The Original

4.2
604 reviews
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$30 and under
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American
Inspired by diners the 1960s, The Original, Portland's downtown destination for all-day dining, serves up playful variations on classic menu standards.

Made from ingredients seasonal and local, and prepared with classic French techniques, our menu of eclectic American cuisine takes on regional favorites and modifies them with flavors and textures unique to the Pacific Northwest.

In an atmosphere that's stylish, sophisticated, and cool, The Original honors the past as it listens in on the pulse of Portland's evolving tastes.

DINER + ARCADE = THE DINERCADE
The Original’s Dinercade is located on the mezzanine level of The Original. A cool mix of new and retro arcade video games, with a craft cocktail, beer and wine lounge. A great space for all to enjoy while you and your group are trying to beat the high score on Pac Man.

The Original: Eat. Drink. Gather.
Dinercade: Eat.Drink.Play
What 604 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.2
food
4.3
service
4.1
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
86% of people would recommend it to a friend
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Portland
33 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We enjoyed the ambiance and of the Cafe and the wonderful, cheerful service. The food better than was described on the menu, Cream Brûlée French toast tasted creamy with caramelized bits of sugar on top and the Mixed greens with beets, hazelnuts, Chèvre dosed in a yummy Vinegerette. It was nice sitting and watching the activity on the street through the huge windows while eating our lunch. We would highflying recommend coming here for a bite and drink as they also have a full bar. We will be back soon!!

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KS
Portland
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 3

Not for Mother's Day. The food selection was limited which I did not know to expect ahead of time. The services was VERY slow though our waiter was pleasant. I would not recommend this for special occasions or for people in wheelchairs.

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T
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Thanks Drew for the great mother's day breakfast! Was very accommodating to my mom who is vegetarian. Went out of the way to make her day special.

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p
Portland
3 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Went with family on Sunday morning- excellent service, great variety of options since they serve the whole menu all day

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service! Gave us a discount for an order mixup without us asking for it! Would highly recommend!

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BF
Memphis
5 reviews
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

The Original was a great place to have brunch with friends. The food was good, the service was quick and attentive, and the restaurant was clean and nice. We had a great meal here.

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G
1 review
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

The Original was a pleasant surprise for brunch. The food was very good...I had the eggs benedict which is my standard for judging a breakfast place. All the staff were very friendly and attentive. Next time, we'll get a table not near the door as it was a little drafty as people came & went. Other than that, the place was great with a modern twist on the classic diner. And to top it off, the newly opened arcade on the 2nd floor was awesome and a blast from the past!

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OT
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Our server was great, explained and shared his opinions which I love. Pot pie is awesome!

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M
New York Area
14 reviews
Dined on March 30, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

Food was very good, although nothing super incredible to note. Service was pretty poor. Overall a decent spot as long as you are ok with slow service.

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d
San Francisco
38 reviews
Dined on March 29, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

Doughnut Sliders and Chicken and Waffles - way to go!

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L
1 review
Dined on March 28, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

The food was amazing and the server was very friendly and helpful.

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W
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on March 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My first time visiting this restaurant and it was great! Came in with a group of 7 and everyone was super friendly and helpful. Nice atmosphere, great food, & delicious drinks! Stacy was our server and she did a fabulous job taking care of us! Will certainly request her on our next visit!

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SO
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My first time at the restaurant! I saw the profile of the restaurant on DDD and told myself, I'll definitely visit while in Portland! Food was good and service! I wasn't disappointed!

Cheers !

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D
Portland
21 reviews
Dined on March 17, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 2

The Original continues its decent into complete failure. It has gone downhill for many months now. Will not give it another chance.

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PF
Portland
49 reviews
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Fun restaurant with lots of food and drink options. Very friendly staff and great service the entire visit. Food was hot and fresh. Would go back for a meal. Love the Decor and layout of the restaurant.

