Jump to content


Photo

Beaverton, Hillsboro & West Side Restaurants


  • Please log in to reply
446 replies to this topic

#21 jennifer

jennifer
  • Moderator
  • 3,261 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Beaverton

Posted 24 November 2007 - 10:37 AM

Zab Thai is very good! The chef/owner worked at both Thai Orchid & Typhoon, picked the best dishes from both place & opened Zab Thai.

Haven't been to MOV in years. It was always just "okay". Good place for lunch. I'll have to revisit, thanks for the tip!

Also, thanks for the noodle house tip.

There's something about Reedville...every single time I ended up sick from eating there. We have a friend who LOVES their onion rings (damn good onion rings). But I just won't go anymore.

#22 jennifer

jennifer
  • Moderator
  • 3,261 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Beaverton

Posted 24 November 2007 - 10:38 AM

Btw, also great coffee at Insomniac Coffee on NE 53rd & Baseline. Not quite Coffeehouse NW good, but still very good.

#23 mgmgbooks

mgmgbooks
  • Members
  • 84 posts

Posted 24 November 2007 - 08:36 PM

Glad to hear MOV has improved. We used to go there a couple times a year at least. But the last time we went (which was probably well over a year ago) it was not good. We were especially disappointed with the desserts, which seemed like they came pre-packaged. We asked our server something about the dessert (i don't recall exactly what) and they couldn't tell us, which we presumed was probably because they didn't make them in house.

I did not have dessert that evening so I can't tell you if they are any good or if they are made in house. Next time I go, I'll try to find out.

#24 Olivia

Olivia
  • Members
  • 54 posts

Posted 25 November 2007 - 09:28 AM

I live on SW 181st border of Aloha & Beaverton right by Aloha High, it's really hard sometimes to find a good place to eat around this area, and these are some places that I like to go to:

* A Hawaiian place next to Fred Meyer on TV Highway...I forgot the name but they have a pretty decent food. Not as good as Hapa Grill on SW Teal, but it's pretty good.

* Jin Wah on Canyon is good for Dim Sum and chinese food.

* China Town on SW Walker is good for Dim Sum too.

* Hoo Soon Kyi on SW Beaverton Hillsdale is really good authentic Korean, but the service is so so.

* La Prima on SW Beaverton Hillsdale sharing the Fred Meyer parking lot, serves good Italian dishes.

* Hakatamon next to Uwajimaya popular for their homemade udons.

#25 pyrofemme

pyrofemme
  • Members
  • 380 posts
  • Gender:Female

Posted 26 November 2007 - 10:32 AM

We are also on this side of town and tend to stay in the area when we just want a quick, close dinner.

Hakatamon - Great sushi and udon.

Pho Nguyen - Yummy pho and noodle bowls.

Kabob House - (in the courtyard near Trader Joe's) Chicken is especially good.

China Delight - Not the best but it satisfies the occasional craving for wonton. Their "original" sweet and sour pork is nice. I'm shocked to see they have a nice website (http://www.pdxchinadelight.com/).

Original Thai Cuisine - They deliver!! Heavenly chicken and satay, veggies in entrees are super fresh.

Mingo - I've only been for lunch and never had pizza but I enjoyed it every time.

Abhiruchi South & North Indian - We hit the lunch buffet every few weeks.

Gloria's Secret Cafe - Tiny place with a tiny menu. Fresh Salvandoran food is a nice change of pace. I think it's cash only.

#26 Calabrese

Calabrese

    Desaparecido

  • Banned
  • 5,970 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Gone

Posted 26 November 2007 - 01:40 PM

Gloria's Secret Cafe - Tiny place with a tiny menu. Fresh Salvandoran food is a nice change of pace. I think it's cash only.





Where is this place? Address or general area description?

#27 pyrofemme

pyrofemme
  • Members
  • 380 posts
  • Gender:Female

Posted 26 November 2007 - 01:51 PM

12500 SW Broadway St
Beaverton, OR 97005
(503) 643-2320

#28 jennifer

jennifer
  • Moderator
  • 3,261 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Beaverton

Posted 09 December 2007 - 10:15 AM

Speaking of good Korean, there's also Nakwon in old Beaverton. And I've heard that Ho Soon Yi on Beaverton-Hillsdale, just east of Scholls Ferry is good too.

Yeah jennifer, I noticed that bbq/shabu shabu place the other day. Here's hoping... If you try it before we do, please post and let us all know how it is.



