Everyone who's anyone in Portland knows about/has eaten at/has reviewed on their food blog Local 188. And for good reason. So here's the obligatory review, and I apologize in advance for the photography (or lack thereof)... I was a little, how do you say, drunk.
M and I have dined at Local three times now and have come away with a more favorable impression each time we do. Our favorite appetizer has been the grilled moro flat bread ($3), that comes with a huge dollop of herbed, whipped butter (as best I can tell that's what it is). The second time we dined, I had the sopa de la noche ($5), which was cream of mushroom.
I liked it, M did not- he said it was unremarkable. However, he and I both enjoyed the braised short ribs ($13). They were soft and well flavored, although I got a bite of something with the grossest texture- like crunchy, but spongy fried fat. I actually had to spit it out into my napkin, and I hardly ever encounter something I can't choke down.
On the aforementioned night, we sat at the bar and had nice service- the bartender was knowledgeable about the menu and didn't mind stopping to answer our questions, even though the bar was pretty busy.
On our most recent visit, we scored a table after about a ten minute wait at the bar, without a reservation, kinda late on a Saturday night (nineish?). So I was happy. M and I again shared the flatbread to start, and then shared the salad special and the steak special. The steak was a sirloin (actually cooked rare, the way we ordered it, yay!), with Yukon gold mash and asparagus.
Each time we dine at Local, we find that we come away having had some awesome food, for a reasonable price (our bill, including drinks, averages around $60). I have heard complaints about the service from other reviewers, but we have never personally experienced any hiccups. However, we are pretty low-maintenance diners, preferring to be left alone- as long as our drinks are full! Local is definitely one of the hip spots of Portland, and from what I've seen so far, the hipsters are definitely on to something here.