Diversity Cafe – Forest Grove

Diversity Cafe is a newer cafe located in Forest Grove right on Main Street.  It’s right down the street from Miget’s Island Grill.  I was surprised that I’d never heard of it before.  It’s a large building on the corner of main and twenty-first.

Where is Diversity Cafe?

There was plenty of parking when I arrived around nine am.  The parking lot in front is great though access is a little limited – be sure to pay attention to where you’re entering the parking lot, I almost drove the bronco onto the curb.  I was lucky enough to find a spot right near the front door.

Diversity Cafe and Catering
Diversity Cafe is open most days and because there is also a bar attached there are frequently night-time events as well

Inside Diversity Cafe

Immediately to the right of the front door (past the payment station) is a section of bar seats facing the outside windows.  The high-seats are the divider between the restaurant area, the cooking area (in the middle), and the bar area at the far end.  I saw a friend I know from the Kings Head Pub and found out that he works Monday and Tuesday and Friday and Saturday nights tending bar there, so if you see him, say hit to Les!!

High bar seating chairs at Diversity Cafe
There is a large space here that would make it nice to meet and mix with friends outside the bar

In the restaurant itself there is seating for between thirty and forty people – not counting the higher bar chairs.  Several of the places where folks can sit are booths (I managed to secure one) and some of the other spots (mostly in the middle) are tables.  Both places to sit are equally comfortable, though the booths are normally my favorite kinds of spots.

Tables and Booths at Diversity Cafe
The angle is a little low due to not wanting to show anyone’s face but the central tables can be seen along with parts of the booths

Looking across from where I was sitting is the specials menu – there aren’t any because it’s still pretty early on a Saturday morning.  The super comfy booth can be see as well as the hardwood floor.  Both the wainscoting and hardwood floor create a very nice comfortable and relaxing atmosphere.  The Diversity Cafe is very close to Pacific University, so I can easily see it being a very popular spot for the students to relax when not in class.

Drink and Specials menu at Diversity Cafe
Diversity Cafe has a nice selection of drink and food specials and events – like Karaoke Friday nights

Another thing I really liked about the Diversity cafe is the lights and ceiling – In know this is a rather mundane subject, but stick with me here for a moment.  The lights are the vintage “Edison”-type bulbs that look fantastic and the ceiling itself was all painted black.  I know that lots of stored and public spaces paint the ceiling to pull folks eyes downward, however I think it’s a part of the structure that often under appreciated, so I frequently look upward to see what’s above me.  In this case the ceiling, fixtures, and light bulbs themselves really worked for me and created a very nice effect for my dining experience.

The black ceiling and Edison bulbs work very well together
The “Edison”-type bulbs can’t be seen in this picture but they make for a fantastic effect against the black ceiling

Ordering and Meal

Finally I got around to checking out the menu – I didn’t realize at first there was a back portion, so didn’t see my favorite – Chicken Fried Steak, but once I turned it over I noticed there were several more selections I’d initially overlooked.

Menu from Diversity Cafe - Lots of selections
The menu has quite a few selections, all looked delicious but I was looking for something specific
More breakfast offerings from Diversity Cafe
Finally I found the Chicken Fried Steak, yes!!  Plus there are many more delicious breakfast choices

As soon as I got my food I knew I’d chosen correctly.  The chicken fried steak looked absolutely delicious!!!  The ice tea was strong and refillable.  The eggs were cooked exactly as I’d requested and the potatoes were just fantastic.  I really appreciate an establishment that has freshly chopped potatoes.  The one really excellent thing about the breakfast was the gravy on the chicken fried steak.  It was very well seasoned, just the perfect temperature and there wasn’t too much of it.  Sometimes restaurants want to cover poorly cooked or small pieces of chicken fried steak with too much gravy, but not here.  It was a perfect amount.

The meal at Diversity Cafe was absolutely fantastic
The gravy was the best part of the meal, the potatoes were cooked with fresh onions and peppers and the chicken fried steak was perfectly done

Summary and Review

Diversity Cafe as a new spot for me – it met and exceeded all of my expectations.  The parking was very good, the interior was nice and the food was absolutely delicious.  Very highly recommended.  Due to its proximity to Pacific University there may be times when it’s a bit busy, but when I was there around nine am on a Saturday there was room for me right away.  Diversity Cafe definitely deserves the five Heywillamettes it gets, and I encourage everyone who has an opportunity to visit.

Heywillamettevalley five out of five rating


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