Porter's Pub, Keizer

Porter's Pub has since undergone several changes of names and ownership

Briefly, I thought about calling this post, "The good, the bad and the worn out", but reconsidered after sleeping on our experience. Porter's may not be the most up to date locale, but it did have it's good points.

On a recent evening, N and I ventured out to Porter's Pub after receiving a tip that they served up some delicious fish and chips. The pub is located in a Keizer strip mall on the corner of Dearborn and River Road North on the NE side of the street. The two of us decided to eat in the family section instead of the bar. There were several young men enjoying a loud friendly get together in the bar and we opted to sit where we could hear each other. The pleasant waitress tending the front area, brought us a pair of tired looking paper menus and asked us what we'd like to drink. She volunteered that they offer an impressive list of microbrews. It's not an out of the ordinary list, but I was impressed with the number. When we said the Deschutes "Hop in the Dark", sounded good, she offered to bring us out a couple of tastes. And what a big taste it was--both in quantity and flavor.

I filled N in on the tip about the fish and chips and then spotted the specials board from my seat. The honey barbecue chicken wrap sounded like it was worth a try. While we waited for our orders to arrive, we chatted and listened to all of the variations of the f-word the young men were finding to use. I'm thinking that bringing kids into the family area after 6:30pm might be a risk.

When our dinner arrived, I couldn't help noticing how different N's fish looked from a typical order of fish and chips. Not in a bad way (other than the pale color), just made me think they definitely make it themselves. While the tarter sauce tasted like it was house-made, the fries were not. I didn't get much feedback from N, other than "it's okay". I reached over for a bite. The coating had a nice combination of spices that didn't overwhelm the fish, but the overall mouth feel and texture led me to believe the fish was overcooked in oil that wasn't hot enough. I don't think he'll be craving this particular variation in the future.

My wrap was filled with fresh ingredients, and thankfully not overstuffed. There was a nice balance of vegetables to the cheese and chicken and sweet barbecue flavor. Overall, with the coleslaw, the special made for a nice meal--even though I shared a few bites with N.

I've heard Porter's Pub is a favorite with several Salemites. What's your favorite thing to order? And has anyone had their Shepherd's Pie?
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4820 River Road North
Keizer, OR 97303-4538
(503) 393-3269


Chuck Bradley said...

It is interesting how one pair of eyes sees "worn out" while another see something else altogether! Here are my opening sentences from a Porter's review I wrote, on another site, back in March of this year: "I love the not-so-new feel of 60's-70's places like this. You'll sit in sturdy oak captain's chairs that have the kind of appeal that only years of 'experience' can bring." LOL!

And, while I seem to be on a contrarian bent, I think Porter’s is one of the better Pub Grub joints in the area. Their Sandwich Meats are all real. Not the chewed and glued stuff so many places serve. And their Burgers are made with fresh hand formed patties. I’ve never been disappointed by one here. They’re not Willamette Burger Co quality, but I’d put them on a par with Stone Front’s. Another memorable lunch here was a Corned Beef Sandwich and a bowl of excellent Navy Bean Soup.

Patricia, whom I get as my server whenever possible, is as good as it gets.

I will agree that it is probably not a good place for kiddies, even in the “family section”. Although the concept of a family section in a bar has always struck me as more than a little oxymoronic.

As always, good review KandN! Thanks.

KandN said...

Chuck, I think each year I become more critical. Either it's because of the mood I'm in or maybe it's because I know what's possible.
Push, push, push, is sometimes how I envision eatsalem.
"You can do it. Try a little harder. Give it your all. Do your best."
Sandwich meats are important. I'm glad to hear Porter's knows that. My wrap was tasty. The onions were a nice touch.
A regular steam cleaning of carpets is also important, as well as making sure paper menus are retired as soon as they're not longer presentable.
But you're right. One pair of eyes can see the good another misses.
And that's a good thing.

donald said...

I honestly liked porters the few times I went there. I know they recently have new owners or management or whatnot. Great Review!

Anonymous said...

This past Sunday me and a few frends thought that Porters would be a good place to stop for breakfast. I was very disapointed with the quality of the food. Small things like hashbrowns cooked to black, eggs over done, gravy so cold it was sent back, eggs benedict with a fried hard egg. I rate breakfast here at this time minus 5