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Nasi tim — a Chinese Indonesian rice dish with chicken, egg, and broth — at Pasar in Portland.
Nasi tim at Pasar.
Molly J. Smith/Eater Portland

The Hottest New Restaurants in Portland, February 2024

A Northern Vietnamese restaurant with hand-made noodles, a Beaverton Korean restaurant attracting lines around the building, an Indonesian snack bar with jiggly desserts, and more

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Nasi tim at Pasar.
| Molly J. Smith/Eater Portland

As a city rife with turnover, sitting comfortably on the culinary cutting edge, Portland sees restaurants open doors with regularity, hoping to make a splash in a town that’s overabundant with talent for its size. Some of those newcomers become the talk of the town quickly, among food writers or neighborhood regulars in search of something special.

Thus, we present the Eater Heatmap, which covers some of the most exciting restaurants that have opened in the past six months. Know of a spot that should be on our radar? Send us a tip by emailing pdx@eater.com. For more established, bucket-list restaurants in Portland, check out the Eater 38.

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Eater maps are curated by editors and aim to reflect a diversity of neighborhoods, cuisines, and prices. Learn more about our editorial process.

Coredam

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This Beaverton Korean restaurant opened with little fanfare, but Coredam is now easily attracting multiple-hour-long waits on weekends thanks to its generous assortment of banchan, hearty stews and soups, and relative rarities (in Portland, anyway) like raw and spicy marinated crab. Coredam also offers a nice selection of kalguksu, Korean knife-cut noodles in fragrant broths teeming with clams, thin ribbons of beef, or mussels. Arrive very early if you intend to visit — at least 30 minutes before open.

Chem Gio at Mosaic Taphouse

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The Vietnamese drinking snacks on offer at this St. Johns taphouse are loud, figuratively and literally. Pieces of tofu crack on each bite, revealing a soft core dripping with faux fish sauce. Chem Gio’s take on banh xeo eat almost like a Taco Bell taco in the best way, shredded iceberg and calamansi fish sauce blending with pieces of shrimp and pork in a turmeric yellow pancake-like hammock. Bot chien trung — crispy taro rice cakes — arrive with squiggles of egg, house soy sauce, and pickled papaya salad, pops of acidity and salty soy blending with the creamy-centered taro cakes. Chem Gio is also incredibly strong when it comes to vegan Vietnamese food; the betel leaf-wrapped vegan la lot uses a meatball of Impossible meat, black fungus, and tofu, which gives them satisfying savory and umami notes.

Friendship Kitchen NW: Saigon to Singapore

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This Northwest Portland sibling restaurant to the Glisan Vietnamese restaurant of the same name is a culinary portrait of its owners, Trang Nguyen Tan and Wei-En Tan. Nguyen Tan’s Vietnamese roots and Tan’s familial ties to Singapore both hold space on the restaurant’s menu, from 10-hour simmered beef pho to scallion and ginger-laden chicken rice. The restaurant’s take on laksa, based on Tan’s mother’s recipe, gets its salty hit from dried shrimp in the base, sweetened with coconut and piled high with shrimp, fish cakes, and tofu. For something celebratory, spring for the Singaporean chile crab noodles, two pounds of snow crab drenched in chile sauce.

Sun Rice

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At this stall within the Moxy Hotel downtown, chef TJ Cruz serves traditional and inventive takes on silogs, Filipino breakfast plates involving garlicky rice and a sunny fried egg. The foundations here are very strong: The rice is profoundly flavorful, and its accompanying crispy-edged fried egg offers a luscious yolk for a saucy touch. Some bowls involve things like beef head corned beef and hash brown bits or spiced vinegar-marinated branzino, though it’s hard to beat the lechon kawali, or crispy pork belly: Crackly skin gives way to luscious rendered fat. The optional mango-peach hot sauce is mandatory, its sweetness smoothing the sharp zaps of heat.

A crispy pork belly rice bowl at Sun Rice within the Moxy Hotel. The bowl comes with tomatoes and shallots, garlic rice, lechon kawali, and a sunny-side-up egg.
Pork belly rice bowl at Sun Rice.
Brooke Jackson-Glidden/Eater Portland

Queen Mama's Kitchen

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Within this ornate downtown Portland Saudi Arabian restaurant, regulars share pots of cardamom-scented coffee and sip cups of saffron tea, awaiting grape leaves filled with velvety rice and bright baba ghanoush. Each day, the restaurant offers a different special, which is worth an order; on Fridays, smoky, fall-apart lamb shanks accompany rice cooked in the rendered fat and jus, while on Thursdays, saleeg features a bed of creamy, deeply chicken-y risotto-esque rice, a pillow for rich roasted poultry. A slice of cheesecake is a fine punctuation to any meal.