We went to the new Korean BBQ/Shabu Shabu place last Thursday night. It looks totally different inside than Canyon Pearl (the previous restaurant in this space). They've made quite the investment in the BBQ tables. Huge slab granite tables with the grill in the center. These tables seat 6 or 8 easily. Like our first visit to Hae Rim, we were the only caucasians in there. We ordered Koren BBQ brisket, Galbi ribs, and vegetable tempura. I thought these ribs were usually called Kalbi ribs, but it said Galbi on the menu. I'm not that knowledgeable about Korean food, so I wasn't really sure if Galbi and Kalbi were the same thing or not. Definitely not. These "ribs" were boneless.

Anyway, the ribs were slightly marinated and the brisket was not. Both were extremely tender cuts and very fresh. They were served with a big plate of green-leaf lettuce, dipping sauce, and a soy paste of some sort that was salty and good.

All of the little condiments, kim chees, salads, etc. that come out in the beginning were good, but they didn't have that wonderful crisp brightness like the ones at Hae Rim.

One thing that annoyed us was that the server automatically assumed we didn't know that we were supposed to put the meat on the grill & turn it, etc. (duh!) She did all of this for us, and kept coming back to our table to tend to the grill. When we picked up the tongs to turn over the meat, she came rushing over. We looked around for a while and she nor any of the other servers did this with any of the other tables. I'm sure she was trying to be nice and very helpful, but it was also slightly insulting and it felt like she was looming over us most of the time while we were trying to eat.

The food was okay. It wasn't spectacular and it wasn't as memorable or clean tasting as Hae Rim. To be fair, there were many things we didn't order that looked good on other tables. These HUGE (maybe 13" - 15" across) stew pots were on some of the tables and I saw shellfish shells & other remains in them. Looked good. There were no greens on the menu though, very little in the way of vegetables, and we love vegetables.

Total for 3 people was $60 incl. tip. I think my husband's friend was still hungry though when we left.

Jennifer

#29 ExtraMSG

ExtraMSG
  • Admin
  • 18,340 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Felony Flats
  • Interests:Me like food.

Posted 17 May 2009 - 12:37 AM

Had to run some errands out in Beaverton, so I decided to use the opportunity to do some food exploring. First thought was to do an Ochoa vs Ochoa challenge. I've long wondered which of the two are better or if there's even a significant difference. So I headed down TV Hwy, but quickly got sidetracked. I had figured that if I saw something new or interesting, I'd go ahead and stop. Didn't figure I'd see two hours worth of interesting.

I often scan strip malls, especially low-end strip malls, for markets and little restaurants that could be interesting. So when I saw this sign

Attached File  cedar_west.jpg   79.52K   3 downloads

I had to stop. Filipino bakeshop? I'm in.

Posted Image

First I decided to check out El Campesino, a Mexican green grocer on the eastern-most corner of the shopping center. I actually wasn't expecting much, but was happily surprised.

Posted Image

They had a good selection of vegetables, including young onions with their stalks on (cebollitas), cactus leaves, tomatillos and their diminuative sisters milpero tomatillos, chayote, both with and without their prickly skin, yuca, a standard variety of fresh Mexican chiles, including chilacas, various herbs, and the fresh garbanzos, favas, and banana leaves pictured above.

Posted Image

Fruit selection was more interesting. For citrus, there were mandarins, valencias, grapefruits, limes, key limes, lemons, and also the nice limas dulces, pictured above. I should have gotten some of the sweet limes to see if they were actually the sweet limes you find in the Yucatan, eg, to make sopa de lima. Much milder. Some say they're the same as Persian/Indian limes, but I've never looked into whether they are different cultivars or not.

Posted Image

They had half a dozen or more varieties of bananas and plantains in different sizes and levels of ripeness. My wife loves sweet fried ripe plantains, but usually I have to buy green ones from Food4Less and let them ripen. Here I could get them exactly how I wanted them.

The had quince, something I don't usually see at a Mexican grocer. And they were nice and ripe. Great aroma. They had melons and other less exotic fruits, like pears, apples, and grapes.

Posted Image

Among more exotic fruits, they had guava, cherimoya, mango (multiple varieties), papaya, and one of my favorites (and much too hard to find) mamey. I've talked more about mamey before. The quality was better than average to good with everything. They also had fresh cut fruit spears in cups.

