February 28th, 2014 | MATTHEW KORFHAGE Food & Drink |

D'oh! Yelp Names Portland Food Cart Among Best Restaurants in America... Months After it Closed

Built to Grill is so good it's better than the French Laundry even after closing.

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How great was Built to Grill?

The cart had awesome penne alla vodka and gnocchi at terribly low prices. Sadly, since moving into and out of Star Theater last December, it's been closed.

This did not stop Yelp's Official Blog from naming it one of the top 100 places to eat in America.

"Bookmark these babies now!" the popular user-review aggregation site declares.

Built to Grill is ranked the 24th best place to eat in the country, 10 spots higher than the famed French Laundry. Among New York restaurants, the closed cart ranks 20 spots higher than New York's famed Le Bernardin

Meanwhile, Portland's Waffle Window also scored a spot among the finest, coming in at #48, just edging out New York's Per Se, sister to the French Laundry. 

No other Portland restaurant made the list. 

It's tough for a scrappy place like the French Laundry to compete in a tough consumer review marketplace. Says Megan K of Brea, California of chef Thomas Keller's California restaurant: "My dads thoughts? Not impressed, he wanted a Big Mac after." 

The top place to eat in the in the country was listed as Da Poke Shack in Hawaii, which offers "always fresh, never frozen" poke bowls, poke plates and local specialties such as broccoli and crab salad.

Meanwhile Tim R's December 27, 2013, review of Built to Grill, three weeks after it closed, gave the cart high marks. He had the penne alla vodka and the arancini di riso. "Both were delicious," he wrote, "and its hard to believe that something with such rich flavor was made in a food stand."

UPDATE 1 pm: Portland Yelp Community Manager Don Bourassa writes, "The purpose of Yelp's Top 100 Places to Eat list is to highlight small businesses who have worked hard to earn a great reputation with the Yelp community. At the time this blog post was published, Yelp confirmed with the owner of Built 2 Grill that their closure is temporary."

 
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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