Pied Cow Coffeehouse
|Mon - Thu:|
|Sat - Sun:|
Phone: (503) 235-8223
The Pied Cow Coffeehouse
Bike Parking: Yes
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes
Cuisines: Coffee House, Cafeterias
Alcohol: Beer, Wine
Takes Reservations: No
Outdoor Seating: Yes
Price Range : Average
04/19/2010Provided by Citysearch -
So, I took my girlfriend to the Pied Cow for her birthday because it really is a cute little place and she wanted to smoke some hooka. I could really write a novel about how poor the service was, but I'll let you read the many other reviews about this place for you to make your own decision about how poor the service was. Really, the biggest issue was that the manager/owner was a pretentious a-hole. Not very accommodating or helpful at all. Extremely rude and so into himself that there is literally a painting of himself on the front sign (get over yourself). We were presented with a $500+ bill, but when I added up the tickets they provided, the total came out to about $260. We still paid the $500+.
My girlfriend and I really like this place because it's a quaint little place to smoke hooka at, but at $16 per hooka (OUCH), they really need to work on how they treat their customers. If you are looking for a place that will overcharge you for what they serve, if you'd like to be treated like your business doesn't matter and that they could really care less if you ever came back, then this place is perfect for you. Do yourself a favor and don't go the Pied Cow. Any positive experience that you are looking for will be negated by the rude staff that is on hand. They definitely are lead by example by a too-cool pretentious little man that really needs to get over himself and understand that word of mouth is a great way to lose customers.
10/01/2009Provided by Citysearch -
This place is one of my favorite places to go in Portland. It's got a calming environment, both inside and outside. There teas are great- they serve tea traditionally, my favorites are the kava and matte. They also have great dessert and great beer, although I think they took Hair of the Dog off the menu which was my favorite. I read a bad review above about one of the servers, but every time I've been there the staff was very accommodating. It's a great place to study or hang out with a few friends.
08/19/2009Provided by Citysearch -
Years ago I used to go to this place all the time. It was a great place to enjoy a relaxed vibe and have a good dessert. Now it seems to have completely lost its way. The food and drink have taken a huge dive and the service is HORRIBLE. This place seems to be resting on its laurels and now seems to depend on its fading, lackluster ambiance to propel people past the fact that no one around here seems to care anymore. The whole place has the feel of an aging beatnik talking about that one time he shared a joint with a roadie from the Grateful Dead.
06/10/2009Provided by Citysearch -
I JUST got back from taking my friend who is visiting to The Pied Cow. I went for the 16 dollar hookah (YEESH!) and she was hungry so she ordered ""The Salmon Plate"". We had this tall and unhappy waiter w/ a sunken face and slicked back black hair who was extremely unpleasant from the start. Anyways, her salmon plate was (not joking) a relatively small portion of cold salmon w/ mounds and mounds of cream cheese, slices of cucumber and a HUGE amount of those white saltine crackers that they sell at Safeway. Do you know which crackers I'm talking about? Okay, so, my friend tells the waiter that what she ordered isn't exactly what she was expecting. Which can happen, it's not entirely her fault. Who will honestly eat that many saltine crackers and cream cheese for 10 dollars anyways? He looks at her blankly and says in the most rude and obnoxious way that he has no idea what she was expecting b/c that IS the salmon plate. Well, duh, mister. Anyways, she tells our waiter that she was expecting something a little different; something possibly hot. Then he said to her in this horribly rude and unattractive way that ""IT'S THE SMOKED SALMON!"" After he said that I was like ""You don't need to be rude to her"" and then he looked at me in a horrible way and said to me loudly that he's ""JUST STATING THE FACTS!"" I told him that that doesn't mean he's not being rude to her and that her plate is just a plate of saltine crackers. Which, if he's stating the facts, the menu would've said ""Salmon plate w/ saltine crackers for 10 dollars!"". He took her plate and literally smashed her silverware into the wash-bin that was outside. He then came back and told me in front of everyone that I ""shouldn't be complaining for food I'm not paying for!"" and I said ""Hey! Honestly? Honestly? Chill out!"" and he said ""No, nope! Don't talk to me."" My waiter told me to not talk to him?
He then preceded to hang out in front of the window that was nearest to where we were sitting outside and stare at me. He also purposefully talked about us in front of us to his coworkers. I'm not kidding! I'm not a crazy lady, and I'm a pretty nice girl. This guy is insane! He refused to help us as customers, smashes silverware in front of us AND other people sitting outside and he tells me that I shouldn't be complaining? I feel that if we didn't have this horrible confrontation w/ him my friend never would've been able to order anything else.
Okay, so if you don't want to be overcharged for food/hookah and have undefinable service from an ugly waiter, don't go to The Pied Cow.
04/07/2009Provided by Citysearch -
The Pied Cow is such a fun and funky place to hang out. I love the garden seating. Even though you're off Belmont, the hedges give it privacy, and it's great being able to hang out and relax. There's also a heated outdoor area, which comes in handy on cold days.
