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August 10th, 2005 Laura Shinn | Special Section Stories
 

READER'S POLL - YOU VOTED. WE TALLIED.

Check out the results for WW's BIGGEST READERS POLL EVER!!!

     
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While WW's crew of reporters has been checking out chicken coops and spicy racks all around town, we've been hearing from readers about the places and people that make Portland so, well, weirdly great. This year, we received more than 3,450 total votes in our 2005 Best of Portland Readers' Poll, of which 599 were eliminated because they were multiple submissions or didn't include proper identification.

So we've added and subtracted (well, a fancy computer program did, anyway) to come up with this list of first-, second- and third-place winners, as well as honorable mentions (HM) in selected categories. Overall, you'll recognize some longtime favorites among the top vote grabbers-REI, Music Millennium, Powell's, Moonstruck Chocolate, New Seasons, Pink Martini and Papa Haydn. While there were remarkably few ties, that swanky view spot, Portland City Grill, beat Kells for Best Meat Market by just one vote. Hmmmm.

A couple of interesting notes:

Of all the votes, County Chair Diane Linn didn't score a single one for Best County Commissioner. Since there were only five choices, you might assume at least one voter would have made a keyboarding error-but no dice. We suggest this outcome may qualify her as Most Vulnerable Local Elected Official. Then there's the Mercury's Wm. Steven Humphrey, who was running a close second behind the O's Steve Duin for Best Non-WW Columnist. After Humphrey launched a campaign to encourage his newspaper's readers to vote for him, that's when Duin's lead took off.

Here are the results:

ARTS and ENTERTAINMENT

Best Art Gallery

FIRST PLACE: PORTLAND ART CENTER

You eschewed the traditional Pearl scene and went with the brand-spankin' new Portland Art Center, a five-month-old, by-the-people, for-the-people contemporary art Mecca on the east side. (2045 SE Belmont St., 239-5481)

SECOND: DISJECTA

THIRD: LAURA RUSSO

Best Local Author

FIRST PLACE: CHUCK PALAHNIUK

He still measures up as your favorite of the literati. But here's the trick: True fans know how to pronounce his last name. And we bet you can.

SECOND: URSULA K. LE GUIN

THIRD: JEAN AUEL

HM: PHILLIP MARGOLIN

Best Major Arts Institution

FIRST PLACE: PORTLAND ART MUSEUM

The Portland Art Museum is your No. 1 place to get a culture fix-and we'll bet you can't wait 'til that North Building opens Oct. 1. We'll see you there. (1219 SW Park Ave., 226-2811)

SECOND: OREGON SYMPHONY

THIRD: PACIFIC NORTHWEST COLLEGE OF ART

SHOPPING AND AMUSEMENTS

Best Airline Serving Portland

FIRST PLACE: ALASKA

For quickie service to just about any town in the Pacific Northwest, you know that Alaska Airlines rocks the PDX Int'l. Plus, it's hard to resist that Eskimo face on the tail. Who we think resembles Bob Marley. But that's just us. (www.alaskaair.com)

SECOND: SOUTHWEST

THIRD: JET BLUE

Best Audio Store

FIRST PLACE: BEST BUY

You broke down and professed your undying love for the nationwide chain Best Buy, because in this vast meadow of blue and yellow-clad salesman, your wildest stereo system dreams can come true. (9630 SE 82nd Ave., 777-1200, and other locations, www.bestbuy.com)

SECOND: FRED'S SOUND OF MUSIC

THIRD: CAR TOYS

HM: MAGNOLIA HI-FI

Best Bank

FIRST PLACE: WASHINGTON MUTUAL

It's no secret that Washington Mutual is the best alternative to keeping all your cash in your underpants drawer. Underneath the fee-free checking and no-charge ATM usage, they have heart, dammit. If you could make out with one of their smiley tellers, you would. (800-788-7000, www.wamu.com)

SECOND: PORTLAND TEACHERS CREDIT UNION

THIRD: BANK OF AMERICA

Best Bike Shop

FIRST PLACE: BIKE GALLERY

From fixing flats to trading road-rash stories, the family-owned Bike Gallery is your favorite enabler of your obsession with the two-wheeled worldview. (1001 SW Salmon St.; 4235 SE Woodstock Blvd. and other locations, 222-3821)

