Restaurant Guide–Arkansas

Restaurant Guide Main Index


  • Date indicates the most recent update of the restaurants listed
  • Bold indicates my recommendations; others come from what I consider to be good sources (see bottom of page for further explanation)

Alma

Crawpappy’s Cajun Cuisine–1915 US 71 (Cajun) Closed Sun-Tue.  Reviewers say it is really good Cajun food. (5-6-19)

Altus

Wiederkehr–3324 Swiss Family Dr. (German) Open daily except Sun evening (closes at 8 pm on weekdays). Swiss and Austrian specialties.  Bratwurst, reuben, German potato salad are good.  Stroganoff is disappointing (according to reviewers). (6-2-19)

Benton

Silos Cafe–510 Hwy. 5 N. (Southern) Open Daily.  If you want something fried, they probably have it here. There are some exceptions, though, such as oven cooked chicken. Also has sandwiches (grilled cheese was mentioned in the reviews). (6-2-19)

Bentonville

Miss Saigon Pho–310 S. Walton Blvd. (Vietnamese) Open daily 10:30 am to 9:00 pm.  Good pho, but has a menu with a number of other good options. Banh xeo (crepes) is a good choice. Has a very good vegan pho. (Takeout only 6-30-20)

Pho Thanh–1204 S. Walton Blvd. (Vietnamese) Open daily 10:30 am to 9:00 pm.  Reviews for the pho are not as good as Miss Saigon, but has other items the reviewers say are good, such as bun bo hue. (Takeout and delivery only 6-30-20)

Note: there are a number of interesting looking restaurants with different cuisines in town. Most look very good, but the one that seemed to stand out (3rd St. Eatery) is now closed. I think there are a number of good restaurants in Bentonville, but it is hard to tell from reviews that any of them stand out enough that I would recommend them over the others.

Blytheville

Dixie Pig–701 N. 6th St. (BBQ).  Has been serving barbecue since 1923. Known for its “pig sandwich” (chopped pork). (5-24-19)

Conway

Agape Asian Noodles–1700 Altus St. (Chinese) Closed Sun.  Most popular dish seems to be Szechuan beef noodles, but has pho, ramen, and other types of Asian food. (6-2-19)

Katmandu Momo–1018 W. Oak St. (Himalayan) Open daily except Sun lunch.  Has Nepali food. Spicy dishes are said to have the true Asian spice levels. There are many choices here that are not fried (a good change from the local cuisine). (6-2-19)

WunderHaus–900 Locust Ave. (German) Lunch Wed-Fri, dinner Thu-Sat.  Serves good German food according to reviews, but also has added some German/Southern fusion food such as apple strudel bread pudding. (6-2-19)

De Valls Bluff

Craig’s BBQ–315 Main St. (BBQ) Open Daily.  Real deal, hole in the wall BBQ. Doesn’t just have one specialty, but pulled pork, chicken, etc. are all good. Sides are exceptionally good also (such as the slaw). (5-18-19)

Ms Lena’s Pies–2885 Hwy. 33 S. (Bakery).  Pies–fried chocolate pie is especially good, but any pie they have is recommended. Sells pies Thu-Sat from morning to early afternoon, or any time the “Open” sign is posted.  Roadfood says the fried pies (sold only on Sat.) are even better than the regular pies (the best fried pies they’ve ever had). (5-18-19)

Eureka Springs

Bavarian Inn–329 W. Van Buren (Czech) Open daily (dinner only).  Wienerschnitzel is unpounded (don’t recommend).  Czech dumplings, chicken anna mari, goulash, and desserts are good. (2-18-19)

Mei Li Cuisine–3094 E. Van Buren (Thai) Open Daily.  Has Hmong food (along with a full menu of Americanized Chinese food in order to keep them in business in a small town). (2-18-19)

Oscar’s Cafe–17 White St. (Cafe) Breakfast and lunch only (closed Mon).  It’s hard to put a label on the type of food served, but everyone seems to agree it is good.  Norwegian waffles, BLT, and quiche are recommended. (2-18-19)

Thai House–2059 E. Van Buren (Thai) Closed Sun (and closed from 3 to 4:30 pm).  Most people like the food. Items that don’t get less good reviews are the pad thai and rice. (2-18-19)

Two Dumb Dames Fudge Factory–33 S. Main St. (Candy) Open daily 10 am to 5 pm.  Enjoy fudge fresh off the press and other family recipes (all for the sweet tooth). (2-18-19)

Fayetteville

Farmer’s Table Cafe–1079 S. School Ave. (American) Breakfast & lunch only (closed Mon).  People say the food has good flavor and is fresh. Photos show colorful food that is not the typical fried food of this region. The problem is that so many people want to eat here there is frequently a problem getting in. (Takeout only 6-30-20)

Thep Thai–1525 S. School Ave. (Thai) Open 11 am to 8 pm (closed Tue). Seems to be the most authentic Thai rest. in NWA which may not mean much, but I would give it a shot. They say there is no handicapped parking here, so to me this is a sign that there may be other problems with management as well (but the food is good). (Takeout and delivery only 6-30-20)

Wes’s BBQ–14 S. University Ave. (BBQ) Closed Sun. BBQ ribs. Many recommend the burgers. (Takeout only 6-30-20)

Fort Smith

Calico County–2401 S. 56th St. (Southern) Open daily (including breakfast).  Southern style home cooking (reviewers say it is like Cracker Barrel but with better food). (5-6-19)

Pho Vietnam–2214 Rogers Ave. (Vietnamese) Open daily (closed in the evening Tue & Sun). Located in an old gas station, reviewers say it is not fancy but cheap, very good, and totally authentic Pho, lemongrass Bun, banh mi are recommended. Every customer gets a free banana tapioca dessert. (5-6-19)

Ralph’s Pink Flamingo BBQ–2801 Old Greenwood Rd. (BBQ) Lunch Mon-Sat, dinner Fri & Sat.  The BBQ here was the winner of the Kansas City Barbecue Society grand championship. Reviews are mixed, though–some love it and some seem to think they are too successful to keep up the quality that makes award winning BBQ. Brisket, pulled pork, and sausage are supposed to be the best items, but many say they love everything they have tasted. (5-6-19)

Tassanee’s Thai Cuisine–1611 Dodson Ave. (Thai) Closed Sun.  This is the one Thai restaurant that reviewers say you can be sure has authentic food (they also say it is delicious). (5-6-19)

Thai Chicken Bowl–2100 Rogers Ave. (Thai) Closed Sun.  Curries are highly recommended. Note: this is the number one rated restaurant on Yelp in Ft. Smith. (5-6-19)

Hot Springs

McClard’s–505 Albert Pike Rd. (BBQ) Closed Sun & Mon.  The most famous and popular BBQ in town. People like the ribs, tamale spread, and the red sauce. My sources tell me this is among the best BBQ restaurants in the state, but it is for people who like a spicy sauce (this is the only sauce they have). (Dining room is open 7-25-20)

Phil’s–2900 Central Ave. (Southern) Open 7 am to 6 pm (closes at 2 pm on Sat & Sun).  Recommended items are breakfast special (eggs, sausage & pancakes), chicken & dumplings, patty melt, pork loin, and pie. Some reviewers report that there is a “no sharing” policy which they (and I) find rather strange, but they say the food is worth it (even if you end up leaving some on the plate). (Dining room is open 7-25-20)

Pho Hoang My–608 E. Grand Ave. (Vietnamese) Closed Tue (and closed from 2:30 to 4:30 pm).  Has a number of different varieties of pho. Vietnamese pork chop is also recommended. Bun (vermicelli bowl) is said to be excellent. (Dining room is open 7-25-20)

Rolando’s–210 Central Ave. (Cuban) Open Daily.  El Cubano plate is recommended, but also has available a wide variety of Cuban dishes and appetizers.  Also is in a very nice wooded setting with an outdoor patio available. (Reviewers say they sat on the patio, but I don’t know if dining room is open 7-25-20)

Smokin In Style BBQ–2278 Albert Pike Rd. (BBQ) Closed Sun evening & Mon.  Ribs, pulled pork (most people say ribs are the best item). Homemade banana pudding is also quite good. (Dining room is open 7-25-20)

Steinhaus Keller–801 Central Ave. (German) Dinner only (closed Sun & Mon).  Said to be excellent food. Diners recommend getting one of the “Chef’s Specials.” (Dining room is open 7-25-20)

Taste of India–1204 Central Ave. (Indian) Closed Mon (and closed from 2:30 to 5 pm).  Has better reviews than the Indian food in Little Rock–good vegetarian options here. Has a lunch buffet, but the menu has a large number of choices. (I don’t know if dining room is open 7-25-20)

Johnson

Wright’s Barbecue–2212 Main Dr. (BBQ) Open 11 am to 9 pm (closed Sun & Mon).  Very good reviews, especially considering it is not one of the places that runs out of meat shortly after noon. Brisket is said to be especially good, but reviewers like all of the meats. (4-1-19)

Lake Village

JJ’s Lakeside Cafe–1025 Hwy 65 & 82 (American) Dinner only on Fri & Sat.  (I think it’s a buffet). Breakfast daily except Sun. Southern cooking, fried chicken is recommended. (5-24-19)

Rhoda’s Hot Tamales–714 St. Mary St. (American) Closed Sun.  Hot tamales that are definitely worth making a special trip to experience. This is a real restaurant (not just a takeout place). Fried chicken and pies are also recommended. (5-24-19)

Lewisville

Burge’s–526 Spruce St. (BBQ) Open daily 10 am to 8 pm.  Famous for its smoked turkey and ham–serves both in its very popular sandwiches, along with hamburgers and other items. (Also has a location in Little Rock). (1-10-20)

Little Rock

Buenos Aires Grill–614 President Clinton Ave. (Argentinian) Closed Sun & Mon.  Said to be authentic. Large variety of items under $15 (this is not just steaks, but many of the steaks are not very expensive either). (Dining room is open 7-25-20)

Capital Bar & Grill–111 W. Markham St. (American) Open Daily.  Upscale sandwiches & American food (specializes in Creole and Southern food). Cuban sandwich, french onion soup, burger, gumbo, brown sugar pie. Pulled pork (special on Thursday) is the favorite of some. (Temporarily closed 7-25-20)

Gus’s Fried Chicken–300 President Clinton Ave. (American) Open Daily.  Fried chicken that takes about 15 min. to cook (to me this is a sign that the chicken is good!). Some say they like the dark meat (so this is another sign that the chicken is good). Most say they don’t like the sides unless you get the mac & cheese or one of the other “upgraded” items. (Dining room is open 7-25-20)

Layla’s Market–9501 N. Rodney Parham Rd. (Middle Eastern) Open daily except Sun evening.  Has standard Middle Eastern food from the Syria/ Jordan region. What makes it stand out, though, is the amount of food you get for your money and the fact that it is all good (everything down to the rice is something diners really enjoy). (Dining room is open 7-25-20)

