Portland >Food & Dining > Besaw's
2301 NW Savier St, Portland, OR | Directions 9721045.534856 -122.698955
Neighborhoods: Neighbors West - Northwest, Northwest District
Old school NW Portland brunch spot with plenty of history and a charming bar. Try the mighty breakfast burger or huevos rancheros. GF pancakes and French toast! Lines can be long on weekends, so go early.
A Northwest 23rd brunch institution, this cozy eatery dials up the romance when the sun goes down. Dinner service features candle-lit cafe tables perfect for quiet conversation (a far cry from the hustle-and-bustle of the morning rush) and a full menu of Northwest ingredient-driven dishes.
Rotten experience--I won't go back or recommend it – The only reason that I tasted any of what I ordered was that I had not eaten anything prior to it arrival at the table. But, the whole thing started when a couple who came up after us went in and got seated, I asked what's going on. She said we weren't on the list. She nicely assured me that we would go next, no matter what. I will always wonder if our name had been ignored, crossed off in error or pronounced incorrectly and/or so softly that we didn't hear it as we patiently waited on the sidewalk for 15-20 minutes.
We followed the blonde-haired guy with the soft-shaped handlebar mustache inside and out onto the sort of enclosed patio. He walked so quickly that we didn't get even a wisp of any ambience the regular room might have. I immediately noticed that a group of eight who had gone inside way before still had not ordered, and then that a group of four came in to be seated after us. I also noticed that the couple who had been seated right ahead of us (who had walked up to the door after us) had not ordered. So I decided if either of those two large groups had their orders taken before us, we'd excuse ourselves and leave.
That didn't happen, thank goodness, so we ordered. I got the two-egg breakfast with bacon and substituted a pancake for the toast--it comes with rosemary-garlic roasted potatoes and honey-cured bacon. He got a hamburger and substituted the potatoes for potato chips. A $10 burger with potato chips! He also ordered a Coke which took forever to arrive and then was taken by the guy who seated us to the table with the eight people. He blamed his mistake on the fact that he was still sort of new.
Good grief. New folks ought to try even harder. He certainly had a bias at the front door, walking out and looking and making eye contact only to his right or straight south on NW 23rd, as he announced names. With city traffic sounds all around on a typically busy Saturday, he should have been louder and looked all directions.
The food came quicker than I thought it would. I knew I was in trouble when I cut into the pancake. I've never felt that texture in a pancake. He knew he was in trouble when he saw the grease on the plate beneath the burger and the grease-soaked brioche bun. Both of us ate because we were very hungry, but neither one of us enjoyed it very much. The honey-cured bacon can only be described as fried to a practically-burned-crisp. The potatoes were tasteless--no rosemary, no garlic flavors anywhere.
I'm the reason we stopped there--I'd walked by before and seen the crowds, so I figured it must be good. Why else would so many people be going there? Well, I'm here to tell you, I will never again be lured into a place by a crowd of strangers. I'll rely on actual people that I know who eat at establishments before I decide to give them a try.
Finally, I didn't think it was possible to find such bad food in Portland at a local establishment. I've been proven wrong, woefully wrong.
Quick service + delicious food – My husband and I wanted breakfast food on a Saturday at 1pm. There was still a lingering brunch crowd but we were still seated and attended to by the waiter very promptly. I ordered the Salmon scramble and my husband ordered the avocado omellete. Both dishes were quite delicious and we were both stuffed at the end. I wish I had room for dessert but was much too full to eat another bite. I was also able to drink 4 cups of coffee which were yummy to the tummy. We'll definitely be stopping by again especially to try the waffles & the forest mushroom omelette.
Affordable deliciousness – A few girlfriends and I went here to catch up on gossip etc. We came at the end of the brunch crowd and was seated within 10 minutes of arriving (Monday, Federal Holiday, around 1 pm). I ordered the curry potato soup and whole wheat toast. The curry soup was thick and hearty and had enough heat to warm my chilly body and the thick soft toast added a much needed crunch to the meal. For $4.75 (plus tip), the friendly service and tight knit table setting was an affordable way to hear gossip and catch up with girlfriends. Highly recommended. Next time, I'm getting the Belgium waffle!
Incredible food and service!Up to par with any big city standard! – Overall had a great experience from start to finish! Very affordable and reliable!
Thank you! I will be back!
bad chicken and waffles – I think that the atmosphere was very nice, wait staff friendly. I went there specifically to try their "chicken and waffles", which were highly recommended by a friend. I couldn't even eat it. The chicken was too crispy and greasy and the waffles had no flavor. Maybe it's just that I don't like the combo, but I really couldn't even eat the two things separately. I would go back, but this time for breakfast.
Not what it used to be – We went there for dinner last night. I used to love this restaurant but I will never go back. The beet salad was hot and a syrupy mess. The wine wasn't brought to the table until after the salad was served. My salmon (which I ordered rare) was completely overcooked and the olive/tomato/asparagus accompanying it seemed totally random and salty. My husband's pork tenderloin was overcooked to the point of being extremely difficult to chew. Topping it off, the bread was stale!
Never again will I go to Besaw's, which is sad because it is a neighborhood institution.
terrible service, terrible tea – i got seriously the worst tea of my life there. how does one mess up tea? it took forever to get it because it was "brewing" and all I got was light yellow water that tasted like astringent. and we couldn't find the waitress to complain and ask for new tea at ALL. not going back.
while my boyfriend went to find our waitress to fix the tea i watched the women next to me wait and wait for their check before finally giving up and going to the front to try and pay. so it wasn't just a fluke that i had less than stellar service.
Where did you come from? – With a dear friend in town and an unusually late Tuesday night, we were in the market for a very late recovery breakfast. While I generally stay on the eastside, I was prompted by a coworker to check out Besaw's as they serve breakfast everyday until 3:00pm. Sweet Jesus. I had such an absoutely fantastic experience, my girl friend is laughing as I write this now... It was fairly busy for a weekday, but none the less, the hostess was all over it, my server Eleanor was hilarious and on point, even the busser was a dream. KInd, efficient and smiling??? Now let me talk about the food... I barely know where to start. Bloody Mary. Delicious. Best damn Huevos ever. We shared banana-pecan pancakes and pork apple sausage. So fricking good. So adieu, thank you Besaw's for making my day when it was least expected. Remarkably unbelievable. I'll be back with more friends in tow.
Really kind staff! Great food, too! – I called them about 30 mintues before I showed up and they had a cute little table all set up for me and my 8 friends! Its a tiny restaurant so I thought I would have to wait. We chatted with the hostess for a minute and she was great with my friend's baby. Our server (Richard?) was professional and fast. Food was awesome! (I really liked my salmon scramble)
Can't understand what these negative reviews are all about--we had a fantastic time and will tell all of our friends!
Great Bar! – My wife and I visit Portland from Seattle often. Last week we were in town and decided to eat at Besaw?s for dinner. This was our first time and it was pretty good.
The server was great, very funny, and full of energy.
The drinks were the best cocktails we have ever had!!! They were perfect.
The food was good, it didn?t meet up to the service and drinks, but was good.
We stayed for a bit, and just hung out. Had some cake and coffee and enjoyed our time with each other.
All and all, very nice. We think we have found our new drinking spot in Portland.
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