SECOND: RIVER CITY BICYCLES

THIRD: COMMUNITY CYCLING CENTER

HM: CITYBIKES

Best Camping/Hiking Gear

FIRST PLACE: REI

You adventuresome readers depend on the good old classic REI to keep you swaddled in SPF-65 hiking shorts and up to speed on the latest in luxury tents. Or non-luxury. It's your choice. (1405 NW Johnson St., 221-1938 and other locations)

SECOND: ANDY & BAX

THIRD: NEXT ADVENTURE

Best Car Dealer

FIRST PLACE: Ron Tonkin

Car Czar Ron Tonkin is the dealer you call when you really, really need an auto fix. Yeah, you can get a Ferrari there. Jealous? (www.tonkin.com)

SECOND: JIM FISHER

THIRD: DICK HANNAH

Best Car Repair

FIRST PLACE: Steve's Automotive

And when the SUV's trannie dies due to overzealous shifting, readers opt to tow it to Steve's Automotive, who will treat your baby with the utmost care and responsibility. (22 NW 14th Ave., 227-4112)

SECOND: RE-BORN AUTOMOTIVE

THIRD: EVERETT STREET AUTOWORKS

Best Clothing for Hip Chicks

FIRST PLACE: BUFFALO EXCHANGE

Style-savvy chicas flock to gently worn clothing boutique Buffalo Exchange to cook up looks that no other hipster can concoct-an important factor to consider when getting your fashion on. (1420 SE 37th Ave., 234-1300; 1036 W Burnside St., 222-3418 and other locations)

SECOND: ANTHROPOLOGIE

THIRD: AMERICAN APPAREL

Best Clothing for the Society Set

FIRST PLACE: NORDSTROM

If it's imperative that you sport the latest Lohan boho ensemble, you know it's likely that Nordstrom will have what you're looking for-or at least a close approximate. (1001 Lloyd Center, 287-2444; 701 SW Broadway, 224-6666; 9700 SW Washington Square Road, 620-0555, and other locations)

SECOND: SAKS FIFTH AVENUE

THIRD: MARIO'S

Best Cookware

FIRST PLACE: KITCHEN KABOODLE

If you need a retro toaster or a bridal-shower gift, the Kaboodle is your choice for cooking essentials. Not to mention that it's just fun to say "kaboodle." (404 NW 23rd Ave., 241-4040; 535 SW 6th Ave., 464-9545; 1520 NE Broadway, 288-1500 and other locations)

SECOND: SUR LA TABLE

THIRD: WILLIAMS-SONOMA

Best Craft or Bead Store

FIRST PLACE: DAVA BEAD

Crafters of the world, unite: Aspiring jewelry designers tell us that Dava Bead is the bee's knees for beads. (1815 NE Broadway, 288-3991; 6357 SW Capitol Highway, 246-1934)

SECOND: THE WHOLE 9 YARDS

THIRD: BEADS FOREVER

Best Cutlery

FIRST PLACE: PORTLAND CUTLERY

You can get kitchen knives...or bowie knives...or swords. At the 100-year-old Portland Cutlery, it's all about the blade, and you wouldn't have it any other way. (536 SW Broadway, 228-2030)

SECOND: WILLIAMS-SONOMA

THIRD: KITCHEN KABOODLE

Best Day Spa

FIRST PLACE: DOSHA

Dear readers, you're so fond of Dosha that you've voted it best day spa for three years in a row! Spill it: Do the massages go above and beyond the call of duty or what? Uh...we're just askin'. (3490 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 231-4993; 2281 NW Glisan St., 228-8280)

SECOND: REJUVENATION DAY SPA

THIRD: AEQUIS

HM: AVALON

Best Doggie Daycare

FIRST PLACE: WAG THE DOG

Wag the Dog is your favorite dog-lovin' sitter, for those times when Fido needs some surrogate love while you're out bringing home the bacon. (2410 SE 50th Ave., 238-0737)

SECOND: UNLEASH YOURSELF

THIRD: NOAH'S ARF

Best Flower Shop

FIRST PLACE: SAMMY'S

Whether it's an "I'm sorry" bouquet or enough rose petals to satisfy your American Beauty fantasy, Sammy's Flowers is your choice for floral fabulousness. (2120 NW Glisan St., 222-9759)