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DD
1 review
Dined on March 10, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

It's ok, wasn't horrible, but wasn't great either. I didn't order the right thing. Hash browns were great though.

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AC
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and great service. What else is there?

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BS
Portland
1 review
Dined on March 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 3

Went for brunch and it was outstanding. Our party has dietary restrictions which were accommodates

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OT
Portland
1 review
Dined on March 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Such a charming step back in time to the traditional diners of the 1950’s. Good service and great food!

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M
Portland
29 reviews
Dined on February 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The server was great. She recommended an amazing dish for me, offered separate checks for our group of 8 (which we didn’t take her up on), was prompt to refill coffee, she told us all about the new game room, and even took our picture when we asked. She let us visit as long as we wanted. And the food was excellent. I love that they take reservations for breakfast and that they can accommodate groups.

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K
1 review
Dined on February 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My family is quite picky but all loved their food and service while they visited from out of town. *

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R
1 review
Dined on February 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fancy place, fancy food, affordable price, and awesome location. Best place for brunch.

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OT
Seattle
2 reviews
Dined on February 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service. Tasty coffee and food.

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SG
Portland
3 reviews
Dined on February 17, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

We needed a last minute brunch reservation for 9 people on a Sunday morning. Knowing how crazy brunch is in Portland on a Sunday, we knew it would take 90+ minutes for our large group, but The Original had openings for the next morning. Overall, we were all happy! The food was well priced and portioned for Portland. The ambiance was nice and lively. However, our service was a bit odd at times. We had our waiter/waitress change three times and it took 15 minutes to get drinks out. Also, our table kept running out of water and the waiter did not refill for 20 minutes until we asked. But overall, we had a great time, got our brunch fix, and enjoyed the massive portions.

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OT
Portland
13 reviews
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 4food 2service 4ambience 3

Would I recommend The Original to a friend? I struggled with the question because, while The Original is a cool place, with a decent menu, great drinks, a cool vibe and friendly service, this last visit was 'less than.'

We had reservations and got a nice booth. The first round of drinks were ordered promptly, but despite a relatively slow evening, it took quite a while for the bartender to get to our order. The server was prompt on his end, and apologized for the delay. All good. We ordered burgers, fries and chili fries. My burger was literally crunchy, it was so overdone. I wanted to complain and send it back, but then I would be 'that guy' and my wife's order was perfect for her. So, I choked it down. Flavor was great. Chili fries good as well. Just hard to fathom how a restaurant that primarily cooks burgers, could fail so miserably.

The second round of drinks, for some reason, came out in the incorrect glassware. Again, not sure the issue with the bar, but the mix was off in addition to being in the wrong glass. A sugared rim is quite different than a sugared piece of fruit hanging on that rim. And honestly, the drink, same as the first round, was like a shot in a glass. Strong, to the point of 'choking the back of the throat.' Again, not the servers issue, but fully the bartender's concern. Or, lack of concern.

We had a gift card from Christmas to burn, so that was that. The bill was in line with what you would expect at any decent restaurant in Portland. Unfortunately, that was not really what was delivered on this last visit. I had a similar experience and thought a couple years back, and with their updates and such, I figured another shot was in order. Not sure that will happen again.

So, I would recommend this place to a friend who was OK with inconsistency, and perhaps an expensive 'fail,' but wanted a cool vibe, a interesting menu and great service. Maybe the line cook and bartender can get on the same page and deliver.

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n
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Sam was the most heartwarming waitress we've ever had she was able to secure the last of the specials and be an all around joy to have. She was able to explain what the most popular meal that everyone was ordering so it could give us an idea of what the kitchen was prepared to cook. Someone had dropped either a glass or plate and i was the only person clapping Sam looked at me for validation to take the attention off of whomever dropped the dishes and was in agreement. The best part is was she dropped off some change for us to go upstairs and play in their arcade that they had just installed.

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OT
Portland
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great wait staff! Came here on a holiday and they were on their game. Friendly and welcoming, never had a bad experience here.

