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Ploy's Thai - Wonderful, Authentic Thai Food in SW Portland!

A few friends and I were curious to try the new Thai restaurant that took over the former Blockbuster store in our SW Portland's Garden Home neighborhood. What a great place! Now just about every time one of us goes there, we find each other or one of our other neighbors enjoying a meal or carrying out dinner for the family back home.

The owner, Aly, is a popular builder in the Portland-Vancouver area, and really went all out to create a beautiful and relaxing setting for lunch and dinner guests. The walls are a lovely fresh green, with tasteful art, high ceilings and designer lighting. This restaurant is definitely a jewel nestled inconspicuously near Lamb's Market and Starbucks!

In keeping with the Aly's vision of excellent and authentic cooking, his kitchen staff is all from Thailand. The main chef has 40+ years experience preparing food that one would find in fine restaurants in Bangkok. Every morning Aly drives to Asian markets around the Portland Metro area to pick up fresh produce and Thai spices for that day's menu.

The portions are really large and beautifully presented, with colorful garnishes and subtle, delicate flavors. The food is not too spicy even for American tastebuds -- unless you ask for it to be! And there is even a menu with gluten-free options.

The best surprise of all is the prices. There aren't many really nice places in Portland where a family of four can eat a gourmet Thai dinner for under $50, but this one of them. Rated 5 stars+ by my friends, neighbors and family. Hope to see you there some time!


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Portland - Unique, Wonderful City of Coffee

Spanish Coffee at Huber's CafePortland's American Barista & Coffee school proudly calls its home town a "unique, wonderful coffee mecca." OregonBusiness.com awarded Portland a High Five for being the "unlikely capital of American coffee culture" for its simple, handcrafted pour over cups of coffee (http://www.oregonbusiness.com/high-five/5098-portlands-coffee-culture-returns-to-pour-over-methods).

Really it's not surprising that a city so serious about microbrewed beers and bottling fine wines would also be part of a movement to produce high-quality, artisan coffee. Coffee Bean International, the city's largest roaster, describes Portlanders as "really interested in that handcrafted, living free kind of thing," and says "coffee falls into that category when you start to learn more about it."


—Mark Tilson



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