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Aviary
Aviary

Aviary Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.aviarypdx.com
  • Phone: (503) 287-2400
  • Hours of Operation: Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00PM - 10:00PM
    Friday & Saturday: 5:00PM - 11:00PM
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: French, Asian
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Beer, Chef's Table, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Wine
  • Catering: Contact us for more information.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 17th Street and 18th Street
  • Parking: Street Parking
A word from Aviary
Located in the Alberta Arts district of Northeast Portland, Aviary combines industrial design with local art, reclaimed wood from the original site, and locally crafted lighting. With a chef's counter, communal table and a seasonal patio. Three co-chefs, Sarah Pliner, Jasper Shen, and Kat Whitehead, collaborate on an eclectic menu of small plates inspired by France and Asia. Leah Moorhead's wine list draws from boutique wineries in France and the Pacific Northwest with a cocktail list with seasonal infusions.Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Overall
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Food
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Service
Diner Reviews
  • "Avairy was our favorite find after three days in Portland. Our server was incredible in terms of knowing wines, describing the food and how it was prepared without any attitude, he was simply an enthusiast for what the restaurant offered. Nothing we ordered disappointed us, and we enjoyed very morsel of the five dishes we ordered. A must to enjoy in Portland."
    Dined on 7/2/2014
  • "Finally made it to Aviary and was not disappointed. For the two of us we ordered 3 small dishes and shared the grilled octopus for an entree. Which left room for two wonderful desserts. Seems like everyone is serving grilled octopus now (we've had it 3 times this year) but Aviary's was the best , The largest tentacle (from Uwajimaya?), perfectly grilled and served with ricotta pudding and red curry sauce. Several flavors but none overwhelmed the others and blended wonderfully. And the same analysis is true for the other dishes. And the wine list was very good. Finally the wait staff was knowledgeable and attentive. A must go!"
    Dined on 7/1/2014
  • "Certain dishes stood out others were passable at best. Service was spotty. Our waiter apologized for the service saying they were really busy. The place was half empty."
    Dined on 6/9/2014
  • "Regardless of your food preferences, Aviary shines with every dish and drink. No, I don't work there and don't have any connection other than loving good food and beverages and reasonable prices. If you are from out of town and have only one evening for dinner, aim here."
    Dined on 6/4/2014
  • "Aviary is good. Some dishes are really good, and some are, well, not, so it averages out to good. I will say it's nice for Alberta to have this restaurant that is more about dining than about a quick meal. The cocktails need to change. They've been the same for years. Maybe a few have rotated, but overall some freshness needed there.Service is pretty good. A tartare was to be forgotten. I prefer when a tartare is mixed rather than having all separate components presented for the diner to mix him/herself. Oysters with tomato "granita" are underwhelming as the granita gets watery and provides no acidity to the oyster as a mignonette would. The tempura veg is always a hit, as is the bread with bagna cauda. "
    Dined on 5/16/2014
  • "I've become known among my friends and family as a person who likes "weird food". At Aviary, the food is not weird. It is a unique flavor experience found in unlikely, astonishingly delectable, perfectly prepared, fresh ingredients. The cauliflower flan served as a nice comfortable backdrop for mouthful of sea (in the best way) that the other ingredients so perfectly delivered. The signature dish, crispy pig ears, had some surprise shiso leaves that always get a double eyeroll of pleasure from me. The sweetbreads were the best I've ever had. Perfectly crunchy on the outside, fatty and tender inside. I can't wait to go back and try the rest of the menu. The waiters were equally excited about the menu, pleasant, and unobtrusive."
