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Updating the Eater PDX Heat Map: Where to Eat Now

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Restaurant obsessives want to know what's new, what's hot, which favorite chef just launched a sophomore effort, etc., and more often than not, tipsters, readers, friends and family of Eater have one question: Where should I eat right now? And while the Eater 38 is a crucial resource covering old standbys and neighborhood essentials across the city, it is not a chronicle of the "it" (ie, newest) places of the moment.

Thus, we offer the Eater HeatMap, which will change often to continually highlight where the food-focused crowds are flocking to at this very second. As promised, February was a banner month for restaurant openings, so we welcome four new spots to the list: The adventurous Kingdom of Roosevelt, modernist-leaning Racion, Arabesque and fire-roasted Levant, and part-Thai-market Tarad.


The 2013 HeatMap Updates:
1/3/2013: Added: Ava Gene's, Verde Cocina en la Perla
2/7/2013: Added: Tasty N Alder, Raven & Rose
3/7/2013: Added: Levant, Racion, Kingdom of Roosevelt, Tarad

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Chef Scott Snyder fills a whole in the local culinary scene with Levant, a restaurant that combines "Arabesque" influences (from Turkey, Palestine, North Africa) with French techniques and aesthetics. Share plates like stuffed grilled squid with chickpeas, fried cauliflower, and lamb served four ways.

Ración

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Tabla alum Anthony Cafiero branches out with his first restaurant, the 18-seat Ración, and the spot allows his modernist sensibilities to emerge in dishes like cauliflower panna cotta and sous-vide egg with ​hazelnut romesco. There's one tasting menu available nightly, and though "modernist," Cafiero's food remains playful and accessible.

The Kingdom of Roosevelt

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Thistle chef Eric Bechard makes a splashy return to Portland with his diminutive Kingdom of Roosevelt, which features an adventurous, foraged menu teeming with game animals. Vegans need not apply, but rich flavors abound: Dive into Bechard's corn dumplings and sprouted rye porridge, "forager's pie," and pickled elk tongue.

Tarad Thai Market and Restaurant

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Part market, part restaurant, the adorable Tarad features a Chaing Mai native in the kitchen, dishing up steamed buns, traditional noodle dishes, and regional specialties. Bonus points: The spot is open until 3a.m. on weekends to sate those drunken khao soi gai cravings.

Tasty 'N Alder

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John Gorham expands his popular Tasty N Sons concept with the just-opened downtown spot Tasty N Alder. At brunch, chef Kyle Prewitt gets to explore world flavors in comforting dishes like Korean fried chicken and bibimbop with bacon and eggs. Dinner service leans toward a steakhouse vibe, with clams Casino and bacon-wrapped shrimp cocktail.

Raven & Rose

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Most of the buzz seems reserved for Raven & Rose's upstairs cocktail bar (and indeed, it's often packed to the gills on weekends), but don't overlook the downstairs dining room, where chef David Padberg churns out simple-but-flavorful plates. Rabbit is served "two ways" with biscuits and creamed kale; mussels hit the oven with fennel sausage.

Ava Gene's

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The newest spot by Stumptown's Duane Sorenson, the Italian-by-New-York Ava Gene's, is drawing crowds for chef Joshua McFadden's polished take on Italian food. Order up the perfectly al dente pasta, pork osso busco, and surprising vegetable dishes. Also: a cocktail menu by Woodsman Tavern's Evan Zimmerman and desserts by Clare Gordon draw raves.

Verde Cocina en la Perla

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Farmer's market favorite Verde Cocina opens a brick-and-mortar location in the Pearl, offering hearty and healthy interpretations of Mexican food. For brunch, chef Noe Garcia's popular huevos rancheros and gringas are on offer; dinner features deft takes on ceviches, mole, and seasonally stuffed quesadillas.

Blue Star Donuts

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One of the buzziest recent openings, somewhat surprisingly for this doughnut-happy town, is Micah Camden's Blue Star Donuts, which takes a from-scratch approach to deep-fried dough. Expect unique, house-made glazes (blueberry bourbon basil!) and savory options (like a doughnut topped with fried chicken).

Lardo West

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Just like his Lardo Hawthorne location, chef Rick Gencarelli offers porchetta, mortadella, and smoked coppa sandwiches at this casual spot (which also flaunts a killer tap list).

Levant

Chef Scott Snyder fills a whole in the local culinary scene with Levant, a restaurant that combines "Arabesque" influences (from Turkey, Palestine, North Africa) with French techniques and aesthetics. Share plates like stuffed grilled squid with chickpeas, fried cauliflower, and lamb served four ways.

Ración

Tabla alum Anthony Cafiero branches out with his first restaurant, the 18-seat Ración, and the spot allows his modernist sensibilities to emerge in dishes like cauliflower panna cotta and sous-vide egg with ​hazelnut romesco. There's one tasting menu available nightly, and though "modernist," Cafiero's food remains playful and accessible.

The Kingdom of Roosevelt

Thistle chef Eric Bechard makes a splashy return to Portland with his diminutive Kingdom of Roosevelt, which features an adventurous, foraged menu teeming with game animals. Vegans need not apply, but rich flavors abound: Dive into Bechard's corn dumplings and sprouted rye porridge, "forager's pie," and pickled elk tongue.

Tarad Thai Market and Restaurant

Part market, part restaurant, the adorable Tarad features a Chaing Mai native in the kitchen, dishing up steamed buns, traditional noodle dishes, and regional specialties. Bonus points: The spot is open until 3a.m. on weekends to sate those drunken khao soi gai cravings.

Tasty 'N Alder

John Gorham expands his popular Tasty N Sons concept with the just-opened downtown spot Tasty N Alder. At brunch, chef Kyle Prewitt gets to explore world flavors in comforting dishes like Korean fried chicken and bibimbop with bacon and eggs. Dinner service leans toward a steakhouse vibe, with clams Casino and bacon-wrapped shrimp cocktail.

Raven & Rose

Most of the buzz seems reserved for Raven & Rose's upstairs cocktail bar (and indeed, it's often packed to the gills on weekends), but don't overlook the downstairs dining room, where chef David Padberg churns out simple-but-flavorful plates. Rabbit is served "two ways" with biscuits and creamed kale; mussels hit the oven with fennel sausage.

Ava Gene's

The newest spot by Stumptown's Duane Sorenson, the Italian-by-New-York Ava Gene's, is drawing crowds for chef Joshua McFadden's polished take on Italian food. Order up the perfectly al dente pasta, pork osso busco, and surprising vegetable dishes. Also: a cocktail menu by Woodsman Tavern's Evan Zimmerman and desserts by Clare Gordon draw raves.

Verde Cocina en la Perla

Farmer's market favorite Verde Cocina opens a brick-and-mortar location in the Pearl, offering hearty and healthy interpretations of Mexican food. For brunch, chef Noe Garcia's popular huevos rancheros and gringas are on offer; dinner features deft takes on ceviches, mole, and seasonally stuffed quesadillas.

Blue Star Donuts

One of the buzziest recent openings, somewhat surprisingly for this doughnut-happy town, is Micah Camden's Blue Star Donuts, which takes a from-scratch approach to deep-fried dough. Expect unique, house-made glazes (blueberry bourbon basil!) and savory options (like a doughnut topped with fried chicken).

Lardo West

Just like his Lardo Hawthorne location, chef Rick Gencarelli offers porchetta, mortadella, and smoked coppa sandwiches at this casual spot (which also flaunts a killer tap list).

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