Downtown in walking/bus/streetcar/short cab ride vicinity of the hotel. Check for exact distances, as some are closer than others:
Luc Lac. http://luclackitchen.com/
Vietnamese. Lively. Bar/Restaurant. Pink Parasols hang from the ceiling. Vegan, gluten free options. Great happy hour.
Veritable Quandary. http://www.veritablequandary.com/
Intimate restaurant with Pacific NW cuisine. Flower lined patio. Old style bar.
Bar/Restaurant atop The Nines Hotel. Blue faux Miami-esque interior. Rooftop balcony that overlooks the city with views of Mount Hood and Forest Park. Separate gluten-free and vegan menus. East Asian-inspired food. Strong cocktails.
Clyde Common. www.clydecommon.com/
Large open Euro-style dining area with killer cocktails and good food. Adjacent to the Ace Hotel and Stumptown Coffee. Great location right downtown by Powell’s.
Before it was in Brooklyn, it was in Portland. PDX’s original coffee.
Laughing Planet. http://laughingplanetcafe.com/
All over Portland. One is a seven-minute walk from the conference hotel. Great for a quick lunch. A local casual place with bowls, burritos, and quesadillas. Tons of gluten-free and vegan options. You can order online (especially good for groups) ahead of time.
Peruvian. Downtown. Very lively. Good for groups. Separate vegan and gluten-free menus. Located in the Pearl district.
Whole Foods. http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/stores/pearl
Want granola bars and oatmeal packets for your hotel room? Go here.
Little Bird. http://www.littlebirdbistro.com/
French upscale bistro.
Super casual, located in a yoga studio. Fresh juices, bowls, all gluten-free and almost entirely vegan.
Dar Salam. http://downtown.darsalamportland.com/
Absolutely excellent Iraqi food. Lunch buffet. Dinner menu. Casual. Fantastic vegan and gluten-free options.
Voodoo Donut. http://voodoodoughnut.com/
Cash only. Vegan and non-vegan donuts of all kinds (from chick-o-stick topped donuts to large donuts shaped like anatomical parts....) Open 24/7. Long lines. You can get married here, too. The Portland Creme donuts are a particular favorite, and the Voodoo Doll donut is legendary.
Fab, Gatsby-esque bar downtown not too far from the conference hotel. The cocktails are the point here.
Whiskey Library. http://www.multnomahwhiskeylibrary.com/whiskey/
A gorgeous whiskey library. At peak hours the lines are awful, and people with memberships get in first. But during off-peak hours it’s worth the gamble to try to get in. The whiskey selection is astonishing.
Pepe le Moko. http://pepelemokopdx.com/
Tiny adorable underground French speakeasy-style bar with dreamy cocktails. Adore. Reservations accepted and recommended.
All vegan, all gluten-free. A sweet little bakery. With ice cream, all manner of towering cakes, weekend donuts, and savory dishes from mac n’ cheese to pizza. Get the apple cider donut.
Alder Street Food Cart Pod.
At Southwest 10th and Alder Street. The city’s largest pod of food carts. Perfect for lunch. Everything from Thai to Ethiopian to Mac and Cheese to Polish.
Los Gorditos. http://www.losgorditospdx.com/
Taquería with cult following. Amazing vegan options (entire separate vegan menu). Terrific rice and beans.
Vtopia Vegan Cheese Deli. http://vtopiancheeses.com/
Off the charts vegan cheese. At a vegan cheese deli!
Tasty N Alder. http://www.tastynalder.com/
John Gorham is a Portland institution, and this is his downtown restaurant, a modern steakhouse with legendary family style meals. The brunches are especially popular.
Blue Star Donuts. http://www.bluestardonuts.com/
Portlanders are freaking out for these brioche-style donuts. Vegan options.
Farm-to-table restaurant. Very Portland. PNW cuisine.
St. Jack. http://stjackpdx.com/
Lyonnais-style bistro. Très French.
Mother’s Bistro. http://www.mothersbistro.com/
American cuisine. Upscale comfort food. Big brunch.
Virginia Café. http://virginiacafepdx.com/
Historic downtown dive bar.
Salt and Straw. http://saltandstraw.com/
Multiple locations around PDX. Ice cream. Unusual flavor combos like Garam Masala and Cinnamon Cauliflower, Chocolate Caramel Potato Chip Cupcake, Balsamic with Black Pepper, and Pear and Blue Cheese. Great vegan Petunia’s option.
Further afield (will need to cab/bus/drive to get there, but Portland is small so nothing is too far):
Tasty and Sons. http://www.tastynsons.com/
Another John Gorham restaurant with famous brunches and epic family style meals. Located on a sweet stretch of shops and cafés on N. Williams Street, and a short walk from N. Mississippi.
Naomi Pommeroy’s award-winning intimate restaurant tucked away in NE Portland. Set menu. Six courses with pairings. Not for vegans.
Ned Ludd. http://www.nedluddpdx.com/
Very Portland-style American Craft Kitchen where some of the food comes on planks of wood. Super local.
