Palate Pleaser: Nel Centro

Nel Centro (1408 SW 6th Ave.) is a Portland dining hot spot within convenient proximity to several of Portland’s most beloved cultural attractions. Nel Centro, the restaurant inside the Hotel Modera, features classic dishes from Northern Italy and Southern France. The  cozy modern ambiance and timely, friendly service make it a favorite even in downtown Portland’s competitive dining scene.


Locally sourced ingredients and simple, bold flavors make each dish memorable and nourishing, perfect for winter days. Handmade pastas, seafood and meats are favorites on the menu. Nel Centro creates their own flavored lemonades, including pear, pomegranate and white peach. Don’t miss dessert – the sweet selections - like Tiramisu Bombe - are unforgettable! Important to note: Nel Centro offers weekend brunch 8am - 2pm, and happy hour is on seven days a week 4 – 6 pm.


Nel Centro is an obvious choice for theater patrons, given its central location within walking distance of all five of Portland's Centers for the Arts’ theaters. After dinner or happy hour at Nel Centro, theater-goers can walk a few blocks east down the hill to Keller Auditorium, or a few blocks northwest to the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, and the Antionette Hatfield Hall, which houses three Portland venues: Brunish Theater, Winningstad Theater and Newmark Theater. Valet parking at the Hotel Modera can make a theatrical evening on the town smooth and simple.


Keller Auditorium is usually home to large, sweeping productions, such as Portland Opera/ Broadway Across America. The Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall (affectionately referred to as “The Schnitz”) presents noteworthy speakers and star performers throughout the year (for example, the queen of musical theater Bernadette Peters recently paid a visit). The three theaters inside Antoinette Hatfield Hall host a rotation of dozens of local and travelling theater groups throughout the year, such as Oregon Children’s Theater, Stumptown Stages and Third Rail Repertory Theater.


Brunch, lunch, dinner or happy hour at Nel Centro can also be paired with a stroll through Portland’s Cultural District, and a trip to the Portland Art Museum or the Oregon Historical Society. In Passionate Pursuit: The Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Collection and Legacy continues at Portland Art Museum through January 11th, a rare glimpse into the history and motivations of Portland’s most noteworthy art patrons. Multnomah County ID holders can enjoy a trip to the Oregon Historical Society free of charge. For a sensual experience that will satisfy your body and soul, take a trip to downtown Portland’s Cultural District complete with comestibles from Portland’s provincial treasure, Nel Centro.