SECOND: CREATIONS BY THE FLOWERGIRLS

THIRD: OLD TOWN FLORIST

HM: TOMMY LUKE

Best Furniture

FIRST PLACE: DANIA

It's affordable and European. Yeah, Dania is a contradiction in terms, but you love it for what it is: a furniture store that can deliver a custom sofa in under three weeks. (1905 NE 41st Ave., 284-0880; 13150 SW Dawson Way, Beaverton, 643-6604)

SECOND: THE JOINERY

THIRD: HIP

Best Hairdresser

FIRST PLACE: BISHOPS BARBERSHOP

The style with which they trim your tresses and mousse your faux-hawk has landed Bishops Barbershop a special place in your heart. We have a sneaking suspicion it has something to do with the free PBR, but who are we to judge? (326 NW 21st Ave.,

274-4100; 210 NE 28th Ave.,

235-2770, and other locations)

SECOND: DOSHA

THIRD: RUDY'S BARBERSHOP

Best Head Shop

FIRST PLACE: THIRD EYE

According to you, the best place, hands down, to build that sweet 6-foot bong (ahh...water pipe) is Third Eye. (3950 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 232-3393)

SECOND: SMOKING GLASS

THIRD: ROSE CITY TOBACCO & PIPE

Best Independent Bookseller

FIRST PLACE: POWELL'S

We're proud to announce that your Portland bookstore allegiance lies, once again, with Powell's. And if it didn't, we'd cry. (1005 W Burnside St., 228-4651, and other locations)

SECOND: ANNIE BLOOM'S

THIRD: READING FRENZY

Best Indie Record Store

FIRST PLACE: MUSIC MILLENNIUM

Leave the iPod at home: Music Millennium beats out the competitors for the second year in a row as the top shop to find records, CDs, tapes, and the ever-neglected category of cassingles. (801 NW 23rd Ave., 248-0163; 3158 E Burnside St., 231-8926)

SECOND: EVERYDAY MUSIC

THIRD: JACKPOT! RECORDS

Best Jeans

FIRST PLACE: LEVI STRAUSS & CO.

We understand that the process of purchasing a pair of well-fitting blue jeans is a sacred one. Your denim church is none other than the traditional Levi Strauss & Co. May they make your butt look fantastic forever and ever. Amen. (2307 NW Westover Road, 229-0501, www.levi.com)

SECOND: DIESEL

THIRD: LUCKY

Best Lighting

FIRST PLACE: REJUVENATION

You're all about Rejuvenation when it comes to home lighting. We agree, because sitting under one of those retro milk-glass fixtures makes us look 10 years younger. We're not kidding. (1100 SE Grand Ave., 238-1900)

SECOND: LUX

THIRD: HIPPO HARDWARE

Best Men's Clothing

FIRST PLACE: NORDSTROM

It's got everything from high-priced disco jeans to snazz-tacular suits; Nordstrom is our guys' favorite haberdashery. (1001 Lloyd Center, 287-2444; 701 SW Broadway, 224-6666; 9700 SW Washington Square Road,

620-0555 and other locations)

SECOND: MARIO'S

THIRD: LOCAL 35

Best Nails

FIRST PLACE: VOGUE NAILS

Want the French-manicured acrylic nails and matching piggies? Vogue Nails is your top spot with the goods to make all 20 fingers and toes happy. (825 NE Broadway, 288-9000; 720 NW 21st Ave.,

827-0131)

SECOND: PORTLAND SPA & BOUTIQUE

THIRD: BLISS SALON

Best Pet Shop

FIRST PLACE: THE HUMANE SOCIETY

You can't resist the tasty treats and luxuries found at The Humane Society's emporium of pet products. (1067 NE Columbia Blvd., 285-7722, www.oregonhumane.org)

SECOND: PETS ON BROADWAY

THIRD: URBAN FAUNA

Best Place to Buy Band Equipment

FIRST PLACE: PORTLAND MUSIC COMPANY

In need of a tower of power? Tambourines? Sheet music for the Carpenters? For those about to rock, you salute Portland Music Company. (2502 NE Broadway, 228-8437; 531 SE Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., 226-3719, and other locations, www.portlandmusiccompany.com)

SECOND: APPLE MUSIC

THIRD: GUITAR CENTER

Best Place to Get a Piercing

FIRST PLACE: BLACK HOLE BODY PIERCING

For the second year in a row, Black Hole Body Piercing sweeps this category as the place to get pricked. (2946 NE Glisan St.,