Posted Image

They had a solid selection of dry and canned goods also. The dried chiles were pliable and fragrant. They had multiple kinds of chipotles, which are weirdly hard to find around town, and low prices. They had dried shrimp and multiple variations of ground dried shrimp. There were dried avocado leaves, dried favas, and various flours. They had one of my favorite spice rubs, too, El Yucateco's recado/achiote paste. It's much better than others.

Posted Image

One of the coolest items was their house-pickled chicharrones, pork skins. Didn't get any, but it's always fun to see someone doing something like this.

Posted Image

If you're a soda lover and not familiar with "Cola Champagne" you should check it out. If you've had Inka Cola, this will be familiar. It's not as bubble-gummy, much like a lightly citrusy cream soda. This is one of the Salvadoran versions and a good one. (You can find it in many Mexican/Latin markets around town.) There are versions throughout Latin America.

Posted Image

It was a great little tienda and so when I saw that there was an Ethiopian market in the strip mall, also, I was hoping for another wonderful surprise. Addis, though, was a bit underwhelming at first glance. It's tiny, dark, and spare.

Posted Image

There was a sad bit of canned and boxed goods in the middle, though with some oddities like frankincense. The dry goods shelf has some things you'd expect to find in any African or Indian market, such as cardamom, mustard seed, tumeric, fenugreek, etc. But they also have things like black cumin, koseret, raw coffee beans, sorghum, teff flour, besobla, house spice mixes, and black cardamom. The freezer had meats, including goat and lamb. And you could also buy injera, made every day by the owner. So while it was a small store there were some gems inside.

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#30 ExtraMSG

ExtraMSG
  • Admin
  • 18,340 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Felony Flats
  • Interests:Me like food.

Posted 17 May 2009 - 12:39 AM

Posted Image

So finally I got over to the reason I had stopped: Silvestar Bakeshop. To the left, it's jammed full of Asian goods, mostly Filipino favorites. There were pancit canton, soup packets, lumpia mixes, parrot condensed milk, all the little good bits for making halo halo, and even ovaltine.

Posted Image

There was the mighty "All Purpose Sauce" -- from several makers --, filipino soy and fish sauces, plus maggi seasoning, tinned beasties from the sea, and various canned meat products, gravies, and sauces.

Posted Image

In the frozen section, were Filipino hot dogs, longaniza, tocino, frozen fish, and various ready-to-heat items. They also had some fresh veggies and fruits, but the selection was very limited.

Posted Image

One of the reasons I wanted to stop, was Sarsi. Sarsi is a Filipino sarsparilla (now owned by Coca-Cola) that's actually damn good. It's better if you can find it in the glass bottle, but even out the can or 2 liter jug, it's better than most commercial root beers and up there with better sarsparillas. They even had Diet Sarsi. Who knew? I got her distributors number, too, so you may see it show up on K&Z shelves at some point.

Posted Image

But I was here for baked goods. Their specialty is pan de sal, a soft and moderately dense egg bread, a little lighter than challah. It came in sets of six for $2.99, each about the size and shape of a dinner roll. (It was interesting to read that the bread started out as a more rustic, crusty bread much like a quality baguette. I have been hypothesizing that many breads have lost their character over the years, especially those that have been popularized and needed to be cheap, such as sandwich breads.) They had desserts, such as bread pudding with tapioca pearls and coconut and bibinka, a type of rice cake/pudding with coconut milk. There's also halo halo, of course, and arozcaldo, a dish a lot like risotto.

Posted Image

I picked up some pan de sal stuffed with pieces of young coconut. I bought a bunch for the staff and everyone seemed to love them.

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#31 ExtraMSG

ExtraMSG
  • Admin
  • 18,340 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Felony Flats
  • Interests:Me like food.

Posted 17 May 2009 - 12:40 AM

Posted Image

Headed out towards Hillsboro and the Ochoas. I still hadn't really eaten anything. I got about 50 feet and saw Don Chilitos, a taqueria I'd never noticed before.

Posted Image

I was a bit uneasy heading in. The posters on the windows were very slick, but I've seen them before. Perhaps there's a company that sells posters to taquerias. They advertised freshly made tortillas; that's usually a good sign. The inside was very slick as well, though. It could have been a Chipotle or Quizno's. It made me weary, but I ordered a full range of dishes anyway to give them a fair chance.

Posted Image

I got two tacos, one with carnitas one with pastor, a huarache with carne asada, and a shrimp tostada.

Posted Image

The tortillas on the taco were decent. Above average for handmade, which is nearly always better than machine made. These were delicate. The carnitas were crispy and flavorful. The al pastor was a little dry and salty. Their salsas were kind of flat and just okay.

