About Ava Gene's
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!
Portland, OR 97202
Hours of Operation:
SE 34th Avenue
$31 to $50
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Chef's Table, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Wine
Ava Gene's Ratings and Reviews
went for hubby's birthday and had a very enjoyable experience--food was vey tasty, maybe a bit heavy on the olive oil, not too many vegetarian dishes but we found a few and all were good. Prices were highish, but not overly so, and we felt very satisfied and not so full we felt sick. That's all fine with me.
This use to be my favorite restaurant in Pdx. From the moment we walked in the service was poor. The hostess questioned if we really had a reservation - she finally found it. The waiter was great but after he took our order we did not see him until he brought the bill. The pace there has always been more relaxed and leisurely but we waited for 20 minutes for the entrees with dirty dishes stacked at the end of the table. Although there was staff going by out table no one would clear them. When someone finally stopped we asked if she could check in our meals she rudely replied they would be out soon. So disappointed as this has been one of my favorite spots. Hopefully it was just an off night.
We brought our son for his first visit to Ava Gene's and it did not disappoint. We had interesting wonderful food and loved it all. Our son is from San Francisco and he compared the freshness of the vegetables to one of his favorite restaurants; STEM. Couldn't have been any better!
Ava Gene's is consistently outstanding in food quality, well made coctails with in-house ingredients, excellent wine list and advice, and a helpful and attentive wait staff. I think it is one of the two or three best in Portland, and definitely the best for Italian cuisine.
Our second visit to Eva Gene's was disappointing after having such a great meal the first time. Even though it was a Monday evening, the restaurant was very crowded and noisy. Our salad with mostly pears and dressing but was missing greens, which would have helped it along. The socki salmon was just okay; the mixture of gains and citrus was a little strange though. Our wine was good but the dessert, a cannoli was bitter and we sent it back. We will go back but probably not right away.
Thankful for the great service we received at Ava Gene's. Out for my husband's birthday and found our server to be prompt and charming. Very kind and accommodating regarding allergies and he was spot on with all menu descriptions. Loved the charcuterie board and the always great burrata.
Made a reservation so no waiting issues. Checking coats was a nice touch. Everyone was nice and informative with all questions. I didn't care for my wine which was bland and a bit overpriced. The berlotti beans on bread was fantastic, maybe the best of the night. The burrata was WAY too salty. Not really sure why but this was almost to the point of being inedible. The spouse liked her entree– tortellini with potato and mint– which was simple but nice. The braseole was good, very tender and flavors melded nicely between the acidity of the greens, tomato gremolata and the meat. The sweet cream gelato was almost too simple with no real flavor.
Always a pleasure to have their world class salami from Brooklyn, scrumptious bread sticks, and the polenta cake for dessert! Yumm! Everything was delicious and the service was terrific as usual. We love coming here for the food, the fine service and the proximity to our home (1 block!!! lucky us!!).
We had a nice meal and a lovely evening at Ava Gene's, but I would not care to go back or recommend it. I don't like the menu much and the price is far too high for the experience. This is not fine dining, it's nicely done everyday food, which I like, but not for the price. The menu is very meat-centric and limited for vegetarians. The cheeses are all US cheeses and not as amazing as many Italian choices. I have a tree nut allergy, and nearly half the dishes have tree nuts. There is not a single green salad. Nearly all the vegetable dishes have heavy, meaty ingredients that make them a poor accompaniment to a pasta with cheese or a meat dish. Overall limited choices. On the plus side, lovely space, wonderful service, and everything was very tasty.
We chose the expensive tasting menu and felt we were getting what wasn't selling well. Very little meat in the short rib pasta, a bowl of unappetizing looking polenta, another bowl of overdone veggies, etc. service painfully slow. Coffee took over 15 mins to get, etc. this use to be a favorite restaurant. Sadly no more.
This was our second dining experience at Ava Gene's and we will be back many more times to this amazing restaurant. The food is out of this world in taste and creative presentation. Everything is just incredible. The service is friendly, helpful and our server made us feel he was genuinely happy we were there at his table. Ava Gene's is one of Portland's very best!
Most of the food was really good- though heavy. Only dish we did not like was the polenta. Also the dessert menu was lacking and the nonalcoholic drinks were overly sweet. The ambience was great though and the pasta dishes were perfect. Nice spot for a special dinner or a date.
I really love this restaurant. The first two times we've been here, we had phenomenal waiters. They walked through the menu and explained (in very delicious detail) a lot of the food. This time, our waiter was very nice and efficient, however, she did not explain the menu in such detail, which was a slight disappointment to me. I might suggest that if customers say they know the menu well or don't need an explanation, they can skip it. But what I really appreciated the first two times was hearing descriptions about the food. With that said, I will be back and still highly recommend Ava Gene's.
Not a regular brunch spot and on New Year's Day it showed. The server was nice but so unfamiliar with the menu items that she literally interrupted questions to tell us she hadn't seen any of the items. A very small portion of eggs was good but at $15 very overpriced. The shrimp and polenta--also a high cost item--had no flavor. The apple zeppoles were also pretty flavorless.
All in all, a disappointing brunch experience.
First time. For dinner on Saturday night. Excellent atmosphere. Bistro-like. Could be anywhere - NYC, Italy, London. True fusion of Italian-inspired menu and NW influence with proudly local produce and meat/seafood. Great wines by the glass. Expensive, but worth it. My duck leg was a little dry. The pasta with mussels only had two mussels. But the food was very, very good none the less. I want to go back. Creative menu with lots of options for family-style dining if you chose. Maybe better to go with another couple or other group, then you can taste more.
As usual this was some of the most creative, yummy and well presented food I've had in Portland area. Every dish was full of diverse flavors which brought something new to the list.
Only missed having a good Oregon wine list as well. The wine list, Italian, was just OK.
Service was excellent and unrushed on even on NYE.
The food was as always well above average. The only weak link was the wine guy/ Tuck in your shirt, and get a rap down! Realizing Portland is the hub if hipsterville, this is a class place! Go take a course in wine stewardship on your way to becoming a sommelier.
Nonetheless, I'll be back a great overall experience.
SO FREAKIN DELICIOUS! We went in there with a very minimal idea of what to expect, and our watress was so helpful breaking the menu down. She also helped suggest dishes, which we appreciate. The Bortolli Beans and Gnocco Fritto were full of flavor and I highly recommend it!
This was our second visit to Ava Gene's and we had another wonderful experience. The food is truly delicious! We started with grilled bread and two salads, the carrot was my favorite with toasted peanuts and mint; the flavors were refreshing and bright! My hubby preferred the beet salad, which was very good as well, the house made croutons offered a nice crunchy contrast to the rest of the salad. For dinner we had the seafood linguini (amazing), and the house made spaghetti; both were very good, the linguini was our favorite, we were pleasantly surprised there were no shells to pick through. For our main course we shared the deep fried black cod, which happened to be the special that evening; it was light, tender, and delicious! The server was very helpful, we debated choosing the chefs tasting menu, after hearing what we were interested in trying she steered us down our own path. The only thing that I don't love about this restaurant is the noise level; the ambiance is otherwise lovely. We look forward to our next visit!
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