Restaurant Guide–Portland

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  • Date indicates the most recent update of the restaurants listed
  • Bold indicates my recommendations; others come from what I consider to be good sources

Beaverton

Casa Lola–16305 SW Barrows Rd. (Mexican) Open daily until 9:30 pm.  Authentic Mexico City cuisine freshly made with flavorful ingredients. Map (Dining room is open 11-4-21)

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). Also in Tigard. Map (Dining room is open 8-24-21)

Lima Peruvian–12090 SW Allen Blvd. (Peruvian) Open daily 11 am to 8 pm.  Reviewers describe authentic and very delicious food. Interesting items on the menu, although the chaufa dishes are limited. Map (Dining room is open 11-26-21)

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. Map (Dining room is open 11-4-21)

Top Burmese–12655 SW 1st St. (Burmese) Open daily (closed from 2:30 to 4 pm).  Branch of Top Burmese in Portland, and has the same menu. Food seems to be just as good and just as authentic as the other restaurant. Map (Dining room is open 11-9-21)

Camas, WA

Natalia’s–437 NE 4th Ave. (Russian) Breakfast and lunch only (closed Sun & 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. Map (Dining room is open 11-4-21)

Gresham

Kuya Fred’s Cuisine–1446 E. Powell Blvd. (Filipino) Closed Sun evening & Mon.  “Real” Filipino food. Originally located at the Filipino community center, then had several locations (but this is now the only one on their web site). 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. Map (Dining room is open 11-4-21)

Oregon City

Bistro Cubano–709 Main St. (Cuban) Closed Tue & Wed.  Good reviews for the food. Some say it is pricey but worth the money. From the photos it looks as if they give you substantial portions which include side dishes (black beans, tostones, etc.). Cuban sandwich is said to be equal in quality to many that are served in Florida. Map (Dining room is open 11-9-21)

Ingrid’s–209 7th St. (Scandinavian) Closed Sun evening & Mon.  Good reviews. Many people seem to like the meatballs (a safe bet) while others like the more exotic food such as venison. They all say it is good, though. Map (Dining room is open 11-9-21)

Portland

Andina–1314 NW Glisan St. (Peruvian) Dinner only (closed Mon & Tue).  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. Map (Dining room is open 11-26-21)

Behind the Museum Cafe–1229 SW 10th Ave. (Japanese) Lunch only (open daily).  Said to be excellent food–mostly Japanese but it’s more innovative Japanese fusion than traditional Japanese. Map (Dining room is open 11-26-21)

Beijing Hot Pot–2768 SE 82nd Ave. (Chinese) Dinner Wed-Mon; lunch Sat & Sun (closed Tue). Hot pot is the specialty (I think was $25 in 2020 and serves two people). Noodle dishes and dumplings are popular. Has specialty dishes that are not found in many other restaurants. Map (Dining room is open 11-9-21)

Broder–2508 SE Clinton St. (Scandinavian) Open 9 am to 3 pm (closed Tue & Wed).  Popular for breakfast (has aebleskivers). Has another location at 8800 SW Oleson Rd. (which some say is less crowded and easier to get in). (2021 now has a north location also). Map (Dining room is open 11-4-21)

Bun Bo Hue–7002 SE 82nd Ave. (Vietnamese) Closed Wed. Eater says its namesake beef noodle soup is a standout. Map (Dining room is open 9-10-22)

DarSalam Lazurdi–320 SW Alder St. (Iraqi) Open Daily.  Located in downtown Portland. 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. Map (Dining room is open 11-26-21)

Fubonn Supermarket–2850 SE 82nd Ave. (Asian) Open Daily.  Asian supermarket which is the location of several restaurants and food stalls (Vietnamese, Korean, and other cuisines). Had a Malaysian restaurant that is no longer listed on its web site, but other restaurants look good also. The good thing here is that you have several cuisines under one roof. Map (Store and restaurants are open 11-4-21)