Posted Image

The huarache's large, slightly thick tortilla, had an off-taste, either like bad oil or masa that had been left out too long or used a second or third day and soured. The tortillas was undercooked, too. There was a lot of shredded lettuce and sour cream, making the whole thing kind of bland. Beans were mediocre. The asada was the best part, occasionally chewy, but with a good char and nice bit of beefiness.

Posted Image

The tostada was better than it looked. I rarely like ceviches or cocktails made with bay shrimp, like this one. It was a pre-formed tostada base, which was a bad start. But the shrimp were firmer and less fishy than usual. The shrimp were in a cocktail sauce tasting of ketchup and salsa that wasn't bad.

Not great, but they have a drive-thru and a big menu. There's breakfast, both American style and Mexican style. There are tortas, burritos, nachos, fajitas, mojarras, sopes, etc, etc, and even things like cheeseburgers and club sandwiches. Some of that recommends them and some of it doesn't.

I asked the lady working there if they were a chain and she said they were, but that she didn't know where they were from. I couldn't find another Don Chilitos that was related on the internet.

I decided to go down just a little further, at least through Aloha, and look for anything else that might be interesting. I thought of stopping at Sabor Salvadoreno and checking out the market next door.

Posted Image

In the Aloha Mall parking lot, one of the best taco truck destinations in PDX, was a new truck, La Morenita. Decided to give it a try. The menu has tacos, tortas (including a cubana), burritos, sopes, huaraches, and gorditas.

Posted Image

I got three tacos: carnitas, asada, and cabeza. The carnitas were excellent. Some of the better carnitas I've had in a while, well-seasoned, very crisp on the outside, but juicy and succulent on the inside. They hadn't been smashed and dried out. The asada was gristly with a steamed texture and really salty. The cabeza was tender and perfectly cooked, but very bland. No seasoning or flavor at all. Such damn good carnitas, yet the other items were so poor. It may be one of those places where they can do a couple items well. But with Ely's and Lindo Michoacan in the same parking lot, it'd be hard to return. Perhaps for the cubana.

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#32 ExtraMSG

ExtraMSG
  • Admin
  • 18,340 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Felony Flats
  • Interests:Me like food.

Posted 17 May 2009 - 12:41 AM

Posted Image

My final stop on this whirlwind culinary tour of Aloha was La Espiga Dorada. Basically, this means "golden sheaf", like a Spanish version of "amber waves of grain", as you can see from their signage.

Posted Image

One of the first things that caught my eye was this sign inside advertising the empenadas, some of them savory, that they sell on the weekends. Hadn't noticed that anywhere before. I knew I'd have to return for that.

Posted Image

Second thing I noticed were the racks of freshly baked pastries and breads. As I confirmed with the girl working the cash register, everything was made there.

Posted Image

The case was justifiably emptied out of many items, including the jam, cheese, and chipotle empenadas announced on a sign over the case. The breads looked great, though, much better than the usual panaderia. You could tell there was real care taken and items had a fresh quality that you don't find in tiendas bringing in pastries, selling them for who knows how many days.

Posted Image

I got several items. The coconut macaroon was probably the best of the moist and chewy variety I've had around town. Not just at Mexican bakeries, either. The day of the dead bread with its signature crossbones pattern, had a great outer texture with a nice, mildly sweet flavor. The sesame topped cookie was like a pignoli, but with sesame seeds instead of pine nuts. I didn't try the pineapple biscuit or the other item. Gave them away to employees. Everything I tried though was among the best verions I've had in town.

Posted Image

I did come back on the weekend and pick up some empenadas: jam and pineapple, tuna, and carne molida. All three were in a flaky puff pastry. I didn't try the tuna, but the other two were good. The carne molida had ground meat, spices, and chiles. I think they do a better job with the pan dulce, but I'd like to try the mole and the cheese and chipotle ones some time.

The fact that I got all this on a relatively short stretch of TV Hwy was encouraging. This was only Aloha. How much more is out there on the west side -- in Hillsboro and farther west, or in Beaverton and its various pathways to and from strip malls and condos? I knew I'd have to find out.

