Where to Eat This Week

Inside the buzzy Pearl District spot Janken, there’s a never-ending blossoming cherry tree.

Janken (Aaron Lee)


250 NW 13th Ave., 503-841-6406, jankenrestaurant.com. 4–10 pm Tuesday–Thursday, 4–11 pm Friday–Saturday, 4–9 pm Sunday.

You may not have seen a green leaf in weeks, but inside this buzzy Pearl District spot, there’s a never-ending blossoming cherry tree. Do your best to book a seat underneath the centerpiece and enjoy the food and people watching in equal measure. The glitz of Janken will distract you from the dismal drips outside: Get swept away by the smoke billowing out from under a cloche lifted tableside to reveal a pineapple mezcal cocktail; splurge on scallop nigiri topped with uni that provides the essence of the sea. And if you’re really looking to go full-on summer, order bingsu for dessert, the Korean condensed milk snow with a texture that’s somehow fluffy and crunchy, disappearing on your tongue as quickly as a passing memory of sunbathing on Sauvie Island in July.


2727 N Lombard St., 503-206-5313, elyikeoaxaquenoysusazon.com. 10 am–9 pm daily.

Yique, a regional Oaxacan goat stew, rivals any soup out there. This little hole-in-the-wall in Kenton is putting out yique, moles and other specialties that send you straight to the Southern Mexican state, home to a lot of the country’s finest cuisine. Think of yique (also spelled yike) as a meeting of pozole and birria consommé, topped with an ample amount of tender goat. Unlike pozole, the hominy in yike is broken down, a process done in house by the mother-daughter duo who own the restaurant. With guajillo pepper and spiced consommé, it’s a heartening bright orange bowl that provides more insulation than Smartwool.


2934 NE Alberta St., assemblybrewingco.com. 11 am–10 pm daily.

The first Black-owned brewery in the state just opened its second location this month, meaning more Portlanders can munch some of the best Detroit-style pizzas in town. Assembly Brewing is named in honor of the auto factory assembly lines that have powered co-founder and brewer George Johnson’s hometown of Detroit for decades. Customers at the new Alberta Street location can expect whole square pies, five by-the-slice options (including one for vegans), salads, and Parmesan-coated breadsticks. Drink offerings include eight taps for Assembly beer, locally made hard cider, wine, and a handful of cocktails and spirits. Assembly serves what might be the most authentic Detroit-style pies in the area thanks to Johnson’s training with late award-winning pie baker Shawn Randazzo and development of a proprietary dough recipe, which results in a thicker than normal crust with exceptional crunch.


7117 SE Milwaukie Ave., 503-272-1960, @puregreenportland. 7 am–9 pm daily.

The West Coast’s first location of the New York-founded juice bar opened in the Sellwood-Moreland neighborhood in December. Pure Green offers smoothies that are a hefty 20 ounces and cost about $10 a pop. The Tropical Breeze and Pure Piña Colada flavors both had tasty Hawaiian vibes but without that shock of refined sugar you might get at other smoothie chains. Additional menu options include cold-pressed juices, made-to-order oatmeal bowls, and avocado toast with bread from gluten-free bakery Bastion down the street. The inviting space includes a large community table, outdoor seating and two-tops with tons of outlets, but it’s worth holding out for one of the four hanging rattan chairs.


626 SE Main St., 503-502-2038, jejupdx.com. 5–11:30 pm Wednesday–Saturday.

The owners of Han Oak and Toki have brought us Jeju, a twist on Korean barbecue that makes it less about an all-you-can-eat munch fest cooked yourself at the table and turns it into a considered affair. In assuming the former Renata space, a grand buildout in inner Southeast, the Jeju team inherited the Italian restaurant’s wood-fired oven and have put it to excellent use. A seat at the bar near the oven provides a front-row view of crispy rice bowls and meat dishes sliding in and out, as well as additional warmth from the hot fire. We’re nuts for the banchan, mandu dumplings and the ssam platter. Skirt steak, rib-eye, pork coppa and housemade sausage are served sliced, ready to be tucked into lettuce or chicory, slathered with ssam-jang, and topped with herbs before stuffing the packet into your mouth whole.

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