Gado Gado–1801 NE Cesar Chavez Blvd. (Indonesian) Open daily 5 pm to 9 pm.  An Indonesian restaurant that is “fusion” (has items from other countries, particularly Malaysia). They have an special “Rice Table” dinner (that is currently $85) that includes food from Indonesia’s Dutch heritage. The regular menu, though, is much less expensive than this. Note: Oma’s Hideaway is the “street food” version of this restaurant. Map (Dining room is open 9-10-22)

Güero–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). Map (Dining room is open 10-7-21)

Higgins–1239 SW Broadway (Northwest) Dinner Wed-Sun; lunch Wed-Fri.  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). Map (Dining room is open 11-4-21)

HK Cafe–4410 SE 82nd Ave. (Chinese) Open daily until 9:00 pm (8 pm on Sun). 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 Garden is said to be good for more upscale food but now is takeout only). Map (Dining room is open 11-4-21)

Kachka–960 SE 11th Ave. (Russian) Dinner only (closed Wed). 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’ health care. Map (Dining room is open 11-26-21)

Khao Niew–4579 NE Cully Blvd. (Lao) Dinner daily; lunch Sat & Sun.  Google Maps says it is inside the Central Bldg. (so maybe is not visible from the street). Reviews are a little bit mixed, but Lao people say it is like home. Map (Dining room is open 10-7-21)

Lechon–113 SW Naito Pkwy. (Tapas) Dinner only (closed Sun).  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). Map (Dining room is open 11-26-21)

Mekong Bistro–8200 NE Siskiyou St. (Cambodian) Dinner only (open daily).  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. Map (Dining room is open 9-10-22)

Nepali Kitchen–3434 NE 49th Ave. (Nepalese) Open 11 am to 7 pm (closed Wed).  Food is served through a window that looks like it is in the back of the owners’ home. The “restaurant” is a garden with picnic tables and “dining pods” (individual shelters available to get out of the weather). The menu is small but the food is Nepali (not the Nepali version of Indian food–just native dishes from Nepal). I don’t think they have chow mein (my favorite Nepali dish) but they have other interesting dishes I have not seen at other Nepali restaurants. Map (Dining area is open 10-7-21)

Oma’s Hideaway–3131 SE Division St. (Malaysian) Open daily 5 pm to 9:30 pm.  This is the “street food” version of Gado Gado. Oma’s has a limited menu but it all looks good (with several coconut dishes). Note: Gado Gado is Indonesian but the menu here looks Malaysian. Map (Dining room is open 9-10-22)

Original Pancake House–8601 SW 24th Ave. (Breakfast) Open 7 am to 3 pm (closed Mon & Tue).  This is the original location (founded in 1953) of what is now a national chain.  It had what was then a cutting edge idea of serving authentic ethnic and national pancake recipes such as Swedish pancakes and the Dutch Baby, as well as other items such as a Danish cherry kijafa crepe. It won an award from the James Beard Foundation under the America’s Classics category. Map (Dining room is open 9-10-22)

Paadee–6 SE 28th Ave. (Thai) Lunch Thu-Sun; Dinner Wed-Mon (closed from 3 to 5 pm).  Casual version of Langbaan, this is Isan style Thai food. To me this looks like the perfect combination of food that looks great at prices that are not out of reach. (Langbaan is located at the same address and has a tasting menu with seemingly hard to find Isan menu items–the menu changes monthly). Map (Dining room is open 9-10-22)

Paley’s Place–1204 NW 21st Ave. (Northwest) Dinner only (closed Sun-Tue).  One of the iconic Northwest cuisine restaurants in Portland. Makes the most out of local ingredients. One interesting aspect of the restaurant is that several dishes are served from the owner’s native country of Belarus (such as ushki dumplings filled with sweet corn). Map. (Dining room is open 11-9-21)

Pho Van–1919 SE 82nd Ave. (Vietnamese) Open 10 am to 9:00 pm (closed Wed).  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. Map (Dining room is open 11-26-21)