231-0712)

SECOND: PAINLESS STEEL

THIRD: ADORN BODY ART

Best Place to Get a Tattoo

FIRST PLACE: TIGERLILY

According to our expert readers, Tigerlily is Portland's handiest with a needle and ink. (4620 NE Sandy Blvd., 288-1555)

SECOND: ADORN

THIRD (TIE): ATOMIC ART, INFINITY

HM: ATLAS TATTOO

Best Place to Rent a Video

FIRST PLACE: MOVIE MADNESS

You film buffs are sticking with Movie Madness Video and More as the best rental joint in town-two years running. (4320 SE Belmont St., 234-4363)

SECOND: NETFLIX

THIRD: HOLLYWOOD VIDEO

Best Skateboard Shop

FIRST PLACE: CAL SKATE AND SPORTS

Shredders and Betties alike are down with Cal Skate and Sports, with trucks and decks and wheels a-plenty. (210 NW 6th Ave.,

248-0495)

SECOND: DADDIES BOARD SHOP

THIRD: EXIT REAL WORLD

HM: CAL'S PHARMACY

Best Ski Shop

FIRST PLACE: THE MOUNTAIN SHOP

The Mountain Shop, an ecstasy-inducing three floors of outdoor necessities, is your desired skiing and snowboard pro shop. (628 NE Broadway, 288-6768)

SECOND: NEXT ADVENTURE

THIRD: OREGON MOUNTAIN COMMUNITY

HM: U.S. OUTDOOR STORE

Best Vacuum Cleaners

FIRST PLACE: STARK'S

When it comes to hoovering, Stark's Vacuum Cleaner Sales sweeps the competition. They even sell the Dyson-the (say this with a Brit accent) "first vacuum that doesn't lose suction"-in spite of its, ahem, sucky commercial.

(107 NE Grand Ave., 232-4101)

SECOND: RAINBOW VACUUMS

THIRD: DISCOUNT VACUUMS

Best Vintage Clothing Store

FIRST PLACE: BUFFALO EXCHANGE

It's got vintage fashion, and the hip chicks shop there; there's no denying that the Buffalo Exchange is your couture Mecca. (1420 SE 37th Ave., 234-1300; 1036 W Burnside St., 222-3418 and other locations)

SECOND: RED LIGHT

THIRD: LADY LUCK VINTAGE

Best Jewelry/Watch Store

FIRST PLACE: TIFFANY & CO.

The mysterious superpower of the little blue box reigns supreme: when it comes to diamonds and pearls, Tiffany & Co. is your home base for bling. (330 SW Yamhill St., 221-5565, www.tiffany.com)

SECOND: CARL GREVE

THIRD: SWATCH

Best Workout Spot

FIRST PLACE: 24 HOUR FITNESS 24 Hour Fitness is your choice for shaping up those guns of steel. Because where else can you pump sweaty iron and work the abs at 12:30 am? Where? (1210 NW Johnson St., 222-1210; 1400 SW 4th Ave., 224-2233; 10052 SE Washington St., 252-2447 and other locations)

SECOND: BALLY'S

THIRD: PORTLAND ROCK GYM

HM: CURVES

FOOD AND DRINK

Best Asian RestaurantFIRST PLACE: PHO VAN

When you have a hankering for a pile of pad Thai and a desire for that delectable, yet strangely orange, iced tea, you can quench it only at Pho Van. (1012 NW Glisan St., 248-2172; 1919 SE 82nd Ave., 788-5244)

SECOND: THAI ORCHID

THIRD: TYPHOON!

Best Bakery

FIRST PLACE: GRAND CENTRAL BAKING

Man, you people love the Grand Central Baking. This is the first of three first-place prizes. We hope it doesn't go to GCB's heads. (2230 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 232-0575; 3425 SW Multnomah Blvd., 977-2024 and other locations)

SECOND: ST. HONORÉ BOULANGERIE

THIRD: PEARL BAKERY

HM: KEN'S ARTISAN BAKERY

Best Brunch

FIRST PLACE: MOTHER'S BISTRO & BAR

You will wait in the brunch line at Mother's Bistro & Bar. For hours. In the rain. Because the eggs benedict are that good. (409 SW 2nd Ave., 464-1122)

SECOND: TIN SHED

THIRD: CADILLAC CAFÉ

Best Burger

FIRST PLACE: STANICH'S

Oh, sweet, sweet Stanich's. We're not sure if it's the fried egg on the World's Greatest Hamburger, or the crispy French fries, but Stanich's makes your mouth water. (4915 NE Fremont St., 281-2322; 5627 SW Kelly Ave., 246-5040)

SECOND: KENNEDY SCHOOL

THIRD: HELVETIA TAVERN

HM: HIGGINS

Best Burrito

FIRST PLACE: CHA! CHA! CHA!

