Try Tacos and Tequila on the Waterfront at Three Degrees

Nothing says summer like a margarita and some freshly grilled fish tacos, and it’s even better if you have them in the sun by a river. Luckily, Three Degrees has all this covered with their annual summer TD’s Tacos & Tequila, a pop-up restaurant on the waterfront serving, appropriately, tacos and tequila.

Three Degrees serves as the restaurant and bar for the Kimpton Riverfront Hotel, and every summer it sets up a grill, bar, and counter out back right on the waterfront walkway. Roughly a dozen guests can join, sitting on backed stools at the riverside counter under some helpfully placed umbrellas to block the direct sun. The tacos are grilled to order right there, and most of them are excellent.

The best are the rotating fish tacos, always filleted that very day. The chile rubbed albacore tuna ($4) is lightly garnished with a cucumber jicama relish and lime crema, and is deliciously mild and fresh. This dish is perfect with a smoky Vida Mezcal ($10), one of the best mezcals at that price point. The Rockfish A La Tall ($5) is likewise delicious, zestier and spicier with an olive tomato relish and marinated habañeros.

Other standouts include the vegetarian Charred King Oyster Mushroom ($5), with grilled onion and chimichurri, and the very not vegetarian Tequila Braised Pork Belly ($4), with mango, peanut salsa, and crispy chicharron.

Margaritas are $9 and are excellent, but a more fun option is the Paloma De Tamarindo ($11), an enticing and refreshing mixture of Vida Mezcal, grapefruit soda, lime, and tamarind. Served in a clay mug, it goes down far too easy. There’s also the delicious Spicy Strawberry Margarita ($10), which is a vivid red crowd pleaser. Beers include Pabst and some Mexican lagers in cans and bottles, as well as a single rotating draught beer.

Taco purists might rightfully balk at $4 and $5 price points on tacos, but the quality of ingredients used, as well as the lovely setting, help justify it. It’s hard to argue with when you’re sitting in the sun, sipping a margarita, and watching a crew team row down the Willamette River; it’s worth the splurge for a lovely summer treat.

Photo via Alexander Frane

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