Fruteria El Campesino
17871 SW Tualatin Valley Hwy
Aloha, OR 97006
503.601.6006

Addis Market
17895 SW Tualatin Valley Hwy
Beaverton, OR 97006
503.601.3940

Phillipine Asian Store
Silver Star Bakeshop
17937 SW Tualatin Valley Hwy
Beaverton, OR 97006
503.848.6168
http://www.silverstarbakeshop.com

Don Chilitos
17985 SW Tualatin Valley Hwy
Aloha, OR 97006
503.356.1090

Sabor Salvadoreno
3460 SW 185th Ave, Suite A
Aloha, OR 97006
503.356.2376

La Espiga Dorada
18350 SW Tualatin Valley Hwy
Beaverton, OR 97006
503-591-9859

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#33 craig

craig
  • Moderator
  • 2,074 posts
  • Location:Close In SW

Posted 17 May 2009 - 08:22 AM

My final stop on this whirlwind culinary tour of Aloha was La Espiga Dorada. Basically, this means "golden sheaf", like a Spanish version of "amber waves of grain", as you can see from their signage.

Posted Image

One of the first things that caught my eye was this sign inside advertising the empenadas, some of them savory, that they sell on the weekends. Hadn't noticed that anywhere before. I knew I'd have to return for that.

La Espiga Dorada
18350 SW Tualatin Valley Hwy
Beaverton, OR 97006
503-591-9859

One of the delights of my life is going a ashore (from a sailboat) in my early 20's at Turtle Bay in Baja. I wandered around this very small town for a bit and bought a fresh, warm baked good at random that was an empanada. Never figured out what was in it but the filling might have been refried beans and brown sugar. It was fig-like but I know it wasn't figs. Empanadas have been a favorite ever since. I will have to check this place out.

Next Saturday?
"Part of the secret of success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside." -- Mark Twain

#34 Prone to Hyperbole

Prone to Hyperbole
  • Members
  • 658 posts

Posted 17 May 2009 - 11:12 AM

Wow, Nick! You really hit a soft spot with this post! I'm enjoying a sunny, gorgeous, lazy Sunday morning, sipping my Columbian El Jordan (stumptown), listening to "Meet me tonight in Loredo" by Marty Robbins, and reading your STELLAR, resourceful, infinitely useful post above, and I think I actually teared up! Call me a food romantic, or cultural romantic, but you really hit a soft spot with this one! More than with the Asian food I love, or Southern BBQ, etc. This is what I LIVE for! I can't believe I've never trekked out further to Aloha to find these places. But you're knowledge and insight is what really helps. I can really go out there with focus now.

Thanks so much!

My love for all things Latin is about make my 24 hour trainer very, very angry at me! :w00t:

KEEP UP GOD'S WORK!!! ;)
breakin' the law, breakin' the law!

#35 ExtraMSG

ExtraMSG
  • Admin
  • 18,340 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Felony Flats
  • Interests:Me like food.

Posted 17 May 2009 - 02:05 PM

Thanks.

So I did end up doing the Ochoa vs Ochoa showdown. I put it here:

http://www.portlandf...wtopic=1627&hl=

btw, when I went to Ochoa, there were several places I saw driving around that I'd love to know if anyone has been to:

Mi Paraiso
1050 SW Baseline St # C4
Hillsboro, OR 97123
503.681.3088

Casa Colima
140 SW Oak St
Hillsboro, OR 97123
503.726.8449
http://www.casacolima.com

Apparently this one is a taqueria related to the restaurant:

Casa Colima Mexican Restaurant
6319 SW Capitol Hwy
Portland, OR 97239
503.892.9944
http://www.casacolima.com

I think the taqueria is open 24 hours and may have a drive-thru.

There was also this one, Taqueria Santaya, which I didn't get the address of and can't find on Google.

At about 212th and TV Hwy, I believe, was a truck, Gaby's Tacos.

And across from Mayuri on Walker Rd is a panaderia and maybe a market. Anyway, things to check into.

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#36 Flynn

Flynn
  • Secondary Admin
  • 3,679 posts
  • Location:SW Portland

Posted 17 May 2009 - 02:13 PM

And across from Mayuri on Walker Rd is a panaderia and maybe a market. Anyway, things to check into.

Sauce and I ducked into that strip mall last week to see if Za Majestic was still there and doing binchou tan (yaki using japanese charcoal)..

There's a decent indian market, a pretty average looking hawaiian place (Aiea Grill), and the panaderia/carneceria you mention (Ramirez, I think). They just opened a few months ago. Everything looks new-ish. Pretty small meat case and steam table section. It wouldn't get me away from the markets on SW Allen, or from making the hike to Wilsonville for Tienda San Francisco when I want the really good stuff. But Ramirez is proud owner of the single biggest futbol trophy I've ever seen, so there's that.

