Portland, OR

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Portland, OR When most people think of Portland, images of rain, hipsters, and bicycles, the city has actually become quite a food mecca. With over 650 active food trucks in the city limits, a plethora of specialized restaurants, and a major focus on farm to table/sourcing locally, Portland is one of the largest food-tourism destinations in the country. In fact, tourists spend more money on food than any other activity.[1] This coupled with the fact that you can get incredibly high quality meals for quite a low price means that we are serving up a serious amount of grub.

Portland has this odd thing where people really try and one up one another by creating something ultra specialized that you probably have never heard of (it’s a part of the hipster culture, right)? The beautiful thing about this is that most of these creations are absolutely fantastic and don’t completely bomb. Fortunately you can get quite high-end meals for not that high-end of a price. In fact, even the highest end restaurants will set you back under $80/person with alcohol. There is a lot of great food to be had in the low-mid range, though.

Contributors residing here:[edit]


  • The Observatory
    • Location: Montavilla
    • Dish you recommend: The veggie burger (with bacon on top)
    • Comments: Honestly, their veggie burger is significantly better than their regular burger. Hence the popularity of ordering it and getting it with bacon on top.
    • Price range: Low ($5-14)

  • Tasty n Sons
    • Location: NoPo
    • Dish you recommend: John’s Breakfast, Bacon wrapped dates
    • Comments: Interesting tapas-style breakfast format. Be prepared to wait in line.
    • Price range: Mid-range ($16-40)

  • Beast
    • Location: Northeast
    • Dish you recommend: Prix-fixe
    • Comments: Fantastic example of farm-to-table on a very high end. Naomi Pomeroy and her hot ass sous are cooking up some of the best meals in the country. Communal seating.
    • Price range: Higher ($50+)

  • Simpatica Dining Hall
    • Price Range: Mid-range
    • Location: Inner SE
    • Dish you recommend: Fuckin' anything!
    • Comments: They're mostly high end catering, but on weekends they open up for brunch and dinner. The dinners are a set menu and I've heard wonderful things. I've only ever been there for brunch. The brunch is hands down the best in Portland. I dare you to argue.

  • Name: Pine State Biscuits
    • Price Range: $7-8
    • Location: 3640 Southeast Belmont Street
    • Dish you recommend: The Reggie
    • Comments: Didn't eat at their physical store, but had a Reggie at the market at OSU. Banging.


  • Helser's
    • Price Range: $5-10
    • Location: 1538 NE Alberta
    • Dish you recommend: Scotch Egg, Eggs Benedict, anything with salmon.
    • Comments: Probably one of the best breakfast places I've been to. Go and eat breakfast.

Burgers and Fries[edit]


  • Taste of Sichuan
    • Price Range: Lunch: $6-10 Dinner:$10-20
    • Location: 16261 NW Cornell Rd in Beaverton
    • Dish you recommend: Homemade Potstickers, Green Onion Pancake, Homemade Pancake, Sizzling Rice Soup, West Lake Beef Soup, Cold Cucumber in Garlic Sesame Oil, Tea Smoked Duck, Cheng Du BBQ Lamb, Five Spice Tofu with Pickled Vegetables and Pork, Sichuan Style Prawns
    • Comments: There are dishes served here that I haven't seen outside of Mainland China, and more importantly are prepared with skill and fidelity to Sichuan cuisine. Skip the typical Americanized fare and venture a try of the specials and their "Wild Side" menu items. Do try out the handmade pancakes as a substitute for rice when eating the Cheng Du BBQ lamb or the tea smoked duck. It's a fried flat bread, much like thicker, peanut tinged naan with a crispy exterior. These all have dirt, earthy flavors that work well together, and the accompanying black rice vinegar dipping sauce is a sharp yet apt complement. The pancake isn't especially large (around 7 inches in diameter) so order some rice as back up starch. Also, if you order a spicy dish, look into some of the cold vegetable appetizers. They're usually soaked lightly in rice vinegar and aromatics, so the sweet-sourness helps cool the spicy heat and acts as a palate cleanser. The cucumber in garlic sesame oil I mention above is good for first timers. The waitstaff are not the best. They waver between attentive and eager to clumsy and ignorant. Also, this is pretty far into Beaverton.