Mr. Chen’s Authentic Chinese–3901 S. University Ave. (Chinese) Open 11 am to 7 pm (closed Tue).  Basil chicken, steamed dumplings, steamed buns, Taiwanese braised pork, hot pot. (Takeout and delivery only 7-25-20)

The Pantry–11401 N. Rodney Parham Rd. (Czech) Closed Sat lunch & Sun.  Owners are Czech, but they also serve German food. Jager Schnitzel has good recommendations. My feeling is to get Czech food that is available at few other restaurants. (Dining room is open 7-25-20)

Three Fold Noodles and Dumpling Co–611 S. Main St. (Chinese) Open 11 am to 8 pm (closed Sun).  Authentic style Chinese food with a very simple menu–noodles or dumplings. It is served fast food style on plastic plates, but it looks very good and reviews confirm this (noodles get the best reviews). (Takeout only 7-25-20)

Whole Hog Cafe–2516 Cantrell Rd. (BBQ) Open daily 11 am to 8 pm.  I have been told by a local that this is the best BBQ in Little Rock, and maybe the state (Lindsey’s in North Little Rock is second). Ribs and chopped beef are the best items here (sliced beef is the best item at Lindsey’s). They have several types of sauce, and this is one of the features that makes it a favorite over other restaurants. (Dining room is open 7-25-20)

Marianna

Jones Bar-B-Q–219 W. Louisiana St. (BBQ) Lunch only (Yelp says it opens at 7 am) (closed Sun).  In operation for over 100 years, it has barbecue made the old fashioned way (meat is smoked on site, served on plain white bread with thin vinegar-based sauce). Many say this is the best barbecue they have ever eaten. (5-6-19)

Mountain Home

Dusit Thai–920 Hwy 62 E. (Thai) Closed Sun (and closed from 3 to 4 pm).  Good food, but order the spice level higher than you would at a big city restaurant. Flavors seem to be Americanized (sweeter than they should be), but this can be offset by getting dishes such as ones with basil or other ingredients that will have a stronger flavor than the sauce. (2-18-19)

North Little Rock

Lindsey’s BBQ–207 Curtis Sykes Dr. (Southern) Lunch only (open to 8 pm on Fri) (closed Sun).  This is mainly a Southern cooking/ soul food restaurant, but the BBQ is said to be some of the best in the state (some say the sliced brisket is best). A good thing about this place, though, is that you can get real side dishes with it (yams, slaw, cornbread, black eyed peas, etc.). Sometimes has specials such as turkey and dressing, and I think fried chicken is always available. (5-6-19)

Rosalinda–900 W. 35th St. (Honduran) Open daily except Sun evening. Reviewers say this is some of the best food in the LR area–even the vegetarian dishes are very good. Plantains are especially recommended. On Sat & Sun it opens at 9 am, and reviewers say chorizo and eggs are good. (5-6-19)

Rogers

Havana Tropical Grill–203 N. 2nd St. (Cuban) Open daily (closes early Sun-Tue). Authentic Cuban food. Most dishes look fried, but have salads, grilled dishes, etc. (Dining room is open 6-30-20)

Monte Ne Inn Chicken–13843 E. Hwy. 94 (Southern) Dinner Tue-Sat; lunch Sun. This is supposed to be fried chicken that is worth going out of your way to try. May be comparable to Stroud’s (in MO and KS). (Temporarily closed 6-30-20)

Saiwok Vietnamese–2882 W. Walnut St. (Vietnamese) Closed Sun.  Good food with a number of menu choices (including vegetarian). People seem to particularly like the pork belly dishes. (Takeout only 6-30-20)

Searcy

Filipino Restaurant–701 E. Race Ave. (Filipino) Open daily except Sun evening.  A Filipino restaurant that gets very good reviews from locals has to be a winner. Lemon pork is recommended, but I haven’t seen a negative review about any of the items served. (5-24-19)

Springdale

AQ Chicken House–1207 N. Thompson St. (American) Open Daily. Fried chicken–maybe better than Stroud’s (comparable restaurants in KS and MO). (4-1-19)

Szechuan House–2255 W. Sunset Ave. (Chinese) Open daily 11 am to 10 pm.  Offers both authentic Sichuan food and more Americanized dishes (I think they will be clearly marked and obvious to customers which are which). (4-1-19)

Thai Taste–3138 S. Old Missouri Rd. (Thai) Closed Sun.  I believe this was the popular restaurant in Roland, OK that then moved to Ft Smith. (That restaurant had good curries, soups, and pineapple fried rice but people said skip the pad thai). People in Springdale say they like the soups and curries, but not so much the pad thai. (5-6-19)

 

Notes About This List:

This is a “master list” of restaurants that I have seen on the Internet or other sources and would like to try, or that I think would be of interest to others.  I do not mean for this to be an exhaustive list of every good place to eat, but it should represent a good sample of the most interesting or unique restaurants, along with a few that best represent an area’s regional cuisine.  My own recommendations are in Bold.

I am not looking to include:

  • Fine dining (unless they are unique because of regional specialties)
  • Low end restaurants that are popular with locals but may not be of much interest to travelers or people in general (everyone will have to use their judgment on this one)

Extra consideration for the following:

  • The food is organic, fresh, healthy, or farm to table
  • The restaurant serves a relatively hard to find type of ethnic food and reviews are good

In addition to the regular guidelines I try to include:

  • The best Asian restaurants in the area even if they are not totally authentic
  • Particularly good Mexican restaurants (this usually means the food is from a particular state in Mexico or it is one of the best examples of a U.S. regional style)

Please feel free to leave your own comments or suggestions.

 

Sources:

About You Magazine (Arkansas Goodies)

Arkansas.com (Arkansas BBQ Trail)

Roadfood

Urbanspoon.com (former web site which I used for preliminary research)

Yelp (Arkansas)

Zomato (Little Rock)

 

Restaurant Guide–New Orleans

Restaurant Guide Main Index


Louisiana


  • Date indicates the most recent update of the restaurants listed
  • Bold indicates my recommendations; others come from what I consider to be good sources (see bottom of page for further explanation)

Gretna

Banana Blossom–500 9th St. (Thai) Closed Sun & Mon. Very good Thai food, and seems to pass whatever test (flavor, authenticity, etc.) the reviewers have. Pineapple curry has good reviews (but really everything does). (3-6-19)

Kenner

Little Chinatown–3800 Williams Blvd. (Chinese) Open daily 11 am to 10 pm.  The Chinese food here is solid, but the seafood clay pot I had made this one of the most memorable Chinese meals I have had with very fresh and delicious sea food. (3-6-19)

Metairie

Acme Oyster House–3000 Veterans Blvd. (Seafood) Open Daily.  Branch of a popular French Quarter restaurant that specializes in oysters. I was told they also have very good red beans and rice. (3-6-19)

Cafe Du Monde–3301 Veterans Memorial Hwy. (Cafe) Open until 9 pm (6 pm on Sun). I was not able to go to the original location in the French Quarter because one of the people in my party was unable to stand in line for the hour or more that it looked as if it would take to get in. I was unaware at the time, but Cafe du Monde has some branch locations such as this one in the Lakeside Mall food court (not very touristy, but reviewers say the world famous beignets are just as good here). Also recommended is the hot chocolate. (3-6-19)

Chef Ron’s Gumbo Shop–2309 N. Causeway Blvd. (Cajun) Closed Sun & Mon. Of course the star here is the gumbo, but other items are popular as well (jambalaya, etc.). Reviews are very good for the food. (3-6-19)

Drago’s Seafood–3232 N. Arnoult Rd. (Seafood) Open Daily.  Known for its oysters, which are said to be some of the best. Charbroiled oysters are particularly recommended. Shrimp is also said to be good. Reviewers are not impressed with items that are not seafood (steaks, etc.). (3-6-19)

Pho Michael–3559 18th St. (Vietnamese) Open 11 am to 9 pm (closed Mon).  Despite the name, reviewers say the best food here is from the extensive menu of items other than pho. Bun Bo Hue is one of the recommended items. (3-6-19)

New Orleans

Acme Oyster House–724 Iberville St. (Seafood) Open Daily.  Known for its oysters, which are said to be some of the best. I got a very good tip that they have some of the best red beans and rice, but I did not get to try time (they are on the list for next time!). There are 3 locations including one in Metairie, but I assume the one in the French Quarter (this one) would be the most interesting. (3-6-19)

Ancora Pizzeria–4508 Freret St. (Pizza) Closed Sun. Authentic Neapolitan pizza. (3-6-19)

Angelo Brocato–214 N. Carrollton Ave. (Desserts) Closed Mon.  It probably takes a lot to impress the locals here with desserts, since they seem to be everywhere. People really give good reviews, though, to the coffee, gelato, biscotti, cannoli, and spumoni (which may be the best of all) that are served here. (5-18-19)

Antoine’s–713 Saint Louis St. (French) Open daily except Sun evening.  Sometimes dinner is worth the price, but it is hit-or-miss. Many still like to go for the nostalgia and because usually the food is good (I went there when I was young and it is on my list for a return visit). Birthplace of oysters rockefeller. (5-18-19)

Ba Mien–13235 Chef Menteur Hwy. (Vietnamese) Closes at 7 pm (closed Mon). In the Vietnamese neighborhood. Food from “3 regions” (north, south, & central). The favorite of locals on eater.com. (3-6-19)

Bao & Noodle–2700 Chartres St. (Chinese) Closed Sun & Mon.  Some may question why they would want to come to New Orleans and eat Chinese food, but for me this was one of the best meals I have had anywhere. Dan dan noodles are a good place to start (it is very spicy). I didn’t get a chance to try the bao, but it looked excellent as well. (3-6-19)

Cafe du Monde–800 Decatur St. (Coffee) Open 24 hrs.  Known for its coffee and beignets. There is usually a line to get in but there’s no rush to leave once you are inside. (4-4-19)

Cafe Minh–4139 Canal St. (Vietnamese) Closed Sat. lunch & Sun. Upscale Vietnamese. Expensive, but they have items you can’t find elsewhere. It is described as the fanciest Vietnamese restaurant in town. Also has Cajun food. (4-4-19)

Casa Borrega–1719 Oretha C. Haley Blvd. (Mexican) Closed Sun & Mon.  Oaxacan style–mole, tamales. (4-4-19)

Commander’s Palace–1403 Washington Ave. (Organic/Farm to Table) Open Daily Lunch & Dinner. Expensive, but one of the best meals you will have. Dressy attire according to Yelp (probably requires a coat). (4-4-19)