Pie Spot–521 NE 24th Ave. (Pie shop) Open 8 am to 8 pm Tue, Thu, and Sun only.  Recommended as a good place to get Marionberry pie, sold in an individual size if you want it so that you do not have to buy an entire pie to try it out. Has other pie flavors as well as lunch items such as chicken pot pie and mushroom pot pie. Map (Takeout only 9-10-22)

Ramen Ryoma–1039 SW Morrison St. (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). Map (Dining room is open 10-7-21)

Stammtisch–401 NE 28th Ave. (German) Dinner daily; lunch Fri-Sun.  A special occasion German restaurant that has menu items that are seldom found outside of Germany. Flavors are said to be just about the same way. Not outrageously expensive but higher prices than normal. Map (Dining room is open 11-26-21)

Swiss Hibiscus–4950 NE 14th Ave. (Swiss) Dinner only (open Thu-Sun).  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). Map (Dining room is open 8-25-21)

Taiwan Bistro–11136 SW Capitol Hwy. (Taiwanese) Closed Tue.  Has a very high rating and reviewers say it is authentic. Individual items are on small plates, and many people like to get the combination plate (LuWei) with several items. Braised pork over rice, pork buns, and Taiwanese tofu are some of the recommended dishes. Also has congee, a soup I enjoyed at a Taiwanese restaurant in Seattle. Map (Dining room is open 11-26-21)

Tangier–221 SW Pine St. (Moroccan) Open until 9:00 pm–10 pm on Fri & Sat (closed Sun).  Moroccan tagines, but also has a number of other good choices (mainly Lebanese). Map (Dining room is open 11-4-21)

Taqueria La Mestiza–8525 NE Fremont St. (Mexican) Open 10 am to 8 pm (closed Wed).  Small place with authentic Mexican food, but specializes in Yucatan style food including cochinita pibil. The owner also recommends pavo en relleno negro (only available on weekends) but there are several other interesting items. It is probably best to ask for suggestions because the Yucatan items are not ones that will be familiar to most people. Map (Dining room is open 9-10-22)

Tin Shed–1438 NE Alberta St. (American) Breakfast & lunch only (open daily).  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 looks interesting as well (stopped serving dinner after the pandemic). Map (Dining room is open 11-26-21)

Top Burmese–1305 NW 23rd Ave. (Burmese) Open daily 11:30 am to 9 pm. Burmese restaurant that reviewers really like. The restaurant seems quirky with robots that wait on tables and take your payment, but seems to be OK with customers and they say the food is good. Many dishes are similar to Indian food (a neighbor of Burma), but also has mango dishes and food that is similar to Thai. Map (Dining room is open 9-10-22)

Wajan–4811 E. Burnside St. (Indonesian) Open 12 pm to 8:30 pm (closed Mon & Tue and closed from 2:30 to 4 pm weekdays).  Many reviewers say the food is great and some say it is more authentic than other Indonesian restaurants in town. Based on the menu I think this would be my first choice for Indonesian. A few months ago diners said only the outdoor patio was open. Google Maps says the dining room is now open but I am not sure about this. Map (Dining room is open 9-10-22)

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

Tigard

Tong Thai–11705 SW Pacific Hwy. (Thai) Closed Sun (and closed from 3 to 4:30 pm).  Reviews are so good I have to think the food must be very good. This seems to be the best, or one of the best restaurants in Tigard. Map (Dining room is open 11-9-21)

Vancouver, WA

Abhiruchi–233 NE Chkalov Dr. (Indian) Closed Mon (and closed between 2:00 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. Map (Dining room is open 10-7-21)

Bosnia Rest.–2902 NE Burton Rd. (Bosnian) Open daily noon to 8 pm.  Beef stew, Turkish coffee, desserts, and other Bosnian and Serbian dishes are recommended. They used to have a larger menu before the pandemic but reviewers say what is left is very good and tastes like “home” (if you are from that region). Map (Permanently closed according to Google Maps 11-26-21)

