My favorite Portland restaurant has an unassuming window front on SE Hawthrone. Don’t let that fool you though, what lies inside Iorio Restaurant is the real treat.
Iorio wins points simply for their delicious food. Although it is a little pricey for my intern budget ($16 for an entree), the food is too delicious to pass up. My mantra: “No to daily Starbucks, yes to Iorio dinner.”
Steven found this restaurant on a recommendation from a co-worker for a good date place. And trust me, Iorio is perfect for any occasion. The dining room is small, with rich red walls and old photographs of the Iorio family. Each and every time we go there (it’s become “our” place”) the warm smells and the delightful staff greet you instantly.
The great thing about Iorio is that they have created light, sustainable, and local Italian food, which is hard to find in many Italian restaurants.
Turns out that I am not the only one in love with Iorio. They were voted the 2010 best restaurant of the year by Portland Citysearch.
Last Saturday we dressed up for a cute date night at Iorio. We started with the Monterey Bay calamari, which was voted the best in Portland by the Oregonian. The lightly breaded calamari comes with two house-made dipping sauces, a lemon-preserve aioli (my favorite) and a serano chili vineager (Steven’s favorite). It’s truly delicious. If you love calamari, don’t miss out on this dish!
For dinner I ordered the handmade ravioli of the day. The filling concoction of grilled sirloin, basil, and cheeses was delicious in my perfectly shaped homemade ravioli. The layer of spicy marinara sauce gave the perfect amount of spice to the dish. I always end up getting the ravioli of the day, each time the concoctions are unique and completely delicious.
Steven got the New York strip steak which came with wild mushrooms and wilted greens. I can’t speak for Steven, but I know I kept stealing bites from his meal…It was perfectly seasoned and grilled. The mushrooms had a nice little kick to them as well.
We ended our great date night dinner with their homemade chocolate chip cookies & milk. There is a small delay, as they make each batch to order, but it’s truly worth it.
Eat at Iorio, I promise you will have a great food experience!
Tip: Be sure to get a reservation, they rarely take walk-in patrons because of their popularity! Check them out at Iorio Restaurant