    Dined on 5/30/2014
  • "Admittedly, our reservations were at 5:30, and they may have just mopped or cleaned the tables. The smell was awful, like a latrine after a good cleaning. Hopefully this review will prompt a change in their routine. Fortunately, the weather was beautiful and an outdoor table was available. An okay outdoor ambience, but pretty austere. The food ranged from outstanding to good. The raw sea urchin was a little hard to look at, and pretty tasteless, but my bad for ordering it. In general, it was an adventure in eating and some of the food was outstanding. I especially enjoyed the tuna tartare. Everyone in my party left satisfied. "
    Dined on 5/31/2014
  • "We ordered everything on the happy hour menu and loved it all and the service was great. "
    Dined on 5/16/2014
  • "Awesome attention to detail. Just the right amount of food that was perfectly prepared. What a gem this place is..."
    Dined on 5/14/2014
  • "I gave it 3 stars - could easily be a 4 or 5 but feel like it fell a little short with food this time. Presentation & taste was good but not great. It has been about 9 months since our first time there. My recollection of first experience there was that we enjoyed the food much more the first time but I honestly think it was partially due to our choices. Beet salad is back and is fun, pig ears - you can skip them - I've had better. They were kind of flat. Octopus well prepared. I'll go back but not for a while - it is not a restaurant where I finished the meal and can't wait to come back again. Maybe I've gotten pickier? But it's a fun place to go & you'll enjoy it. "
    Dined on 5/6/2014
  • "Aviary distinguished itself with the food. As a party of 4, we tried about 10 items from the menu (+ 3 desserts...). All were great. Unusual ingredients paired in interesting ways to create a truly uniquely delicious food experience. Beer and wine selection were great as well. Would definitely recommend it to anyone who was looking for a highly memorable food experience. Service was prompt, but not overbearing. Noise level allowed civil discourse. Didn't spend time there, but the bar looked nice as well."
    Dined on 5/3/2014
  • "The food was amazing with different levels of flavors for every dish. I had dishes I had never heard of before and we loved every one. We can't wait to go back to try some of the other dishes."
    Dined on 4/26/2014
  • "Love their imaginative use of flavor combinations and ingredients. Wish we're had room to try out more dishes. Will definitely be back!"
    Dined on 4/25/2014
  • "Exciting menu. Great drinks! I recommend the St. Germaine cocktail."
    Dined on 4/24/2014
  • "Great food, seamless service. I just couldn't understand why they left the inside as such a skeleton. I understand this when the skeleton is interesting, but it feels like a cafeteria. This building is not worthy of a minimalist approach to designing the space. I don't know why the walls are white, or why I can see down the hallway to the side, or why there is no artwork. If this place was cozy it would be one of my favorites. But when I spend that much money to go out, I want to feel transported into a different space. There is lots of good food in this town, ambience is crucial. And this may keep me from coming back. If I can get food this good, which I can, somewhere that is lovely to be in, the other place will always win out. "
    Dined on 4/24/2014
  • "Our second visit made my Mom happy! My Mom, turning 75 tomorrow, visits Portland often and being a longtime cook, both for a family with 4 boys and professionally as supervisor for various organizations, non-profits, and publications (including Cooks Illustrated) always wants interesting! We struggle to come up with something on the fly to fit that bill. FOOD is OUTSTANDING! The wait staff answered all the questions we had with detailed comprehension and a great attitude, helping us pick a variety of dishes to share. A dairy allergy - both the wait staff and the kitchen took it in stride, made recommendations and accommodations allowing this to be easy and enjoyable, it highlights their in depth knowledge of the food they present. Thank you"
    Dined on 4/23/2014
  • "Some of the most inventive delicious cuisine we have had since being in Europe. Ambience is a little brittle, due to the concrete some decor to soften the noise reflection would help. Thanks for a lovely dinning, we will be back. And we will spread the word to come and dine here. Regards Canada"
    Dined on 4/19/2014
  • "Excellent service that was spot-on: knowledgeable and professional without attitude. The food was the most creative I've seen in some time. Everything was tasty!"
    Dined on 4/11/2014
  • "Another enjoyable dinner at Aviary--the Brix Layer cocktail sets the tone, then an array of small and large dishes. Only critique: the flavor of most dishes but especially the squash charlotte and the green bean tempura benefit greatly from added salt. The crispy pig on coconut rice is a winner!"
