South by Northwest



North Portland’s Patton Maryland serves up smoked and Southern-style pub fare with a side of kid-friendly service.

As I approached the door of the recently opened Patton Maryland pub carrying a huge mom bag and rain-soaked toddler, a server rushed over to hold open the door for us. I could tell this was going to be a kid-friendly place. Even better: My in-laws had already secured a table, and a high chair and kids’ menus/coloring pages were all set out for us.

We arrived in time to order off the happy hour menu. I tried the cocktail on special — a spin on a Moscow Mule with sweet and spicy ginger beer ($6). My father-in-law selected the happy hour draft beer of the night, a Hefeweizen ($4.50). We also ordered the house potato chips sprinkled with sweet and spicy seasonings ($2) and the fried cauliflower ($4). My 1-year-old loved both of the nibbles. The adults at the table also really liked the romesco sauce that accompanied the cauliflower.

I was very disappointed that they were already out of smoked meatloaf at 5:30 pm on a Saturday evening. I ordered the pimento cheeseburger instead ($12). There are some excellent pimento cheeseburgers in Portland; this iteration did not surpass them, although I loved the paper-thin onion slices. My husband’s smoked chicken plate ($16) was generous in size, but again was just okay. We ordered the kids’ veggie and cheese plate ($3) for my 4-year-old who was in a picky mood. It came with carrots (which she ate), celery (which she didn’t) and cheddar slices (which she mostly played with). It was a good menu option, but it would have been nice to see some steamed broccoli or cauliflower in the mix. My 1-year-old pasta lover made a dent in his kids’ macaroni and cheese ($3.50). The mac and cheese went well with the braised greens I’d ordered with my burger — the greens were too vinegary without a rich and cheesy counterpoint. My mother-in-law was pleased with the celery and apple salad ($9). She also ordered a side of sweet potatoes. They were firm, white sweet potatoes, and they came in a thick syrup of brown sugar and butter. I barely resisted the urge to scoop my finger in the bowl to get the last bits. My father-in-law’s chopped barbecue beef sandwich was puzzling. Unlike the finely chopped beef sandwich he had been expecting, the Patton Maryland sandwich was simply big chunks of beef on bread.

We ended our meal on a high note — with the banana pudding ($5.50) and chocolate cream pie ($6). We’d ordered the desserts to share, but my daughter protested when I tried to pass around the decadent chocolate pie with a thick, cinnamon-graham crust saying, “I thought this was just for me!”

Patton Maryland gets a high score for family-friendliness — another server came over to give my son a smile and a tickle when he was squawking to get out of his high chair, but the food occasionally missed the mark. But because it was so easy to grab a drink and a meal there with the kiddos in tow, I’ll go back.

5101 N Interstate Ave. Sunday to Thursday, 11am-10 pm. Friday and Saturday
11am-late. Minors until 9:30 pm. Happy hour 4 pm-6 pm daily. 

More ’Cue for You

Road Runner BBQ food cart I’ll never forget the time my then 18-month-old daughter ate so much of my husband’s chopped beef brisket plate that he had to go order another serving. Call to order ahead, they often run out. 503-310-2728. Open Wednesday-Sunday. 5205 SE Foster Rd.

Reverend’s BBQ Get the ribs or the messy Good Reverend burger, you won’t be sorry. Spice-averse kiddos can dig into the grilled cheese and apple slices. 7712 SE 13th Ave

Russell Street BBQ  The sides are so satisfying here that three-choice side sampler is your best bet. Keep the kids entertained by making up stories about the flying pigs decorating the restaurant. 325 NE Russell St.


Denise Castañon
Denise Castañon

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