever had by far!!!! Cons: Very noisy and way to small more

Disappointing evening at Paley's 6/8/2009

I took out of town guests to Paley's based on previous good experiences there. However, this visit was a disappointment, and I was embarassed to have recommended this restaurant to my guests. Each issue on its own would not have been a big deal, but together they made for a disappointing evening. We had a reservation, yet we waited 40 minutes for our table. The bar was full, so we spent the time constantly shuffling out of someone's way. And the drinks we ordered to while away the time didn't come until after we were seated. When our table was ready, we were seated between a table with a crying baby and a table with a large group of 15. The room was so loud that most of our dinner conversation was, ""Huh? What did you say?"" Both our server and a busperson knocked over a drink on the table, once spilling a drink on my guest. Our server took our orders only to return 15 minutes later to tell us they were out of those dishes. We ended up ordering dishes we didn't really want. There was nothing wrong with the food, but it wasn't exceptional either. Cons: Terrible service more

The Dining Standard in Portland and the NW! 2/16/2009

Everything was remarkable. Kimberly Paley greeted us at the door and it was like meeting a long time family friend. The atmosphere was picturesque, the service was warm and attentive. The food is definitely the best in Portland thus far. The only thing remotely wrong with the whole picture is that when you go to places like that ""oyster"" place on Alberta Street , you expect the same standards and welcoming attitude. Paley's is definitely untouchable in all areas of fine dining experiences. Pros: Vitaly Paley and Kimberly Paley Cons: Nearly every place after your visit will be a let down more

Terrible service. 2/13/2009

For the hype and the prices, this place disappointed. The waitress was so unbelievably rude and snobby. Our food was tasty, but nothing outstanding and my fish was oversalted. Pros: cute place. Cons: AWFUL waitstaff. more

Unfriendly, Unprofessional and Arrogant 2/12/2009

My first visit to Paley's was nothing special. The food was good, although very small portions and our server was pretty unfriendly. The menu also states ""all substitutions will be kindly denied"". Pretty arrogant and unaccommodating. Pros: Creative Menu Cons: Unfriendly, Unprofessional and Arrogant more

Terrible service - So many wonderful restaurants in Portland - you can do better than Paley's Place 1/20/2009

I went there last night with a group of 9 people. Our server was curt and unfriendly. Portions were small and I didn't care for the fact that I had to shell my own prawns. They just don't look that great heads and all on a plate not to mention there were THREE of them. Once shelled there was barely a bite. I won't be back. Pros: Nice hostess Cons: Poor service/bad presentation more
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Menu for Paley's Place

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  • From its front porch seating to its intimate dining room and a tiny bar with deep red banquettes and soft-toned walls, this veteran restaurant is at once casual and elegant. Northwest neighbors...

  • 8/13/2009 Provided by Citysearch

Additional information

  • Hours:

    Mon-Thu 5:30pm-10pm; Fri-Sat 5:30pm-11pm, Sun 5pm-10pm
  • Payments:

    American Express, Master Card, Visa
  • Neighborhoods:

    Northwest District, Neighbors West - Northwest