Despite a litany of apocalyptic social-media grumblings heralding the death of the food cart, the state of Portland's mobile, inexpensive cuisines remains Herculean. Peep our five favorite carts of 2016, and check out wweek.com for Cheap Eats: our comprehensive guide to dining on a budget in Portland.
Co-cart of the year: Chicken and Guns
1207 SE Hawthorne Blvd.
Dustin Knox's latin-inspired grilled chicken and double-fried potatoes will have you eating there multiple times a day.
Co-cart of the year: Matt's BBQ
4709 NE Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
Matt Vicedomini's barbecue was already very good before his odyssey to central Texas, but by December 2015, he was making some of the best barbecue in Portland.
3. Straits Kitchen
1122 SE Tacoma St.
Straits Kitchen showcases the traditional cuisine of the Chinese-Malaysian Baba-Nyonya people.
4. La Camel
Southwest 9th Avenue between Alder and Washington streets, 503-778-0604, lacamel.com. Lunch and early dinner Monday-Saturday.
La Camel serves elaborate, ceramic-cooked tagines and North African-style paellas, slow-cooked foods prepared with uncommon care. The kefta tagine is the cart's flagship—a Moroccan-spiced meatball stew served in thick tomato sauce and topped with egg. $.
5. Mole Prehispanic Cuisine
2671 NW Vaughn St.
Chef Luis Ochoa brings stunning and labor-intensive Mexican moles to the Northwest Industrial neighborhood.