This year for the holidays my brother and sister and I chipped in for a big ticket item for my parents and got that out of the way on the Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend extravaganza. So with only my brother and sister really to shop for I wanted to make sure I got their presents out of the way early. You know like December 23rd… In my defense it wouldn’t have made any sense though to buy presents in Miami, pay sales tax, and then have to find room in my suitcase.
It also wasn’t that bad on Christmas Eve Eve in downtown Portland and I had a plan to get in and out. I used the streetcar/MAX to get downtown and around (no dealing with parking for the win!) and planned to stop at the Duck Store and Niketown (plus a later stop at the grocery store). Unfortunately the Duck Store didn’t have all of what I was looking for, so I also made a stop at the Apple Store. Sounds insane I know, but the Apple Store actually wasn’t too bad. It was also really cool to check out their new building in downtown Portland (wow). The Duck Store always takes a while (as you can’t help but browse), but the other places I was in and out reasonably quickly. I also made a quick stop at the City Target and avoided an extra stop later at the grocery store for a handful of things.
I made plans afterwards to have lunch with an old friend from high school. He lives in the Pearl and so we had been texting about a few options nearby. When we met up it seemed to have come down to either Sizzle Pie (gluten-free pizza, hadn’t been to before) or Supa (gluten-free sandwiches, had been to before). My friend was like “oh let’s check out Supa,” but said it in a very casual way. Only later did I come to find out he had been talking about Supa forever. Or as his roommate put it- he hadn’t shut up forever about wanting to try Supa. And here he was trying to act all casual like “oh yeah that could be cool…” He’s very sneaky like that!
I had been to Supa once before in October and had liked it (just didn’t have a chance to blog about it). Their menu is mostly grilled cheeses, sandwiches, salads, and soups. There is gluten-free bread for the grilled cheese/sandwiches and most soups seem to be gluten-free (and clearly marked as such).
Some of you might be able to guess that given these options I would be all about the grilled cheeses! The last time I had tried the Piper meltie, which is aged cheddar, cream cheese, green chili, and a chipotle aioli. The bread is a more heartier, brown bread and really good (especially compared to what I have available to me in Miami). It’s not super whole grain-y or anything though. The Piper was solid and a good combination of flavors. I was happy with the choice, but it didn’t satisfy this always present craving for like a really cheesy, gooey, Kraft singles grilled cheese that I had always envied (and desperately wanted) as a child. That was an unreasonable expectation to have since the grilled cheeses at Supa first off have an appropriate amount of cheese (and good quality cheese at that- no offense Kraft). Then secondly the flavors of the Piper are just way more sophisticated than Kraft singles and white bread haha. Two very different things. Anyone who doesn’t have tragic, gluten-deprivation memories from their childhood will probably find the grilled cheeses at Supa to be really great. And I did as well despite all my childhood gluten baggage… That time I also got a broccoli cheddar soup, which was really good. All their soups are made fresh each day.
This time around I went for a build-your-own-meltie. I got roast beef, cheddar, Swiss, and chipotle aioli. I also got the Ordo meltie, which is aged cheddar, creamy Havarati, baby Swiss, and pesto aioli. My friend got the regular Radix meltie (applewood smoked bacon, aged gouda, carmelized onion) and a cup of tomato soup.
The special meltie I made satisfied the grilled cheese craving a little bit more than the Piper. I think the roast beef helped for sure. Also the lack of green chilis may have contributed to more of my inner child (who yearned for that Kraft single/white bread and was a very picky eater) coming out and being satisfied. I love the taste of green chilis don’t get me wrong. I’m just talking legit subconscious/deep down there was probably some part of me that was happier for the smooth grilled cheese of just cheese and meat and none of that vegetable “texture” inside… Regardless who doesn’t love bread, meat, and cheese (melted especially)?! I liked the Ordo and thought it had a good combination of flavors (plus it was extra cheesy!).
My friend was very very happy with his sandwich and soup (he finally got to check out Supa!). He thought it was the perfect meal for a cold winter day. I’m expecting he’ll be back pretty often, especially since he doesn’t live too far away.
Supa is a great spot for lunch and gluten-frees I think will find themselves very happy with the gluten-free grilled cheese, sandwiches, and soups (plus salads). Pics of some of the gooey goodness below!
Supa- 432 NW 11th Ave Portland, OR (also a location in Big Pink/US Bancorp Tower)