There are times when we all need a pick-me-up, and sugar always fits the bill. Whether your vice is chocolate, cake, ice cream or cookies, Portland offers a bounty of high-quality take-out treats, expertly prepared and at prices even a student can afford. Even if you are not a dessert lover, it pays to know where to find a treat to give to someone who is.
There are times when we all need a pick-me-up, and sugar always fits the bill.
Whether your vice is chocolate, cake, ice cream or cookies, Portland offers a bounty of high-quality take-out treats, expertly prepared and at prices even a student can afford. Even if you are not a dessert lover, it pays to know where to find a treat to give to someone who is.
Keeping a secret stash of chocolate on hand is like the best insurance policy there is—who knows when it will save the day, but it definitely will.
Stop by one of these shops for a sugar rush at its best. Grab a few to line your pockets for a movie, take to class or share with your friends at work.
1028 S.E. Water St.
Available in classic lemon or raspberry-glazed lime, the bakers at this small, comfortable bakery have gotten the puckery versus sweet ratio just right in these tarts. Always exactingly pretty, this treat has a thin, crisp crust and plenty of thick citrus curd for filling. You should balance the tarts with an assertive coffee or mellow tea, especially if you’re eating the whole thing—it’s not small.
Ken’s Artisan Bakery
326 N.W. 21st Ave.
At the top of this bakery’s pastry case, you’ll always find a tower of these pastel-colored treats. Made of ground almonds, they are the ultimate sandwich cookie. Flavors could be pale-green pistachio, pale egg-shell coconut or rich, dark chocolate. The outer layers are at once crispy and chewy-gooey, enclosing a marvelously creamy-flavor filling. Go ahead, choose with abandon; you can’t go wrong.
1431 S.W. Park Ave.
Just one block north of campus, this small café’s baklava is worth the excursion. Crispy thin layers are drenched in honey and butter, and then packed with walnuts and a satisfying hint of salt. These golden triangles of pastry are homemade by the café’s owner, who is affectionately called Mo by his flock of regular customers.
10 N.W. 10th Ave.
Open Wed. to Sat.
This place is not cheap, but it does sell some of the city’s highest quality chocolate. Conveniently packed in tiny cellophane bags, Elizabeth Montes’ nut-bark creations are crammed with unconventional ingredients such as fiery chiles, pumpkin seeds and dried corn. The salted caramels in bittersweet chocolate have built an impressive following of fans.
Ruby Jewel ice cream sandwiches
Available at Hotlips Pizza and other locations
Forget pizza: The best ice cream within walking distance of campus is hidden in a low-profile freezer you’ve probably walked by without noticing. Ruby Jewel is a local company that started small, hawking these giant sandwiches at the Portland Farmers Market. Thin, chewy homemade cookies are bookended by amazingly creamy old-fashioned ice cream, in flavors like espresso, peanut butter and mint.
Fat Elvis cupcake
407 N.W. 17th Ave.
Cupcakes here come in two sizes, encouraging sampling. With more than a dozen flavors a day, that’s a lucky thing. The Elvis is banana pound cake with chocolate chip, topped with an incredibly creamy peanut and chocolate ganache. They ought to bottle the stuff. Flavors change daily, and other highlights include toasted coconut and big top, a yellow butter cake with chocolate chips and cream cheese frosting. Try anything with hot fudge.