When the Fam Comes to Town!

It’s been a week since our family was in Portland visiting us! Mine from Florida and Thomas’s from Norway. It was two weeks full of eating, drinking, and more eating… I always have these grand plans in my mind when we have guests that we’ll go hiking everyday and be adventurous, exploring unknown parts of the PNW – but what always ends up happening is breakfast, a little exploring, finding a good lunch spot, and then starting to think about dinner. And I am 100% okay with that! No joke, we will be finishing up lunch and someone will say (usually me) “so what are we thinking for dinner?!”

With both of our families, we spent two days in Hood River and three days in Pacific City on the Coast! My fam was here a week and the Norwegian gang was here for two weeks, so they rented a house in Portland for a few days and then we spent their last weekend in Seattle together.

Here’s a little run down of everywhere/everything we ate when the fam was in town!

Hood River

РThe fam had arrived late in PDX so we had pre-made one of our fave lasagna recipes by Matty Matheson . Coincidentally our neighbor had moved out of his apartment and his girlfriend worked at a winery so he left us 10 bottles of Cabernet before the fam came. Lasagna and lots of wine was a pretty good way to kick off the vacay!
– Hood Crest Winery – Spent the afternoon at Hood Crest Winery in Hood River! Great views, $15 tastings, wood-fire pizzas, and charcuterie boards.
– Our last night in Hood River we cooked out at the house again and made BBQ baby back ribs, grilled corn, and baked potatoes!


Pacific City

When you hike up that killer sand dune at cape Kiwanda it makes up for all the carbs and wine you’ve been having, right?

– After exploring the dunes at Cape Kiwanda I love stopping in at Pelican Brewery – nothing extraordinary about the food but I love this place to just sit and have a beer and look out over the ocean and haystack rock!
Riverhouse Nestucca – This is the quaintest little restaurant in town. It was such a cozy atmosphere and everything we ordered was amazing! The paella, Dungeness crab bisque, the crab mac’n’cheese, and the steak with cauliflower mash potatoes were all winners!
– You can’t stay on the coast without having an oyster roast! We picked up 60+ Netarts oysters from the seafood market in Pacific City and went to town! I love making a shallot mignonette to add on top of the oysters.
The Schrooner – A great lunch spot in Netarts Bay which is only a 30 minute drive from Pacific City! Get the crab cakes, steamer clams, and oyster stew!



– On the 2nd week that Thomas’s fam was here they rented a house right in our neighborhood, which was so nice since we would go there when we got off work! They would have charcuterie plates and a bottle of wine popped by the time we got home – I could get use to that!
– For the last night that my family was in town we took them to Ox¬†where we ate beef tongue, lamb heart salad (please still be my friend…), the most amazing braised lamb, skirt steak, and so many good sides. If you’re in the mood for a carnivorous feast then this is the place.
– One of my new favorite food carts is Artigiano on SE Division – It’s got the cutest outdoor seating. We had grilled octopus, spicy pork rigatoni, and lamb shanks. Crazy that’s from a food cart!



– Since Thomas’s fam was flying back to Norway from Seattle, we spent our last weekend together there. Saturday night we went to Elliot’s Oyster House which is right by Pike Place Market. It was a little touristy, but the oysters were amazing as well as the seafood specials (I had halibut and Thomas had the cod). If you go there, prepare for crowds and stick to the oysters/seafood specials on the menu.
– The Ballard Farmer’s Market in Seattle is a must! The fam loved it. So many great produce stands, meat and seafood suppliers, fresh baked breads, sweets, and food carts. I couldn’t resist the Tandoozy food cart where they have fresh baked Naan covered in a garlicky butter and topped with tikka masala, lentil dal, chutney, and basmati rice. SO GOOD!


  1. June 24, 2019 / 11:19 pm

    Oh my word, you all ate so well! I am super into the idea of that crab mac n cheese in Pacific City. Sign me up!

  2. June 25, 2019 / 3:36 pm

    The Schooner in Netarts is one of my favorites for sure! You guys had so many fun spots that you visited! I love Hood River too and can’t wait to go there next month!

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