#37 ExtraMSG

ExtraMSG
  • Admin
  • 18,340 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Felony Flats
  • Interests:Me like food.

Posted 24 May 2009 - 01:16 PM

Sins of omission. So sometimes I tell my wife only PART of the story. eg, I might say that I want to go try a bakery's specialties on the weekend, perhaps the specialties at La Espiga Dorada (pictured above), and ask if she wants to go with me. What I omit is that I'm also planning to wind through Beaverton on my way to a series of recommended stops, looking for interesting eats and promising markets. But hey, it's quality time, right?

When I was tweeting about the above adventures, the first westside explorations, Flynn tweeted back that he had some places for me to try next time I was out that way. So I got the recommendations, fooled my wife into going with me, and headed out camera in hand. The clandestine destination was the corner of Allen and Lombard. But first I placated my wife with a trip to Pier 1 on Beaverton-Hillsdale to pick up a TV stand she'd been coveting.

Posted Image

Then I saw this place in the lot of All American Eyeglass Repair. I stopped.

Posted Image

It was a family endeavor, the older boy taking the orders from gringos like me while the parents cooked the food.

Posted Image

All the standard meats were available. While they advertised goat, they were out on my visit. I got three tacos: al pastor, carne asada, carnitas -- $1 each. The al pastor was sweet and salty, nicely charred and enjoyable. The asada was well-seasoned, lightly charred, but still juicy enough. The carnitas were overly dry, though not horrible, and perfectly tender.

The most impressive thing about the stand was the fantastic selection of salsas/accoutrements to dress the tacos with, which come naked. While the meats were decent, the tacos themselves were delicious with their creamy guacamole or their pickled onion and habanero salsa, etc. Worth a stop just to sample these.

Posted Image

We headed west again to go to La Espiga Dorada when I saw that there was a Puerto Barrios by Koreana. One of my favorite Central American restaurants and panaderias in PDX was Puerto Barrios out towards Hillsboro. I was heart-broken when it closed. So I had to stop when I saw the sign.

Posted Image

Not a restaurant, but just a small market and bakery. There were a few oddities, like Guatemalan breadings, yuca flours, and Cola Champagne, but the real delight were the breads.

Posted Image

There was obvious care taken with both the pan and pan dulce. The crusts were golden, the designs sophisticated for an 800 square foot dilapidated shop in a run-down strip mall. In addition to the breads above, they also had a very nice and traditional pan de queso. I purchased and tasted several items. From what I had, I'd put them among the better panaderias in PDX, along with Yesenia's, Salvador's, and La Espiga Dorada. They also had banana leaf tamales for sale. Like many Central American versions, they were flavorful, stuffed with shredded chicken, tomato sauce, and green olives. The banana leaf flavor really came through in the masa. Well worth the ridiculously cheap $1.50 they charged me. I never got a chance to ask if they were the owners of the previous store. There's a little spot with seating where I could imagine them opening a little fonda. I can only dream.

It's funny that at this point my wife was already a bit annoyed that we hadn't just gone to the bakery and been done with it. I had already planted the seed that we could get lunch somewhere while we were out and about. So there was that. But I still had several places in mind to visit; I was just afraid to be TOO forthright.

We hit La Espiga Dorada and got the empenadas that I posted about previously. Then we headed back towards Beaverton on TV Hwy.

Posted Image

I'd passed this truck, immediately east of Reo's Ribs, half a dozen times or more while driving to and from Aloha or Hillsboro. I didn't remember ever seeing it open and thought it might be broken down -- it certainly looked like it could be broken down. There wasn't even a name of the truck on it and I nicknamed it the "No Name Mariscos Truck". It was definitely open this time and so I stopped. The sign in the window advertised mariscos. With all my east county Mexican seafood success, I was eager for mariscos. I thought I could settle my wife's blood sugar trampoline act with some ceviche, too.

However, the truck has two menus, one for weekends and one for weekdays. On weekdays, they have mariscos -- various seafood tostadas and cocktails. On weekends they do barbacoa and consome.

Posted Image

I got two barbacoa tacos, plus some consome. They also do aguas frescas on the weekend. That day, the choice was pina colada, one of my wife's favorites, so I got one. Everything was fantastic. The barbacoa was the best I've tasted in PDX. The meat, made from beef head slow-cooked until tender, the fat just at the melting point, was coated in a wonderful red sauce. The lucious fat played against the complex and sharp sauce.