Yeah, we agree-the burrito at Cha! Cha! Cha! deserves first-place. But let us ask you this: how quickly can you eat it? Our record is 2.5 minutes. Beat that. (1208 NW Glisan St., 221-2111, and other locations)

SECOND: BAJA FRESH

THIRD: TACO DEL MAR

Best Chocolate-Chip Cookie

FIRST PLACE: GRAND CENTRAL BAKING

And here is where Grand Central Baking re-appears: winner of best chocolate-chip cookie. Do you think there's crack in it? We hear it's that good. (2230 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 232-0575; 3425 SW Multnomah Blvd., 977-2024, and other locations)

SECOND: PEARL BAKERY

THIRD: HELEN BERNHARD

Best Chocolates

FIRST PLACE: MOONSTRUCK

The chocolatiers of Moonstruck Chocolate Cafe put Juliette Binoche in Chocolat to shame, so it's no surprise that this is your preferred proprietor of cocoa bean love. (526 NW 23rd Ave., 542-3400; 608 SW Alder St., 241-0955)

SECOND: GODIVA

THIRD: SEE'S

Best Coffee Shop

FIRST PLACE: STUMPTOWN

Not surprisingly, Stumptown Coffee trumps Starbucks for the second year in a row as your favorite place to pump your veins full of sweet, sweet caffeine. (128 SW 3rd Ave., 295-6144, and other locations, www.stumptowncoffee.com)

SECOND: STARBUCKS

THIRD: RIMSKY-KORSAKOFFEE HOUSE

Best Dessert

FIRST PLACE: PAPA HAYDN

This year, Papa Haydn takes the No. 1 spot, trouncing Pix as your ultimate destination for cakes and confections. (701 NW 23rd Ave., 228-7317; 5829 SE Milwaukie Ave., 232-9440)

SECOND: PIX PÂTISSERIE

THIRD: RIMSKY-KORSAKOFFEE HOUSE

Best Grocery Store

FIRST PLACE: NEW SEASONS

We think it's because it caters to both ends of the food spectrum: You can get gluten-free bread and preservative-laden Skippy crunch at your all-time favorite grocery for two years running: New Seasons. (5320 NE 33rd Ave., 288-3838; 1214 SE Tacoma St., 230-4949 and other locations, www.newseasonsmarket.com)

SECOND: TRADER JOE'S

THIRD: WHOLE FOODS

Best Hangover Breakfast

FIRST PLACE: CUP & SAUCER

No matter what time of day you scrape the sweater off your tongue and amble in, Cup & Saucer will serve you a nice, greasy, vegan-friendly if necessary, breakfast. And you felt they deserved a prize for that. (3566 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 236-6001; 3000 NE Killingsworth St., 287-4427)

SECOND: BESAW'S

THIRD: BEATERVILLE

HM: HOLMAN'S

Best Happy Hour

FIRST PLACE: PORTLAND CITY GRILL

Even though Portland City Grill serves up mojitos for $3.95 from 4:30 to 6:30, the view is really what steals your heart. It's a combination that...sort of makes us horny, to be honest. (111 SW 5th Ave., 450-0030)

SECOND: JAKE'S GRILL

THIRD: BRAZEN BEAN

HM: HENRY'S 12TH STREET TAVERN

Best Hotdog

FIRST PLACE: GOOD DOG/BAD DOG

When it's time for a good frank, you march yourself right over to Good Dog, Bad Dog. We hear the Oregon Smokey rocks the house. (708 SW Alder St., 222-3410)

SECOND: THE DOGHOUSE

THIRD: OTTO'S SAUSAGE KITCHEN

Best Italian Restaurant

FIRST PLACE: IL PIATTO

Il Piatto mollifies the Tony Soprano inside all of us as your preferred Italian trattoria in Stumptown. Just be sure to leave the gumah at home. (2348 SE Ankeny St., 236-4997)