    Dined on 4/11/2014
  • "Four of us went to the Aviary recently during Portland Restaurant Month. Some got the three-course special, others ordered off the menu. The chestnut soup with crispy Brussels sprouts and bottarga was divine, rich and creamy with a nice hit of salt and bitter. The Tasmanian sea trout with blood orange and sunchokes was also fantastic and the fish perfectly cooked. Service is professional and knowledgeable. Wine list is good with many reasonable (ie $40 or so) choices, and the cocktails are original without being weird. I love this place!"
    Dined on 3/26/2014
  • "I took my girlfriend here for her birthday as we've both been wanting to try it. The table was ready to go when we arrived at our reservation time. Good suggestions for wines and drinks by our waiter. I do like the small plates style and the encouragement to share and try a wider variety. Our waiter suggested some options that were already on our "I'm thinking about this" list so it was an easy choice. Dinner was fantastic and desserts were wonderful. My ONLY suggestion for improvement would be to let the coffee in the french press steep more before serving (but I LOVE dark coffee so it could have been me....) I can't wait for the warmer weather and catch a drink or two on the "patio" in the open air. Thanks for a great evening."
    Dined on 4/5/2014
  • "I chose Aviary as a meeting place for my foodie book group. Never been there. I was early and found an excellent Happy Hour at the bar. Great beer price and interesting small plates. Staff was friendly. At dinner with my group, we all enjoyed a reasonably priced bottle of white wine, and three of us had the price fixe dinner and the other, a vegetarian, enjoyed two a la carte dishes. The entree course took a noticable amount of time to arrive; we were enjoying our conversation so much that it was not an impediment .The food was rich, well portioned and satisfying as well as having original touches, such as pureed mango with the chocolate pudding and crisped brussel sprouts both as a nacho base appetizer and added to chestnut creamed soup."
    Dined on 3/31/2014
  • "I thought the menu descriptions sounded amazing so I was excited to try out the restaurant. We were visiting from Seattle and decided to take advantage of the last weekend of the Dining out in Portland Month (3 courses for $29) My first hiccup was that the staff were not at all friendly. They did the bare minimum and they all looked kind of miserable. (Maybe something happened just before they opened?) I was a little disappointed they wouldn't serve happy hour drinks in the restaurant and no food in the bar, but I know that can be a common so that was fine. I don't normally eat a lot so I'm fine with small portions, but these were tiny, tiny portions. I'd try again for happy hour. Maybe."
    Dined on 3/28/2014
  • "The trout was remarkable and the 4 cups of chicken was outstanding!"
    Dined on 3/28/2014
  • "We had a cocktail and asked the bartender for input and he was helpful and we loved our drinks. Intriguing fusion dishes of all sizes. Surprisingly comforting and delicious food."
    Dined on 3/28/2014
  • "THis was my first visit to Aviary and I was very impressed. The space is small, but open. The menu has many interesting dishes and combinations that seemed new to me. Our waiter was very good, although seemed like he was working too many tables. Everyone agreed that their dinner selections were wonderful. I would plan to go again soon. The only down side was the noise. We all had a little trouble having a conversation between the four of us. It would be nice to have some sound absorption in the dining room."
    Dined on 3/29/2014
  • "The food was very tasty and I'm still thinking about it. The service was very friendly, and felt bad that the kitchen had taken so long to get our food out. He comped our drinks which was very nice of him and helped us forget about the wait. Over all, very happy about the Aviary. I will be back."
    Dined on 3/26/2014
  • "Aviary is just a wonderful, interesting restaurant with beautiful, perfectly prepared food. It was one of the few Portland Dining Month meals we thought we worth trying and is a restaurant we'd be happy to visit every chance we could. The only thing I didn't care for was the desert, primarily the mango puree alongside the chocolate. How I wish it had been a passionfruit or something that better complemented the chocolate. But the chestnut soup was amazing and the chicken roulette stuffed with leeks? and apricots and served over tarot puree was fantastic and our friend's tried the sea trout and were wild about their meal. Great job, Aviary!"