Bye and Bye. http://www.thebyeandbye.com/
All vegan bar. Drinks in Mason Jars. Vegan versions of favorite bar snacks.
Screen Door. http://screendoorrestaurant.com/
Local, organic Southern cuisine. Hushpuppies, breakfast corndogs, chicken and waffles, shrimp and grits, poboys, pulled pork. Popular for brunch.
The Grilled Cheese Grill. http://grilledcheesegrill.com/
Eat 20+ kinds of grilled cheese (served with a pickle spear and potato chips) inside an old school bus. Vegan and gluten-free options. There is a bus-less outpost at the Alder food carts downtown.
The Secret Society. http://www.secretsociety.net/
Certainly one of Portland’s best bars. Thursday-night swing dancing, incandescent libations in the cocktail bar.
Blossoming Lotus. http://blpdx.com/
All vegan. Many gluten-free options. One of the best weekend brunches for vegans or non-vegans in town. Happy hour M-F from 3 to 6p.m.
The Sudra. http://www.thesudra.com/
Casual vegan and gluten-free Indian-inspired restaurant with famed happy hour.
Hanoi Kitchen. http://www.hanoikitchen.com/
Stunning, authentic Vietnamese food. Ample vegan options.
Hopworks Urban Brewery. http://hopworksbeer.com/eat/bikebar/
A bicycle bar. Even the furniture is in part made from bikes. Local beer. Good pizza. Help power the pub by pedaling one of the on-site bikes that generate energy.
Pok Pok Noi. http://www.pokpoknoi.com/index.php?id=94
Northeast smaller branch of Andy Ricker’s famous SE PDX Pok Pok restaurant. Thai street food. A few very good vegan options. Notable cocktails.
Toro Bravo. http://www.torobravopdx.com/
Spanish tapas. Good for groups. Part of John Gorham’s empire. Next to The Secret Society.
The Farm Café. http://www.thefarmcafe.com/
Farm to Table. Great food. Very Portland. In a cute converted house. Always one reliable good vegan option. Reservations recommended.
Akkapong Earl Ninsom’s secret Thai speakeasy in SE PDX. Reservations required. Prix fixe. Not for anyone with dietary restrictions. 8 weekly seatings.
Portobello Trattoria. http://portobellopdx.com/
All vegan Italian. Consistently voted one of the best restaurants (vegan or non-vegan) in Portland. The gnocchi amazes. Kombucha on tap. Fresh, beautiful food. Reservations recommended. Gluten-free options.
Ava Gene’s. http://www.avagenes.com/
Roman-inspired rustic Italian. Family style. Highly rated.
Russian. Lots of vodka. Meat-heavy menu.
Over a dozen Latino/a businesses: chorizo, tortas, pupusas, candy, fruit and veggies, tamales, burritos, and more. Culinary approaches from Argentina, Cuba, Mexico, El Salvador, and Colombia, among others.
Bete Lukas. http://bete-lukas.com/
Smashing Ethiopian food. Make a reservation.
Lauretta Jean’s. http://www.laurettajeans.com/
All pie bakery.
Woodsman Tavern. http://woodsmantavern.com/
5-7p.m. M-F oyster hour. American ham, deviled eggs, gourmet corn dogs, fried chicken, seafood hot pot.
Sapphire Hotel. http://thesapphirehotel.com/
Sexy cocktail bar at the base of Mount Tabor. Order the Room Service.
Sweet Hereafter. http://hereafterpdx.com/
Portland’s second vegan bar. Great drinks, rice/veggie bowls, wraps, appetizers.
Ken’s Artisan Pizza. http://kensartisan.com/
Famed thin crust pizza.
Run by Ken from Ken’s Pizza. Close to Milagro Theatre. Great bar. Tavern food.
Apizza Scholls. http://apizzascholls.com/
Handcrafted thin-crust pizza. The people making the pizzas will yell at you.
Bamboo Sushi. http://bamboosushi.com/
The first certified sustainable sushi restaurant in the world. Good vegan options, too.
Jade Bistro and Patisserie. http://www.jadeportland.com/
Super casual walk up counter with some of the best food in Portland. French inspired Vietnamese. Vegan and gluten free options. In the Sellwood neighborhood.
Pok Pok. http://www.pokpokpdx.com/index.php?id=home
Andy Ricker’s insanely popular Thai street food emporium. Go with a group of six or more and make a reservation otherwise you’ll wait in line for upwards of three hours. Order the Khao Soi. Limited, but good, vegan options.
Food Fight/Sweetpea/Herbivore: http://www.foodfightgrocery.com/
The world’s only vegan mini mall. Four shops (bakery/café, clothing/goods store, grocery shop, tattoo parlor) all in a row.
All gluten free. Mostly vegan. All vegetarian. Juices, smoothies, bowls, salads on Hawthorne Blvd in the middle of a great row of vintage shops, cafés, and record stores.
Bar Avignon. http://www.baravignon.com/
Simple fresh French food, good bread, and good wine.
Flagship Portland coffee roaster and café.
Aalto Lounge. http://www.aaltolounge.com/
Great midcentury bar. Good things happen here. Outdoor patio. Strong drinks.