Dong Phuong–14207 Chef Menteur Hwy. (Vietnamese) Open 8 am to 5 pm (closed Tue). In the “Little Vietnam” neighborhood. Lemongrass dishes are good. People say the banh mi is the best in town (has a bakery and is known for its baked goods including cake, etc.). (3-6-19)

Doson Noodle House–135 N. Carrollton Ave. (Vietnamese) Closed Sun. Serves both Vietnamese and Chinese food, and largely because of this it has mixed reviews (the Vietnamese is better). Pho ga (chicken pho) seems to be the most popular item here. Good lunch place with good prices. (4-4-19)

Emeril’s–800 Tchoupitoulas St. (Southern) Open daily for dinner; lunch Mon-Fri.  Expensive, but a memorable meal. The shrimp and the banana cream pie seem to always be a hit with diners. (4-4-19)

Galatoire’s–209 Bourbon St. (Creole) Closed Mon. $$$ (most others are $$$$) Must bring a coat (dress code).  Looks like it would be food I would like better than many other places. Souffled potatoes with Bernaise, fish entree, creamed spinach, potatoes brabant, crabmeat sardou. Easier to get a table than other places. (5-18-19)

Irene’s Cuisine–529 Bienville St. (Italian) Dinner only (closed Sun). Highest rated Italian in the French Quarter-described as authentic Italian-Creole. Hard to get in-wait can be 20 min. to an hour (they have a hard time predicting the correct time for you). (5-18-19)

Jacques-Imo’s–8324 Oak St. (Creole) Dinner only (closed Sun). Expensive, but good food. Loud bar atmosphere. Very busy on weekends. Chicken pontalba is excellent. The menu has a large variety of interesting dishes. Restaurant is casual (no dress code) and is a good place to relax and have fun. (3-6-19)

Mr. B’s Bistro–201 Royal St. (Modern American) Open Daily. Known for its shrimp, gumbo is very good also.  $$$$ (but maybe not as expensive as other high end rests). (3-6-19)

Mona’s Cafe–4126 Magazine St. (Lebanese) Open Daily.  Some say this is the best of the several Mona’s locations. Serves traditional Lebanese food. With the falafel getting good ratings, this is a good sign to me that they know what they are doing. (5-18-19)

Muriel’s–801 Chartres St. (Creole) Open daily to 10 pm.  Serves traditional Creole food and it is said to be very good but at a lower price than many of the other French Quarter restaurants. I think the reason might be because much of the menu consists of the more typical everyday dishes rather than the more special occasion ones. (1-10-20)

Oceana Grill–739 Conti St. (Cajun) Open Daily.  Highly rated Cajun food. Shrimp and redfish are recommended. Reviewers say that the daily specials are a special treat. I also heard that this is one of the best places for red beans and rice. (1-10-20)

Parkway Bakery–538 Hagan Ave. (Po’Boys) Open 11 am to 10 pm (closed Tue). Probably the best Po’boys in town, but some says sandwiches are too small (and cost too much). (3-6-19)

Pho Tau Bay–1565 Tulane Ave. (Vietnamese) Closes at 7 pm (closed Sat & Sun). Some say it is the best & most authentic Vietnamese in New Orleans (and is cheap). Used to be in Gretna but has now moved to downtown NO. (3-6-19)

Willie Mae’s Scotch House–2401 St. Ann St. (Southern) Open 10 am to 8 pm (closed Sun).  Reviewers say the fried chicken makes this place worthy of being on a list of places to visit. It is said to be moist and flavorful with a crispy crust. Other main items are said to be good as well (and I think all of them are fried). Side dishes are also highly recommended. (1-10-20)

Note: There are many more very good high end restaurants than I can list, but for ones that are here I have tried to include both the good and bad comments about them. I am trying to round out the list with lower priced restaurants that will also give a very good dining experience (at least to those who like the particular type of food being served).

 

Notes About This List:

This is a “master list” of restaurants that I have seen on the Internet or other sources and would like to try, or that I think would be of interest to others.  I do not mean for this to be an exhaustive list of every good place to eat, but it should represent a good sample of the most interesting or unique restaurants, along with a few that best represent an area’s regional cuisine.  My own recommendations are in Bold.

I am not looking to include:

  • Fine dining (unless they are unique because of regional specialties)
  • Low end restaurants that are popular with locals but may not be of much interest to travelers or people in general (everyone will have to use their judgment on this one)

Extra consideration for the following:

  • The food is organic, fresh, healthy, or farm to table
  • The restaurant serves a relatively hard to find type of ethnic food and reviews are good

In addition to the regular guidelines I try to include:

  • The best Asian restaurants in the area even if they are not totally authentic
  • Particularly good Mexican restaurants (this usually means the food is from a particular state in Mexico or it is one of the best examples of a U.S. regional style)

Please feel free to leave your own comments or suggestions.

 

Sources:

TripAdvisor (Best Reasonable Priced Restaurants in the French Quarter)

Urbanspoon.com (former web site which I used for preliminary research)

Yelp (New Orleans)

Zomato (New Orleans)

Restaurant Guide–Louisiana

Restaurant Guide Main Index


New Orleans Metro


  • Date indicates the most recent update of the restaurants listed
  • Bold indicates my recommendations; others come from what I consider to be good sources (see bottom of page for further explanation)

Alexandria

Cafe Desoto–414 Desoto St. (Latin American) Lunch only (closed Sat & Sun).  It looks like the idea here is to have healthy Latin American food with real flavor but without relying on greasy fried items. The reviews indicate they are able to pull it off. (3-28-19)

Noodles & Grill Asian Cuisine–3650 North Blvd. (Thai) Closed Sun.  Reviews are extremely convincing that this is an excellent restaurant (although I think part of it is that you get a lot of food for the money). (3-28-19)

Pamela’s Bayou In A Bowl–2049 N. Mall Dr. (American) Closed Sat & closed Sun evening.  Reviewers recommended it for beef tips, fried chicken, smothered chicken, pork roast, etc. The menu changes daily and the flavor is consistent with things being fresh. Some say skip the Cajun food (you can find that anywhere) but the American food here is much better than other places. (3-28-19)

Pho U–4722 Jackson St. (Vietnamese) Closed Sun evening & Mon.  Pho is said to be flavorful but does not have a great variety. Serves banh mi and noodle bowls. Customers recommend the Phnom Penh soup served on Tue (owners are probably Cambodian). (3-28-19)

Word of Mouth–918 Foisy St. (New American) Lunch only (closed Sat & Sun).  American food with a creative menu. Seems to have similar quality to Pamela’s, but the food is more non-traditional. Pot roast and bread pudding are recommended. (3-28-19)

Basile

D.I.’s Cajun Rest.–6561 Evangeline Hwy. (Cajun) Closed Sun & Mon; closed Sat lunch.  Blackened catfish supreme, shrimp etouffee (but reviewers like a number of items). Has live music at night. (6-28-19)

Baton Rouge

Ava Street Cafe–5207 Essen Ln. (Vietnamese) Open Daily.  Photos of the food indicate that they take extra steps to make it flavorful and give you the “extras” found with true Vietnamese style food. (1-13-20)

Bao–8342 Perkins Rd. (Vietnamese) Closed Sun.  When cities have such a strong Vietnamese presence as BR there should be several restaurants that are worthy to try, and Bao appears to be one of them. This is a more modern and upscale restaurant than others, but the food seems to be just as good and as authentic (but it is more expensive). Has bun bo hue with pig’s blood (the authentic version). Other dishes are more to the taste of most Americans, but all seem to be authentic and delicious. (Dining room is open 8-15-20)

BB&PF–10248 Florida Blvd. (Nigerian) Closed Sun.  Reviewers say it is authentic home made African food. The restaurant is small and run by one person. It is vegetarian friendly (has fufu bread, bean burgers, jolof rice, plantains, etc.). Some items are spicy. (I don’t know if the dining room is open)

Dang’s–12385 Florida Blvd. (Vietnamese) Open daily 9 am to 9 pm.  Many say this is the best Vietnamese restaurant in the city in terms of the menu and the execution of the food. The only thing is that the restaurant is old and might have some well-worn booths, etc. (Dining room is open 8-15-20)

Dorothy’s Soul Food Kitchen–1221 Gardere Ln. (Southern) Open Mon-Fri (lunch only, but open until 6:30 most days).  Traditional Southern cooking as opposed to Cajun. Smothered pork chop is recommended. (1-13-20)

Duang Tawan–4850 S. Sherwood Forest Blvd. (Thai) Closed Tue (and closed from 3 to 5 pm). Authentic. Pad ped, pad thai, red curry, pad prik khing are recommended. (1-13-20)

Louisiana Lagniappe–9990 Perkins Rd. (Seafood) Dinner only (closed Sun). Many say it’s the best seafood in BR. Seems to not specialize in fried food, but has the more upscale versions of seafood. (3-2-19)

OMI–7951 One Calais Ave. (Chinese) Closed Mon. Authentic Szechuan and northern Chinese food (but it also has Americanized dishes and sushi). Chongqing spicy chicken and eggplant (Sichuan dishes) are good bets. (Takeout only 8-15-20)

Parrain’s Seafood–3225 Perkins Rd. (Cajun) Open Daily.  I added this because it’s one of the top rated restaurants in BR on Yelp. There does not seem to be any one favorite dish here–you can pick anything that looks good. (1-13-20)

Rama Thai–2919 Perkins Rd. (Thai) Dinner only (closed Sun).  Some say it’s the most like Thailand in BR. Curries are recommended, or use the opportunity to order items that may not be available in other restaurants. (1-13-20)

Ruffino’s–18811 Highland Rd. (Italian) Open daily (dinner only, but lunch served on Fri & Sun).  One of the co-owners has been described as a local celebrity chef of Italian heritage born in New Orleans, and the restaurant is described as a hybrid of Italian and Creole cuisine. Reviewers on Yelp seem to praise the steak more than any other dish, but they like the Italian food as well (I have had experience with the Italian food in New Orleans that would make me want to try the food here as well). (1-13-20)

The Chimes–3357 Highland Rd. (Cajun) Open Daily).  Red beans & rice, crab cakes, seafood, gumbo, crawfish etouffee, blackened alligator bites. (Dining room is open 8-15-20)

Viet Garden–11990 Florida Blvd. (Vietnamese) Open Daily.  Very good, authentic, large choice of dishes. Vietnamese pork chops are recommended. (I believe it is takeout only 8-15-20)

Bossier City

Bergerons Boudin and Cajun Meats–3933 Benton Rd. (Cajun) Mon-Fri 9 am to 6 pm; Fri 9 to 5 (closed Sun).  Smoked meats are the featured item. Boudin, chicken, tasso, etc. (Also in Shreveport) (I don’t know if the dining room is open 7-10-20)

Greek Corner–2153 Airline Dr. (Greek) Open Daily.  People say the food is delicious and authentic, but the menu is limited (more than gyros but doesn’t have moussaka). (Takeout only 7-10-20)

