3634 SE Division St., instagram.com/ruthiespdx. Noon-8 pm daily.
This food cart's self-proclaimed "Mormon cooking" is a shrine to Oregon's natural bounty. Ruthie's menu will change with the seasons, and every bite undergoes some form of fire application from its wood-fired oven. The inaugural lineup includes four salads ($10-$13) and two meats ($22 each).
2. Fills Donuts
1237 SW Washington St., 503-477-5994. 8 am-2 pm Wednesday-Sunday.
If you thought Portland didn't need another doughnut maker, this one introduces a new style to the culinary scene: the Berliner, traditional German pastries with no center hole and a filling of fruit, chocolate or custard. Expect plenty of inventiveness in Fills' finished products, including flavors like matcha, pumpkin, hazelnut and even a pimento cheese doughnut with a sesame seed topping.
3. Birrieria PDX
16544 SE Division St., Portland, 971-336-6804. 11 am-9 pm Tuesday-Thursday, 9:30 am-9 pm Friday-Sunday.
The birria boom has reached Portland, and this cart in deep Southeast is one of its main purveyors. Birria de res, like its sibling, barbacoa de res, has a long tradition in many parts of Mexico, but Birrieria PDX's menu goes beyond classic applications: Other inventive options include the keto taco, made with crispy melted cheese instead of a tortilla, and birria ramen, the Japanese noodle soup made with the broth of the birria, resulting in something that tastes more like pho or Thai boat noodles.
4. Rock Paper Fish
2605 SE Burnside St., rockpaperfishandchips.com. 11 am-9 pm Wednesday-Sunday.
Rock Paper Fish is yet another fast-casual Micah Camden restaurant, and yet another quick pandemic pivot. Open since mid-August, it's a pickup- and delivery-only fish-and-chips window operating out of what used to be Boxer Ramen in the Burnside 26 building. The seafood may be mostly local or regional, but the style is New England: double-battered, double-fried, with thick fries reminiscent of Belgian frites.
5. Han Oak
511 NE 24th Ave., 971-255-0032, hanoakpdx.com. 5-8 pm Friday-Sunday. Takeout only.
Peter Cho's Han Oak wows diners nightly with its modern, progressive take on Korean cuisine—at least, it did until, well, y'know. But the restaurant—one of Portland's best, regardless of cuisine—has revved back up again, offering Cho's world-beating dumplings and what on paper sounds like it will soon be the city's favorite new obsession: a steamed bao burger.