1. Eem

3808 N Williams Ave., Suite 127, 971-295-1645, eemto-you.com.

The most talked-about Portland restaurant of 2019 had difficulty adjusting to the reality of COVID-19, but it seems to have found its footing in Phase 1 with a new grab-and-go window focused on its world-beating curries. And if you manage to snag one of its still high-demand outdoor tables, 'tis the season for co-owner Eric Nelson's hyper-creative cocktails.

2. Nacheaux

8145 SE 82nd Ave., 971-319-1134, nacheauxpdx.com. Noon-7 pm Wednesday-Thursday and Saturday, noon-8 pm Friday, Sunday, 9 am-3 pm.

At Anthony Brown's garishly teal-colored food truck, Mexican favorites get hitched to Southern food and Cajun-Creole flavors. The "Nacheaux nachos" start with a big pile of fresh-fried chips and also feature carnitas that could just as easily be cochon au lait, while a cheesy "crunchwrap" comes stuffed with red beans, dirty rice and fried chicken.

3. Taquería los Puñales

3312 SE Belmont St., 503-206-7233, lospunales.com. 11 am-10 pm daily.

This taco shop is not yet 2 months old, but it feels as if it's been serving the Sunnyside neighborhood for years. Every tortilla is made in-house that day, stuffed with an array of guisados—complex braises of meats and vegetables, including carnitas, barbacoa and chicken tinga.

Chicken adobo. (Henry Cromett)
Chicken adobo. (Henry Cromett)

4. Magna

2525 SE Clinton St., 503-395-8542, magnapdx.com.

It's past time for a food city like Portland to have its own great Filipino restaurant, and one year ago, we got one. Chef Carlo Lamagna's dishes are both intimately familiar and achingly cool, with showstoppers like the crispy pata, or fried pork leg, and pancit bihon, the Filipino version of Chinese glass noodles.

PIGGINS OUT: Classic Portland lunch spot Higgins has opened an outdoor bistro on the grounds of the Oregon Historical Society. IMAGE: Chris Crabb.
PIGGINS OUT: Classic Portland lunch spot Higgins has opened an outdoor bistro on the grounds of the Oregon Historical Society. IMAGE: Chris Crabb.

5. Piggins

1239 SW Broadway, 503-222-9070, higginsportland.com. 11:30 am-8 pm daily.

Piggins is the parkside pop-up patio reimagining of Higgins, a Portland dining landmark since 1994. The menu is effectively a greatest-hits package of some of the restaurant's most beloved dishes with no big chances taken, no vast departures accorded. That's a good thing.