About Ava Gene's

3377 SE Division St
Portland, OR 97202
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Ava Gene’s is a neighborhood place, located on Division Street in Southeast Portland. Our restaurant serves rustic cuisine, features an extensive Italian wine list and offers cocktails focused on & inspired by the regions of Italy. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Italian

Hours of Operation:
Sunday: 4:30pm-10pm
Monday-Thursday: 5pm-10pm
Friday: 5pm-11pm
Saturday: 4:30pm-11pm

Cross Street:
SE 34th Avenue

Dress Code:
Smart Casual

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(971) 229-0571

Website:
http://avagenes.com/

Executive Chef:
Joshua McFadden

Additional:
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Chef's Table, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Wine

Restaurant Photos

Ava Gene's
Ava Gene's
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Ava Gene's
Ava Gene's
Ava Gene's
Ava Gene's
Ava Gene's
Ava Gene's
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Ava Gene's
Ava Gene's
Malted Vanilla Gelato
Pane Borlotti Beans, Olive Oil And Rosemary
Apples, Cabbage, Leeks And Cheese
Spaghetti With Cherry Tomatoes And Almonds
Tomato, Peach And Basil Salad
Ribeye
Rigatoni
Cucumbers, melon, colatura, mint, chiles, hazelnuts
Panna Cotta
Carrots, quinoa, cashews, honey vinegar
Celery, almonds, dates, parmigiano-reggiano
Meyer Lemon Sorbetto
Paccheri, Lamb Ragü, Chicories
Fettucine, lamb ragu in bianco, radicchio
Tomatoes, peaches, basil, pistachios, Grove 45 olive oil
Shrimp And Squid Piatti
Tuscan Cavalry
Meatball Monday Garganelli
Burrata
Burrata, corn, husk cherry walnuts, jalapeño, focaccia
orecchiette, pork sausage, collards
Pane Nduja & Pane with Fresh Sheeps Cheese & Nettles
Affettati Piccolo
Chocolate sorbet, hazelnut praline and espresso gelato
tre scelte dai giardini
Cannoli
Roasted Peanut Gelato
Carta Di Musica
Fritti
Ziti, Zucchini Pesto, Sungolds, Basil
Bucatini

Ava Gene's Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.7

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.6

ambience

4.4

value

4.0

noise

Moderate

89% would recommend it to a friend

Loved For

Most Booked
Portland / Oregon
Italian
Portland
Most Booked
Portland
Best Restaurants in SE Portland ›

Fit for Foodies (126)
Special Occasion (104)
Neighborhood Gem (87)
See All
Romantic (68)
Notable Wine List (66)
Hot Spot (54)
Local Ingredients (28)
Creative Cuisine (19)
Good for Anniversaries (18)
Good for Groups (18)
Good for a Date (16)
Worth the Drive (14)
Handcrafted Cocktails (12)
Authentic (11)
Vibrant Bar Scene (11)
Open Kitchen (11)
Seasonal (10)
Good Vegetarian Options (9)
Cozy (9)
Good for Birthdays (8)
Late-night Find (7)
Bar Seating (7)
Casual (7)
Family Style (7)
Healthy (6)
Modern Decor (6)
Fun (6)
Great for Outdoor Dining (6)
Business Meals (5)
Tasting Menu (5)
Comfort Food (4)
Kid-friendly (4)
Happy Hour (3)
People Watching (3)
Wood Oven (2)
Molecular Gastronomy (2)
Organic (2)
Great for Lunch (2)
Pre/post Theatre (1)
Great for Brunch (1)
Gluten Free Options (1)
Tapas (1)
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1069 reviews
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All dishes were too salty. We actually ...

 
 (Los Angeles)
·Dined 5 days ago

All dishes were too salty. We actually sent the linguini and mussels back because it was overly salty.