Posted Image

The consome was rich (arguably greasy) and beefy, with an aromatic complexity of spices. I drank it all greedily and swore to return on a weekday for mariscos.

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#38 ExtraMSG

ExtraMSG
  • Admin
  • 18,340 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Felony Flats
  • Interests:Me like food.

Posted 24 May 2009 - 01:16 PM

Posted Image

My wife had none, which gave me a good excuse to head towards the original reason for the trip, the conglomeration of ethnic eats at Lombard and Allen. The big sign suggested a huge supermercado, like Grande, Su Casa, or La Tapatia. But neither the supermercado or the pupuseria next to it were open yet.

Posted Image

However, there was a small tienda and carniceria by the same name, Chavita's, that was open. It's small and decent, with mediocre produce, an okay bread selection, a better-than-average meat counter, fish, bulk chiles, even some hot foods, plus all the necessary canned and boxed goods. But it's no competition -- yet -- for Grande or La Tapatia. I'd love to know what the plan is for expanding into the supermercado space.

Posted Image

Between the tienda space and the supermercado space is a cavernous taqueria that looks like an old buffet with used Chinese restaurant tables, complete with lazy susans. The menu is quite large. There are actually two menus, one with pictures and one on the wall. The one on the wall is pretty typical, primarily composed of tacos and burritos, along with sopes and huaraches. They do have some interesting meat choices, both buche and beef tendon. Never had tendon as a taco filling and I probably should have tried it, but I didn't want to disgust my wife.

Posted Image

Their buffet had three guisos and I love a Mexican stew. Choices included pork in tomatillo and chile stew, shrimp with nopales in a chipotle and tomato stew, and shrimp in a spicy cream sauce. I got the pork, along with rice and beans, plus two tacos: carnitas and asada.

The rice was pretty bad. Weirdly sticky and overly light, more like orzo that had been overcooked. The beans were a bit dry and over-salted. But the stew was good. The pork was tender, enveloped in the tangy and spicy sauce, balanced by the earthy dried chile flavor. And they gave several hand-made tortillas with the dish.

Posted Image

The tortillas were quite good, big, fluffy (hard to achieve with corn), and nicely charred. Really some of the better ones I've had around. They were a good base for the large tacos which had well-made meats. The asada was a bit gristly, but well-cooked. The canitas were a bit dry, but also good. Salsas were totally average, unfortunately.

The other menu, kept near the cash register, had all kinds of interesting items, including: gorditas, chilaquiles, menudo, moles, pozole, tamales, and several different enchiladas. Certainly a place worth exploring more.

Posted Image

On the northwest corner of the shopping center was a little store, El Paraiso Tropical, specializing in fruit and freshly made juices. It smelled wonderful inside, like walking through a forest of fruit trees in the tropics.

Posted Image

They had cups of fresh-cut fruit for sale, along with shredded fruits and vegetables to be mixed together and eaten with a fork. We went with a juice: mango. I looked around while they made the juice, peeling, cutting up, and then juicing fresh mangoes.

Posted Image

This was new: a six-sided dreidel in Spanish. Like the four-sided Jewish dreidel, each side results in either putting or taking money from the pot. I won't even attempt to guess the origins of the Mexican dreidel, but it was a delight to find. I should have bought one for Ken.

Posted Image

The juice was muy sabroso. It tasted like mango. Ripe mango. It didn't need anything else.

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#39 ExtraMSG

ExtraMSG
  • Admin
  • 18,340 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Felony Flats
  • Interests:Me like food.

Posted 24 May 2009 - 01:18 PM

Attached File  IMG_1767.JPG   73.31K   0 downloads
On the other end of the shopping center was a bar, El Perico, with a taqueria connected to it. The bar was open and the door to the taqueria was open, but there were no lights on and no one inside that I could see.

Attached File  IMG_1768.JPG   70.06K   0 downloads

I shied away from going into the noisy bar, but the advertisements on the window intrigued me: handmade tortillas and Michoacan style food. Perhaps a good destination for a weekday lunch.

Posted Image

By this time, my wife had given up any hope that it would be a short trip into the 'Tron, so she didn't fight me when I said there was one more place. Not promising when we got there. The name and location were enough to scare me off, but it did come recommended. The strip mall it was in was too new. The name was too Americanized. It could be good, but it wasn't likely. The menu was all over the place: chimichangas, burritos, and combo plates along side chilaquiles, mole, carnitas, and even mariscos like cocteles, ceviches, and camarones ahogados.

