At Noble Rot, the wine flights and cheese plates come with a complimentary side of Incredible View, and what an incredible view it is—a lofty west-facing panoramic sweep of downtown Portland, the Willamette River, and the hustle-bustle of hipster activity that is lower East Burnside Street.
If you ask nicely, the staff will give you a tour of the restaurant’s magical rooftop garden Tuesdays at 5pm, well before you can get tipsy enough to be a liability. I hope.
Perched atop the ruddy four-story LEED-certified Burnside Rocket building, Noble Rot has several key vantage points—the luxe semi-circular white leather booths that flank the North wall, the lovely little patio hanging off the back of the restaurant, and the magical rooftop garden accessible via a steep, narrow staircase in the hall behind the bathrooms. If you ask nicely, the staff will give you a tour Tuesdays at 5pm, well before you can get tipsy enough to be a liability. I hope.
More than just pretty rooftop expanse of soil and seedlings, the fruits of this stunning garden inform much of chef-owner Leather Storrs’ menu, and you’ll see bits and pieces of it (literally) in dishes like the citrus-kissed mixed melons with garden-grown tender mustards, halibut with sweet and sour eggplant and just-picked green beans, and grilled flat iron steak with “roof salad.” Rooftop-born strawberries even make their way onto the dessert menu, accompanying a rich brown butter cake nestled in a shallow lake of crème anglaise.
Co-owners Kimberly Bernosky and Courtney Storrs take utmost care with their lovingly-crafted wine list, balancing a variety of Pacific Northwest wines with their European counterparts, at price points that don’t gouge you for the million-dollar view.
Cuisine: New American
Executive Chef: Leather Storrs
Owner: Kimberly Bernosky, Courtney Storrs, Leather Storrs
Atmosphere: Cool, swanky perch with incomparable west-facing views and a pretty posh crowd
Outdoor seating: One of the city's very best patios, with breathtaking views
Best Seat: On the patio or in one of the horseshoe-shaped white leather booths
Noise Level: Normal to Buzzy
Dress Code: Casual is good, but the crowd tends to run dressier than normal, so tuxedos and LBDs are fine too
Bring the Kids: No
Bathrooms: Down the hallway between the horseshoe booths and the bar, to the left
Parking: Street parking is free and can be challenging to find at peak times
Cocktails: Full bar, seven signature cocktails ($9-$11)
Beer: Three local beers on tap ($5), five bottled ($3-$8)
Wine: Very nice list and over two dozen glass pours ($5.50-$15), flights ($10-$14)
Sake: By the glass ($8-$13)
Ideal Meal: Onion tart, butternut squash and goat cheese panino, black cod with soy glaze, grilled flat iron steak, "peanut butter and jelly" dessert
Vegetarian Friendly: Yes
Good for the following occasions: Girls' Night Out, Date Night, Happy Hour With a View, Dining Alfresco
Reservations: Yes, call 503.233.1999 or reserve online at Open Table