1. Sushi Ohana
The secret has long been out about this 6-year-old Lloyd District spot. It's consistently crowded, and it's really no wonder—the sushi is consistently above average, particularly the salmon nigiri and pepper tuna, and the happy hour is killer. From 11 am to 5 pm daily, plates are as cheap as $1.50.
2. Sushi Takahashi 2
Anyone who thinks all sushi-go-rounds are the same needs to visit this hole in the wall across the freeway from Portland State University. With plates circulating on a model Southern Pacific train set, specials tacked to the wall on parchment paper, and a soundtrack of funky instrumental music, it feels like a secret hideaway you might stumble upon in an alleyway after getting lost in Tokyo.
3. Sushi Ichiban
24 NW Broadway, 503-224-3417.
Speaking of Sushi Takahashi 2, this is the former location of the fabled Sushi Takahashi 1, which also ferries plates via train set. It's remained a favorite, known equally for its vegan rolls and salmon skin roll.
2850 SE 82nd Ave., No. 2, and other metro-area locations, 503-777-7914.
Don't worry, it's not Irish. Situated next door to beloved Asian grocery Fubonn, O'Sushi is your best go-round option among many on Southeast 82nd, and home to maybe the longest belt in town, a track zigzagging through the entire dining room.
5. Sushi Chiyo
4029 NE Sandy Blvd. and other metro-area locations 503-288-4858.
If Sushi Ohana is overrun, you won't lose much in the way of freshness if you drive seven minutes east to this low-ceilinged, Hollywood neighborhood gem, which sends around everything from hulking slabs of nigiri to tiny cartons of "yogurt-flavored" drinks.