02/07/2009Provided by Citysearch -
A group of us went to the Pied Cow for hookah and desserts. It was my second time here and I was hesitant to go because of the poor service I received the first time. Once there, the waitress told us to stand and wait for a table to open up and sit down when one came available. Following her direction, we sat down at the next available table. The waitress came over to our table and began to clean it, purposefully wiping the table debris into our laps. No joke, it was incredibly obvious. She then proceeded to overhear us asking each other if this was weird and then came over to us and told us that this should be a lesson, next time we should wait for them to clear the table. A member of our party went to discuss this with the manager who proceeded to give her a lesson in restaurant etiquette. He didn't apologize but rather told her that she was making a scene and that next time maybe we should adhere to the ""unspoken rules"" of the restaurant business. Wow, really harsh. No apology, no nothing - just a lesson that we were in the wrong. The guy was totally out of line and unprofessional. The service for the rest of the night was horrid. I will never return to this place and every time it comes up in conversation, I'll be sure to make note of this experience. If I ever get into the restaurant industry, I sure hope the manager of the Pied Cow and the waitress that served us patrons my restaurant. I'd be more than happy to return the fantastic service I got and teach them a lesson in ""proper restaurant etiquette.""
01/28/2009Provided by Citysearch -
I feel like this place is always a crowd pleaser, especially for out of town folks. It's kind of a 'Portland' place. The inside is really cute and vintage. The staff is cute and weird. And the garden is amazing. What I like about this place is you can get a really good tea and a plate of snack foods to share with your buddy instead of going out for a full-on dinner. My favorite snack to share is the salami plate. My favorite desert is the flaming banana nutella crepe. If you need an exotic beer they got it, you need a triple mocha they got that or if you want to do some smoking pipe thing you can get into that. It's also open pretty late (at least midnight) but doesn't have that bar vibe. If you're in Portland you have to check this place out along with dots, voodoo donuts and the farm cafe.
01/21/2009Provided by Citysearch -
I have been going to the Pied Cow since I was in high school (over 10 years ago) and I have always had excellent service there. The coffee is good, the selection of beers is incredible and the food is excellent. The atmosphere is relaxed and charming. One of the highlights is being able to sit outside during the spring and summer, but the inside area is eclectic and fun as well. The Pied Cow remains my favorite Portland coffee house.
09/29/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I've been to the Pied Cow several times. It's true that the service is pretty much non-existent, even when there is more than one server ""working"" per table. Believe it or not, that isn't the worst part about this place. This last time I went there I was told that the Pied Cow has a one charcoal policy. They will only give you one coal per hookah.
A roll of hookah charcoals costs about $10 for a box of 160 pieces (my family owns a hookah bar in Texas, so I'm familiar with prices). A decent bowl of shisha can last through at least 2 coals with a good flavor. Yet they insist you not enjoy the entire bowl that you paid $16 to smoke so they can save about $.06.
Having vapid hipster waitstaff is one thing, but not getting to enjoy what you pay for is unacceptable.
If you want to enjoy a hookah the traditional way I really recommend Yasmen Lounge in Beaverton on the Beaverton-Hillsdale Hwy. Yes, it's Beaverton and therefore lame, but this place is about as authentic as you can get. You'll never ask for a coal and on the weekends an older dude jams out on the keyboard while 60-something Lebanese couples line dance with younger Middle Easterners.
Yasmen is what hookah- smoking should be. The Pied Cow is an exercise in frustration.
09/12/2008Provided by Citysearch -
The first thing i must say is: you CANNOT come here expecting good service. You will sometimes get good service here, and some of the servers here are actually quite nice, but sometimes i have gotten the worst service in my LIFE here. Despite that being said, i will still come back on occasion. Why? The deserts are awesome and unique, the Nutella Banana Crepe and Bernadette's Brownie Boat being exceptional examples. This place has super quirky awesome weirdo bohemian ambiance, think mismatched tiny chairs and tables, bizarre kitschy outsider art, and a staircase shrine. Its set in a lovely old converted Victorian house that has been painted all sorts of crazy colors on the outside. During the warmer months they have lovely outdoor seating in a back yard encircled and hidden from the street by bamboo plants and the sound of a trickling fountain. They have an excellent variety of drinks both alcoholic and non. The only other negative thing (other than the service) is that i have been coming here since 1995 and their items keep getting smaller and smaller and smaller. Maybe that's a sign of the times, or maybe they can just afford to do this since they have gotten more popular.