Saleeg, fattoush, meze, and tabouli all sit on a table at Queen Mama’s Kitchen.
Saleeg and meze at Queen Mama’s Kitchen.
Brooke Jackson-Glidden/Eater Portland

The Paper Bridge

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The menu at this subterranean Northern Vietnamese restaurant may be the city’s most detailed, featuring several pages explaining the origins, cultural influences, and components of each item. It’s a smart choice, considering the Southeast Ash restaurant serves dishes hard to find at the city’s other Vietnamese restaurants: Sitting under a canopy of paper lanterns, visitors rip apart glutinous rice cakes, satisfyingly chewy with a crisp exterior, filled with fried pork and vegetables. Sheets of house-made rice noodles swaddle tender beef and herbs, to be dunked into nuoc cham. And while the restaurant serves pho, it highlights variations harder to spot stateside, like pho vit cao bang, a delicate duck and pork bone broth with an herbaceous sweetness provided by aromatic mac mat leaves. Linger for a post-meal pot of hot tea.

Orange & Blossom Patisserie

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Each morning, this Killingsworth patisserie’s pastry case holds a sampling of gorgeously constructed cookies, pastries, pies, and buns: slices of olive oil cake topped with a ribbon of pistachio buttercream, a moist gingerbread cake with candied citrus, sourdough chocolate chip cookies with the ideal balance of crunch and chew. They all happen to be vegan, though you wouldn’t know it. The star of the case is the cardamom orange blossom bun, a knot of soft, stretchy brioche sticky with both spiced vegan butter and an orange blossom glaze. Pastries change monthly based on what’s in season from Oregon and Washington farms, but those buns will always be available.

Indonesian food remains underrepresented in the American restaurant market — particularly regional or culturally specific Indonesian food. The owners of Alberta Street’s Pasar, who also own East Burnside Indonesian restaurant Wajan, are happily hyper-specific, focusing on Chinese Indonesian dishes and meals found at markets throughout the archipelago. Diners dunk fried snacks like bala-bala, a craggy veggie fritter, into a garlicky peanut sauce, or nibble on sandwich-like squares of sticky rice filled with chicken floss; some stick around for heartier dishes like lontong Cap Go Meh, a curried coconut soup grounded with shellfish in its base, absolutely abundant with pickles, vegetables, fried snacks, and lontong, Indonesian rice cakes steamed in banana leaves. The nasi tim, a terrine-esque mound of rice, a kecap manis-marinated boiled egg, and chicken earthy with dried mushrooms, comes with a side of broth that is alive with white pepper and scallions. Bite-sized, jiggly desserts are a fun conclusion to a visit here.

A diner scoops a bite of Lontong Cap Go Meh at the Portland Indonesian restaurant Pasar.
Lontong Cap Go Meh at Pasar.
Molly J. Smith/Eater Portland

Annam VL

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The most centrally located companion restaurant to Vietnamese soup destinations Rose VL and Ha VL, Annam VL on Belmont similarly specializes in daily soup specials: On Tuesdays, Hanoi-style chicken noodle soup, bún thang, houses a pile of dried shrimp and cilantro, while Sundays involve bowls of bánh canh cha tôm loaded with fried shrimp and pork meatballs. Every day, however, folks can — and should — order banh it tran, poached sticky rice dumplings in a sweet, savory fish sauce.

Alpenraüsch

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This new Alpine restaurant from the team behind Olympia Provisions couldn’t have opened at a better time, just as the city’s lengthy rainy season began. Sitting next to the fireplace in the corner, diners swipe potatoes through melty Raclette, dunk bratwurst into pots of fondue, and sip glasses of schnapps or calvados and Benedictine-spiked hot toddies. Alpenraüsch balances its sense of comfort food cheer with elegance; for example, slices of juicy duck soak in a rich, roasted cherry jus, bolstered with pork salvaged from the charcuterie and sausage-making process. The salats are a crucial starting point, particularly a well-balanced carrot-fennel slaw.