Lemongrass–3244 Barksdale Blvd. (Asian) Closed Sun (and closed from 3 to 5 pm).  Has Singapore & Lao dishes. Reviewers like Singapore Mei Fun. (I only have information that they have takeout 7-10-20)

Lucky Palace–750 Diamond Jacks Blvd. (Chinese) Closed Mon.  Supposedly the best Chinese in Shreveport area. Upscale food and dining room. Some reviewers say the quality is similar to Dallas restaurants. I think this is an exaggeration, but the food here is good (some food seems authentic and some more Americanized). (Dining room is open with limited seating 7-10-20)

Pho Bowl–1605 Benton Rd. (Lao) Closed Sun & closed Sat evening.  Lao restaurant, but also has pho & Vietnamese (Lao food has the best reviews). (I don’t know if the dining room is open 7-10-20)

Sam’s Southern Eatery–2910 Barksdale Blvd. (Southern) Closed Sun.  Known for its (giant) fried shrimp. Gumbo is also very good. Has home made cake for dessert. (Dining room is open 7-10-20)

Southern Pho–2100 Benton Rd. (Vietnamese) Closed Tue & closed Sun evening.  Reviewers like the pho, vermicelli dishes, fried rice, etc. (and say it has a true Asian flavor). (I do not know if the dining room is open 7-10-20)

Taqueria San Miguel–4100 Barksdale Blvd. (Mexican) Open Daily.  Authentic Mexican food. Has “arroz con mole” and other Mexican style sauces (chile verde, chipotle red sauce, etc.). Many people recommend the fish and fish tacos, as well as the tacos al pastor. (Dining room is open 7-10-20)

Vincent General Asian Store–1000 Northgate Rd. (Vietnamese) Closed Sun.  Vietnamese grocery store that also has a restaurant–food is very good, and reviewers say the pho is full of flavor (also try the pho ga–chicken pho). (I do not know if the deli is open, but the grocery store is open 7-10-20)

Breaux Bridge

Cafe Sydnie Mae–140 E. Bridge St. (Cajun) Closed Mon (and closed from 2 to 5 pm). (Formerly Cafe des Amis–it closed for a while and was reopened by other family members). No longer serves breakfast (which I wanted to try), but reviewers say the other food is good. Steaks and seafood are popular. Side dishes, dessert, etc. are Cajun or New Orleans style. (3-2-19)

Poche’s–3015 Main Hwy. (Cajun) Open daily 5:30 am to 8 pm (closes at 6 on Sun).  Has a wide variety of real Cajun cooking, but may be most famous for its meat market (sausage, etc). This is the restaurant featured on Globe Trekker’s program highlighting Cajun food and culture. I particularly liked the gumbo (special served in winter only). Note: you can get some of Poche’s items by mail order at cajungrocer.com. (Takeout only 7-3-20)

Church Point

Sunny’s Fried Chicken–111 E. Ebey St. (Cajun) Open daily 7:30 am to 10 pm. Seems to be competing with Palace Cafe in Opelousas, because they both are said have excellent fried chicken and shrimp poboys. (I don’t know if the dining room is open 7-3-20)

Covington

Baan Thai Sala Thai–315 N. Vermont St. (Thai) Closed Mon.  Reviewers think the flavor here stands out compared to other Thai restaurants. Many think the lunch buffet is a particularly good deal (Tue-Sat)–the flavor is good and you get a good selection of different items. (3-2-19)

Lola–517 N. New Hampshire St. (American) Closed Sat lunch, closed Sun.  One reviewer describes this as fresh, seasonal Southern fare. Also has sandwiches and Cajun food (this is fresh and seasonal as well). (3-2-19)

Pho Cong Noodles & Grill–1200 US 190 Bus. (Vietnamese) Open 10 am to 8 pm (closed Sun).  Many excellent reviews for the pho, but those who move to other items on the menu love them as well. Has Vietnamese “pancakes” (banh xeo). (3-2-19)

Denham Springs

Randazzo’s Italian Market–240 Capitol St. (Italian) Open Tue-Sat (closes at 7 pm Tue-Thu; 8 pm Fri & Sat).  Authentic fresh tasting (as opposed to “red sauce” type) food, with ingredients imported from Italy. Very high ratings on Yelp. (Patio dining is available 8-15-20)

Donaldsonville

Grapevine Cafe and Gallery–211 Railroad Ave. (Cajun) Closed Mon, closed Sun evening (and closed from 2 to 5 pm).  Reviewers say this is one of those special hidden gems found in small towns that gives you local food the way it should be prepared. Has both Cajun and Creole food, and both are upscale. Prices are a little high but not to the point of being “fine dining.” (1-13-20)

Elton

Neptunes–1010 Main St. (Cajun) Open daily except Sun evening & Mon evening.  Many say this is the best place ever for crawfish. Other items get very good reviews as well. (6-28-19)

Eunice

The New Ronnie’s Cajun Cafe–541 W. Laurel Ave. (Cajun) Breakfast & lunch daily; dinner Wed-Sat.  Doesn’t just concentrate on seafood (has pork chops, chicken, beef tips, and according to Yelp even has vegetarian options. Plate lunch comes with side dishes & dessert. (6-28-19)

Hammond

Pho Grace–2728 W. Thomas St. (Vietnamese) Closed Sun.  Seems to be authentic, but the menu is pretty basic. People like the flavor of the food, and the drinks are good (almond milk tea, etc.). (3-2-19)

Punjabi Dhaba–2201 SW Railroad Ave. (Indian) Open daily 11 am to 10 pm.  Inside a gas station, but the food is described as being genuinely good. Has a buffet on weekdays, and reviewers say it is fresh and delicious. It seems that they have chutney/sauces which add to the flavor. (3-2-19)

Lafayette

Bangkok Thai–3904 Johnston St. (Thai) Open Daily.  Consensus for one of the best or the best Thai in Lafayette. Green and red curry are popular. Quieter than other Thai (no loud TV). (I don’t know if the dining room is open 7-3-20)

Blu Basil–5451 Johnston St. (Vietnamese) Closed Sun.  Upscale, sister restaurant to Saigon Noodles. More expensive, but you’re paying for a bigger selection, quiet atmosphere, and supposedly better food (such as more high quality shrimp). (Dining room is open 7-3-20)

Bon Temps Grill–1312 Verot School Rd. (Cajun) Open Daily.  Top quality Cajun food. This is a large restaurant in an out-of-the-way neighborhood. Some selling points of this restaurant are that it’s large, so they have a large menu and they are not likely to run out of individual items. (Dining room is open 7-3-20)

Cafe Vermilionville–1304 W. Pinhook (Cajun) Closed Sun. & Sat. lunch.  Well regarded Cajun restaurant. More upscale than most other Cajun restaurants. (I think the dining room is open 7-2-20)

Cedar Grocery–1115 Jefferson St. (Lebanese) Lunch only (closed Sat & Sun).  Serves Middle Eastern food (Lebanese & Greek among others), mostly sandwiches. Has some Indian food. Seems to be doing a Cajun fusion thing also, with a muffaletta (Middle Eastern sandwich on round bread instead of pita). (I think they have tables-it is self serve 7-3-20)

Charley G’s–3809 Ambassador Caffery (Cajun) Dinner only (closed Sun).  Upscale Cajun. Expensive–should go for a special occasion experience. Andouille gumbo, crab cakes, crab meat salad, blackened mahi mahi. Seasonal specialties are recommended. (Dining room is open 7-3-20)

Dwyer’s Cafe–323 Jefferson St. (Cafe) Open daily 6 am to 2 pm.  Known for its breakfast and hot plate lunch. Has Cajun dishes such as gumbo, sausage, poboy, etc. Food is somewhat upscale and reviewers say it is very good. The restaurant also has a special “French table” where locals meet around 7 am to enjoy breakfast and to speak French. (3-28-19)

Johnson’s Boucaniere–1111 St. John St. (Cajun) Breakfast & lunch only (closed Sun & Mon).  Come here for “real Cajun food and culture.” Made in house smoked sausage is recommended. Note: this is only “to go” or for dining on picnic tables outdoors. (3-28-19)

La Pagua–5425 Johnston St. (Mexican) Open daily except Sun evening.  A friend of mine who ate there says this is real-deal Mexican food with a good flavor (not touristy or Americanized). (I don’t know if the dining room is open 7-3-20)

Mae Sone Noodle House–4807 Johnston St. (Lao) Closed Sun & Mon (and closed from 2 to 5 pm).  Several cuisines, but the specialty seems to be Lao. Very good reviews of the food. (Seems to be more expensive than the typical Asian restaurant, though). There are several other authentic Asian restaurants close by (on Johnston St.). (I don’t know if the dining room is open 8-15-20)

Magic Wok–2944 Johnston St. (Chinese) Closed Sun.  This is the only Chinese restaurant in town that looks like it has real Chinese food (string bean & tofu, garlic green beans, udon noodle soup, dumplings, etc.). Reviewers say to skip the buffet and ask the owners to make some “specialty authentic Chinese cuisine.” (I don’t know if the diing room is open 7-3-20)

Old Tyme Grocery–218 W. St. Mary Blvd. (Cajun) Closed Sat evening & Sun.  Excellent PoBoys (shrimp is popular, but all are good). Has an indoor dining room and an outdoor patio. Note: their sister restaurants are Sandra’s Cafe & Health Food Store in Lafayette and BJ’s Poorboy in Broussard. (I don’t know if the dining room is open 8-15-20)

Saigon Noodles–2865 Ambassador Caffery (Vietnamese) Open daily except Sun evening.  Medium selection of dishes–rest. is small. (Go to their sister restaurant Blu Basil for a larger menu choice, but if you want pho or one of the basic dishes Saigon Noodles is probably a better choice and seems to be less expensive). (I don’t know if dining room is open 7-3-20)

Social Southern Table–3901 Johnston St. (Southern) Closed Sun evening & Mon.  Primarily a traditional Southern restaurant (fried chicken, etc.) but also has Cajun food. (Dining room is open 7-3-20)

Thai With Love–924 Kaliste Saloom Rd. (Thai) Open 11 am to 8 pm (closed Sun).  Seems to be the most authentic Thai in Lafayette. Tom yum, panang curry, green curry. (I don’t know if dining room is open 7-3-20)

The French Press–214 E. Vermillion St. (French) Open daily (breakfast & lunch only); dinner Fri & Sat. Especially recommended for breakfast.The Cajun Benedict is popular. Food is said to be some of the best in town, and setting is upscale (as opposed to many places that have more of a diner atmosphere). (Dining room is open 8-15-20)

Lake Charles

Big Daddy’s Sports Grill–1737 W. Sale Rd. (Seafood) Breakfast & lunch Mon-Sat; dinner Tue-Fri.  Supposedly the best place for fresh (not frozen) fried shrimp. Other food, though (not seafood) gets mixed reviews. (5-27-18).