06/13/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I recently went to the Pied Cow for the first time. My friend was celebrating her birthday. Our server was a very handsome man with one of those friendly smiles where his eyes kinda twinkle. We were totally stoked!! But then............... there was a group of us... after about 20 minutes he came by to take our food and drink order. But after we received everything we were never checked on again. at least an hour went by. i would have cared for another drink but i wasn't ever given the chance! our group was charged a manditory 18% gratuity but I didnt think that was very fair because we didnt really recieve any service! A coupke people in our party said the same lack of service occurred to them the one time they were there prior. The wine was very affordable. And the dessert was delicious. I am a server myself and I understand things get hectic, but man... an hour without checking in on a table! that is pretty ridiculous.
04/14/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I just love walking up to this Victorian house with it's beautiful carved wooden door and stepping inside delightfully to find a lovely parlour. The somewhat gothic-vintage decor, artwork and fantastic chandelier hanging above creates an intimate romantic setting. I tried the Kava because I thought a mouth numbing experience would be fun... but the taste was not very much fun. The tingling from the Kava only lasted a minute and wasn't worth the gritty taste to me so I ended up drinking my partner's herbal tea instead which was delicious. The food menu wasn't very big, but we had the salmon and cheese plate which had some of the best smoked salmon I've had in a while. The portion wasn't huge, but perfect for tea time. I have yet to try the outside patio and hookah, but I'm looking forward to it when the weather warms up.
03/01/2008Provided by Citysearch -
My friends and I stopped in for a post-dinner drink on a recent Friday night. I don't mind tipping generously for good service, especially when I'm part of a large group with food orders that have to be deliberately timed. I politely inquired if our group of 6 would be charged a mandatory 18% gratuity (even though we were the only people inside the place on a quiet Friday night in February) our waitress responded argumentatively and brought a check without asking if we were finished. She had left off the additional charge, but before we could thank her, she added that she'd left it off because ""arguing with restaurant policy must be [our] trip."" Since when is it acceptable to treat a customer rudely because they asked a question?
Needless to say, we left a tip (if only for the benefit of the other employees) but I won't return again.
02/25/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I heard good things about this place, which may have caused me to come in expecting much more than I got. My single shot americano was very disappointing; it tasted burnt and wasn't nearly as smooth as the average portland coffee. Not only that, but it cost nearly twice as much as the average americano. Service wasn't so hot either.
The banana nutella crepe, however, was delicious.
02/02/2008Provided by Citysearch -
Sure the servers might be slow, but you go to this place for the interesting decor, the quirky atmosphere and the delicious food. The Honey Ginger Lemon Toddy is perfect for cold winter nights, and the desserts are sinfully delicious. Try the Mezza Platter-enough for two, so that you can avoid spending lots of dollars. Sublime in the summer!
10/22/2007Provided by Citysearch -
The atmosphere here is fun in the summer but lacking any other time. The food is decent but it is also over priced and the portions are minimal. The hookah is is lacking in flavor and cleanliness (the only problem is it's hard to find it any place here that is over 21 so you don't have to deal with children). My first pull from the hookah brought ash in from the last batch and we promptly requested another. The service was absolutely horrendous. In the past I have had no problems with the service besides the fact it was slow and took them forever to get your order, but they were semi-friendly. This time the waitress was rude from the start to finish. When I arrived I asked how her day was going to which she replied, ""inquiries into my personal life are none of your business."" Last I checked asking how your day is going is hardly an inquiry into your fascinating life honey. The check was slammed on the table, and we were told to pay it as soon as possible before we even took our first bite; two of the customers that arrived shortly after us left without ordering and said they didn't plan on coming back because of how rude she was. I plan to follow suit. If this establishment can't bring in more amiable waitresses and cleaner products I will take my business elsewhere. I would suggest looking to another establishment for, coffee, beer, hookah, overpriced appetizers or service. You want a good selection of beer? Head up the street. Coffee? Head to any of the multiple coffee houses nearby. This place is BAD!!!
08/01/2007Provided by Citysearch -
So here is deal, if you love funky decor and long to feel like the caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland, this is the spot for you. During the summer outdoor eating is a must and why not do it in a garden while puffing on a hookah? The only thing is the owners are slightly illogical. Due to a past fire, you must be 21 to partake in the hookah goodness. It appears that drunk bro-hoes are more apt to deal with flame than sober 18 year olds. Learn something new every day.
The drinks are always a delight. If you?re in the mood to try something refreshing/dirt tasting that makes your mouth numb, they have your fix. It?s called Kava. I find it enhances the pleasure of smoking a hookah. It?s a kind of chucky-barky herbal tea. The steamers at the Pied Cow are top notch, as are all the other house coffee confections. Speaking of confections this bovine based establishment is the place to go if you want chocolate cake.
Liver working just a little too well? The beer list is fantastic! They have tons of nutty foreign beers and also an extensive wine list.
The thing to remember is that it is Portland. You want big smiles and attentive servers: this is not the town for you. It?s just not how we function and we are ALL holier-than-thou hipsters. Don?t le the service stop you. The Pied Cow is fantastic.
The only draw back with The Cow is that they gyp you on the food portion size. Eat before you come!