Among the fabulous new places that have arisen on the hill, Terra Plata continues to be one of my all-time favorites. In what was once an area dominated by an auto body repair shop, changes began several years ago giving way to food, entertainment space, new homes to local business favorites and our very own mini Pike Place – the Melrose Market.
Thinking back to my early days on the hill, what might draw me to the area was a stop at Bauhaus for a coffee heading to or coming from a jaunt downtown, which has not moved up to the space once inhabited by the Capitol Club. Perhaps dinner at Machiavelli, lunch at Baguette Box or even some pub grub at Six Arms – all of which are still there, now joined by Lil’ Woody’s and the long standing nightclub, Baltic Room.
That triangular building just never stood out to me. I or even you might see the shops and eateries from the Pike or Pine side but venturing in between was just that, a short cut to where you needed to go. Along came 2010 and magic began to happen to this historic building from 1927.
New life was being given and divided among businesses that are woven together and in my opinion anchored by one of the more brilliantly designed restaurants to come along at that time.
As the gorgeous weather of summer rolls in it just screams for you to go to Terra Plata for a meal or even cocktails and nibbles as you progress thru your day – I’ve only ever gone for brunch which I highly recommend! It is a veritable fishbowl of windows giving the passer by a clear view in and thru the triangular restaurant where you’d enter thru the cobblestone point where Melrose and Minor intersect. The only other building of its shape that sticks out wonderfully is for a whole other blog post!
The food. THE FOOD! Their three egg scramble is perfection, some of the ingredients change – as they should with the seasons – but its always delicious and perfectly portioned. When I first started going they had baked oysters with chorizo, greens and cheese. If I’m not mistaken, the oysters were from Taylor Shellfish, their neighbor – how’s that for fresh!? Served in the shell on a bed of sea salt and in the center was a virgin bloody mary shot. Of course you could get it made with some booze to be a traditionalist. I’m very much a traditionalist. Their manchego biscuits are to die for. You can even get a small sliced up loaf of Columbia City bread with butter and or jam for your table. Pour over their menus online, you won’t be sorry!
Finally, with this weather, in our beautiful city, on our beautiful hill. THEY HAVE A ROOFTOP! It is gorgeous! Complete with their own edible garden that surrounds you while you eat, you’re one story off the ground but its such a perfect vantage point that you almost feel like you’re in a whole other place. The simplicity of the downstairs flows up to the roof during your walk up the stairwell. Spacious enough to enjoy time with whomever you’ve come with but close enough that you might just make a new friend or two. Its happened! I was there once having brunch and gabbing away with a friend and the next table over interjected as they overheard we were performers. What better way to enjoy a lovely meal on a gorgeous day then to make random and new friends! Sometimes its the little things that just make the best experiences, I hope you have some at Terra Plata!