Billedeaux’s Cajun Kitchen–2633 Fruge St. (Cajun) Lunch only (closed Sun).  Cajun food with good reviews by people who seem to know how Cajun food should be prepared. This is a casual place with food served on paper plates. (5-27-18)

Pho Tien–4415 Nelson Rd. (Vietnamese) Closed Sun.  Generally good ratings–some say it is lacking mint & is not authentic (but the owners are Vietnamese refugees). (5-27-18)

Leesville

Tha da Petch–1910 S. 5th St. (Thai) Closed Sat & Sun (according to Yelp).  Very good Thai with rich flavors. (5-27-18)

Mamou

Cafe Mamou–411 6th St. (Cajun) Open 7 am to 8 pm (but I don’t know which days).  Very informal, hometown Cajun food–shrimp sandwich is recommended. (3-22-17)

Fred’s Lounge–420 6th St. (Cajun) Only open Sat 8 am to 2 pm. Live music and Cajun dancing Sat. morning (along with the food–mostly breakfast items). (3-22-17)

Mermentau

C’Est Bon–1400 Railroad Ave. (Cajun) Dinner Wed-Sat.  Excellent Cajun food. Boiled crab, shrimp, and crawfish is the specialty (can also get it in gumbo). (E. of Jennings). (3-22-17)

Monroe

Athena–1530 Sterlington Rd. (Greek) Open Daily.  Mostly Lebanese food with a few Greek dishes. Moussaka, lamb chops, chicken shawarma, hummus, & falafel are recommended. Seems to be more expensive than typical Middle Eastern restaurants (and they seem to have large servings). (5-27-18)

Big Momma’s–1118 S. 2nd St. (Southern) Lunch only (closed Sun).  Reviewers say it is excellent southern style food. Soul food and BBQ are both good here. (5-27-18)

Rawz–1100 Sterlington Rd. (Thai) Closed Sun and closed from 2 to 5 pm.  Curries are good. (5-27-18)

Note: See West Monroe for more Thai options

Natchitoches

Laysone’s–622 2nd St. (American) Breakfast & lunch only (closed Sun).  Meat pie is a local specialty, and Laysone’s is the most well known place that serves it. Red beans and rice are a popular suggestion to go with it. (3-28-19)

Opelousas

Palace Cafe–135 W. Landry St. (Cajun).  Shrimp poboy is recommended (bread is thin so you get a good taste of the sandwich). Fried chicken is also among the best. (3-22-17)

Rayne

Chef Roy’s Frog City Cafe (Cajun) Closed Mon; closed Sat lunch; closed Sun evening.  The food is upscale (the atmosphere seems to be casual). The chef is from France, and either puts a French spin on Cajun food or vice versa (I’m not sure which). In any case, they say it is very good. (I don’t know if dining room is open 7-3-20)

Gabe’s Cajun Food–1410 The Blvd. (Cajun) Open 10 am to 8 pm (closed Sun).  Gumbo, chicken. Lunch plates. (Takeout only 7-3-20)

Shreveport

El Cabo Verde–1023 Provenance Pl. (Mexican) Open Daily.  Chef is from Oaxaca. It does not seem to totally follow traditional recipes, but it is fresh and organic, it is said to be delicious, and gives a good food experience. Vegetable enchiladas and vegetable tacos are two of their specialties, but they have meat dishes as well. (Dining room is open 7-10-20)

Marilynn’s Place–4041 Fern Ave. (Cajun) Open daily except Sun evening.  One of the highest rated restaurants in Shreveport on Yelp. Gumbo is especially recommended. (Takeout only 7-10-20)

Real BBQ and More–5863 Fairfield Ave. (BBQ) Open 10 am to 8 pm (closed Sun).  People say the name “real BBQ” is correct. Brisket sausage is recommended. (Takeout only 7-10-20)

Taqueria La Michoacana–2905 Youree Dr. (Mexican) Open daily 8 am to 9:30 pm .  Seems to be the most authentic Mexican restaurant in town (mostly serves tacos). Note: this does not have upscale Mexican food–for that the reviewers recommend Ki’ Mexico or El Cabo Verde, but neither of them is said to be really authentic. This also has much better prices than most of the other restaurants. (Takeout and delivery only 7-10-20)

Note: Evi’s Schnitzel House is reported to be permanently closed but in case it opens again, a friend of mine who ate there highly recommends it.

Slidell

Copeland’s of New Orleans–1337 Gause Blvd. (Creole) Open Daily.  If you want New Orleans food without the traffic and parking problems, this looks like a good bet. Mostly gets very high reviews (this is a chain out of New Orleans with 15 locations, all of which are in the Southeast). (3-2-19)

Kenney Seafood–400 Pontchartrain Dr. (Seafood) Open daily (closes at 6:30 pm-5:00 on Sun).  This seems to be the locals’ favorite for fresh seafood (has a market and restaurant). It is not the only seafood restaurant with high ratings, though (others include Pearl’s, Peck’s, and Kingfish). (3-2-19)

Pho House–720 Brownswitch Rd. (Vietnamese) Closed Sun.  Reviewers say it is authentic, has a pretty large menu, and is as good as the Vietnamese restaurants in New Orleans (or at least is pretty close). (3-2-19)

Terry Lynn’s Cafe–1960 1st St. (American) Breakfast & lunch only (closed Sat & Sun).  May be the best place in town for breakfast. Other food is eclectic: American (hamburgers, etc) New Orleans style (muffaletta, etc.). (3-2-19)

Thai Orchid–785 Robert Blvd. (Thai) Open Daily. Excellent food according to reviews. People especially like pad thai, panang curry, yum nuea. Extensive menu (can find some new, interesting dishes). Is reasonably priced. (3-2-19)

Sunset

Cafe Josephine–818 Napoleon Ave. (Cajun) Closed Sun & Mon (and closed from 2 to 5 pm). Good alternative to Prejean’s (Prejean’s used to be good but has reportedly gone downhill).  Gumbo, seafood (reviewers really like everything). This looks upscale, and the food is not like you will find in most Cajun restaurants. (3-2-19)

Thibodaux

Fremin’s–402 W. 3rd St. (Cajun) Closed Sun & Mon, closed Sat lunch (and closed from 2 to 5 pm).  New Orleans quality food. Upscale–lunch has some affordable choices such as soup and sandwich for about $8 to $10. Most dinners are about $20 to $30. (3-2-19)

The Venetian–401 Jackson St. (Cajun) Closed Sat lunch & Sun.  This is Cajun food served in a diner (definitely not upscale). Poboys are popular. Update 2019–I cannot confirm that this is still open. (3-2-19)

West Monroe

Bangkok Spice–5332 Cypress St. (Thai) Closed Sun and closed from 2:30 to 4:30pm.  May be more authentic than Rawz. Most people like pad thai here (and curry at Rawz in Monroe).  Say the flavors here are complex. (5-27-18)

 

Notes About This List:

This is a “master list” of restaurants that I have seen on the Internet or other sources and would like to try, or that I think would be of interest to others.  I do not mean for this to be an exhaustive list of every good place to eat, but it should represent a good sample of the most interesting or unique restaurants, along with a few that best represent an area’s regional cuisine.  My own recommendations are in Bold.

I am not looking to include:

  • Fine dining (unless they are unique because of regional specialties)
  • Low end restaurants that are popular with locals but may not be of much interest to travelers or people in general (everyone will have to use their judgment on this one)

Extra consideration for the following:

  • The food is organic, fresh, healthy, or farm to table
  • The restaurant serves a relatively hard to find type of ethnic food and reviews are good

In addition to the regular guidelines I try to include:

  • The best Asian restaurants in the area even if they are not totally authentic
  • Particularly good Mexican restaurants (this usually means the food is from a particular state in Mexico or it is one of the best examples of a U.S. regional style)

Please feel free to leave your own comments or suggestions.

 

Sources:

Culture Trip (Baton Rouge)

Google Maps

TripAdvisor (Louisiana)

Urbanspoon.com (former web site which I used for preliminary research)

Yelp (Louisiana)

Zomato (Lafayette)

Restaurant Guide–Idaho

Restaurant Guide Main Index


  • Date indicates the most recent update of the restaurants listed
  • Bold indicates my recommendations; others come from what I consider to be good sources (see bottom of page for further explanation)

Boise

Basque Market–608 W. Grove St. (Basque) Lunch only (closed Sun & Mon); open to 7 pm Thu & Fri. Tapas style. Flavorful & well seasoned. Soups taste home made. Paella is a specialty. (Has better reviews than Epi’s). (Takeout only but they have limited seating available on the patio 7-9-20)

Bosnia Express BoEx–4846 Emerald St. (Bosnian) Open 9 am to 5 pm (3 pm on Sat); closed Sun. Goulash, panini, gyro. Seems to be mostly Mediterranean style food with a few Central European dishes thrown in (but seems like a good combination). (Dining room is open 7-9-20)

Casa Blanca–5506 W. Overland Rd. (Cuban) Open Daily. Authentic Cuban food. Has plates such as ropa vieja. (Dining room is open 7-9-20)

Lucky Palace–8630 W. Overland Rd. (Chinese) Open 4 pm to 9 pm (closed Mon).  Authentic Chinese food is available. Serves clay pot dishes. (Takeout and delivery only 7-9-20)

Pad Thai House–10038 W. Overland Rd. (Thai) Closed Mon.  Food seems reasonably authentic and it will have Thai spice levels if you want it. They seem to take great care to individualize your order the way you want (spicy, not spicy, etc.). If they mess it up they will recook the food for you (a good thing), but as a result this is not always the speediest restaurant in town (some of the reviewers do not have patience for this, perhaps for valid reasons, but it think it is good they are trying to cook things the right way). (Dining room is open 7-9-20)

Tango’s–701 N. Orchard St. (Argentinian) Open 11 am to 7 pm (closed Sat evening and Sun). Authentic Argentine empanadas–both lunch style and dessert. Wide variety of fillings give a wide range of flavors. Some reviewers say some of the empanadas are authentic and others are ones they have added. (Takeout only 7-9-20)

Coeur d’Alene

Pho Thanh–2108 N. 4th St. (Vietnamese) Open daily except Sun evening.  Probably the best choice for inexpensive Asian food. (Dining room is open 7-9-20)

Syringa Sushi–1401 N. 4th St. (Japanese) Closed Sun & Mon.  Sushi & Japanese (tempura, etc.). (Dining room is open 7-9-20)

Wolf Lodge Inn–11741 E. Frontage Rd. (Steakhouse) Dinner only (closed Mon & Tue). East of town on I-90. Steaks are “raised right.” People say this is a special experience and worth the money ($$$ price range). (Dining room is available by reservation only 7-9-20)