Plates of venison frites, wine, and trout-topped rosti sit on the table at Alpenrausch.
Dishes from Alpenrausch.
AJ Meeker

Xiao Ye

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The atmosphere of this restaurant, specializing in what the team calls “first generation American food,” is warm and loud, borderline-cottagecore plates of acorn squash toast and butter-basted chicken hearts passed around boisterous tables throughout the space. The food is similarly colloquial, but executed impeccably: Mini madeleines use both mochiko (glutinous rice flour) and masa, which balance each other out — the mochiko adds a lovely springiness, while the masa gives each madeleine a nice weight. Jolyn’s favorite noodle, a play on the noodles chef Louis Lin would make for partner Jolyn Chen after long restaurant shifts, coat alkaline spaghetti in a remarkably delicious combination of sesame, black vinegar, and Lao Gan Ma. And as a grand finale, it’s best to splurge on both large format plates, fried chicken with curry jus and a whole grilled fish.

A plate of masa madeleines sits on a white plate at Xiao Ye.
Mini madeleines at Xiao Ye.
Carter Hiyama/Eater Portland

Daawat a Ishq

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This Northeast 42nd Avenue Indian restaurant has become an under-the-radar favorite for both Cully neighborhood locals and food writers in town. Baingan bharta, a grilled eggplant mash, is fragrant with unending smoky depth, brightened with tomato and a touch of ginger. The richness of standards like butter chicken are balanced with masala and chiles. Heat-seekers will be happy here — these dishes benefit from a full spectrum of seasonings and should be ordered spicy. And for dessert, the rosewater-saturated gulab jamun are a decadent finish.

Los Burros Supremos

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Chef Adán Fausto worked everywhere from New York’s Daniel to California’s French Laundry before opening this takeout-and-delivery-only Southeast Division burrito spot. Don’t expect gargantuan, infant-sized wraps filled with a salad bar’s worth of vegetables here; Fausto’s burritos are focused, small Norteños filled with little more than beans, cheese, salsa, and protein. The mesquite-grilled carne asada is the famous option, well-suited to the Número Uno; however, it’s hard to skip the Norteños, which get a satisfying crisp on either side after they’re filled. We love the carnitas and mesquite-roasted vegetables as potential fillings, as well as a few extra orders of salsa for dipping.

Two hands hold a burrito from Los Burros Supremos.
A burrito from Los Burros Supremos.
Los Burros Supremos

Yaowarat

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The latest restaurant from the Akkapong Earl Ninsom empire celebrates the food scene of Bangkok’s Chinatown, which means dishes like salted fish fried rice and wonton-esque crispy bean curd dumplings share space with beef shank yellow curry and rad na, a gravy-soaked crispy egg noodles with gailan. Meals at this Montavilla spot should start with “Chinese sashimi,” pickled chile-topped slices of albacore glistening with sesame oil and lime juice, before bowls of tingly and rich mapo tofu and a larb-esque ground pork-and-black olive dish, laden with shallots and chiles. For dessert, dunk sweet buns in luscious pandan and Thai tea custards between sips of tea.

Coredam

This Beaverton Korean restaurant opened with little fanfare, but Coredam is now easily attracting multiple-hour-long waits on weekends thanks to its generous assortment of banchan, hearty stews and soups, and relative rarities (in Portland, anyway) like raw and spicy marinated crab. Coredam also offers a nice selection of kalguksu, Korean knife-cut noodles in fragrant broths teeming with clams, thin ribbons of beef, or mussels. Arrive very early if you intend to visit — at least 30 minutes before open.

Chem Gio at Mosaic Taphouse

The Vietnamese drinking snacks on offer at this St. Johns taphouse are loud, figuratively and literally. Pieces of tofu crack on each bite, revealing a soft core dripping with faux fish sauce. Chem Gio’s take on banh xeo eat almost like a Taco Bell taco in the best way, shredded iceberg and calamansi fish sauce blending with pieces of shrimp and pork in a turmeric yellow pancake-like hammock. Bot chien trung — crispy taro rice cakes — arrive with squiggles of egg, house soy sauce, and pickled papaya salad, pops of acidity and salty soy blending with the creamy-centered taro cakes. Chem Gio is also incredibly strong when it comes to vegan Vietnamese food; the betel leaf-wrapped vegan la lot uses a meatball of Impossible meat, black fungus, and tofu, which gives them satisfying savory and umami notes.

