Mini Guide to North Mississippi Avenue
I spent last weekend aimlessly wandering the streets of Mississippi Ave in North Portland. I enjoy exploring Mississippi Avenue because the colorful streets pay tribute to a rather turbulent past and it feels like walking in Portland’s history.
History of Mississippi Avenue
Mississippi Avenue is the epitome of gentrification in Portland and the sting is still palpable. This used to be the affordable part of the city and now you’ll hear local’s regale personal stories of families getting priced out. But the vibrancy of the long-established community remains, and the murals and splashes of colors prove it indeed.
If you find yourself wandering down Mississippi Avenue, make sure to check out the following places.
Food, Food, Food!
Porque No ($$): My favorite tacos and guacamole in Portland! Their margaritas are also very good. Lines start to form quickly during the lunch hour and dinner hours. If you can, swing by during happy hour – runs daily from 3-6pm or Taco Tuesday, when tacos are 50 cents off.
Lovely’s Fifty-fifty ($): Undeniably delicious wood-fired pizza served alongside homemade ice cream. This well reviewed spot came in with a bang and it’s hard to image Mississippi without it. The secret to their award-winning taste? A sourdough starter.
Little Big Burger ($): Great smaller burgers with truffle fries to boot. The catsup here is really good (but some consider it spicy). I normally stop it for a quick bite if I need a boost of energy. However, if you plan to only have one meal while exploring Mississippi Ave, make it Porque No or Lovely’s Fifty-fifty.
Ruby Jewel Scoops ($): Delicious ice cream sandwiched between cookies of your choice. My personal favorite combo is lavender ice cream between two chocolate chip cookies – but go crazy and come up with a combo of your own!
Blue Star Donuts ($$): If you have followed this blog for a while you might be suspicious of how often I mention Blue Start Donuts. I assure you I am not employed by them (but I am here if they
need want me). My admiration of their tasty donuts is no secret, try a seasonal flavor or order the tried and true bergamot.
Drink & Be Merry
Prost! Marketplace ($): A food cart pod serving creative cuisine on Mississippi Ave. Regardless of what you choose to eat (Matt’s BBQ is my personal favorite), make sure to grab brews from Prost! The German brewery adjacent to the cart pod. This food pod has picnic tables, lighting and a tent to keep diners dry – so come rain or shine!
Stormbreaker Brewing ($$): A local’s favorite for good reason! My co-worker goes once a week, especially during the warm summer months when the outdoor patio could not be more inviting. Their brews are top notch and you can expect nothing less from the service.
Shops to Visit
Pistils Nursery ($ – $$): One of my favorite plant stores in Portland! Some of the bigger plants are not normal people priced, but smaller 4-inch potted plants go for $8, not too bad in the plant world.
Meadow: Salt, Chocolate and Bitters ($$). A cute shop worth a visit even if you don’t plan to purchase anything. They have finely selected chocolates from all over the world in addition to massive salt blocks and unique wine.
ReBuilding Center ($$): I actually just discovered the ReBuilding Center and I’m surprised I didn’t know about it earlier! It’s a massive 40,000 square foot building full of recycled home materials for shoppers to pursue. It’s great for updating your home and simply getting inspired.
Things to do on Mississippi Avenue
Catch a show at Mississippi Studios. I once saw Marty O’Reilly & the Old Soul Orchestra and the memories still give me goosebumps. The venue is so cozy and intimate.
Well, there you have it, folks! I hope you found this mini guide to North Mississippi Ave. helpful! If you have any questions let me know in the comments below.
Until next time,
P.S. Here’s some more photos from Pistils Nursery because I can’t help myself.