Driggs

Teton Thai–18 N. Main St. (Thai) Dinner daily; lunch Mon-Fri.  Green curry is good, but just about everything has good reviews. Reviewers say the food tastes authentic, and the level 3 spice is quite spicy. (1-29-19)

Eagle

Grit–360 S. Eagle Rd. (New American) Closed Mon; closed Sun evening. Freshly made food. Chicken pot pie is recommended, but it is not always available. Hawaiian pizza and stroganoff are also recommended. I think it also has some Basque side dishes. Burgers and tacos are popular. (3-2-19)

Schnitzel Garden–1225 E. Winding Creek Dr. (German) Dinner Tue-Sun; lunch Fri-Sun. Reviewers say it is authentic European, even to serving the dishes when they are ready (and not all at the same time). Schnitzel is pounded properly (something not always done in U.S. restaurants). Choices of meat are pretty much limited to schnitzel (various kinds), sausages, pork shank (their house specialty), and beef stroganoff. (3-2-19)

Hailey

Jhony’s Peruvian–125 N. Main St. (Peruvian) Open Daily. Also known as JC’s Peruvian. Highly recommended. Many like the pollo a la brasa (rotisserie chicken). (5-5-19)

The Smokey Bone BBQ–315 S. Main St. (BBQ) Closed Sun & Mon.  The brisket is said to be like it is in Texas, and the people here know what they are doing when it comes to BBQ. (5-5-19)

Hope

Beyond Hope–1267 Hope Peninsula Rd. (New American). This is described as burgers and bar food with a great view. Gets good reviews, and may be less expensive than Floating Restaurant. (5-14-19)

Floating Restaurant–47392 Hwy 200 (American) Open Daily. Upscale type restaurant, but mostly it’s just good American food (ham & swiss melt, buffalo burger, buffalo shepherd’s pie, fish and chips). Sunday brunch is recommended. (5-14-19)

Idaho Falls

Arugula Deli–261 Walnut St. (New American) Closed Sun.  Healthy food, and makes good use of ingredients such as quinoa. (1-29-19)

Copper Rill–415 River Pkwy. (American) Dinner only (closed Sun).  Good reviews for their food (has a good variety of American dishes, including steaks). (1-29-19)

Jerome

Burnt Lemon Grill–306 S. Lincoln (New American) Closed Sun.  Since this is the heart of potato country, I was looking for a place that was noted for its potatoes. Burnt Lemon Grill is known mostly for other things (especially the lemonade), but potatoes are good also (especially the tots and the sweet potato fries). (5-14-19)

China Garden–1100 S. Lincoln (Chinese) Open Daily.  Mostly American style Chinese food, but reviewers say the ham fried rice and lo mein are particularly noteworthy (and have a Chinese flavor). (5-14-19)

Kellogg

Casa de Oro–120 W. Cameron Ave. (Mexican) Open Daily. Has enchiladas suizas, Mexican style tacos, and mole. A lot of the menu looks more American style, though. Some reviewers say it’s one of the few places in town open on Sunday. Note: located on the north side of I-90 (most restaurants are on the south side). (3-29-19)

Moose Creek Grill–12 Emerson Ln. (American) Dinner only (open Wed-Sun).  Pasta with mushrooms, gorgonzola chicken, fish tacos, and other dishes seem to outnumber the traditional American dishes (and they are quite popular with reviewers).  Huckleberry lemonade and huckleberry cake are recommended (really all the desserts are recommended).  Located off of Portland Ave. just east of Division St. (3-29-19)

Ketchum

A Taste of Thai–380 1st Ave. N. (Thai) Closed Sat & Sun lunch. Said to be authentic Thai (I suspect it’s associated with the rest. in Twin Falls, where I have eaten). Also in Hailey. (5-5-19)

La Cabanita–160 W. 5th St. (Mexican) Closed Sun. Authentic Michoacan style Mexican food with authentic sauces (such as green sauce). Reviewers say it tastes like home cooked food. Also in Bellevue, ID. (5-5-19)

Pioneer Saloon–320 Main St. (American) Open daily (dinner only). The reviews on every web site are so good I have to include this place. Steaks and grilled salmon are the specialty, but prices are for a casual restaurant (not a special occasion place). Also a good place for drinks. (5-5-19)

Rickshaw–460 N. Washington Ave. (Asian Fusion) Dinner Tue-Sat, lunch Fri only (open Sun in summer).  Normally I would shy away from Asian fusion restaurants, but Yelp reviews are very convincing that this is a good place. It seems to be more Thai than any other type of food. (5-5-19)

Lewiston

Tacos Cecy–1350 Main St. (Mexican) Closed Sun.  Mexican food that is “as authentic as it gets.” Tacos, tortas, tamales, etc. Chorizo, shredded pork, chicken are good (and tamales are especially recommended). No red or green chile, though (does not have enchiladas or more “upscale” food). (3-29-19)

Thai Taste–1410 21st St. (Thai) Closed Mon. People say it’s good Thai (better than expected in a small city). Worth stopping, and not just because there aren’t a lot of other choices. Noodle dishes are best–curries have mixed reviews. (3-23-19)

Meridian

Epi’s–1115 N. Main St. (Basque) Dinner only (closed Sun & Mon). Don’t order from menu–get a special. Reservations are encouraged. (5-14-19)

Moscow

Iron Wok–2010 S. Main St. (Chinese) Open Daily. Authentic Sichuan style food. Dan dan noodles and mapo tofu are recommended (dan dan is very spicy). (5-14-19)

Loco Grinz–113 N. Main St. (Hawaiian) Closed Sun.  Reviewers say it is good Hawaiian food but high priced. Kalua is recommended. (5-14-19)

Maialina Pizzeria–602 S. Main St. (Pizza) Open daily until 10 pm. Reviewers say it is authentic Napoletana style pizza. Salads are also very good. (5-14-19)

Sangria Grille–2124 W. Pullman Rd. (Peruvian) Dinner daily, Lunch Sat & Sun.  People say this is some of the best food of any type in the region. Has chaufa (Chinese style Peruvian food). (5-14-19)

Mountain Home

Apple Barrel Deli–344 N. 2nd E. (New American) Breakfast & lunch only (open daily).  Reviewers say it is high quality food served in a mom & pop restaurant (deli style). Variety of food from down home to panini sandwiches and French onion soup. (5-20-19)

Chai-yo Thai–1500 American Legion Blvd. (Thai) Open daily (open late night).  Excellent & cheap Thai from a food truck (however, the reviews are better for Shiok). (5-20-19)

German House–2375 W. 6th S. (German) Lunch only (dinner on weekends). This is called “German House” because it really is in a lady’s house (who does all the cooking). The food is called authentic and flavorful, but reviewers did not seem sure of the hours and some had found the restaurant closed when they went. (5-20-19)

Shiok–13654 SW Venable St. (Singapore) Closed Mon. Fish maw soup, steamed fish, dim sum. Singaporean & Chinese food. Located near entrance of Air Force Base. Reviewers say the food is “modern” and the menu offers a large choice of items. (5-20-19)

Nampa

El Cafetal–3116 Garrity Blvd. (Colombian) Closed Tue.  Colombian cuisine with a wide variety of choices. Some are fast food style and sandwiches, and some are dinners (fish, steak, chicken, etc.). (5-14-19)

Island Kine Grinds–140 Caldwell Blvd. (Hawaiian) Closed Sun.  Authentic Hawaiian–owner is from the islands. (5-14-19)

Little Saigon–1305 2nd St. S. (Vietnamese) Closed Sun & Mon. Has pho and vermicelli bowls. Reviewers say it has a very good flavor and the price is right. (5-14-19)

Pollos y Mariscos El Guero–1204 12th Ave. S. (Mexican) Closed Tue.  Said to be authentic, and has dishes I have not seen in US restaurants anywhere (reviewers say the restaurant is Baja style). The spice level is quite high for those dishes that are spicy (the reviewer’s say this is more reason to think it is authentic). (5-14-19)

Pocatello

Elmer’s–851 S. 5th Ave. (American) Open Daily.  Open all day, but it’s most popular at breakfast. German pancake is recommended. (1-29-19)

Taste of India and Nepal–330 N. Main St. (Indian) Closed Sun (and closed from 2:30 to 5 pm). Looks as if it’s genuinely good. Has thali (combination) plate and a lunch buffet. Buffet seems to be Americanized and not spicy. (1-29-19)

Thai Kitchen–978 Hiline Rd. (Thai) Open Daily.  House special curry, red curry, and massaman curry get good ratings. Pad see ew is also popular. Reviewers say not everything on the menu is this good, though. (1-29-19)

Post Falls

Old European–1710 E. Schneidmiller Ave. (Danish) Breakfast and lunch only (open daily). Danish aebelskivers for breakfast are the specialty. Hungarian goulash for lunch is good. Also has Swedish and German dishes. Also in Pullman and Spokane, WA. (Takeout only according to Yelp 7-9-20)

Tilly’s–212 E. 7th Ave. (American) Lunch only (closed Sun).  Mostly a soup and sandwich place, but it is upscale with some entrees and they say salads are very fresh. (Dining room is open 7-9-20)

White House Grill–712 N. Spokane St. (Greek/Turkish) Open Daily. Upscale (kabobs & sea bass are specialties). Turkish cigars (appetizers) are recommended by everyone. (Takeout and delivery only according to Yelp 7-9-20)

Rexburg

Cupbop Korean BBQ–124 W. Main St. (Korean) Closed Sun.  Started as a popular food truck in Salt Lake City–now they have a branch here (although this is a regular rest.–not a food truck). (1-29-19)

Frontier Pies–460 W. 4th S. (American) Open Daily.  Home made chicken pot pie. Blueberry and other pies. Reviews are so mixed, though, that I put this on the list with some caution. (1-29-19)

Original Thai–10 E. Main St. (Thai) Closed Sun.  Mostly very good reviews. Several say it is the best or one of the best Thai rests. in Idaho. Some say the stir fried dishes are better than the curries. There seems to be more of a problem with the service than with the food (for those who leave bad reviews). (1-29-19)

Sagle

Cafe 95–469000 Hwy. 95 (American) Closed Mon; closed Sun & Tue dinner.  Hamburgers, fried food. Omelettes are popular. Very high ratings from a number of diners. Has items such as taco salad. (Dining room is open 7-9-20)

Salmon

Junkyard Bistro–405 Main St. (American) Open Daily. Serves American food along with some Thai and Italian (and it all gets good reviews). Vietnamese pork sandwich is available on Wed. (5-20-19)

Sandpoint

Hydra Steakhouse–115 Lake St. (Steakhouse) Closed Mon lunch. 1970’s style steak house. Patty melt, steaks, burgers, mud pie, specials (such as Alaskan salmon). Not expensive. (Takeout only according to Yelp 7-9-20)