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OT
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

The customer service was AMAZING! We would go back again and again just to have that same type of service, and the food was very tasty as well. And the flavor combinations were delicious. My only criticism would be that for the price you pay for the chicken and waffles we wish we would have gotten another price of chicken.

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CB
Portland
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Our food was incredible and delicious, made perfectly given all of my pain-in-the-butt specialty food prep requests. Nailed it! All the staff we interacted with was pleasant+, even downright jovial. There was a section for "occasion" in the reservation - ours was "date night" - and the staff knew that and did little but noticeable things that made me feel as if I was a regular..."I hope you had a great date night! Our arcade isn't officially open until next week, but you are welcome tonight to give it a test run!" We decided to ditch the movie we were going to see and chose to spend the rest of date night having a few drinks and racing eachother on screen and playing pinball.

Frankly, it was much more romantic than just going to see a movie. We got closer and had a great time - I even asked the bartender for a free shot if I sang him a song. I think he personally had to cover it, but we also spent a little time getting to know the bartender and interacting with staff (it was slow at that specific time so we weren't taking service away from other tables). Getting that "early access" to the arcade, singing with the bartender, and the conversation with staff really made me feel like a regular, like a real PERSON -- not just a customer. Not to mention my special lady and I had...dessert... as soon as we got home! We felt especially close because we spent time interacting with other people - and more importantly eachother, and this place facilitated that - way better than any dark, crowded theater could!

Finally, as I mentioned, the food was incredible! The poutine ( i grew up in Buffalo, NY right on the Canadian border) was out of this world, and *perfect* for sharing! She got some alcoholic (berry?) smoothie, and it was sufficiently potent, but we COULD NOT taste the alcohol in it! Pulling that off is tough, trust me I've tried! The kitchen staff DEFINITELY are true masters in their art!

SO GOOD that I took the time to find and write a review. Cheers!

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OT
Portland
2 reviews
Dined on February 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Thanks for the great service!

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PL
Seattle
3 reviews
Dined on February 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The experience was phenomenal, our waiter was very helpful and friendly. Absolutely amazing food, and service. Definitely will come back for more!

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JL
Portland
6 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great dinner breakfast with great options for vegetarians or pescatarians - went with a group of 6 friends and there was something for everyone

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X
1 review
Dined on February 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The staff are very well mannered an good at what they do, I wish that the resolve of my evening was well. This u did stay for more than my expected extended time the staff was extreamly helpful an I would recommend this place to my friends around the world.

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RS
1 review
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

This was a pretty good experience. Our waiter was really good so that always helps. I ordered the Steelhead Benedict which was really good but the hash browns were on the mediocre side. Stumptown coffee was nice, as always. The others I was with enjoyed their food but also mentioned the hash browns as undercooked and bland. It was an overall pretty good brunch.

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OT
Portland
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

Table was ready right when we got there and the service and food was exactly what we needed for a group of 7! Already planning on coming back.

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JP
Portland
1 review
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

Experience was Meh- nothing special. Service was slow. Food was like warm. Fine for a quick breakfast before yo leave the hotel but nothing special.

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SW
1 review
Dined on January 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We had visited about 2 years ago for a big birthday party and this time just as a couple. The service both times was excellent. The food was tasty and fun and we especially enjoyed the banter between our server and ourselves and the other patrons. The fact that we could ride Max to and from the restaurant and not have to worry about parking was a plus!

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OT
Vancouver
4 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

Friendly service and yummy food. The chicken and waffles was a must try dish!

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DM
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Had a great time, and wonderful service! We came here on New Year's Eve, and it was such a fun and low-key way to have dinner before going out. Great handmade cocktails and our server recommended a wonderful drink after I said a few of my traditional favorites I lean towards.

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OT
Portland
7 reviews
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The Original is a great place for breakfast in Portland, its unique and original.

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