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food2
ambience2
service2
value1

Look no further for great Italian. If y ...

vip
 (San Francisco)
·Dined 5 days ago

Look no further for great Italian. If your loooking for fresh innovative dishes with a great wine list than look no further. There is a reason it is hard to get a reservation, because it is always consistently great! The negroni is a must. Cheers!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Absolutely love this place. It seems a l ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on September 21, 2016

Absolutely love this place. It seems a little lame to rave about a salad, but holy goodness the Tuscan Cavalry salad was fantastic. Can't get enough of Ava Gene's

Tags: Bar Seating, Fun, Good for Birthdays, Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies, Hot Spot, Seasonal, Neighborhood Gem, Family Style, Cozy, Comfort Food, Romantic, Special Occasion, Notable Wine List, Good for Anniversaries, Business Meals
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Outstanding food and service. Excellent ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on September 19, 2016

Outstanding food and service. Excellent wine selection. Only very slight negative would be portion sizes. The four of us split everything (two salads and two entrees), and found all plates to be a bit on the small side. Just a word to the wise if you are hungry! Otherwise, this was an epic dining experience!

Tags: Local Ingredients
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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

Excellent. We were celebrating and anniv ...

vip
 (Portland)
·Dined on September 19, 2016

Excellent. We were celebrating and anniversary and were greeted with congratulations by both the host and the server. They also gave us complimentary glasses of prosecco to celebrate.

Delicious meal, everything we had was absolutely amazing.

Will definitely be back for our next special occasion.

Tags: Open Kitchen, Notable Wine List, Handcrafted Cocktails, Romantic, Good for Birthdays, Good Vegetarian Options, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Cozy, Bar Seating, Fun, Good for a Date, Creative Cuisine, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

This restaurant offers the perfect dinin ...

vip
 (Portland)
·Dined on September 18, 2016

This restaurant offers the perfect dining experience. It has excellent curb appeal, atmosphere, bar, kitchen bar seating and service. The food is unique and delicious. The plates are well priced. The staff is knowledgeable and friendly. They also have a wine steward who is certainly a pro. It's definitely one of Portland's best restaurants.

Tags: Romantic, Good Vegetarian Options, Local Ingredients, Fit for Foodies, Good for Anniversaries, Open Kitchen, Cozy, Notable Wine List, Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

We decided on Ava Gene's to celebrate my ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on September 17, 2016

We decided on Ava Gene's to celebrate my parents' 50th Anniversary and it was perfect. The only downside is the noise level but the food, service and special feeling did not disappoint!

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for a Date, Worth the Drive, Creative Cuisine, Happy Hour, Handcrafted Cocktails, Bar Seating, Fit for Foodies, Good for Anniversaries, Notable Wine List
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

Took some out of town chef friends who h ...

vip
 (Miami)
·Dined on September 16, 2016

Took some out of town chef friends who had never been before and they loved it just as much as we always have.

Tags: Good for Groups, Good Vegetarian Options, Healthy, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Over-rated in all aspects.

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on September 15, 2016

Over-rated in all aspects.

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food3
ambience4
service4

Dinner at Ava Gene's was amazing! The s ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on September 14, 2016

Dinner at Ava Gene's was amazing! The service was attentive without being over-bearing and the food was fantastic. This might not be the best option if you're budget conscious but I felt it was a great value for a terrific dining experience. Delicious food, gorgeous space, superlative service.

Tags: Authentic, Local Ingredients, Neighborhood Gem, Cozy, Casual
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

We had an incredible anniversary meal! W ...

 
 (San Francisco)
·Dined on September 14, 2016

We had an incredible anniversary meal! We were even gifted two glasses of complimentary champagne to celebrate! So sweet! Staff was great, attentive and relaxed. They made our experience so enjoyable! Food was delicious! My husband is Italian so he's hard to impress but he told me afterward that he wanted to bring his parents next time, that is a five star review as they never go out to Italian!! Everything we ordered was yummy and we will be back!

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food5
ambience5
service5

It's an excellent restaurant with great ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on September 13, 2016

It's an excellent restaurant with great service. All four of us enjoyed our experience. I just wish the fish I ordered had been ahi, instead of albacore. The chef did a great job preparing it though.

