Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Screen Door

This was our second attempt to eat at the Screen Door. A couple of weeks ago we came by for the Sunday brunch. However, the line of customers came out the door and around the corner and it was raining that day. That is a good sign in my book but not that day. We just rolled on by. Tonight we were looking for some of the best southern fried chicken in town.

The restaurant featured a nice area for outside seating.

We chose to dine inside. It is fun to watch the employees practising their craft.

We arrived just before the restaurant opened for the evening and were in the dining room early. Around an hour later the place had only a couple of open tables.

Ok. I know this is the part for which you're waiting. The special on the chalk board sounded good but we'd come in for chicken. Debbie and I each ordered the fried chicken plate. It came with a nice glop of mashed potatoes and some ham gravy and a bit of cooked greens. I have to tell you that I'm a dark meat guy and usually only eat drumsticks and thighs and I was a little disappointed when I saw that my plate had a piece of breast on it. Don't stop reading yet! Oh my goodness! How did this magic happen? I have never had a better piece of chicken breast. The crust was delicious and the chicken interior was sooo juicy. I still don't know if this is the best fried chicken in Portland but there is something that I do know. This is the best chicken breast I ever ate. Hands down. I'd swear it in court. I suppose that means that almost no body knows how to properly cook a chicken breast. Well the folks down at the Screen Door know how and my suggestion to you is to try it yourself.

Friday, October 8, 2010


Earlier today we decided that once again we should venture out beyond our "safe zone". I suggested a destination to Debbie in an email but when I arrived at home she was busy on the net frantically searching for something, anything else. I told her that they appeared to have a couple of nice shrimp selections so she relented and off we headed to Eleni's.

This establishment features Greek or more specifically Cretian cuisine. The dining area was attractively decorated and the tables were adorned with white napkins but the expected attire appeared to be casual although we could have dressed up and been comfortable as well. We were a little early, perhaps 5:00 pm and the place was nearly empty. I get concerned when I arrive at a restaurant and no one else is there. However, as the evening grew later, more patrons began to arrive. The waiter was pleasant as he seated us. He quoted from memory about five specials that were being featured this evening. The menu was ala carte which always tends to give me pause. I prefer to just have to read the entree selection and what comes with it. Anyway, we each chose a salad and an entree. At first I thought it curious that the waiter then asked if I'd like some kind of rice and spinach dish. I thought that was weird but wisely received his council. Debbie also ordered a salad and an entree and he then suggested an addition. She took him up on it and I'd have to say that it was a good thing.

The first thing to arrive after our beverages of choice was a lovely plate of bread with an olive oil and kalamata olive dip. Kalamata olives are not Debbie's favorite but I loved it.

This was Debbie's salad selection.
Roma tomatoes, cucumber, green onion, peppers, olives and feta dressed in white balsamic and olive oil
I ate the last third of it. It was lovely!

My salad was the KRITIKIA SALATA $11
Tender mixed greens with tomatoes, English cucumber, peppers, mushrooms, avocado, onions and currants; dressed with a honey balsamic vinaigrette
It was absolutely delicious. Perhaps a bit sweet but it was a honey vinagrette after all.

This was Debbie's entree. Here is where the description gets a little dicey. I suspect that the pilaf bed that her shrimp arrived on was the suggestion made by the waiter. I can't determine by the menu what it was. It was good as I had a chance to finish off what she was unable to accomplish.

This blurred image (apologies offered)is the suggestion made by the waiter. Essentially, it was a rice and spinach dish. It was good. There was a lemony flavor complementing this dish.

This was my shrimp entree. It was wonderful but without the addition of the rice and spinach, would have left me hungry and probably a bit cranky.

Obviously the chef at Eleni's is a master and an artist. Art is not enough for me as I require a certain quantity as well. You know, we spent nearly $60.00. Without the opportunity to finish off Debbie's salad and entree, I would have left hungry and would have been completely bummed out. I noticed as I looked around the restaurant that there were about seven men and perhaps twenty or twenty-one women. I wonder if Eleni's is perhaps a bit heavy on the ambiance side and a bit weak on the quantity side. Look, the experience was a delight. The food looked and tasted outstanding but I hate it when I need to eat everybody elses food to feel satisfied. Just sayin'.