Joel’s–229 Church St. (Mexican) Breakfast and lunch only (closed Sun).  Breakfast burritos and fish tacos are recommended. (I believe the dining room is open 7-9-20)

Pie Hut–502 Church St. (American) Lunch only (closed Sun-Mon).  Pies are really good, but people like the lunch also (mostly sandwiches). (Has an outdoor patio, and I believe the dining room is open 7-9-20)

Secret Thai–218 Cedar St. (Thai) Closes at 7:30 pm; closed Sun. & Mon (some sources say it is closed Sat lunch). Good Thai, but people complain about the prices. One of the highest rated rests. in Sandpoint. Reviewers on Yelp say the curries and flavors are authentic but they did not like the vegetables used in the dishes. (I believe the dining room is open 7-9-20)

Thai Nigiri–209 N. 1st Ave. (Thai) Closed Sun & Mon (and closed from 2:30 to 5 pm). Highest rated Thai on Yelp–reviewers say it is surprisingly delicious and authentic. Also has sushi (this is probably the reason for the name “nigiri.” Has reviews that convince me more to try it than Secret Thai. (I believe the dining room is open 7-9-20)

Twin Falls

A Taste of Thai–837 Poleline Rd. (Thai).  Very good Thai in a somewhat unexpected location–a few miles off of the Interstate but worth going here. (1-29-19)

Buffalo Cafe–218 4th Ave. W. (American) Breakfast & lunch only.  Reviews say this is the place to go for breakfast. Basque sausage and homemade jam are some of the favorites. (1-29-19)

Emma’s Cafe–669 Blue Lakes Blvd. N. (Bosnian) Open 10 am to 8 pm (closed Mon).  Sausage, meat platter, and Bosnian pancakes are recommended. (1-29-19)

 

Notes About This List:

This is a “master list” of restaurants that I have seen on the Internet or other sources and would like to try, or that I think would be of interest to others.  I do not mean for this to be an exhaustive list of every good place to eat, but it should represent a good sample of the most interesting or unique restaurants, along with a few that best represent an area’s regional cuisine.  My own recommendations are in Bold.

I am not looking to include:

  • Fine dining (unless they are unique because of regional specialties)
  • Low end restaurants that are popular with locals but may not be of much interest to travelers or people in general (everyone will have to use their judgment on this one)

Extra consideration for the following:

  • The food is organic, fresh, healthy, or farm to table
  • The restaurant serves a relatively hard to find type of ethnic food and reviews are good

In addition to the regular guidelines I try to include:

  • The best Asian restaurants in the area even if they are not totally authentic
  • Particularly good Mexican restaurants (this usually means the food is from a particular state in Mexico or it is one of the best examples of a U.S. regional style)

Please feel free to leave your own comments or suggestions.

 

Sources:

Chowhound (Idaho)

Google Maps

Urbanspoon.com (former web site which I used for preliminary research)

Yelp (Idaho)

Zomato (Boise)

Foods in Oklahoma City You Need to Try

I do not really expect to influence people’s eating preferences or decide on my own which are the best dishes at Oklahoma City restaurants.  However, this year’s politics seem to indicate that our message may be better received if we come off as self-confident and a little audacious, so I will be this way in support of a good cause–giving readers the benefit of my highly refined taste in food to impart my vast knowledge of the best dishes that can be found anywhere in the city.

OK, even I do not believe what I just said, but nevertheless I will list some of my personal favorite items at various restaurants.  Even though many of the restaurants listed are excellent all around, these are the items I find that are the best to order.  I have already started a series of posts along the same theme, including Pollo Guero at El Birrias, Chicken Tawook at Camilya’s, and some of the city’s best Enchiladas.  However, this is my first attempt at creating a comprehensive list.

These, then, are dishes I have found to be among the best of the best, and that others may want to try:

Steaks

  • All natural Oklahoma beef — Ranch Steakhouse (OKC)

A number of restaurants have excellent steaks but this is my favorite

Hamburgers

  • Hamburger with Johnnie’s Sauce — Johnnie’s Charcoal Broiler (OKC and The Village) Veggie burger is an excellent substitute
  • Onion Burger— Johnnie’s Grill (El Reno)

There are a number of choices in the metro for hamburgers, and for me eating a hamburger is a splurge, but I like these two when I do (but the veggie burger at Johnnie’s Charcoal Broiler is something I eat more frequently)

Barbecue

  • Ribs — Van’s (Shawnee)
  • Ribs — Swadley’s (Bethany)
  • Pulled Pork — Billy Sims (OKC)
  • Chicken — Billy Sims (OKC)

Meat Dishes

  • Molasses Chicken — Cheever’s (OKC)
  • Grilled Chicken — Green & Grilled (OKC)

Most of my favorite meats are listed in barbecue and ethnic restaurants

Fried Chicken

  • Fried Chicken — Cajun King (Warr Acres)
  • Fried Chicken — Olde Orchard (Bethany)
  • Fried Chicken — Ann’s Chicken Fry (OKC) Only available on weekends
  • Fried Chicken — Eischen’s (Okarche) Maybe the best chicken, but it is not really in the Oklahoma City metro area

Sandwiches

  • Turkey Reuben — Ingrid’s (OKC)
  • Cuban — Cafe 7 (OKC)
  • Turkey and Guacamole — Cafe 7 (OKC)

Salads

  • Pear Salad — Boulevard Steakhouse (Edmond)
  • Apple Spinach Salad — Green & Grilled (OKC)
  • 24 Ingredient Salad — Castle Falls (OKC) Castle Falls is open on weekends and is by reservation only.  I am not sure of the status of this salad, and whether it is still being served.

Desserts

  • Tiramisu — La Baguette (OKC)
  • Black Forest — Ingrid’s (OKC)

This list could be much longer but these are two of the best

Mexican (Enchiladas)

  • Enchiladas de Rajas — Casa Perico (OKC)
  • Enchiladas Verdes — Abel’s (Warr Acres)
  • Tomatillo Enchiladas — Poblano Grill (OKC) Not on the menu but can be special ordered
  • Enchiladas Verdes — San Marcos (OKC)

Mexican (Tacos)

  • Tacos Calvillo — Abel’s (Warr Acres)
  • Tacos al Pastor — Abel’s (Warr Acres)
  • Tacos (various) — Taqueria La Original (OKC)

Mexican (Other)

  • Pollo Guero — El Birrias (OKC)
  • Pozole — Birrieria Diaz (Bethany)
  • Flautas — Chalo’s Tacos (Bethany)
  • Tamales — Chalo’s Tacos (Bethany)
  • Gorditas — Abel’s (Warr Acres)

Latin American

  • Pollo Saltado — Zarate’s (Edmond)
  • Passaro Preto — Cafe do Brasil (OKC)

Italian

  • Spaghetti with Cacciatore Sauce — Papa Dio’s (The Village) This can be ordered as a main dish or as a side dish with any dinner which comes with spaghetti
  • Eggplant Parmesan — Vito’s (OKC)
  • Chicken Parmigiana — Tommy’s (OKC)

Pizza

  • Lombardy Pizza — Flip’s (OKC)
  • Margherita — Humble Pie (Edmond)

French

  • Chicken and Mushroom Crepes — La Baguette (OKC)
  • Chicken Confit — La Baguette (OKC)

German

  • Wienerschnitzel — Old Germany (Choctaw)
  • Chicken Jager Schnitzel — Old Germany (Choctaw)
  • Hahnchenbrust — Royal Bavaria (Moore)
  • Haehnchen Chicken — Castle Falls (OKC) Open on weekends by reservation only

The three chicken dishes are very similar and all are good–I’m not sure which is best

Middle Eastern

  • Tagines — Cous Cous Cafe (OKC)
  • Ghormeh Sabzi — Travel By Taste (Warr Acres)
  • Chicken Tawook — Camilya’s (OKC)
  • Eggplant Casserole — Nunu’s (OKC) Thursday only–served every 2nd Thursday–the Green Bean Casserole rotated with it is also one of my favorite dishes
  • Ribs — Jamil’s (OKC) Middle Eastern style ribs served as an appetizer with dinner, or you can order it as a dinner

African

  • Vegetable Plate — Queen of Sheba (OKC)

Chinese

  • Roast Pork Tofu Hot Pot — Fung’s Kitchen (OKC) added 2-25-16
  • Szechuan Eggplant — Chow’s (OKC)
  • Fresh Fish with Ginger and Onions — Chow’s (OKC)
  • Roasted Pork and Tofu Casserole — Grand House (OKC)
  • Fu-jjian Tofu — Grand House (OKC)
  • Spare Ribs and Bittermelon — Fung’s Kitchen (OKC)
  • Shredded Pork in Garlic Sauce — Szechuan Bistro (OKC) added 2-25-16

Chinese (Lunch Specials)

  • Green Beans with Minced Pork — Chow’s (OKC)
  • Fish with Black Bean Sauce — Grand Village (OKC)
  • Shredded Pork in Garlic Sauce — Szechuan Bistro (OKC) added 2-25-16

Vietnamese

  • Vietnamese Pork Chop — Golden Phoenix (OKC)
  • Chicken and Lemongrass Vermicelli Bowl — Kim Wah (The Village) This is also available at Lido, which uses the same recipe
  • Chicken Vermicelli Bowl (Bun) — Pho Ca Dao (OKC) More authentic and technically better than the same dish at Lido and Kim Wah, but did not have lemongrass

Vietnamese (Pho)

  • Pho — Pho Cuong (OKC)
  • Beef Noodle Soup — Pho Kim Long (OKC)

Thai

  • Pad Prik Khing — Charm Thai (Warr Acres)
  • Green Curry — Tana Thai (The Village)

Japanese

  • Salmon Teriyaki — Tokyo  (OKC) Available on the Happy Lunch or Tokyo Box
  • Tempura Udon — Tokyo (OKC)
  • Chicken Katsu — Tokyo (OKC)

Korean

  • Spicy Potato Stew — Fusion Cafe (Norman)
  • Kimchi Chee Kae — B-Won (Del City)

Indian

  • Cauliflower Kashmiri — Taj (OKC) Not on the menu but can be special ordered
  • Channa Masala — Ajanta (OKC)

See my Oklahoma Reviews for more information about these restaurants.