Friendship Kitchen NW: Saigon to Singapore

This Northwest Portland sibling restaurant to the Glisan Vietnamese restaurant of the same name is a culinary portrait of its owners, Trang Nguyen Tan and Wei-En Tan. Nguyen Tan’s Vietnamese roots and Tan’s familial ties to Singapore both hold space on the restaurant’s menu, from 10-hour simmered beef pho to scallion and ginger-laden chicken rice. The restaurant’s take on laksa, based on Tan’s mother’s recipe, gets its salty hit from dried shrimp in the base, sweetened with coconut and piled high with shrimp, fish cakes, and tofu. For something celebratory, spring for the Singaporean chile crab noodles, two pounds of snow crab drenched in chile sauce.

Sun Rice

At this stall within the Moxy Hotel downtown, chef TJ Cruz serves traditional and inventive takes on silogs, Filipino breakfast plates involving garlicky rice and a sunny fried egg. The foundations here are very strong: The rice is profoundly flavorful, and its accompanying crispy-edged fried egg offers a luscious yolk for a saucy touch. Some bowls involve things like beef head corned beef and hash brown bits or spiced vinegar-marinated branzino, though it’s hard to beat the lechon kawali, or crispy pork belly: Crackly skin gives way to luscious rendered fat. The optional mango-peach hot sauce is mandatory, its sweetness smoothing the sharp zaps of heat.

A crispy pork belly rice bowl at Sun Rice within the Moxy Hotel. The bowl comes with tomatoes and shallots, garlic rice, lechon kawali, and a sunny-side-up egg.
Pork belly rice bowl at Sun Rice.
Brooke Jackson-Glidden/Eater Portland

Queen Mama's Kitchen

Within this ornate downtown Portland Saudi Arabian restaurant, regulars share pots of cardamom-scented coffee and sip cups of saffron tea, awaiting grape leaves filled with velvety rice and bright baba ghanoush. Each day, the restaurant offers a different special, which is worth an order; on Fridays, smoky, fall-apart lamb shanks accompany rice cooked in the rendered fat and jus, while on Thursdays, saleeg features a bed of creamy, deeply chicken-y risotto-esque rice, a pillow for rich roasted poultry. A slice of cheesecake is a fine punctuation to any meal.

Saleeg, fattoush, meze, and tabouli all sit on a table at Queen Mama’s Kitchen.
Saleeg and meze at Queen Mama’s Kitchen.
Brooke Jackson-Glidden/Eater Portland

The Paper Bridge

The menu at this subterranean Northern Vietnamese restaurant may be the city’s most detailed, featuring several pages explaining the origins, cultural influences, and components of each item. It’s a smart choice, considering the Southeast Ash restaurant serves dishes hard to find at the city’s other Vietnamese restaurants: Sitting under a canopy of paper lanterns, visitors rip apart glutinous rice cakes, satisfyingly chewy with a crisp exterior, filled with fried pork and vegetables. Sheets of house-made rice noodles swaddle tender beef and herbs, to be dunked into nuoc cham. And while the restaurant serves pho, it highlights variations harder to spot stateside, like pho vit cao bang, a delicate duck and pork bone broth with an herbaceous sweetness provided by aromatic mac mat leaves. Linger for a post-meal pot of hot tea.

Orange & Blossom Patisserie

Each morning, this Killingsworth patisserie’s pastry case holds a sampling of gorgeously constructed cookies, pastries, pies, and buns: slices of olive oil cake topped with a ribbon of pistachio buttercream, a moist gingerbread cake with candied citrus, sourdough chocolate chip cookies with the ideal balance of crunch and chew. They all happen to be vegan, though you wouldn’t know it. The star of the case is the cardamom orange blossom bun, a knot of soft, stretchy brioche sticky with both spiced vegan butter and an orange blossom glaze. Pastries change monthly based on what’s in season from Oregon and Washington farms, but those buns will always be available.

Pasar

Indonesian food remains underrepresented in the American restaurant market — particularly regional or culturally specific Indonesian food. The owners of Alberta Street’s Pasar, who also own East Burnside Indonesian restaurant Wajan, are happily hyper-specific, focusing on Chinese Indonesian dishes and meals found at markets throughout the archipelago. Diners dunk fried snacks like bala-bala, a craggy veggie fritter, into a garlicky peanut sauce, or nibble on sandwich-like squares of sticky rice filled with chicken floss; some stick around for heartier dishes like lontong Cap Go Meh, a curried coconut soup grounded with shellfish in its base, absolutely abundant with pickles, vegetables, fried snacks, and lontong, Indonesian rice cakes steamed in banana leaves. The nasi tim, a terrine-esque mound of rice, a kecap manis-marinated boiled egg, and chicken earthy with dried mushrooms, comes with a side of broth that is alive with white pepper and scallions. Bite-sized, jiggly desserts are a fun conclusion to a visit here.

