First Street Dining Commons
Southwest 1st Street between Watson and Washington avenues, downtownbeaverton.org/blog/dining-commons. 7 am-8 pm daily.
At Beaverton's outdoor dining hall, you can get the unfettered thrill of plate hopping some of Portland's best spinoff restaurants—Ex Novo Brewing, Big's Chicken, Top Burmese, and lauded ramen spot Afuri Izakaya. You can now cavort from restaurant to restaurant, collecting an assortment of spectacular dishes never before assembled for the same feast that you'll unfurl and enjoy in the road.
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.
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.
Pacific Crust Pizza
2703 NE Alberta St., 503-719-5010, pacificcrustpizzaco.com. 4-10 pm Monday-Friday, 11 am-10 pm Saturday-Sunday.
Normally, whenever Portland gets a new pizza joint, we ask ourselves if the city really needs another one. But, hey, it's 2020. We're going to need all the comfort we can get. In case the name didn't tip you off, Pacific Crust has an outdoors theme, with Northwest-style ingredients, like elk fennel sausage and alder-smoked trout. You can also end the meal around the campfire, s'mores style, with a dark chocolate brownie with graham cracker and toasted marshmallow.
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.