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Good for a Date, People Watching, Handcrafted Cocktails
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food4
ambience3
service5
value4

The appetizer, salad and pasta dishes we ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on September 13, 2016

The appetizer, salad and pasta dishes were amazing!!! If I go again I plan to repeat those courses and skip the main course options.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion, Cozy, Open Kitchen, Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies
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food4
ambience5
service5
value3

A really wonderful evening with outstand ...

 
 (New York Area)
·Dined on September 12, 2016

A really wonderful evening with outstanding food and service. Will definitely head back!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Worth the Drive, Open Kitchen, Good for a Date, Healthy, Local Ingredients, Business Meals, Notable Wine List, Special Occasion, Seasonal, Casual, Romantic
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

We had a delicious meal in celebration o ...

 
 (Seattle)
·Dined on September 11, 2016

We had a delicious meal in celebration of our wedding anniversary. We especially enjoyed the creative salad offerings--they were fresh and delicious. Our server took excellent care of us without being intrusive. All in all a lovely evening!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Authentic, Notable Wine List
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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

Ava Gene's was recommended by a friend a ...

 
 (Washington DC)
·Dined on September 7, 2016

Ava Gene's was recommended by a friend as one of the best restaurants in Portland. It did not disappoint! We loved it so much we dined there two nights in a row. We have traveled all over the world and the young chef at Ava Gene's is as talented as any we have come across. The pasta was as good as one what finds in Italy. The tuna was delicious. Also loved the pole bean and little gem salads. Desserts also superb. If you only have to pick one restaurant to try while in Portland, make it this one.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Romantic, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Birthdays, Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Good for Anniversaries, Local Ingredients, Hot Spot, Authentic, Cozy, Creative Cuisine, Fun, Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

My NEW favorite restaurant in Portland. ...

vip
 (San Francisco)
·Dined on September 7, 2016

My NEW favorite restaurant in Portland. Wait staff was very knowledgable on wine pairings

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Good for Anniversaries, Modern Decor, Fun, Healthy, Creative Cuisine, Authentic, Notable Wine List, Good for a Date, Open Kitchen, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Absolutely my favorite restaurant in tow ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on September 7, 2016

Absolutely my favorite restaurant in town. We dine frequently and are never, ever disappointed.

Tags: Modern Decor, Bar Seating, Good for a Date, Local Ingredients, Handcrafted Cocktails, Seasonal, Creative Cuisine, Wood Oven, Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Worth the Drive
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

We just spent a week in Portland, and th ...

 
 (Minneapolis)
·Dined on September 6, 2016

We just spent a week in Portland, and this meal at Ava Gene's was the biggest disappointment of all the meals we had. Everything was ok (except the cold spaghetti and meatballs we had to send back), but nothing was worthy of the great reviews I've read online. Maybe it used to be better than it currently is?

I know it's an Italian restaurant, but there weren't even any Oregon wines or beers on the menu...seems like that would be a given.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food1
ambience3
service3
value2

Generous in salt

vip
 (New York Area)
·Dined on September 5, 2016

Generous in salt

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food3
ambience4
service3

Very good food and great service. There ...

vip
 (Nashville)
·Dined on September 3, 2016

Very good food and great service. There are daily specials/meat options that may be more appealing to your palate. I suggest calling the week before to see what each day has planned. We were looking forward to some plates that were on the website, but not offered on the day we scheduled reservations.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Good for a Date, Modern Decor
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

The food was very good, but our service ...

 
 (San Francisco)
·Dined on August 31, 2016

The food was very good, but our service was incredibly spotty. Drinks were not brought for long periods of time. Our entrees came before our salads! I was so excited to come here, but it was very disappointing.

Tags: Organic, Romantic, Modern Decor, Cozy
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food4
ambience4
service2
value3

Amazing, incredible awesome food was per ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on August 31, 2016

Amazing, incredible awesome food was perfect. Server Ben was so helpful and kind everything was n time.my perfect dinner

Tags: Local Ingredients, Creative Cuisine, Good for Anniversaries
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

Food was delicious and tasty - everythin ...

