Wednesday, January 09, 2013


Portland, Oregon – the only big city close to where I live – boasts almost 500 food carts. Most gather in "pods" of at least a few mobile eateries parked together on an otherwise empty lot, sometimes forming a semi-permanent food court. On a rare visit to the city we sought out The Sultan's Kitchen, one of several Turkish vendors and reported to specialize in iskender kabob, my favorite Turkish dish. They did, and we got some.

If you find yourself in Portland you might look for what you long for on the Portland Food Cart map (or yes, there is an app for it.)

Thai, Vietnamese, and Indian options abound and are a safe bet in my book. Here’s a taste of what else you might find.I love some of the names they chose.

Viking Soul Food: Swedish dishes
Adaddin's Castle: Iraqi cuisine
El Sultan: Mexican and Greek food
Eurodish: specializing in Eastern-European-style home cooking
EuroTrash Food Cart: inspired by Spanish and Portuguese cuisine
Pyro Pizza: wood-fired oven pizza and handmade sodas
El Masry Egyptian: Egyptian food including gyros and shwarma
Beez Neez: great sausage cart even serving reindeer sausage
Tabor: Czech food cart featuring the Schnitzelwich
The Swamp Shack: Cajun dishes from a food cart
Big-Ass Sandwiches: specializes in a big sandwich with your choice of meat topped with fries and cheese sauce
No Fish, Go Fish: specialty and seasonal soups along with small "no fish" fish-shaped sandwiches
Honkin' Huge Burritos: vegetarian burritos that are truly huge, even the small one
Cool Harry's Frozen Yogurt: locally made organic frozen yogurt in unique flavors
The Frying Scotsman: traditional Scottish fish and chips
Perierra Creperie: French-inspired handmade savory and sweet crepes
PDX671: Guam-and-Pacific-NW-influenced food
Pepper Box: breakfast tacos and other New-Mexico-inspired foods
Fuego de Lotus: Venezuelan-inspired fare
The Dump Truck: handmade Asian dumplings
Wolf and Bear's: Israeli-inspired food like falafel and hummus
Emame's Ethiopian: Ethiopian food
Island Grill: Hawaiian plate lunch
Weenies From Another World: hot dogs and hamburgers
London Pasty Co: traditional British pasties
Herb's Mac and Cheese: mac and cheese and more
Cake on a Hot Tin Roof: dessert cart
Nong's Khao Man Gai: specializing in a single dish - khao man gai, a rice dish with chicken and spicy sauce
GF Chef: real food, gluten-free

Questions: If you were looking for a great food cart, what would you be happy to find? If you were starting your own, what would it be and why?

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