Restaurant Guide–Portland

Restaurant Guide Main Index


Oregon


  • Date indicates the most recent update of the restaurants listed
  • Bold indicates my recommendations; others come from what I consider to be good sources (see bottom of page for further explanation)

Beaverton

Casa Lola–16305 SW Barrows Rd. (Mexican) Open daily until 9:30 pm.  Authentic Mexico City cuisine freshly made with flavorful ingredients.  (3-5-19)

Din Tai Fung–9724 SW Washington Square Rd. (Taiwanese) Open Daily.  This is a chain that specializes in xiao long bao, but has a wide variety of items. I do not often see restaurants like this in the suburbs (which is why I added it to the list). (6-26-19)

Lima Peruvian–12090 SW Allen Blvd. (Peruvian) Open daily 11 am to 9 pm.  Reviewers describe authentic and very delicious food. Interesting items on the menu, although the chaufa dishes are limited. (6-26-19)

Ramen Ryoma–10500 SW Beaverton Hillsdale Hwy. (Japanese) Open daily (closed from 2:30 to 5 pm).  Reviewers say it is authentic (not necessarily the best in the Portland metro but in the running). (6-26-19)

Taste of Sichuan–16261 NW Cornell Rd. (Chinese) Open daily (closed from 2:30 to 4:30 pm).  One of the most authentic, and certainly one of the best Chinese restaurants in Portland (according to reviewers). Steamed dumplings are especially popular. (6-26-19)

Camas, WA

Natalia’s–437 NE 4th Ave. (Russian) Breakfast and lunch only (closed Mon). Very good reviews, but I don’t see any mention of Russian food which it supposedly serves (people say it has changed owners so perhaps this is the reason). Food is all freshly made so this is a very popular restaurant. Most people like breakfast the best. (4-21-19)

Portland

Andina–1314 NW Glisan St. (Peruvian) Open daily (closed from 2:30 to 5 pm).  Based on reviews and photos I have seen, this seems to have a much deeper range of food choices than the typical Peruvian restaurant (but it is also in a higher price range). Serves items on small plates. I think it would be worth it for what seems to be a very unique experience. (5-5-19)

Behind the Museum Cafe–1229 SW 10th Ave. (Japanese) Open daily 8 am to 8 pm (7 pm on Sun).  Excellent food–mostly Japanese but it’s more innovative Japanese fusion than traditional Japanese. (5-5-19)

Beijing Hot Pot–2768 SE 82nd Ave. (Chinese) Closed Tue (dinner only Wed-Fri & Mon. Hot pot is the specialty (I think it is $25 and serves two people). Noodle dishes and dumplings are popular. Has specialty dishes that are not found in many other restaurants. (3-5-19)

Broder–2508 SE Clinton St. (Scandinavian) Open Thur-Sun only (open 9 am to 3 pm).  Popular for breakfast (has aebleskivers). Has another location at 8800 SW Oleson Rd. (which some say is less crowded and easier to get in). (Dining room is open 8-23-20)

DarSalam Lazurdi–320 SW Alder St. (Middle Eastern) Closed Sun.  Located in downtown Portland. Said to be Iraqi style Middle Eastern food. What really sets it apart, according to reviews, is the care the owners seem to put into preparing the food and the consistent high quality of it. (5-5-19)

Fubonn–2850 SE 82nd Ave. (Malaysian) Open daily until 8:00 pm.  Asian supermarket which is the location of several restaurants and food stalls (Vietnamese, Korean, and other cuisines).  It seems to be most notable for the Malaysian food, though. (Store and restaurants are open 8-23-20)

Guero–200 NE 28th Ave. (Mexican) Open Daily.  Popular food truck that has now become a restaurant. Serves excellent, authentic tortas. Has a few plate dinners as well (which get good reviews). (5-5-19)

Higgins–1239 SW Broadway (Northwest) Open daily except lunch on Sat & Sun.  Maybe the best place in town for Northwest cuisine since Wildwood closed in Feb. 2014. Duck confit is good. Expect to spend quite a bit here (but you get a better deal during Portland Dining Month). (Dining room is open 8-23-20)

HK Cafe–4410 SE 82nd Ave. (Chinese) Open daily until 11:00 pm (Yelp says midnight). Has dim sum for lunch which is said to be hit or miss. Very good and reasonably priced food on the menu. Excellent place for everyday Cantonese style food at a good price (Wong’s is a good choice for more upscale food). (Dining room is open 8-23-20)

Kachka–960 SE 11th Ave. (Russian) Open daily (closed from 2 to 4 pm). Reviewers say it is excellent quality. This is somewhat of an upscale, special occasion restaurant. Reviewers say, though, that when they moved to their new location they raised the prices and decreased the portions (not much, but enough that people notice). There is also a strange feature in that they have a 5% charge on all bills for the employees’ hearth care. (5-5-19)

Kuya’s Cuisine–8917 SE Stark St. (Filipino) Only open Thu 3 pm to 8 pm and Fri-Sun 1 pm to 8 pm.  “Real” Filipino food. Located in the Filipino community center (walk down the hall until you find the restaurant). Food is not altered for American tastes–some of it may be strong for people who are not used to it. The upside is that it will show you how real Filipino food tastes. (4-4-19)

Lechon–113 SW Naito Pkwy. (Tapas) Lunch Mon-Fri; dinner daily.  Food is Peruvian and Argentinian, served on small plates. Reviewers say the food is excellent because it is fresh, the flavor is complex, and just about any other superlative you can name. I would be interested in things like lomo saltado with a soy teriyaki (Asian) glaze and a coconut rice patty. It is rated as $$ on Yelp (probably not as expensive as I would think for this type of food). (3-5-19)

Mekong Bistro–8200 NE Siskiyou St. (Cambodian) Dinner daily; lunch Sat & Sun.  Authentic Cambodian food that reviewers think is excellent.  Noodle soups are the specialty. Even though the number of Cambodian restaurants is growing across the US, this one has more menu choices than you are likely to find in other places. (Takeout and delivery only 8-23-20)

Pho Van–1919 SE 82nd Ave. (Vietnamese) Open daily until 9:00 pm.  Recommended by Portland Tip Sheet. Has a large menu and good flavors (also in Beaverton). Some people say the pho is average but other menu items are very good. (Dining room is open 8-23-20)

Pok Pok–3226 SE Division St. (Thai) Open daily 11:30 am to 10 pm. Authentic–rec. by Portland Tip Sheet. Serves sticky rice, papaya salad, etc. (so it must be northern style). The food is a little bit upscale. Some say the food is not as mind blowing as the Thai food in the Los Angeles area, but it is good. (Temporarily closed 8-23-20)

Swiss Hibiscus–4950 NE 14th Ave. (Swiss) Dinner only (open Wed-Sat).  When Rheinlander closed and reviewers say Gustav’s changed, many of them now say this is the best German style food in town (it probably has been since 2010 when it opened, but people are just now discovering it). There are some other good German restaurants in town, though (and some think Gustav’s is good). Reviewers recommend the fondue appetizer (made with Swiss cheese). (Takeout and delivery only 8-23-20)

Tangier–221 SW Pine St. (Moroccan) Open daily until 9:00 pm (10 pm on Sat).  Moroccan tagines, but also has a number of other good choices (mainly Lebanese). (Dining room is open 8-23-20)

Tin Shed–1438 NE Alberta St. (American) Open daily 7 am to 9 pm.  The PBS “Breakfast Special” program featured this as one of the memorable breakfast restaurants in America. Here you will find unusual (and very good tasting) recipes as well as vegetarian, gluten free, or any type of food that fits your diet. Lunch and dinner look as if they are interesting as well. (4-4-19)

Wong’s King Seafood–8733 SE Division St. (Chinese) Open daily until 10 pm.  Cantonese & dim sum–highest recommended Chinese on Portland Tip Sheet. Some say that the menu items, though, are expensive and geared toward banquet eating (not everyday Chinese food)–HK Cafe down the street is cheaper. Has dim sum daily until 3 pm. (3-5-19)

Portland Food Carts are taken to a new level in Portland that is not found in other cities, and offer more good choices than I can list here. There is a discussion of them on the Portland Food Group web site (linked at the bottom of the page) as well as other web sites such as this one:

Eater: Portland, OR

Vancouver, WA

Abhiruchi–233 NE Chkalov Dr. (Indian) Closed Mon (and closed between 2:30 and 5:00 pm).  The standard for Vancouver restaurants seems to be that they are as good as the ones in Portland. This one, though, may be even better (and in fact their other restaurant is in Beaverton, OR). Also the Beaverton restaurant is open 7 days a week. (2-1-19)

Farrar’s Bistro–12514 NW 36th Ave. (American) Closed Sun.  Wild caught salmon, chicken pot pie, fish tacos, and probably some other items that are just as good. (2-1-19)

Nom Nom–801 C St. (Lao) Open daily (open to 1am on Fri & Sat).  Reviews say it is delicious and top quality. The flavor is not too sweet or Americanized, but is balanced to give true Asian flavors. Has Lao, Thai, and Vietnamese dishes. (2-1-19)

Thai Little Home–3214 E. Fourth Plain Blvd. (Thai) Open daily except Sun lunch.  Seemed to be the consensus best Thai in Vancouver until Thai Wok Kitchen became popular, but this one is still popular as well. Lemongrass chicken is one of the most recommended dishes, but a lot of the dishes are ones that people like. (2-1-19)

Thai Wok Kitchen–5000 E. 4th Plain Blvd. (Thai) Open Daily.  This is one of the highest rated and possibly the best Thai restaurant in the Portland area, or even the Pacific Northwest. There is nothing on the menu that does not receive five stars by most reviewers. (2-1-19)

Wilsonville

Dar Essalam–29585 SW Park Pl. (Moroccan) Lunch Mon-Thu; dinner Mon-Sat.  The choices here go well beyond what I have seen in other Moroccan restaurants, and reviewers say it is excellent. Tajine is $20 as of 2017 (I can’t find a 2019 menu), so it’s a little expensive. This seems to be a destination restaurant at only moderately expensive prices. (5-5-19)

 

Notes About This List:

This is a “master list” of restaurants that I have seen on the Internet or other sources and would like to try, or that I think would be of interest to others.  I do not mean for this to be an exhaustive list of every good place to eat, but it should represent a good sample of the most interesting or unique restaurants, along with a few that best represent an area’s regional cuisine.  My own recommendations are in Bold.

I am not looking to include:

  • Fine dining (unless they are unique because of regional specialties)
  • Low end restaurants that are popular with locals but may not be of much interest to travelers or people in general (everyone will have to use their judgment on this one)

Extra consideration for the following:

  • The food is organic, fresh, healthy, or farm to table
  • The restaurant serves a relatively hard to find type of ethnic food and reviews are good

In addition to the regular guidelines I try to include:

  • The best Asian restaurants in the area even if they are not totally authentic
  • Particularly good Mexican restaurants (this usually means the food is from a particular state in Mexico or it is one of the best examples of a U.S. regional style)

Please feel free to leave your own comments or suggestions.

 

Sources:

Chowhound (Portland)

City-Data “Favorite Chinese food in Greater Portland”

City-Data (Vancouver)

Extra MSG: (former web site which included the “Portland Tip Sheet”)

PBS Breakfast Special

Urbanspoon.com (former web site which I used for preliminary research)

Yelp (Portland)

Zomato (Portland)