 
 (Houston)
·Dined on August 30, 2016

Food was delicious and tasty - everything we tried was fresh and delicious. We ate at the bar and the staff was very well versed in the local foods and the foodie culture of Portland. Also, loved the vibe and music at this place.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

On of the best meals in Portland. Everyo ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on August 30, 2016

On of the best meals in Portland. Everyone in our party loved the drinks and food. Even though the restaurant was packed, our servers excellent and the wait times for drinks and courses were reasonable. Will definitely be back soon.

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Local Ingredients, Authentic
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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

It was all very good and fun to share di ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on August 30, 2016

It was all very good and fun to share different foods but felt the servings were small and it was a little on the spendy side.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Local Ingredients, Neighborhood Gem, Family Style, Good Vegetarian Options
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food4
ambience4
service5
value3

I'm done with ag. This was probably our ...

 
 (Tahoe)
·Dined on August 29, 2016

I'm done with ag. This was probably our 6th time there, and there service was very hasty and snobby this time. They crammed the four of us into a four top behind a huge vip that felt the need to stretch out, not caring about those around him.

The veggie salads have gone up in price and down in portion size and flavor. I'm usually not one to complain about price too much but this borderline ridiculous. The wine pours are prob 3.5-4 oz (if you're lucky) rather than the standard 5 oz, but they charge you as if you are getting 6 oz....

the Sugo pasta was good, but the clam pasta was bland and quite small for its 22 dollar price tag. No dessert and only a 198 check!

Don't do it.

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food3
ambience2
service2

EVERYTHING about this restaurant was inc ...

 
 (Houston)
·Dined on August 27, 2016

EVERYTHING about this restaurant was incredible! From our wonderful attentive waiter, to the bread service was spot on. Dinner was delicious and when asked for a wine that paired with my dish, I was shocked at how perfect it was. My favorite dinner while visiting Portland.

Tags: Healthy, Bar Seating, Wood Oven, Cozy, Family Style, Romantic, Good for a Date, Worth the Drive
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

We had the Chef's tasting menu: five cou ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on August 27, 2016

We had the Chef's tasting menu: five courses which varied wildly in quality and taste. The charcuterie board that came out first was excellent, but nothing that was truly a standout in comparison to your usual charcuterie board. The jam was amazing, the meat melted in your mouth. The crackers were nothing to write home about.

Next up, the three salads (course 2) and two pastas (course 3) absolutely stole the show. The salad comprised of fresh summer peaches and goat cheese stood out in particular. The mini ravioli in melted butter with corn exploded with unexpected flavor: a summer firework in your mouth, so juicy, so fresh.

Next was a leg of lamb (course 4) that was just so fatty and tendonous that we just couldn't enjoy it. The flavor was very faint, so we stuck with eating the green beans that came on the side and left the lamb be.

Panna cotta, faintly flavored, came in last and least (course 5). Maybe the lamb was so disappointing it was just hard to get back into the swing of things. We'll never know.

Moral of the story: stick to the charcuterie, salads, and pasta here. From our limited experience here, it doesn't seem house-cooked meats or desserts are where they thrive. The extreme difference in quality/taste between the courses was dramatic and disappointing.

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Fit for Foodies, Neighborhood Gem, Local Ingredients, Family Style
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food3
ambience5
service5
value3

Ava Jean's is a true highlight of Portla ...

vip
 (Chicago)
·Dined on August 25, 2016

Ava Jean's is a true highlight of Portland's staggeringly excellent food scene. The lamb with chimichurri and eggplant may have been the best in a lifetime of lambovorianism. And the peach butter and pancetta bruscetta was as memorable. Two minor complaints here, dwarfed by the quality of the mains and starters, are (1) an uninspired desert list (food of this stature needs a pastry chef to complete the experience) and (2) the Italians-only wine list (a pet peeve of mine in the western US where the bounty of local and regional wines speaks for itself). Overall, potently delicious.

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Hot Spot, Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Business Meals
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food5
ambience4
service5
value3

This must be the best restaurant in Port ...

