One night that I was in Portland my friends and I were going out on Mississippi Ave in North Portland. I was really excited since I hadn’t been out much on Mississippi. I had been there a few times to walk around and eat, but I had only been to one of the bars (Bungalow) that had sprouted up since I left to Miami. I had heard a lot about places like Bar Bar and Prost and how nice they were during the summer.
My friends and I started out at Bar Bar on their large outdoor patio. I was trying to place for a while why it seemed so different from similar outdoor spaces in Miami (like Butcher Shop). Part of it was the scene- in Miami people don’t usually go out to bars in running attire after working out haha. I realized part of it was the added vibe of a sunsetting summer day. In Miami in the summer it’s hot as hell so it’s not the same level of enjoyment. And then when it cools down it’s not light out as late. Maybe over thinking it, but I really enjoyed Bar Bar and the chill laid back vibe.
People were feeling kind of hungry (we did mostly drinks, although Bar Bar has food) and we decided to walk down to Por Que No?. I was really excited for that since I love Por Que No?! Unfortunately the line was ridiculously long when we got there and even though it usually moves quickly I think people were a bit too hungry to wait to order and then get our food.
Someone suggested StormBreaker Brewery just down the block and someone else asked if they had food. They did indeed and so we headed that way. Interestingly earlier that day and week I had been talking about the brewery that used to be in the same spot. That was one of my dad’s favorite breweries. I just couldn’t remember the name in the conversation(s) I had. Ironically, it was called Amnesia Brewery… Amnesia had consolidated at it’s Washougal, Washington location and StormBreaker had replaced it.
We took a seat in their outdoor beer garden right along the street. We started with drinks and then ordered a round of food. The menu is mostly burgers, sandwiches, salads, and plates (steak, chicken, bratwurst), plus some snacks. Looking over their burgers there were several I wanted. The Jucy Lucy is two patties with fontina cheese, bacon, red onion jam, and herb aioli. The Jerk Burger is two jerk patties, fontina cheese, and a jalapeno-pineapple chutney. Then there was the Mississippi Monster, which is two patties with pimento cheese, green chili, and the herb aioli.
Even though I just had a burger with pimento cheese (well actually two) at Dick’s Kitchen (it might have even been the day before this I think) I still found myself leaning towards that (although the Jucy Lucy and Jerk Burger sounded awesome). I went for that (with a gluten-free bun) and then a snack of their StormBreaker Slim Jim (beef jerky). Two of my friends got the Kale salads and two others got one of the daily grilled cheese specials (fontina cheese and avocado), plus someone got an order of their spiced peanuts snack.
People were pretty hungry so the peanuts and Slim Jims were a nice starter. The peanuts weren’t super spicy, but had a little kick. I was a big fan of the Slim Jims. It was similar enough in taste to a Slim Jim, but you could tell it was much higher quality of ingredients.
On my burger- I enjoyed it (juicy burger and a good gluten-free bun) and I liked that StormBreaker seems to put a focus on fresh, quality ingredients (especially relative to usual bar food). I just felt like there was too much going on with the burger. There was the pimento cheese, the green chili. and the herb aioli and they all sort of mixed together for a less defined taste. I’d go for maybe just one or two of the three (probably do away with the green chili). The burger came with waffle chips on the side, which I give a big thumbs up to (and my friends agreed with me)!
My friends liked their Kale salad, which came with bacon, gouda, soft egg, and almond and seed brittle. I had a bite of the almond and seed brittle and while it sort of reminded me in texture and appearance of bird food (like little chunks of the peanut butter-seed things we made in grade school), the taste was good and I liked that it brought some added crunch to the salad. My friends’ only complaint was that they were a little large to eat with ease in the salad (you can’t really spear it with a fork).
On my next trip to StormBreaker I’m definitely going to try one of the other delicious-sounding burgers and get some more Slim Jims. I liked that StormBreaker does sort of gourmet, quality bar and beer garden food. That’s pretty typical Portland, but I really enjoyed the atmosphere and food at StormBreaker. If you’re looking for burgers and/or a brewery on Mississippi Ave check out StormBreaker!
StormBreaker Brewery- 832 N. Beach St. Portland, OR