What’s not to like about pancakes? Delicious, easy, and potentially nutritious, they are a go-to meal at any hour in our house. So usually we wouldn’t pack the entire family into the car to go and eat pancakes somewhere else. But that was before Slappy Cakes opened.

This ingenious Belmont Street breakfast and lunch eatery has griddles built into every table so you can build your own pancakes. Choose from a variety of batter options including buttermilk, sweet potato, vegan and gluten-free. Pick accompaniments like nuts, berries, chocolate, bacon, goat cheese, lavender honey, etc. Then everyone in the family can create their own custom pancakes.

Of course, this being Portland, the emphasis is on organic and local ingredients whenever possible. And many of the fresh herbs, fruit, and vegetables are from their own little courtyard garden.

Slappy Cakes isn’t just about the pancakes. They offer full breakfast and lunch menus—as well as an extensive list of breakfast and cocktail options. In addition to classic breakfast dishes, you’ll find some surprising entrees like congee and chicken tikka. I had an amazing quinoa salad for lunch. And their Slappy Benedict is one of the best in town. But be warned: If someone else at your table is making pancakes, you will be SO jealous. It’s just too much flippin’ fun.

I’m not their only fan: You’ll have to wait in line on the weekend unless you go early or late. But you can waltz right in on a weekday. The space is airy and open with big tables. The atmosphere is casual, fun and filled with the smell of griddled cakes. It will fast become a family favorite and give you a reason to give your well-worn spatula a well-deserved rest.

Slappy Cakes, 4246 SE Belmont Street, 503.477.4805, www.slappycakes.com, Mon-Fri 8:00 am – 2 pm. 
Sat-Sun 8:00 am – 3:00 pm.

—Cheyenne Terbrueggen