Sellwood-Moreland is a proud Southeast enclave, keeper of the city's history through landmarks and the antiques trade, and cloistered away by greenspace and the river on the city's southern edge. The neighborhood is currently in a sort of Golden Age, anchored by a string of quality shops and restaurants along its commercial corridors on Milwaukie, 13th, and 17th Avenues. The demographics were traditionally lower-middle to middle class, and most of the neighborhood's icons hold on, even as antique shops shutter, and condos and home prices go up. Local displacement doesn't garner the sympathy of Albina, St. Johns, or even Lents, but the change is felt either way as boutique shops roll in and antiques roll out.
Straits Kitchen, 1112 SE Tacoma St.
Bible Club, 6716 SE 16th Ave.
Stars Antiques Mall, 7030 SE Milwaukie Ave.
Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge, Southeast Milwaukie Avenue and Mitchell Street.
Oaks Amusement Park
7805 SE Oaks Park Way, 503-233-5777, oakspark.com.
Keeping your lunch down may be a challenge at Oaks Amusement Park, built in 1905 to coincide with the Lewis and Clark Exposition and once dubbed the "Coney Island of the Northwest." The north end of Portland's sole amusement park midway features a grand old wooden skating rink and a separate arena which hosts the Rose City Rollers, a women's roller derby team which has sent opponents skittering into the boards since 2004.
6034 SE Milwaukie Ave., 503-232-1826, portlandironhorse.com. Lunch-dinner daily.
This taverny Tex-Mex spot is one of the most welcoming restaurants in Sellwood, in part because it's less restaurant than it is Sellwood's greatest specialty: a dive bar. The encyclopedic, cheese-heavy menu includes everything from Dungeness crab enchiladas to a grilled chicken and pesto quesadilla. $.
Jade Bistro, Teahouse and Patisserie
7912 SE 13th Ave, 503-477-8985, jadeportland.com. Lunch-dinner Monday-Saturday.
This two-floored Vietnamese cafe/confectionary/teahouse has been a hit going on eight years, serving down a daily line of patrons with a deep and wide menu ranging from banh mi and salad rolls, to noodle entrees and a glass case of delicate macarons. $.
San Felipe Taqueria
6221 SE Milwaukie Ave., 503-235-8158, sanfelipetaco.com. Lunch and dinner Monday-Saturday.
San Felipe Taqueria, a fiery red box on an otherwise bleak stretch of Sellwood, is a world of never-ending chips and salsa for $1.75, $2.25 soft tacos with housemade tortillas, and $6 house margaritas that come in glasses the size of small bowls. $.
1112 SE Tacoma St., 971-325-7323, straitskitchenpdx.com. Lunch and early dinner Thursday-Tuesday.
Our third favorite cart of 2016, Straits Kitchen showcases the traditional cuisine of the Baba-Nyonya, descended from generations of Malays and Chinese. The laksa lemak noodle bowl is commensurately soul-warming: sweet-and-spicy coconut-curry broth, fried tofu, chicken and vegetables floating amid a tangle of thin rice vermicelli. $.
7835 SE 13th Ave., 503-946-1732. Lunch-dinner Tuesday-Sunday.
Wei Wei's beef noodle soup is one of our new favorites. It joins thick cuts of meat with hand-pulled noodles in a deep-brown broth that is meatier, richer and more excessive than that in any pho or British meat pie—a stock so dense the very marrow swirls within. $.
6716 SE 16th Ave., 971-279-2198, bibleclubpdx.com. Closed Monday-Tuesday.
Bible Club is a wildly and wonderfully expensive Prohibition-themed museum of bar craft, with bartenders equally serious about housemade tonic and edible flower garnishes, plus a very serious chef—Anthony Cafiero, formerly of Ración—turning out amazing French onion soup and lovely potatoes with "melted leeks."
6903 SE Milwaukie Ave., 503-232-4447, kaysbarpdx.com. Afternoon-late Monday-Friday, brunch-late Saturday-Sunday.
This warm, wood-paneled corner bar is too nice to be a dive and has served Sellwood's denizens from its central perch since 1934. It's also purportedly haunted. Three deaths have occurred on premises since Kay's opening, and there are whispers of a ghost photographed.
Sellwood Public House
8132 SE 13th Ave., 503-736-0179, sellwoodpublichouse.com. Afternoon-late Monday-Friday, brunch-late Saturday-Sunday.
Lamenting the Black Cat's destruction is a neighborhood pastime, but the Sellwood Public House fills the gap well. Up a long flight of stairs, the pub itself is two distinct spaces: a cozy sports bar and a game floor/concert floor to rival what was lost down the street.
7919 SE 13th Ave., 503-234-9600, tildeshop.com.
This bright blue modern space is densely stocked with a rotating stream of tastefully curated local art, gifts, accessories and home decor. The walls are lately adorned with Don Lee's woodmaps, which feature angled wood inlays of the Columbia and Willamette winding through Portland.
6664 SE Milwaukie Ave., 503-683-1836, buttercraftpdx.com.
Buttercraft is the rare neighborhood deli that specializes in exquisitely blended butter loaves in flavors like Once Upon a Thyme and Hedgehog—laced with ground pepper and balsamic, not hedgehogs. A handy stash of local goods and wine is also on hand, along with a backyard patio added just in time for summer.
1226 SE Lexington St., 503-505-9344, cloudcapgames.com.
Family-friendly is not as common an adjective for game stores as one would think. Yet Cloud Cap is exactly that, with a wide selection of board games—and summer camps for kids who want to learn card or role-playing games—packed into a tidy, colorful space.
Stars Antiques Mall
7030 SE Milwaukie Ave., 503-235-5990, starsantiques.com.
The mall is more of a compound, really, with Stars Antiques shops taking up both sides of Milwaukie Avenue just south of Bybee. Stars is the Queen Bee of Sellwood's formidable if diminished antiques trade, a warren of vintage maintained by well over 100 dealers.
Wilhelm's Portland Memorial
6705 SE 14th Ave., 503-236-4141, wilhelmportlandmemorial.com.
Described by Chuck Palahniuk as a "city of the dead", this sprawling mausoleum is a mishmash of architectural styles, with murals visible from Springwater Corridor. The Rae Room—an ornate marble tomb of a business magnate and his second wife—is open to the public for an hour and a half each year on Memorial Day. Keep Portland weird. Forever.
In Multiple Locations:
Collage, 7907 SE 13th Ave.
Killer Burger, 8728 SE 17th Ave.
Laurelwood Public House, 6716 SE Milwaukie Ave.
Lompoc Brewing Oaks Bottom, 1621 SE Bybee Blvd.