SECOND: GENOA

THIRD: TUSCANY GRILL

HM: CAFFE MINGO

Best Lunch Cart

FIRST PLACE: INDIA CHAAT HOUSE

The India Chaat House wheeled its way into first place as your premier lunch-cart destination. Our question is: How does such a tiny kitchen produce fabulousness of such large proportions? Clearly, these cooks possess magic powers. (804 SW 12th Ave., 241-7944)

SECOND: SHELLY'S HONKIN' HUGE

THIRD: THE WHOLE BOWL

Best Martini

FIRST PLACE: SAUCEBOX

Shaken or stirred, Saucebox reigns as the best slinger of martinis in PDX. OK, it's officially time to bring back the three-martini lunch (well, if they were open for lunch).

(214 SW Broadway, 241-3393)

SECOND: BRAZEN BEAN

THIRD: VAULT MARTINI

Best Mexican Restaurant

FIRST PLACE: TAQUERIA NUEVE

You found your flautas of choice at Taqueria Nueve on East 28th Avenue's restaurant row. Watch the sangria-it's addictive. (28 NE 28th Ave., 236-6195)

SECOND: ESPARZA'S

THIRD: IRON HORSE

HM: NUESTRA COCINA

Best Pizza

FIRST PLACE: HOT LIPS

All pizza is good pizza, but you confirmed that Hot Lips has it goin' on when it comes to a tasty slice. Small sidebar: Is it us, or do you think of reruns of M*A*S*H when you hear the phrase "Hot Lips?" We thought so. (1432 SE 22nd Ave., 595-2342, and other locations, www.hotlipspizza.com)

SECOND: PIZZICATO

THIRD: ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK

HM: FLYING PIE

Best Power Breakfast

FIRST PLACE: MOTHER'S

Not only did Mother's Bistro & Bar secure the top prize for the city's best brunch, it's also the best breakfast over which to strike a deal. The food inspires a curiously swaggering confidence, much like Wheaties did for Bruce Jenner. (409 SW 2nd Ave., 464-1122)

SECOND: BIJOU, CAFÉ

THIRD: HEATHMAN

Best Salads

FIRST PLACE: PIZZICATO

Although Pizzicato also serves pizza, you appreciate the high-performance salads made of crisp lettuce, tomatoes, olives and the generous chunks of bleu-cheese. What better side for a slice? (705 SW Alder St., 226-1007 and other locations, www.pizzicatogourmetpizza.com)

SECOND: OLD WIVES' TALES

THIRD: FARM CAFE

HM: VEGANOPOLIS

Best Sandwich

FIRST PLACE: GRAND CENTRAL BAKING

There it is again. Grand Central Baking takes the prize for best sammie. We considered awarding GCB with a "best all around" prize, but we don't want to be accused of favoritism. (2230 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 232-0575; 3425 SW Multnomah Blvd., 977-2024 and other locations)

SECOND: KORNBLATT'S

THIRD: ROSE'S DELI

Best Steakhouse

FIRST PLACE: RINGSIDE

Readers in touch with their carnivorous side insisted that RingSide Steakhouse fires up the best steaks in Portland. You may leave with a higher cholesterol count, but it's worth it. (2165 W Burnside St., 223-1513)

SECOND: RUTH'S CHRIS STEAK HOUSE

THIRD: EL GAUCHO

HM: ACROPOLIS

Best Sushi

FIRST PLACE: MIO SUSHI

You say that Mio Sushi's raw fish is unparalleled in Portland, which is why night after night, cold, huddled masses shivering in front of the establishment wait patiently for a table. (3962 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 230-6981; 2271 NW Johnson St., 221-1469; 2735 N Killingsworth St., 286-5123)

SECOND: SABURO'S

THIRD: KOJI OSAKAYA

Best Wine Shop

FIRST PLACE: PORTLAND WINE MERCHANTS

Best place to buy buckets of vino? Portland Wine Merchants. They know the difference between shiraz and petite sirah, and you are thankful for their wine wisdom. (1430 SE 35th Ave., 234-4399)

SECOND: EVERYDAY WINE

THIRD: OREGON WINES ON BROADWAY

HM: GREAT WINE BUYS

Nightlife and Music

Best Dive Bar

FIRST PLACE: LOW BROW

The corners are just dark enough for a make-out session, the beers are cheap and so are the women. OK, we're kidding about the women (sort of), but you worship the Low Brow Lounge for its divine diveyness. (1036 NW Hoyt St., 226-0200)

