1935 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 503-208-3948, todotaco.com. 5-9 pm, Sunday-Monday, 5-10 pm Tuesday-Saturday.
Build-Your-Own-Taco Night is a weekly staple for many families, and it’s easy to understand why. There’s something so playful and satisfying about the creative construction. That fun, familial feeling is a big part of the experience of dining at Todo, where you can choose from half- or full-pound plates of taco fillings and adventurously shuffle them with various toppings on soft corn tortillas or crisp tostadas. Our go-to: the pastor de trompo.
2. Champagne Poetry Pâtisserie
3343 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 503-265-8834, champagnepoetry.biz. 9:30 am-7 pm Tuesday-Thursday and Sunday, 9:30 am-9 pm Friday-Saturday.
This new bakery is a pink wonderland of colorful macarons, airbrushed tarts and soufflé pancakes. Chef-owner Dan Bian is dedicated to infusing classic French desserts with exciting ingredients—from yuzu to guava to ube. The real stars here are the hyperrealistic cakes, including one that looks like a perfect Homer Simpson doughnut.
3. Tito’s Taquitos
3975 SW Beaverton Hillsdale Highway, 503-406-5935, titos-taquitos.square.site. 11 am-6 pm Wednesday-Saturday.
At Tito’s, the taquitos are neither an appetizer nor an afterthought but an elaborate—and elaborately composed—entree. They’ve got a spectacularly crispy crackle, strong corn flavor, and chunky-soft potato filling, plus an assortment of vegetable garnishes and your choice of proteins laid on top.
4. Pono Brew Labs
1728 NE 40th Ave., 503-432-8143, ponobrewing.com. 4-10 pm Sunday-Thursday, 4 pm-midnight Friday-Saturday.
Pono fans now have a dependable place to find the brewery’s beer on tap and can accompany those pints with some stellar Pacific Island- and Asian-inspired food. You really couldn’t go wrong with building an entire meal out of the starters, which include Filipino lumpia, kalua pork sliders, french fries topped with either more of that pig or beef bulgogi and sticky garlic shoyu wings.
515 SW Broadway, #100, 971-865-2930, tercetpdx.com. 5:45-10 pm Wednesday-Saturday.
Located in the mezzanine of downtown’s historic Morgan Building, Tercet is the rebirth of beloved prix fixe seafood restaurant Roe, and you’ll find the new iteration maintains its predecessor’s high standards. Head chef John Conlin has expanded the menu to include meat—a recent visit saw morels draped over a tender beef tartare—though fish dishes are still superb, like a lightly poached wild Chinook in a green sorrel sauce.