There was a Mexican family there, though the dad was buying a lot of booze. (Margaritas, pina coladas, and daquiris are only $4.50 and looked big.) I went with Mex-Mex rather than the Tex-Mex, ordering a shrimp ceviche tostada and two tacos, al pastor and carne asada.

While I sat there, they gave me a basket of chips and salsa. The ranchero sauce was okay, but the chips were bad. They tasted like nasty old oil.

Posted Image

The tacos were the best thing about the meal and they weren't good. The carne asada was edible, but not much more. The meat was tender but there wasn't much flavor to it. The al pastor was downright weird. It tasted like it had been bathed in cumin powder and chili powder, like chili meat that hadn't been cooked long enough. Just bad. And their sign lied. Their salsa is most definitely NOT the best salsa. The salsa verde was bitter and thin. It was so bad I nearly spit it out and my wife and I had to eat some of their mediocre food to get the taste out of our mouths.

Posted Image

The shrimp ceviche was cooked and very bland. Without it curing in lime rather than being poached, it just tasted like boiled shrimp mixed with diced vegetables. And the shrimp was overcooked. We didn't eat more than a couple bites.

Perhaps on such a big menu there are things they do well, but I'm not willing to give it a second chance until someone tells me what's worth the risk.

It was unfortunate to finish on such a sour -- literally -- note, but we still had the empenadas, which we ate, and I had a place to look forward to: the no name mariscos truck.

I returned to the mariscos truck twice in the following week and neither day were they open. The people inside the tienda the parking lot belongs to had no clue where they were. Recently, though, I scored. Apparently they were putting in some new equipment and promise to be open from now on and might even open on Mondays. I got a fish ceviche tostada and a shrimp coctel. The menu has camarones aguaschiles, a dish similar to camarones ahogados, but they were out.

Posted Image

The tostada was quite good. The fish itself tasted like tilapia, definitely not one of my favorites. It often has an "off" flavor to me even when others think it is fine. It had that flavor here, though when eaten in concert with the rest of the ceviche, the off flavor disappeared. Overall, I liked it a lot and it was a generous portion.

Posted Image

Even better was the cocktail. It was $10, but enormous. After eating the tostada, I couldn't eat the whole cocktail.

Posted Image

It was made with nicely poached shrimp and a lot of avocado and other bits. The juice was obviously not ketchup based. Tasted like Clamato or something similar. It was like a shrimp gazpacho. Very refreshing on such a warm and sunny day.

If you just rated the truck on the limited things that it does, it could be the best truck on the west side and already is one of the best in all of PDX. Talking with the owners, you can tell they really care about quality. I thought they said they were from coastal Michoacan or Guerrero, which surprised me when I found out the name of the truck is Guelaguetza, something I always associate with Oaxaca. I still haven't found a good mariscos place on the west side. So far this is in the lead.

Restaurante Lupita's
9549 SW Beaverton-Hillsdale
Beaverton, OR 97005
503.626.3181
Open: Fridays, 3pm to 10pm, Saturdays and Sundays 11am to 10pm

Puerto Barrios
9955 SW Beaverton-Hillsdale
Beaverton, OR 97005
503.627.0465
Open: 8am to 8pm

No Name Mariscos Truck/Guelaguetza
17345 SW TV Hwy
Beaverton, OR 97006
503.442.6920
Open: Tuesday through Sunday
Mariscos on weekdays, barbacoa on weekends

Chavita's Foods
12020 SW Allen Blvd
Beaverton, OR 97005
503.643.2449

Chavita's Restaurant & Taqueria
12050 SW Allen Blvd
Beaverton, OR 97005
503.643.2449
Open: 7am to 10pm

El Paraiso Tropical
12090 SW Allen Blvd
Beaverton, OR 97005
503.526.8982

El Perico
12000 SW Allen Blvd
Beaverton, OR 97005
503.644.6270

Best Salsa
6159 SW Murray Blvd
Beaverton, OR 97008
503.574.3503
Open: 11am to 10pm

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#40 Jill-O

Jill-O
  • Moderator
  • 7,144 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Eastside, on the cusp between N and S

Posted 24 May 2009 - 03:14 PM

Tasted like Clamato or something similar.


Remember that stuff you took a photo of in Food 4 Less?

This: http://www.portlandf...?showtopic=9278

I'll bet that's what it was...
Never give up! Never surrender!