SECOND: SANDY HUT

THIRD: MARATHON TAVERNA

Best Meat Market

FIRST PLACE: PORTLAND CITY GRILL

Not only does the Portland City Grill sport the best happy hour, it also beat out Kells by one point as the best place to score some tail. We told you the view makes us horny. We weren't kidding. (111 SW 5th Ave., 450-0030)

SECOND: KELLS IRISH PUB

THIRD: PGE PARK THIRSTY THURSDAYS' BEER GARDEN

HM: VOODOO LOUNGE

Best Karaoke

FIRST PLACE: THE ALIBI

You've got singing chops, you love tiki-chic and your personal idol is Don Ho; thus, The Alibi is your home base for your budding karaoke career. (4024 N Interstate Ave., 287-5335)

SECOND: CHOPSTICKS

THIRD: GALAXY

HM: BOILER ROOM

Best Lap Dance

FIRST PLACE: ACROPOLIS

Acropolis is your destination for a boobs-n-beer extravaganza-especially if you're in need of a hair-swinging, butt-shakin', buck-nekkid one-on-one dance party. (8325 SE McLoughlin Blvd., 231-9611)

SECOND: UNION JACKS

THIRD: STARS CABARET

Best Late-Night Menu

FIRST PLACE: LE BISTRO MONTAGE

When it's 1 am and the tummy is a-rumbling, readers head straight to Le Bistro Montage and fill 'er up. (301 SE Morrison St., 234-1324)

SECOND: DOUG FIR

THIRD: TACO BELL

Best Local Band

FIRST PLACE: PINK MARTINI

Because who can resist the jazz melange that is the delightful sound of Pink Martini? Not you, dear readers. (www.pinkmartini.com)

SECOND: CROSS-EYED ROSIE

THIRD: PINEHURST KIDS

Best Local Brewery

FIRST PLACE: MCMENAMINS

After the McMenamins' empire dominates the universe, you can say, "I knew them when, and I voted for them in WW's readers' poll, and I still love them, dammit!" (Blue Moon Tavern & Grill, 432 NW 21st Ave., 223-3184, and other locations, www.mcmenamins.com)

SECOND: BRIDGEPORT

THIRD: WIDMER BROS. BREWING

HM: LUCKY LABRADOR

Best Local DJ

FIRST PLACE: DISC JOCKEY GREGARIOUS

When the time comes to get nasty on the dance floor, you say that nobody rocks the wheels of steel quite like Disc Jockey Gregarious. (www.djgregarious.com)

SECOND: MR. ROMO

THIRD: DJ MAKEOUT

Best Mixed Drinks

FIRST PLACE: SAUCEBOX

Yes, you've established the fact that whether it's via martinis or mixed drinks, Saucebox is the premier venue in which to get, um, sauced. (214 SW Broadway, 241-3393)

SECOND: 820

THIRD: SPACE ROOM

HM: BRAZEN BEAN

Best Movie Theater

FIRST PLACE: BAGDAD THEATER

You think the Bros McMenamin are geniuses for creating the whole beer-'n'-flick phenomenon. The Bagdad Theater and Pub is your pick for the top theater in town. That sounds about right, since Entertainment Weekly just voted its sister theater pub the Kennedy School one of the best theaters in the country. (3702 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 236-9234)

SECOND: LAURELHURST

THIRD: CINEMA 21

HM: KENNEDY SCHOOL

Best Music Venue

FIRST PLACE: CRYSTAL BALLROOM

If you had your choice, all bands hitting Portland would play at the Crystal Ballroom...a McMenamins establishment. Anyone see a pattern here? (1332 W Burnside St., 225-0047)

SECOND: DOUG FIR

THIRD: THE ALADDIN

HM: THE ROSELAND

Best Non-Smoking Bar

FIRST PLACE: DOUG FIR

Maybe it's because it's the distinct feeling that Smokey the Bear is lurking about, or maybe it's because the walls seem so...flammable, but nevertheless, Doug Fir is your favorite place to enjoy a drink sans a ciggie. (830 E Burnside St., 231-9663)

SECOND: HIGGINS

THIRD: HOLOCENE

Best Place to Play Pool

FIRST PLACE: MCMENAMINS TAVERN & POOL

Once again, you take your cue from the McMenamins-this time, it's the Tavern & Pool, the best venue to knock balls and handle large sticks. (1716 NW 23rd Ave., 227-0929)

