Welcome to Portland Monthly’s “Ripping the City”, a new series that highlights interesting Portlanders doing interesting things in the community, and offers their insights on the city they call home. This week: Food and Lifestyle Creator Emily Greene.
Emily Greene is a native Oregonian—originally from Medford—whose journey to Portland began in college. While getting her master’s degree at the University of Oregon, Greene would visit Portland on the weekends, before she moved to the city in 2015. She began her career as journalist—with a photography focus—working with a handful of local publications and getting plugged into the food scene. “I felt like when I moved here, everybody kept saying what a foodie city Portland was, but I wasn't really seeing the coverage of places that I personally wanted to go to,” she says. So Greene cooked up the idea to start her own platform, Foodie Snitch, a blog offering a fresh take on what’s happening around the city, while catering to a millennial, female-facing demographic.
Today, in addition to a successful blog, her Instagram boasts over 24,000 followers and she has racked up 78,000 (and counting) TikTok followers—all liking, sharing, and making mental notes of her recommendations and reels.
We caught up with Greene who dished on her favorite quick getaway, the future of Portland, and, of course, restaurants.
As a creative, where’s one place in the city you can go to get inspired/clear your mind and why?
My favorite spot within a reasonable driving distance is Sauvie Island, which is like 20 minutes north of northwest Portland. It’s my favorite place to go picnicking, and when the weather's warm there's swimmable beaches, which is great. It's also where I go peach and berry picking, or to cut wildflowers. I live in the city, so it's a nice mental break to be out there. The access to nature is one of my favorite parts about Portland.
What’s your go-to restaurant(s) to take out-of-towners?
I always took people from out of town to Eem, but recently the same owners opened Phuket Café off Northwest 23rd. I took my parents there recently and they absolutely loved it. I think it's just really fun to show people what a foodie city Portland is and that you can get something here that you can't necessarily get in other places. Not a restaurant, but I also love the photo booth at the Ace Hotel. If there’s somebody visiting, I think a photo booth is just so much more fun than phone photos.
What’s one of the most slept on shops/businesses in Portland?
I recently discovered an art gallery called Stephanie Chefas Projects. I feel like the Pacific Northwest has a very certain aesthetic that often gets associated with a rustic, lumberjack, beer hall kind of vibe. And this curator really brings a whole new level of art into the fold that I don't typically see around the city. As far as shops, I personally love WoonWinkel. I don't know if it would be considered slept-on, but it's definitely a small business I love shopping at. A bunch of pieces in my home, especially my kitchenware, is from there. I feel like the shop owners are also great curators of cool, small maker brands.
What’s one misconception people have about Portland?
I feel like Portland gets a lot of hate, and I see that a lot within my TikTok comment section– whether it's political opinions, or the homelessness crisis. I even remember back last year, people were like, ‘Is Portland burning? Is it completely vandalized? Is it a shithole?’ One of my favorite things that I do, and that I get the most feedback on, is showing that there is such a positive side to living here. It doesn't mean that the bad things don't exist, because they do. But they both live alongside each other. So, I personally really love to focus on the beauty around us, because I'm a big proponent of focus on the good and the good gets better. How are we supposed to be invested in our community, love where we live, and be excited to be here if you only focus on the negative?
What excites you most about the future of the city?
I feel like Portland is going through a renaissance of sorts. I cannot keep up with all the new openings, and all the new things popping up all over the city, within different mediums beyond food. People are ready to come out of this pandemic era and step into something they're really excited about. The city is growing in a way that’s bringing in more diversity—more perspectives—which I think is really needed.
Define Portland in three words.
Foodie. Nature. Laid-back.
Want more Ripping the City? Check out our previous features.