For our special Portland blog, we decided to check out Tilt, a burger place with industrial machines on display inside and large open walls that lead outside. To tell the truth, I wasn't particularly excited to go, but when we finally got there, I immediately changed my mind. The place was packed, so I knew it must have great food. And, I was right. The burgers there are absolutely insane! Don’t get me started on the bacon! It’s like Jeebus and a unicorn had an ultra-super cyborg baby! The burgers hold all of their juices. I didn’t even know burgers had juices. My point is if you’re ever in Portland and need a place to eat, I super double MEGA recommend Tilt.
Overall, I give Tilt 100000000000000000000/10.
|Jerome making his cheeseburger face.|
I got their Koolakofsky burger, which was a quarter-pound burger with a generous helping of pastrami, sauerkraut, Swiss, and tilt sauce, which was like a fry sauce with a hint of Sriracha. As a general rule, if a restaurant has anything close to a Reuben burger on their menu, I order it because I want to encourage that kind of behavior. The Koolakofsky came close to a Reuben burger, so I obliged. I usually like it on a rye bun, but I won’t knock them for trying.
Regardless, the burger was delicious. The patty was nice and juicy and lightly seasoned. All of the flavors worked well together. Jerome got the Bacon Cheeseburger after backing down from the Dbl Bacon Cheeseburger. If you ask me, I don’t think he could have handled the double.
|Exhibit A: Why I'm not a food photographer.|
Fries don’t come with the burgers, so we ordered a large serving of their “Original Beer Battered House Fries.” It was more than enough for Jerome, Erin, Bucky, my buddy Matt, and me. The big problem I had with the fries was that they were not beer battered in any meaningful way. I love beer battered fries, but these seemed like basic seasoned fries. They tasted fine and didn’t require additional salt, but they were cut too thin and a letdown overall. The Tilt sauce they served with it was pretty good, though.
|Our top fry critic at work.|
Just factoring in burgers and fries for Jerome and me, our tab came to $22.50 with a minimal (unnecessary) tip. Apparently, we got six dollars off because it was their “Swing Shift,” Tilt-speak for happy hour. The prices would have been a bit steep compared to Eugene during their normal hours, but for when we were there, they were surprisingly cheap for Portland.
Tilt’s motto is “Handcrafted Food and Drink Built for the American Workforce.” So, as part of their branding, the place is set up kind of like a factory cafeteria…with a full bar and flat-screen televisions. The place was packed and loud…and stressful. As you ordered, there was nowhere to stand without feeling like you were in the way. Maybe I’m a small-town bumpkin, but I had trouble relaxing there.
I’m not sure what category to put this in, but I really liked that they used orange rags for napkins, which they reuse. That is why I’m not rating them lower for ambiance.
Oh yeah, our table had special lighting that made it appear as if it was a factory light that was about to go dead. It made us see tracers. For a good time, ravers may want to bring their glowsticks.
|Oh yeah, and this guy showed up.|
You line up to get your food, you grab your own food, you collect your own condiments (they were out of ketchup and the small containers you put your ketchup in most of the time), you have to go back when they forget to give you your friend’s side salad (stupid healthy Matt), and you have to bus your own table. The only reason they got 2 is because I’m cutting them some slack for being busy.
Tilt’s Overall Score: 69/100
The cheeseburgers at Tilt are excellent, and the prices are affordable during Swing Shift. However, do not expect amazing beer-battered fries, and you may want to take your food to go and head to a park.