832 SE Grand Ave, Portland, OR | Directions 9721445.516619 -122.660612
Grand Cafe Birthday - Mixed Review – I organized a birthday party here and left feeling pretty mixed about the whole experience...
Pros: When organizing the birthday, the woman I talked to was really sweet and helpful. I had to call her up several times before the party date to ask questions & make requests, and she was very eager and patient each time! She reserved a table for us, with our names on it, so there were no worries about whether there would be enough room for our large group. The place charges a cover, but not if you're having a party, so all our guests got in for free with no issues whatsoever. You also get drink coupons ($1 off) when you first come in -- nice! They even provided the birthday boy with a free drink and a free birthday cake, which was absolutely delicious -- not at all what you'd expect from a free cake!
Cons: I was extremely frustrated with the bar staff. First, there were only 2 people manning the bar, but a huge line. They both looked flustered, and when I finally got to the front of the line, they had to make my drink - a simple cosmo -- 4 times before they got it right! As I waited for my drink, I looked up at the glasses hanging from the rack and noticed they were all dirty; a smudgy layer of film covered each one. Yech! I also decided to order some fries from the waitress, and she told me they were "out of food" (it was only 9PM when I asked for this; they'd been open for an hour.) Also, we were there for 3 hours wondering why the birthday boy hadn't been called up for karaoke yet. People who had put their name in before he did were being called up to go first. The last disappointment was the cake. Our party began at 8:30, and by 12 midnight, we still hadn't seen the cake! I kept asking for it, but kept having to wait. Finally, it was brought out to us shortly after midnight, but at that point, most of our party had left. Overall, I was also put off by the general vibe of the place. I don't expect a karaoke bar to be classyclassyclassy, but this place definitely wasn't "grand." Check out the general atmosphere & crowd before you arrange your party here.
Incredible escape – Andrea is a great host and her staff makes this place what it is! Alicia teaches dance almost every night I think at 8 pm she makes the experience fun and is incredibly fun and able to get a bachorlette party on the right foot!! we had sooooo much fun!!! she made my night and all my friends have so much fun with salsa!!! this is a great place for a private party !!!!!!!!!!!
If You ain't latin – I have to admit. Once you find your way into this place there is no turning around from the fact that it's completely unlike any other place you have been to before. (That is unless you often find yourself being underground) The speakeasy atmosphere quickly will repulse or attract you within seconds. Many people in Portland have some memory of being at Andrea's. Sometimes it's from a Birthday party that found the door downstairs, or some friend that told you about some live music that was going on it's still a memory (maybe hazy but its there.) I think every one should be able to experience the rhythm infection that is spread around every Thursday night Friday morning. To actually be a part of Cuban music is something most people only think can be done with a couple of drinks and a lot of people. If thats you this is the place to experiment. cubaneoson. c o m The drinks are strong the music is loud and the people are friendly. If your a guy don't dare step foot within the walkway without the understanding that you are expected to ask the women to dance. Can't dance, don't care still ask. Trust me. I can't dance but I have a ton of fun moving.
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