3538 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 206-4757, themapleparlor.com. Afternoons and evenings Tuesday-Sunday.
We must have reached peak dietary restriction in Portland, right? Thus, Hawthorne's new Maple Parlor, "an inclusive sundae bar" that upgrades the old Swirl space with a selection of eight frozen desserts ranging from old-fashioned full-fat ice cream to paleo-friendly coconut-milk froyo, with gluten-free, vegan and diabetic options in between. The signature flavor is maple, which conjures in my mind a sticky-sweet and vaguely Canadian mess. But the maple flavor here is soft and light, almost woody, and works very well with the available toppings—especially with pumpkin whip, a squirt of peanut butter sauce and a spoonful of candied bacon.Yup, maple and bacon. Remember that combo? It's a Portland classic, harking back to simpler times in these parts.