Portland >Food & Dining > Sanborn's
3200 SE Milwaukie Ave, Portland, OR | Directions 9720245.500249 -122.654117
Neighborhoods: Brooklyn Action Corps, Southeast Uplift Neighborhood Program
DON'T WASTE YOUR TIME! After a long trip to the doctor's office this morning, I wanted to take my mother and children to Sanborn's for some of their renowned German pancakes. So, we walk in with one guy waiting in the corner, and a couple of guys standing. Lots of tables open, though no one has come around to clear them. The couple of gents waiting ask the frantic waiter how long it will be to be seated, and he whisks by with 'just give me a couple of minutes.' They leave. I think: 'poor waiter; must be alone; those guys must have had a time crunch; now we're next in line.' No problem. Yet.
Another group comes in. Waiting, waiting. Chef comes to clear tables. Waiting, waiting. Another group tries to come in, but can't because it's too crowded (because the waiter still has not seated any of us). A woman from the group just after us goes to ask the waiter (who is hiding at the drink station) if we could sit down at some of the now cleared but still dirty and unset tables, just to clear the entry. He rudely tells her: 'I just need you to be patient. I need to seat everyone in order.' He wipes down the tables. Waiting, waiting.
Then she goes back to him again while he is fetching tableware and napkins to set the empty tables. But it is obvious to all that if we could sit down, we'd all be more comfortable, and it would perhaps remove the pressure he obviously was feeling from having a mob of unhappy customers waiting for attention. He sets down tableware at a booth next to where we're standing, and I tell him that none of us requires that the tables be set before we sit down. He turns to me, visibly shaking, and says: 'I really need you to be patient. I am a little overwhelmed right now. No one is sitting down until I get the tables set. And I'm seating everyone in order of when they came in.' So I respond: 'Don't you understand that we're just trying to help you?' And, besides, we're the next group to be seated at a full table,' glancing down at the booth behind him. Then he says something like, 'no, that man is first to be seated,' as if it would be impossible, in that little dining room with all those empty tables, for all the groups simply to grab their seats and sit down simultaneously.
That's when I said, in a fairly loud voice, 'Forget it! We don't need to eat here! You don't want us to eat here! Fine! There's plenty of food over at the Hotcake House across the street!' And we left. And maybe another group left behind us (at least, according to my child, they left).
If this man wants to be so rigid and controlling about how people are seated, to detriment of servicing his clients, he can do so without our business. If he is waitstaff, he should be reprimanded, placed on probation, and fired if he doesn't improve. If he's the owner, he needs to stop biting the hands that feed him if he wants to stay in business for the long run. I will be reposting this review elsewhere, because I want people to know what they can expect when they come here. The service is non-existent. I would have loved to offset this negative review with a glowing food review, but I didn't get to eat here, so I can't.
Sorry, it wasn't that good for me – I went there with a friend for the first time, the service was good but the fare was just ordinary. The corned beef hash was as dry as ashes and the eggs benedict way too lemony as others have noted. The biscuit was very good, maybe if I'd had biscuits and gravy or the pancakes it might have turned out differently.
A huge thank you to the staff at Sanborns!!! – I had a huge family get together and for the life of me could not find a local restraunt that could serve a party of 13 for breakfast on a Saturday!
Well i was pretty discouraged but left a voice message on the service at Sanborns and was thrilled when I got a call back saying they would love to book the reservation for our group. Well it was everyones first time there and we all loved it the place was so cute the staff was friendly, it was spottless and the breakfast was amazing!!! We will definately be back!!!
Best Breakfast in Portland – We had breakfast at Sanborn's 5/22 and loved it. I had the eggs benedict, my wife had an egg white omelete with sun dried tomatoes, artichokes and feta. We split a fruit plate and biscuts with homemade fruit preserves. Absolutely delicious!
The eggs benedict had perfectly poached eggs, nice thick slices of ham and an excellent hollandaise that is made to order. Not too lemony at all as some other reviers have indicated. I didn't try my wife's omelete but she said it was awesome. The biscuits were your basic buttermilk recipe but when paired with whipped butter and the house made fruit preserves they were transported to another level.
The fruit plate was generous and far better than the 75% melon plates you get at other restaurants. All in all, it was the best breakfast we've had in Portland. Everything I saw coming out of the kitchen looked delicious. These folks know what they're doing.
Delicious Breakfast! – My sister has always raved about this place and I finally got to try it today. She got her usual mango German pancake while I opted for the special fig and chevre German pancake. I rarely eat anything sweet for breakfast but could not resist this interesting option. It was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!! Would definitely go back just for that. Our other dining companion ordered eggs, potatoes and bacon. This didn't quite live up to the German Pancakes but was still pretty good. The menu is quite extensive and I can't wait to go back to build my own omelet!
why the hype?? – I recently tried this place and and thought it was less than ok. I'm diabetic and I will tell you they have got some really tempting dishes. Fearing being put into a coma, I opted for the spinach,eggs,and steak (kelly street special).Not all that good. The spinach was way over cooked, almost to the point of turning to green liquid. The meat tasted like the only seasoning used was worscestershire sauce, and had the texture of being cooked the day before, refrigerated, then left on the grill in a pile for far to long. As for the potatoes, you might have to trade in some carbon tax credits before you eat them. That was ok for me because potatoes aren't really diabetic friendly. To be honest, I could have done better with the leftovers in my fridge. The place just doesn't do it for this foodie but if it works for the local trendies then maybe they will stay open for awhile
Maybe I got it on a bad day... – I visited Sanborn's with a friend that lives in the area. I ordered the eggs benedict, and she had a fruit plate. The hollandaise was tart to the point of being inedible, like an eggy & buttery lemonade. Of the fruit given, about half was less than ripe. The service was good and all that.
My friend swears that it’s not usually like this, and I’m willing to give them place the benefit of the doubt. Maybe next time it’ll be better.
Breakfast at Sanborn's is Amazing – Sanborn's is just fresh- the ambiance, the service, the food. It accomplishes the comfort level of an old school breakfast place with a twist. The twist is the refinement of cusiine and environs. The omelets are delicate and cooked perfectly. Breakfast does leave you feeling greasy and heavy. Everything tastes like it was cooked from scratch with the freshest ingredients. Unlike an old school breakfast place, Sanborn's is clean, upbeat, and colorful. And the wait staff makes everyone feel like a VIP. My wife and I love going to Sanborn's.
You've tried the rest, now try the best. – My wife and I love Sanborns.
Where to start? I love the menu - there are so many specials - but even the menu stalwarts have a little twist or interpretation. You really can tell that the chef loves his food and likes experimenting. Then there's the food itself - excellent. I think I've tried half a dozen menu items and cleaned my plate every time. They don't do average quality and then make up for it with quantities - you'll get a great quality breakfast and a good portion size too.
Our favorite breakfast in Portland – My boyfriend and I are breakfast snobs (spoiled by San Francisco), and we've had breakfast at a lot of places in Portland. Sanborn's has become our every-weekend, not-to-be-missed tradition, and we seldom go anywhere else. There is usually only a minor wait (if any), the staff is SUPER-friendly, and the food is awesome. They serve some of the only coffee I will drink, and their French-press mochas are to die for. They have an excellent selection of food, and the waiters are always very helpful in suggesting options. Try the biscuits! Some of the best I've had, especially with the home-made jam.
Don't miss this place. Even the staff seems to like it a lot, there--you'll see the same faces month after month!
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