  • Kenny's Noodle House
    • Price Range: $5-10
    • Location: 8305 SE Powell Blvd
    • Dish you recommend: Congee, Fried Dough Sticks
    • Comments: I've never seen congee (rice porridge for you sino-philistines) that was this creamy and smooth. It's like drinking a silk blanket stuffed with butchered animals. The actual broth tastes excellent, like well made chicken and ham soup. Throw in chopped up pieces of fried dough and white pepper for texture and flavor boosting. For a more fatty flavor, try any of the congee with Thousand Year Old egg. This place also serves Cantonese (e.g. wonton) style noodle soups, but I can't comment on Kenny's preparation as I've never been a fan of Cantonese noodle soups.

Dim Sum[edit]



Food Carts[edit]


The city is home to over 650 food carts. This number was rapidly growing for quite awhile, but eventually slowed and has hovered at this number for about a year now. Carts offer delicious, gourmet meals at a substantially lower price than restaurants due to reduced operating costs. The problem is that food carts often close or change locations, so finding them can be a bit of a pain. Here are a few of Mattdev's personal recommendations.

  • | Nong's Khao Man Gai
    • Price Range: Cheap
    • Location: SW 5th & Alder
    • Dish you recommend: Chicken n' rice
    • Comments: They basically make one thing, and goddamn do they make it well. Here is the description from the website. I tried to think of one but all I can do is say it tastes awesome: "Poached chicken with rice cooked in chicken stock. Served with soybean sauce (mixed with garlic, ginger and chilies) Bland soup served on the side to complete the dish."

  • | Tábor Czech Food
    • Price Range: $6
    • Location: SW 5th and Oak/Stark Parking Lot
    • Dish you recommend: Schnitzelwich
    • Comments: Cool cart, and this sandwich is deservedly famous


  • St. Jack
    • Location: Clinton
    • Dish you recommend: Frogs Legs, French Fries, Onion Tarte
    • Comments: It’s like being in Lyon! The quality of this food is incredibly high and while it is on the semi-pricy side, it is fantastic. Where else can you get a pan-fried deboned pigs foot stuffed with sweetbreads? Cocktails are amazing as well because they have one of the best mixologists in the city managing their bar.
    • Price range: Mid-range ($16-40)

  • Le Pigeon
    • Location: Inner Eastside
    • Dish you recommend: Foie gras, swordfish (if they have it), rabbit.
    • Comments: Ever-changing menu so it’s difficult to pick out a favorite dish.
    • Price range: Higher ($50+)

  • Little Bird
    • Location: Downtown
    • Dish you recommend: Gnocchi, foie gras.
    • Comments: A cheaper and less fancy version of Le Pigeon. Almost as good, but significantly cheaper.
    • Price range: Mid-range ($16-40)




  • Nostrana
    • Location: NE Portland
    • Dish you recommend: PIZZA
    • Comments: Cathy Whims makes some of the best pizza I’ve ever had and at ~$12/pie, they won’t break the bank. Their entrees are also fantastic and they have a superb wine list.
    • Price range: Mid-range ($16-40)

  • Genoa
    • Location: Southeast
    • Dish you recommend: Prix-Fixe
    • Comments: An ever-changing menu from the fantastic chef David Anderson. If this is a bit pricey, check out Accanto next door.
    • Price range: Higher ($50+)

  • Accanto
    • Price Range: $8-15 for Brunch, more for dinner
    • Location: SE Belmont and 30th~
    • Dish you recommend: Changes all the time, but their hashes and biscuits and gravy are amazing.
    • Comments: Admittedly I've never been here other than brunch, but David Anderson really does it proper. If you're not rich enough to eat at Genoa, then Accanto is a perfect substitute. Lots of seasonal items on the menu, wonderful staff, and beautiful ambiance.

  • Apizza Scholls
    • Price Range: $20-30
    • Location: 4741 SE Hawthorne Blvd
    • Dish you recommend: Apizza Margherita + Ceasar Salad
    • Comments: The best goddamn pizza in the world. For my tastes it is pizza perfection.


