Fight Club author and superstar Chuck Palahniuk doesn't live in Portland anymore—he's a ways down the Columbia Gorge. But he's still perhaps the city's best-known tour guide; he was asked to pick his top three Portland tourist attractions for a Seattle TV news station last week.
Even if you've lived here a while, you probably haven't been to any them.
In what is possibly the first list that doesn't include Voodoo Doughnut, Salt and Straw or Powell's Books, Palahniuk's top three were the Kidd's Toy Museum, the Portland Memorial Mausoleum, which he called "a fantastic city of death," and the Gladstone thrift store Red, White and Blue. For dinner, he suggests the very fancy, velvety Wilf's at the train station,
"People who love the Red, White and Blue will hate that I'm talking about it," he says. "Because it is such a kept secret." And you can't actually visit the mausoleum, which is no longer open for the public.
Palahniuk has suggested these three spots before. He wrote about them all in his book Fugitives and Refugees, which we revisited 10 years later in a cover piece commemorating Palahniuk's surprisingly long-lived guide to the lesser known parts of Portland. He also suggested many of the same spots in a a 2016 Wired article.