SECOND: UPTOWN BILLIARDS

THIRD: TRIPLE NICKEL

HM: THE RIALTO

Best Place to Spot Celebrities

FIRST PLACE: HEATHMAN HOTEL

According to you, the Heathman Hotel is the hot celebrity hangout. Thanks for the tip-we'll be parked outside there at 2 am tomorrow morning with our paparazzi cameras and a hot latte. Are you in? (1001 SW Broadway, 241-4100)

SECOND: EL GAUCHO

THIRD: BLUEHOUR

Best Restaurant/Bar PatioFIRST PLACE: KENNEDY SCHOOL

McMenamins' Kennedy School dominates once again in the outdoor dining category, and we don't blame you. Once a school quad, it's now a place for imbibing spirits and mowing down burgers, and you love the naughtiness of it all. We do, too. (5736 NE 33rd Ave., 249-3983)

SECOND: VERITABLE QUANDARY

THIRD: PRODUCE ROW

Politics and Media

Best Local Blog

FIRST PLACE: SAM ADAMS

Sam Adams...sigh. He's so dreamy. And brilliant, and good for mankind-you cling to every word as he details his trek to chalk up 100 hours of work at Portland's most common jobs in his blogosphere. We hope he'll be our intern soon. (823-3008, www.commissionersam.com)

SECOND: BLUE OREGON

THIRD: ONE TRUE B!X

HM: PORTLAND MEDIA INSIDER

Best Local State Rep

FIRST PLACE: DIANE ROSENBAUM

You think state rep and Reed grad Diane Rosenbaum represents. The kinda gal who stands up for women's rights, she's all that and a bag of contraceptives. As the Spice Girls would say, "Girl Power!" Well...you get what we mean. (231-9970, www.leg.state.or.us/rosenbaum/home.htm)

SECOND: MITCH GREENLICK

THIRD: MARK HASS

Best Local State Senator

FIRST PLACE: KATE BROWN

Kate Brown is our Senate Democratic leader, and you like her that way. Wait, what's that cliché? If it ain't broke, don't fix it? Yeah... (986-1700, www.leg.state.or.us/brown/home.htm)

SECOND: RYAN DECKERT

THIRD: MARGARET CARTER

Best Member of the City Council

FIRST PLACE: SAM ADAMS

He's slumming with us in North Portland, he's taking on Wal-Mart with two fists, and he's earnestly determined to boost our still-crap economy. And at the end of the day...Sam Adams is still a complete dreamboat. What more can a city ask for? (823-3008, www.commissionersam.com)

SECOND: TOM POTTER

THIRD: ERIK STEN

Best Member of the County Commission

FIRST PLACE: SERENA CRUZ

She was instrumental in issuing same-sex marriage licenses in Multnomah County last year. If you had your way, outgoing commish Serena Cruz would be sainted-the patron saint of equal-opportunity love, if you will. (501 SE Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 600, 988-5216)

SECOND: LISA NAITO

THIRD: MARIA ROJO DE STEFFEY

Best Nonprofit Agency

FIRST PLACE: OREGON FOOD BANK

The Oregon Food Bank stirred up the most inspiration in our readers as the most well-intentioned nonprofit agency. (800-777-7427, www.oregonfoodbank.org)

SECOND: HABITAT FOR HUMANITY

THIRD: FREE GEEK

Best Non-WW Local Newspaper Columnist

FIRST PLACE: OREGONIAN'S STEVE DUIN

You love Steve Duin: his wit, his whip-smart thinking, his mix of topics, and of course, his meticulously groomed moustache. His merits, while fantastic, can be overwhelming. Just power through and enjoy the richness of Duin. (www.oregonlive.com)

SECOND: MERCURY'S WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY

THIRD: OREGONIAN'S MARGIE BOULÉ

Best Radio Station

FIRST PLACE: KNRK

Talk about a makeover: 94.7 KNRK went from lame to fantastic in one year-and you'd like to kiss station director Mark Hamilton for his smooth move. We're pretty sure he wants to make out with you, too. (866-906-9947, www.knrk.com)

SECOND: KOPB

THIRD: KBOO

Did your fave miss the cut? Be sure to vote next year at wweek.com!


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