  • Boke Bowl
    • Price Range: $6-14
    • Location: Water Ave, next to Bunk
    • Dish you recommend: RAMEN
    • Comments: As much as I like to remain traditional with my ramen, this place is seriously incredible. You can go the traditional route, but you can also order ramen with a northwest flare by adding korean fried chicken, fried oysters, or even ordering their delicious fennel broth. The pork and eggplant buns are amazing and have this incredible mustard sauce that I seriously want to drink, the vegan broth is delicious and the fennel is not too overbearing, and they even have incredible miso vanilla soft serve ice cream. Seriously, GO HERE

Mexican and Central/South American[edit]

  • Santa Cruz
    • Location: St. Johns
    • Dish you recommend: Chicken burrito, fish taco, lengua, carnitas, anything really.
    • Comments: This place is probably the best Mexican food I’ve had outside of Mexico. Prices are absolutely ridiculous for the quantity of food that you get. $4 for a football sized burrito? Hell yes!
    • Price range: Low ($5-14)

Middle Eastern[edit]

Pub Grub[edit]

  • The Hop and Vine
    • Price Range: $4-10 (Beer), $8-25 (Food)
    • Location: 1914 N. Killingsworth St.
    • Dish you recommend: H&V Burger
    • Comments: This is the best burger I've had in Portland. $8 at happy hour, $10 otherwise (it used to be available at lunch for $5, but they have tragically discontinued lunch). They smoke the meat out back in the patio area (great place to ruminate over beer with a cigar), put it on fresh buns made daily from scratch, add leyden cheese, some greens, tasty house aioli, bacon, and oh yeah, a goddamn perfectly fried egg whose yolk runneth over. Comes with a salad of greens, pickled red onions, and a sweet balsamic vinaigrette of some sort. I will add that all the other food I've had there has been just as delicious, though it's been very difficult to ever tear myself away from ordering the burger. They also have a nigh-weekly rotating tap of about ten beers, and they are always a fantastic and interesting selection. Tons of local stuff (because lord knows there's plenty to choose from), lots of specialty and single-batch things from far away, too. Staff is authentically friendly; the place could come off as snobby with some of the beer and food it offers, but manages to always feel very comfortable and laid back. Finally, adjacent is their bottle shop, full of high quality brews you can drink there or take with you. They also do wine things (hence hop and vine), but I know nothing of wine and cannot comment on that. The link takes you to their Facebook page (they don't update the main site much), where you will find daily meal specials as well as images of their taplist that are making me consider putting pants on and driving to Killingsworth right now.

  • Spints Alehouse
    • Price Range: $9-20, cheap happy hour ($6 bar plates)
    • Location: NE 28th & Flanders
    • Dish you recommend: The weekly dirty pretzel
    • Comments: Lots of beer, good cocktails and a rockin' awesome bar menu at happy hour. Sometimes the specials flop, but they're a steal either way.

  • Bushwhacker Cider
    • Price Range: Cheap
    • Location: SE 12th and Powell
    • Dish you recommend: None, drink up!
    • Comments: This place has to be one of the most bangin' deals in town. My buddy and I ordered 2 of their flights, which are only $5 and include VERY generous pours of 5 ciders (probably 6oz pours each). We both agreed that their cider was a lot better than the guest ciders. The food selection is a bit limited, but they allow outside food. Bring a burrito from Los Gorditos in, and get drunk on delicious cider for way cheap.


  • Bunk Sandwiches
    • Price Range: $5-10
    • Location: 621 SE Morrison
    • Dish you recommend: Pork Belly Cubano, Pulled Pork
    • Comments: This place is great. Small and friendly, and really tasty sandwiches. Maybe this is considered touristy, because it's been on TV and shit, but it's a worthwhile stop, and I've never seen it particularly busy. I mean, line out the door is fairly standard, but like I said, it's small.

  • Meat Cheese Bread
    • Price Range: $7-8 per sandwich.
    • Location: SE 14th & Stark
    • Dish you recommend: Park Kitchen. Thin sliced roast beef, pickled red onions, blue cheese something or other and some greens. So good.
    • Comments: The other sandwich shop besides Bunk. Bunk makes messy wet sandwiches, MCB mostly makes cold sandwiches.


  • Pok Pok
    • Price Range: $9-20
    • Location: 3226 SE Division Street, Portland Oregon
    • Dish you recommend: Laap and the boar collar dish
    • Comments: Small plates, Thai drinking food. Cool atmosphere, and bold addictive flavors. I also enjoyed my meal at Ping, the sister restaurant.


  • Jade Teahouse
    • Location: Selwood
    • Dish you recommend: Stir-fried eggplant, salad rolls.
    • Comments: The prices are also ridiculously low for the quality of the food you’re getting here. Lots of southeast Asian dishes at an incredibly low price.
    • Price range: Low ($5-14)


Eateries that pride themselves on being totally or at least mostly vegetarian focused go here. While many Indian places could fit as well they should stay in Indian.