written by Julie Lee
Cabin fever getting the best of your family? Here are some of our top recommendations for a family night out.
The Old Spaghetti Factory
We’d be remiss to not mention the staple of family fun in Portland since 1969. The Old Spaghetti Factory started as one restaurant in Old Town and now has more than 45 locations throughout the country, as well as in Canada and Japan. This is the grandfather of loud, boisterous fun where kids feel welcome and parents and grandparents can indulge in a much needed glass of vino (or two) with a plate of spaghetti and meatballs. Bonus; you can get an entire meal for around $10, including a loaf of piping hot bread, soup or salad, and spumoni ice cream, so bring the Hamiltons, not the Benjis.
Portland metro locations:
0715 SW Bancroft St.
18925 NW Tanasbourne Dr.
12725 SE 93rd Ave.
Grassa, Lardo’s sister in the heart of downtown Portland, is a hidden gem to take a young family out when a heaping plate of pasta calls. This is the artistic cousin of Spaghetti Factory, with house-made everything and thoughtful presentation, yet festive and welcoming for kids of any age.
1205 SW Washington St.| grassapdx.com
Cha Cha Cha Taqueria
If well-prepared Mexican food is the family’s crave, then Cha Cha Cha Taqueria is the answer; large and loud, with TVs and an outdoor patio. Cha Cha Cha is the perfect crossroad between conventional Mexican fare and the farm-to-fork movement. Owner Javier Hurtado locally sources meats and will soon farm restaurant-owned land in Estacada for kale, corn, cucumbers and other organic yummies to pile high on vegetarian dishes and tuck into ceviche.
1208 NW Glisan St. | chachachapdx.com
Taverns are ironically great hangs for a long afternoon of family fun, offering a less refined and clamourous atmosphere. Sunshine Tavern, owned by local culinary celebrity Jenn Louis, is a favorite for adults and kids alike, offering colossal burgers, gravy cheese fries and a soft serve ice cream machine with sprinkles. Table shuffleboard is available for a little family friendly grudge-match while adults sip on a slushy margarita.
3111 SE Division St. | sunshinepdx.com
Laurelwood Public House & Brewery
Laurelwood breweries cater to whole families, with play areas for knee-high tots, hand-tossed pizzas for all and craft beer brewed on site for those born after 1994. Several locations exist throughout Portland, including at PDX and the Moda Center,
6716 SE Milwaukie Ave.
5115 NE Sandy Blvd.
7000 Airport Way
1 North Center Court St.