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Old 03-19-2015, 02:17 AM
 
Location: Aloverton
6,564 posts, read 13,065,142 times
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We were moving to Forest Grove, but we got a dishonest seller and home inspection saved us a lot of grief. Now we're almost clear to close on a place that I think is technically outside the Beaverton city limits, and is thus sort of considered in Aloha, but has a Beaverton zip.

Time to get to know as much as we can. What places are great to eat? Great mechanics, and other service providers? I can find lists in every category with a search, but I place more faith in a firsthand local viewpoint here than I do in a Yelpfest. We like most kinds of food and are open to trying new stuff (after sixteen years in Kennewick, even eager to have the opportunity in the first place). We're interested in anything that folks consider to be outstanding in Beaverton/Aloha.
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Old 03-19-2015, 11:52 AM
 
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Variety of Indian, both north and south cuisine. Chennai Masala off Cornell is excellent, but the decor is underwhelming, and it's very different regional cuisine (south I believe) than what you may be used to.

I also recommend checking out Allan's Mexican off West Union/185th - it's kind of in this nice middle place between affordable and upscale - e.g. a salmon taco plate with homemade tortillas will run maybe $12 or so. So not cheap and not budget breaking, but somewhere in between. [edit - as compared to say, Ochoa's, which is good and affordable, but I only recommend if you can actually read spanish or just want to order something common]

I also think the McMenamins Roadhouse, food-wise, is one of the better McMenamins, and it's a great property.

I used to have a great mechanic off Cornelius Pass but pretty sure they closed. After that we started going to the dealer, which aside from being in the congestion of downtown, was fine but not exactly a secret to rave about.

Moving towards downtown Beaverton there's a ton of stuff, but what you like will mostly be a matter of taste. There are some hole in the wall places with great food but lousy decor. A lot of the better vietnamese for example, is in places that you wouldn't have looked at from the outside and expected great things. But a few, like CT Bistro, have really done well and made some investment in their space as well as well as keeping up the quality. Several of the places that look fancier I think are more 'meh' in terms of the food.

Lots of good farmer's market options (Downtown H'boro is decent, Orenco is pretty good and accessible, downtown B'ton bigger but more of a pain to drive in/out of for most). The library at Brookwood is beautiful, and has some nice ponds and short walking trails.

But long/short you'll be doing a lot of driving unless you're a moderately serious biker and are comfortable riding on a pretty busy road network. A lot of the slower, smaller roads don't go through.
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Old 03-19-2015, 01:22 PM
 
Location: Aloverton
6,564 posts, read 13,065,142 times
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Great list, thanks. I read and speak Spanish comfortably, so Ochoa's is simple for me. And that's one thing I must find anywhere I live: that great sit-down Mexican restaurant where I can develop good rapport and know I can take visitors with zero chance of disappointment.

Interesting about decor. The reflex is to say that one doesn't eat the decor, but realistically, restaurants spend money on it for a reason and I'd be blind to think we are immune to ambience. Will take that to heart about not being taken in by a great exterior vs. a humdrum one. It's been my experience that one of the lessons that takes longer to sink into those coming from some Asian cultures is the impact of signage and exterior look in our culture. I have seen a number of immigrant businesses name their places by cheaply adapting the previous sign to save money, and evidently where they came from, that's not a negative, but I think assimilated Americans are more likely to take that as a negative. I remember the EconoLodge in Kennewick that some folks bought, and just removed two letters to make it Eco Lodge. I never saw any cars parked there.

If Chennai Masala might differ from the Indian food (makes sense given the diversity of their country) we're used to, sounds like exactly the kind of thing I'm most looking forward to about the Portland area: lots of chances to try new things.

I've been to a few McMenamins, and have to give the company credit for a creative way to find and fill a niche. I gather they're not as uniform as Denny's, but that the menus are generally similar, so the only variable is facilities and staff (probably more the latter).

Will definitely be seeking out the best pizza, Middle Eastern, Greek, and Thai options. I didn't think it was feasible to offer blah Asian food in Portland until we tried a Thai place in a Hillsboro strip mall. Not bad, just not as good as even the average in Boise. Except in Basque food, I'm not thinking the Portland food standard is used to falling below that of Boise very often.
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Old 03-19-2015, 02:19 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
9,792 posts, read 10,609,240 times
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There is a small strip mall at 25th and Cornell in Hillsboro. There is a nice little underrated Indian restaurant called India Palace in there. Decent decor, excellent service. Further east there is another Indian place: Lentil Garden on the East Side of the Mall that occupies the area around 185th between Evergreen and Cornell. Trader Joe's is on the West Side of 185th and you can find nearly everything in there to make your own Indian Cuisine specialties. For Mexican, don't laugh, but we have been ok with Don Pedros at Cornell and Oak.

