It was the first sunny day in years… or so it seemed! As that bright yellow orb in the sky showed off its stuff on a fine Northwest afternoon, over 100 of Portland ‘s Elite (aka “The Yelpers Who Brunch”) came out from hiding for an unforgettable spring-time soiree down by the river at Portland’s sexiest waterside restaurant: Aquariva! And for the first ever Portland Yelp brunch elite event, this one was a doozy.
Upon entering the spacious (and gorgeous) upstairs loft at Aquariva replete with sweeping views of the mighty Willamette, the sun-kissed Yelpers were greeted with morning’s (or early-afternoon’s) best friend – glasses of bloodies and mimosas! Well, not exactly. They were greeted with glasses of Liquid Vodka and champagne, and sent over to the most massive bloody Mary/mimosa bar you’ve ever seen (and they do this every Sunday)! The first round of bloody glasses even had celery-water ice cubes!
Peeps in the 503 love to DIY, so there’s no question Yelp’s finest were in high heaven choosing from hot or not bloody mix, then adding a slough of seasonings like pepper, celery salt, cayenne, and crushed pepper. Next up on the bar was a choice of fresh or creamed horseradish followed by an assortment of pickled beans, asparagus, cucumbers and the like. But it didn’t stop there. Oh no. There were pickled eggs, shrimp spears, bacon, and all sorts of tip-toppings to choose from. It was a veritable salad bar. And for the kids with the bubbly, a choice of mimosa-making juices such as blood orange fit the bill perfectly.
Those taking the road less crimson were sated with “Delicious” (yup, that’s what they were called) cocktails made with Lavishmint vodka, pineapple and sprite… a concoction crafted on demand by Aquariva’s talented bartenders that proved quite popular. And last, but definitely not least, the hop-heads in the room were treated to a selection of Bridgeport’s local Portland brews, including their delicious Kingpin Red, Blue Heron Pale Ale, and Hop Czar Imperial IPA. Our partners spared no expense!
But enough about the cocktails… oh yeah, there was brunch food too! Aquariva’s top man Andy Arndt concocted a fine spread of comestibles that showcased their Sunday brunch menu. Generous bites of the Chorizo, Spinach & Roast Pepper Frittata, Coffee Cake with Jams & Sweet Butter, Mini Blue Corn Pancakes with Bourbon Syrup (vegan), Mini PBJ French Toast morsels, and an Egg & Truffle Scramble served up in spoons helped cushion the blow of all this mid-day drinking.
After a few rounds at the bloody buffet and stuffed full of food, the crowd got to mix and mingle and meet those faces behind the profile pictures. From the outdoor patio overlooking the river to the cozy fireplace room in the back, P-town’s most hard-core Yelpers partied on into the afternoon – all decked in Yelp sunglasses! It was a bloody good time. Brunches of fun, in fact. And the Yelp Elites surely made the mimost of it!
A huge thanks go out to the folks without whom this would not have been possible: Kip, Andy, and the whole Aquariva Crew; Meghan from NWDistillers for the Lavishmint and Liquid; Janessa and Bridgeport for the awesome beer; Crystal for the mean help on setup; and of course the most important part of everything we do here – the Portland Yelp Community – the best community in the whole world.
Don’t believe me? Check the photos and the reviews!
Until the next event…
Don “Brunchmaster” B.