A diner scoops a bite of Lontong Cap Go Meh at the Portland Indonesian restaurant Pasar.
Lontong Cap Go Meh at Pasar.
Molly J. Smith/Eater Portland

Annam VL

The most centrally located companion restaurant to Vietnamese soup destinations Rose VL and Ha VL, Annam VL on Belmont similarly specializes in daily soup specials: On Tuesdays, Hanoi-style chicken noodle soup, bún thang, houses a pile of dried shrimp and cilantro, while Sundays involve bowls of bánh canh cha tôm loaded with fried shrimp and pork meatballs. Every day, however, folks can — and should — order banh it tran, poached sticky rice dumplings in a sweet, savory fish sauce.

Alpenraüsch

This new Alpine restaurant from the team behind Olympia Provisions couldn’t have opened at a better time, just as the city’s lengthy rainy season began. Sitting next to the fireplace in the corner, diners swipe potatoes through melty Raclette, dunk bratwurst into pots of fondue, and sip glasses of schnapps or calvados and Benedictine-spiked hot toddies. Alpenraüsch balances its sense of comfort food cheer with elegance; for example, slices of juicy duck soak in a rich, roasted cherry jus, bolstered with pork salvaged from the charcuterie and sausage-making process. The salats are a crucial starting point, particularly a well-balanced carrot-fennel slaw.

Plates of venison frites, wine, and trout-topped rosti sit on the table at Alpenrausch.
Dishes from Alpenrausch.
AJ Meeker

Xiao Ye

The atmosphere of this restaurant, specializing in what the team calls “first generation American food,” is warm and loud, borderline-cottagecore plates of acorn squash toast and butter-basted chicken hearts passed around boisterous tables throughout the space. The food is similarly colloquial, but executed impeccably: Mini madeleines use both mochiko (glutinous rice flour) and masa, which balance each other out — the mochiko adds a lovely springiness, while the masa gives each madeleine a nice weight. Jolyn’s favorite noodle, a play on the noodles chef Louis Lin would make for partner Jolyn Chen after long restaurant shifts, coat alkaline spaghetti in a remarkably delicious combination of sesame, black vinegar, and Lao Gan Ma. And as a grand finale, it’s best to splurge on both large format plates, fried chicken with curry jus and a whole grilled fish.

A plate of masa madeleines sits on a white plate at Xiao Ye.
Mini madeleines at Xiao Ye.
Carter Hiyama/Eater Portland

Daawat a Ishq

This Northeast 42nd Avenue Indian restaurant has become an under-the-radar favorite for both Cully neighborhood locals and food writers in town. Baingan bharta, a grilled eggplant mash, is fragrant with unending smoky depth, brightened with tomato and a touch of ginger. The richness of standards like butter chicken are balanced with masala and chiles. Heat-seekers will be happy here — these dishes benefit from a full spectrum of seasonings and should be ordered spicy. And for dessert, the rosewater-saturated gulab jamun are a decadent finish.

Los Burros Supremos

Chef Adán Fausto worked everywhere from New York’s Daniel to California’s French Laundry before opening this takeout-and-delivery-only Southeast Division burrito spot. Don’t expect gargantuan, infant-sized wraps filled with a salad bar’s worth of vegetables here; Fausto’s burritos are focused, small Norteños filled with little more than beans, cheese, salsa, and protein. The mesquite-grilled carne asada is the famous option, well-suited to the Número Uno; however, it’s hard to skip the Norteños, which get a satisfying crisp on either side after they’re filled. We love the carnitas and mesquite-roasted vegetables as potential fillings, as well as a few extra orders of salsa for dipping.

Two hands hold a burrito from Los Burros Supremos.
A burrito from Los Burros Supremos.
Los Burros Supremos

Yaowarat

The latest restaurant from the Akkapong Earl Ninsom empire celebrates the food scene of Bangkok’s Chinatown, which means dishes like salted fish fried rice and wonton-esque crispy bean curd dumplings share space with beef shank yellow curry and rad na, a gravy-soaked crispy egg noodles with gailan. Meals at this Montavilla spot should start with “Chinese sashimi,” pickled chile-topped slices of albacore glistening with sesame oil and lime juice, before bowls of tingly and rich mapo tofu and a larb-esque ground pork-and-black olive dish, laden with shallots and chiles. For dessert, dunk sweet buns in luscious pandan and Thai tea custards between sips of tea.

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