I must admit I am not understanding the new location. I mean... I understand the dishonest seller and the bailout out of the first house in FG but.... were there no other viable choices there? Aloha is a world away, literally. I am not sure that a person who could be happy in FG could also be happy in Aloha but thats me. YMMV. We lived in Hillsboro for our first six years here. My job was/is in Forest Grove. My wife was not working. My commute was 8 miles each way, done on a bicycle both ways, rain or shine. Our rent was 800mo for a 2BR house with a HUGE yard. A year ago DW got a job in close in SE Portland and she immediately started pressuring for a move to Portland. We now pay $1300/mo but her commute by bus is 5 minutes! By bicycle it is under 10 minutes. I don't know where your job is but I would advise you not to live too far from it. Over 30 minutes one way is too far. I'm serious. It doesn't seem like it at first but it is. I am in the process of moving my job to Portland so I can have a more reasonable commute myself. It made sense to make DW happy first for obvious reasons .

H

PS. A better choice for Thai in Hillsboro would be Thai House on Main Street (250). Tell Jack that Howard and Julie sent you. Do NOT tell him that a much better Thai place is in Portland at 40th and Hawthorne (Than Thao) we don't eat any other Thai since finding Than Thao.
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Old 03-19-2015, 06:24 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
2,479 posts, read 4,487,861 times
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I'm also in a shared Beaverton/Aloha zipcode. Here are some things off the top of my head:

- our mechanic is Affordable Automotive in Cornelius. Yes, it's a hike from where we live but he's worth it - capable and honest.

- I also endorse Don Pedro in Hillsboro, although I'd describe the location as 10th between Cedar and Walnut.

- Other Mexican options - Tapatio at 185th & Farmington and Guicho's at Murray & Allen - owned by the same family. There's a new place at 176th & Farmington called Mi Jalisco; it looks interesting but I haven't been there yet.

- An intriguingly different but similar cuisine, Salvadoran, can be found at Gloria's Secret on Broadway in Old Town Beaverton and Sabor Salvadoreno on 185th a block or so north of TV Highway. Another Spanish-speaking cuisine, Puerto Rican, is at Boriken on Canyon Rd (TV Highway) near downtown Beaverton.

- for pizza, we're restricted to places with gluten-free crust. The best of those around here are Bellagio's and Garlic Jim's. For those without restrictions, the classic local pizzerias are Giovanni's on Broadway at Hall in Beaverton and Nonna Emilia's on the south side of TV Highway off 170th.

- for Thai food, we like Thai Hi 5 on Broadway in Beaverton and Rama Thai a few blocks west, near Boriken.

- for Indian food we generally go to Abhiruchi in the Kmart shopping center at Murray & TV Highway. Swagat, off Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway near Target, is good too.

- Other random thoughts and recommendations in or near downtown Beaverton:

acupuncturist Edward Ildowe Bae at Acu-Herbs Clinic on Farmington Rd.
Vanek's Shoe Repair on Broadway
coffeehouse Ava Roasteria at 2nd & Hall
Beaverton Bakery across the street from Giovanni's
Broadway Saloon - the grilled prime rib & eggs breakfast is great
Other breakfast/all day options: Tom's Pancake House and Black Bear Diner, a few blocks apart on TV Highway
Jin Wah for Chinese & Vietnamese food and Marinepolis Sushi Land, both in the shopping center at 117th & Canyon
I haven't been there, but DJK Korean BBQ is on a lot of best-of-Portland lists, and there are several other Korean restaurants in the area
for ethnic groceries, Uwajimaya on Beaverton-Hillsdale east of 217, San Francisco Tienda Mexicana at Allen & Lombard, Supermercados Mexico at 10th & Walnut in Hillsboro, Viet-Thai Market on TV Highway east of 185th, and Manila Market on TV Highway at 170th.
For fine dining or close to it, Hall Street Grill on Hall between TV Highway and Cedar Hills Blvd., DeCarli on Watson just south of Farmington, and Reedville Cafe on TV Highway at Cornelius Pass Rd.
Funny things to take pictures of and send to friends back home - the giant rabbit statue at Harvey Marine on TV Highway west of 209th, and the "root beer family" at Shute Park in Hillsboro, where TV Highway transitions to 10th Ave.