 
 (Los Angeles)
·Dined on August 23, 2016

This must be the best restaurant in Portland. The food is extraordinary and always changing, so you go once and you'll be coming back again and again. The cocktails were unbelievable and the wine was on point. Great service - everyone working had intimate knowledge of the menu and talked freely about it. Pacing was great. Portland eateries are not big on reservations -- I flew in for a work dinner so appreciated that Ava Gene's not only had perfect ambiance for the meeting but also was easy to plan with. Would go back to Portland just to eat here again!

Tags: Special Occasion, Authentic, Late-night Find, Seasonal, Worth the Drive, Fun, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Groups, Local Ingredients, Good for Anniversaries, Good Vegetarian Options, Hot Spot, Handcrafted Cocktails, Healthy, Organic, Romantic, Vibrant Bar Scene, Notable Wine List, Good for a Date, Business Meals
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Fantastic. Every time

vip
 (Portland)
·Dined on August 21, 2016

Fantastic. Every time

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food5
ambience5
service5

After reading some of the recent reviews ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on August 20, 2016

After reading some of the recent reviews, I was concerned we would have inattentive or snobby service, too much noise, cramped tables and overpriced food. Nothing could have been further from the truth. We had an amazing dinner at 9 pm on a Friday night. It was busy with a fairly typical noise level and I noticed a table leaving in the corner, and was seated there upon request (maybe a 3 minute wait and we were actually 5 minutes early).

Our server was seriously one of the best I've ever had. She was super attentive and we allowed her to pick our entire meal and wine. We explained what we preferred, including different wines for each of us by the glass as I wasn't familiar with the Italian wineries on the list. I won't go into great detail about the food other than it was fantastic and we had 6 dishes and split the pana cotta (super yum). The total bill was much less than I had expected and overall my girlfriend and I thought the ambiance and food were superb. I'm puzzled why others have had service issues and negative comments as Ava Gene's pretty much delivered a perfect experience for us.

Tags: Romantic, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Wonderful dining experience and unique m ...

vip
 (Portland)
·Dined on August 20, 2016

Wonderful dining experience and unique mostly vegetable dishes. The one thing we didn't like was cheerfully replaced without charge. A total class act.

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food5
ambience5
service5

Amazing food and service as always! This ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on August 20, 2016

Amazing food and service as always! This is worth the long wait for a reservation! Thank you!

Tags: Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Notable Wine List, Romantic
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

The food was insanely delicious, every b ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on August 19, 2016

The food was insanely delicious, every bite was worthy of another bite. My group did family style and the chef was accommodating to dishes we wanted to try and other dishes we weren't expecting. Keeping our overall meal full of surprise and comfort. I would highly recommend every person I know to try the panne cotta, the texture and flavor was out of this world.

Tags: Romantic, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

We had been looking forward to visiting ...

vip
 (Boise)
·Dined on August 17, 2016

We had been looking forward to visiting Portland and getting a chance to try Ava Gene's. It did not disappoint. My husband and I both have some dietary requirements and we had no problems finding something delicious. Our server was great - when a salad arrived with an ingredient we had trouble with, she made it right and also comped and additional salad (which was even more delicious than the one we ordered). Wine list is super interesting. I only gave 4 stars for food because I didn't love my entree. Not their fault. I have confirmed that i don't love n'duja which was in the dish and labeled on the menu. This restaurant will be added to our list of favorites.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Good for Groups, Fit for Foodies, Notable Wine List, Special Occasion, Hot Spot
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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

Service was definitely off. The food too ...

 
 (Portland)
·Dined on August 17, 2016

Service was definitely off. The food took an inordinate time between courses... We had the family style. When I finally complained they tried to make it right by discounting the check. I would rather pay full price and have the experience I anticipated.

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food3
ambience4
service3

Top notch food.

vip
 (Washington DC)
·Dined on August 16, 2016

Top notch food.

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food5
ambience4
service5

We had burrata, fritti, pork shoulder a ...

 
 (Hawaii)
·Dined on August 16, 2016

We had burrata, fritti, pork shoulder and corn agnolotti - all were excellent. Very tasty Rose Negroni.

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food5
ambience4
service5

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