Note: A new Bosnian restaurant called 7 Restaurant is being planned in downtown Vancouver. I think it will have a different owner but the same type of food Bosnia Restaurant had before the pandemic (the menu was drastically reduced in 2020 and 2021)

Farrar’s Bistro–12514 NW 36th Ave. (American) Dinner only (closed Sun & Mon).  Wild caught salmon, chicken pot pie, fish tacos, and probably some other items that are just as good. Map (Dining room is open 10-7-21)

La Oie Cajun Cuisine–9811 NE 15th Ave. (Cajun) Open Tue-Fri only.  Reviews and photos make me think they focus on the freshness and flavor of the food rather than adding some kind of hot sauce or seasoning to try to make it taste Cajun. This is so far from Louisiana that they are at the other seacoast, where they can get equally fresh seafood that looks like it is one of their best features. Desserts look very good as well. This is a food truck, so it will probably be takeout only unless they move into a building with a dining room. Map (Takeout only 11-9-21)

Nom Nom–801 C St. (Lao) Open daily 11 am to 10 pm.  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. Map (Dining room is open 11-4-21)

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. Map (Dining room is open 10-7-21)

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. Map (Dining room is open 8-24-21)

Wilsonville

Dar Essalam–29585 SW Park Pl. (Moroccan) Open daily except Fri lunch, Sat lunch, & Sun.  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. Map (Dining room is open 11-9-21)

Wood Village

Babushka Russian Deli–819 NE 242nd Dr. (Russian) Open 8 am to 3 pm (closed Sat & Sun).  Located about a mile from I-84, and seems to be well known by people making road trips to the east of Portland. Coffee and pastries are one of the biggest draws, but others suggest the borscht or the sandwiches. Has several Russian items on the lunch menu. Map (Dining room is open 11-9-21)


  • For additional explanation of this list see Index
  • Please feel free to leave your own comments or suggestions.

James Beard Foundation America’s Classics

The following are locally owned restaurants that are distinguished by their timeless appeal, and which serve quality food that represents the character of their communities:

  • Portland: Original Pancake House–8601 SW 24th Ave.

Note About “50 States, 50 Dishes” (Condé Nast)

Condé Nast published an article on Jul. 3, 2018 using various sources to compile a “list of the dishes that capture the hearts, souls, and (oh, yes) stomachs of these 50 states (plus Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico), and where you should order them.” For Oregon it was Marionberry pie, made with a blackberry hybrid concocted at Oregon State University.

The editors say a good place to try it is at Pie Spot in northeast Portland.

Note About “50 States, 50 Cuisines” (Condé Nast)

Condé Nast published an article on Sep. 14, 2020 explaining how they set out to go beyond a previous article that had identified the signature dish for each state, and to find food that goes beyond the classics and “to highlight a cuisine worth traveling to each state for, much of which you truly can’t get anywhere else.” For Oregon it is Slavic Cuisine, found primarily in Portland (Oregon has the largest number of Russian-speaking people per capita).

Kachka was one of the first restaurants that showed Portland diners the flavors of Russian cuisine (lamb lyulya kebabs and pickle platters are popular). Paley’s Place, a restaurant featuring Northwest cuisine, also has dishes from the owner’s native country of Belarus. The Pelmeni Melmeni food cart at 1080 SE Madison St. has Russian dumplings and many other options available for takeout.


Sources:

James Beard Foundation (America’s Classics Award Winners)

Chowhound (former web site)

City-Data “Favorite Chinese food in Greater Portland”

City-Data (Vancouver)

Condé Nast Traveler “50 States, 50 Cuisines: The Food Worth Traveling For in Every State”

Condé Nast Traveler, “50 States, 50 Dishes: America’s Favorite Foods and Where to Get Them”

Eater, “Portland’s Incredible Southeast Asian Scene, Mapped”

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

Google Maps

PBS Breakfast Special

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

Yelp (Portland)

Zomato (Portland)