That's exhausted my brain for now. Have fun!
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Old 03-20-2015, 01:21 AM
 
Location: Portland
82 posts, read 127,351 times
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For good, inexpensive food try Buddies Sports Bar & Grill and Monkey Subs. Both are at the intersection of SW Farmington and 185th (in different plazas across from each other). The Bi-Mart store in the same plaza as Monkey Subs is a good place to stock up on household supplies. The staff in there is always friendly too. Annie's Restaurant on TV Hwy. west of 185th has good hot dogs and fries if you like that kind of thing. Cooper Mountain Nature Park & Jenkins Estate are nice places for an easy hike.
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Old 03-20-2015, 01:35 PM
 
Location: Aloverton
6,564 posts, read 13,065,142 times
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When I have access to good Indian, Thai, and Mexican food, life is better. Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
I must admit I am not understanding the new location. I mean... I understand the dishonest seller and the bailout out of the first house in FG but.... were there no other viable choices there? Aloha is a world away, literally. I am not sure that a person who could be happy in FG could also be happy in Aloha but thats me. YMMV.
Here's how that went down. While we fully understood the daunting nature of my wife's commute from FG to SW Capitol Blvd, we looked throughout the western suburbs (FG was about as far as we were comfortable with, westward), and the priority was more on the type of property. We are not very sensitive to the overall city environment around us, except the part close by. We like a lot of natural privacy, cannot tolerate an HOA, and were looking for enough room to either have (or make the property into) the stuff we wanted. That meant no stairs (we are in our fifties), a big enough lot to have or build a shop, and a reasonable commute for my wife. Her work is such that on half the days, she's actually going to someplace besides her office. So that nerfs the commute issue a bit, because half of those days, it would be Hillsboro.

We found a place we liked in FG, but the seller did too many homebrew repairs and didn't know what he was doing, and some of them were in the nature of poor water protection. Of course, living in western OR or WA means reckoning with a climate that means business. Plus, the seller was a bit of an ass about the whole thing (in particular, failure to disclose many conditions), and his agent was an apathetic dolt (probably because her client was an ass). The seller wouldn't budge, and we decided to let him do it his way--with another buyer. We went back on the search, and found this place in unincorporated Washington County not far from the Beaverton city line (thanks to someone on here, I looked it up).

So nothing against FG, but it was kind of at the edge of our search area anyway, and we were delighted to find a place in what I'll probably start calling Aloverton. We had to pay more, but as we see it, we dodged a bullet and ended up better off. And on top of that, the commute is far better for my wife (she and I both remember one-hour Seattle commutes from a couple decades back, so we know how bad that can be). As you said, happy wife = happy home.
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Old 03-20-2015, 01:58 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
9,792 posts, read 10,609,240 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Allen View Post
- I also endorse Don Pedro in Hillsboro, although I'd describe the location as 10th between Cedar and Walnut.
My bad. You are right, of course. Early Alzheimer's. We've only been gone six months and I'm forgetting how West Hillsboro is laid out.
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Old 03-20-2015, 04:06 PM
 
Location: Aloverton
6,564 posts, read 13,065,142 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Allen View Post
That's exhausted my brain for now. Have fun!
Thanks, Rob. A good, honest mechanic is high priority, and we know of one in downtown Portland...if one wants to go downtown for that, which I'm not sure is ideal. Great to know of the Salvadorean option, and the many others. That list ought to keep us out of mischief for some time.
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Old 03-20-2015, 04:08 PM
 
Location: Aloverton
6,564 posts, read 13,065,142 times
Reputation: 10088
Quote:
Originally Posted by eabcan View Post
For good, inexpensive food try Buddies Sports Bar & Grill and Monkey Subs. Both are at the intersection of SW Farmington and 185th (in different plazas across from each other). The Bi-Mart store in the same plaza as Monkey Subs is a good place to stock up on household supplies. The staff in there is always friendly too. Annie's Restaurant on TV Hwy. west of 185th has good hot dogs and fries if you like that kind of thing. Cooper Mountain Nature Park & Jenkins Estate are nice places for an easy hike.
Always need to know of good sports bar options and such, thanks. I wonder if Bi-Mart will seduce me away from my long allegiance to Costco, which I respect as a company but everywhere I've been, shopping there is a complete charlie foxtrot.
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