On a recent business trip to Portland, Oregon we had the opportunity to stay at the Westin in downtown Portland. Shortly after our morning flight arrival and check-in, we chose to dine at the first floor restaurant Daily Grill for lunch (located on the corner of Park and Alder at 750 SW Alder).
We expected from the name for the establishment for it to be more like a sports bar or pub than it actually was. We were pleasantly surprised by the upscale decor with dark burled woods and deeply colored walls contrasting with the white table linens. Giant empty wine and champagne bottles sat in arrangements on the dividers between booths and tables. Natural sunlight streamed in the windows that looked out onto a busy downtown Portland street. Even for the lunch service, the service staff was dressed formally in white shirts with black bow ties). Don't let the name of the establishment mislead you.
The menu had many enticing options all with a classic American flare. We chose to order the charbroiled skirt steak (a house specialty marinated in citrus juices, soy sauce and special seasonings) served with shoestring potatoes and steamed vegetables (broccoli was the vegetable in season). Freshly baked sourdough bread and butter was the only appetizer we needed for this succulent meal. Both of us agreed that it was the best skirt steak we have ever tasted (we would be hard-pressed to find a cut of meat of that caliber for a homecooked meal without quite a bit of hunting). Instead of overpowering the steak with a "Here I Am!" taste, the marinade perfectly complemented the savory red meat. The steak was so juicy there was no steak sauce required.
Despite the somewhat formal decor and dress of the servers, the atmosphere proved to be relaxed and not intimidating in the least. It was easy to sit and have a quiet private conversation and not feel rushed. This was exactly what we needed after having spent the morning traveling through airports.
The steak was definitely one of the pricier items on the menu at $17.95 a plate. Many other options would have brought the total tab of our lunch down considerably. But the skirt steak was wonderful (well worth the price), and the service was top-notch just as one would expect from a Westin restaurant.