To say that I monitor the market here in Portland pretty closely would be an understatement. Being the perfectionist that I am, I like to know exactly what is going on at all times. This has translated into a daily routine as well as a sort of game. One of my favorite websites is Portland Food & Drink. This guy is the go-to guy for finding out what is happening in the restaurant world in Portland.
Between craigslist, loopnet and knowing multiple restaurant real estate agents in town, I've known about the majority of restaurant closures before the general public finds out. It has become a game to see if I can find out before the Portland Food Blog does a story on them. And up until today I was 6 for 6! But alas, there were some surprises today and now I'm 7 for 9. As for the two I missed, I had never even heard of them.
But here's a list of essential websites if you want to start a bar/restaurant or cafe in Portland:
1) Yelp - Amazing insight into market research and competition analysis
3) Craigslist (business and office/commercial)
7) Portland Food & Drink Blog
8) Google Maps
9) Bizcenter.org (Portland SBDC - our business counselors)
And on a completely unrelated note, I am becoming more and more obsessed with the Stock Market. This site is my new obsession.