    Dined on 3/29/2014
  • "This was my third trip to Aviary and they continue to astound with their delicious and creative food. The 4 Cup Chicken with woodear mushrooms and taro root was the best thing I ate in Portland Dining Month. The only demerits are that the place is very noisy when full due to the industrial design, and that doesn't lend to the ambiance. The service was excellent. I also had a canicule cocktail that was one of the best ever, and their choice for local NW pinot noir by-the-glass was very good (and I'm a Dundee Hills pinot snob)."
    Dined on 3/29/2014
  • "Food and service was great! Nice blend of Asian and western cuisine. Definitely worth a 2nd trip!"
    Dined on 3/27/2014
  • "The menu may be intimating at first glance, but the flavor combinations work very well for an overall three dimensional flavor experience."
    Dined on 3/27/2014
  • "Every single person that came up to our table addresses my friend and I as "Guys". It was as if that was standard code at Aviary. The food was alright, but nothing special for me. I did not enjoy my experience there at all. I will not be returning and I would not recommend it to anyone."
    Dined on 3/27/2014
  • "Amazing food, great cocktails, lovely service. Just a bit loud. Highly recommended."
    Dined on 3/27/2014
  • "For all the hype, we expected something a little more inviting when we walked in. Unfortunately, it felt as if we had wandered into an Ikea store. Cold and sparse; certainly not warm and comfortable. Service was just okay. However the food, especially the crispy pork belly and the desserts, were out of this world! Main course of four cup chicken was not especially memorable - tasted good but like something I could prepare at home. The sea trout entre' was undercooked. Overall, the experience was a little unbalanced."
    Dined on 3/25/2014
  • "I went with a group of friends for portland dining month and enjoyed their 3 course menu for $29.00. The tazmanian sea trout alone makes it well worth it to go to this restaurant. The ambiance was nice and laid back, and i liked that the bar was easily accessable from the restaurant but at the same time there was also a distinct separation from it."
    Dined on 3/6/2014
  • "This spare, industrial-ish space is creating some terrific and inventive food. We went for the March prix fixe dinner and walked away very happy. I had the Trout which I thought was the more adventurous of the two entrees, but man was I wrong. The 4 cup chicken had a really complex asian sauce that we both can't stop talking about. Chestnut soup was also a standout. the desserts were fine but unremarkable, or maybe we were just too full to properly enjoy them. Be forewarned that adding cocktails and wine can substantially blow the budget."
    Dined on 3/22/2014
  • "I admit I am not very noise tolerant, but I and 2 dinner companions couldn't hear each other speak on a recent Saturday nite. I find it exhausting to to eat in that environment. I appreciate that Aviary has tried to make some fixes ( foam under tables, and panels on walls and ceilings) but not working."
    Dined on 3/22/2014
  • "Now one of my top 3 places in Portland. Food was amazing. Service was friendly and not obtrusive. And the prices are good for what you get. Give it a try. You'll love it!"
    Dined on 3/22/2014
  • "The food was delicious but subtly flavored. The service was perfunctory and disinterested. The ambience was raw and obnoxiously loud. It seems in all too many notable restaurants in Portland the music is chosen by the staff for their entertainment rather than for the patrons who have come to enjoy each other's company rather than the raucousness of a garage band rehearsal."
    Dined on 3/18/2014
  • "We dined on a busy Saturday evening and found the selections enticing, the service staff incredibly helpful explaining the menu items and friendly. Enjoyed every bite and superb cocktails! One of us was dairy free and found the menu easy to have dairy work-arounds. The goat cheese ice cream was divine. We thought the space would be loud when first arriving in a evening full of diners and hard surfaces. But realized quickly we could converse easily and really didn't notice the crowd. Later we figured out the secret sound absorbing device. Brilliant! Can't wait to come back to Portland to visit Aviary again."
    Dined on 3/15/2014