[sidecart closed in early 2010]
Location: SW 5th between Stark and Oak
Remember that first time you visited a really nice expensive steak house and were shocked that your steak didn’t come with anything but the steak on a plate? Those amazing mushrooms or curly fries or green beans were an extra $5 each. How could they do that? Oh, and since then, at every restaurant you go to, you wish you could just order sides. I know you do. I do. Well, now you can get all the sides you want. From the creators of the wonderful BrunchBox, they give you side cart.
I first saw the menu for side cart on FaceBook and it immediately made me drool. So many options for sides, and almost everything on the menu is vegetarian. Hushpuppies, seasoned curly fries, onion straws, cheesy tots, vegetable medley, okra bites, mac and cheese. And all of the offerings are under $3, so you can get a couple. Upon my first visit, I really couldn’t decide what I was hungry for and then I saw the option of mix and match – 3 items for $5. I opted for okra bites, mac and cheese shells and baked beans.
As you can see, these aren’t tiny portions, but enough to sate you for lunch. You can order larger portions of each item on the menu if you so desire. The okra bites were my favorite that day. Little crunchy nibbles of goodness. I know many don’t like okra, but for me, it is one of the best tasting veggies out there. The mac and cheese was appropriately cheesy with the shells perfectly al dente. The beans were simple, like those you would pick up at a BBQ. Nothing here was over the top nor too fancy and that is what I liked. They served up a great meal at a great price with a great portion.
side cart has daily specials and “Meatless Monday.” You should watch their Twitter feed for those or just swing by. They do offer desert in the form of a battered and deep fried candy bar. Lastly, there is a line item on the menu -
How’s-this-for-awesome – you bring us something edible, we batter (sweet or savory) & fry it. $1-$3
I understand a certain someone who likes food carts is challenging them with items like squash and thin mints. side cart is yet another example of a cart I wouldn’t have thought of, but Portland has embraced and loves. When your out and about, even if you already have your lunch, drop by side cart for a little extra…and tell them Food Carts Portland sent ya.
[prices reflect side portions. full orders are available]
- Seasoned curly fries – $1.50
- Zucchini sticks – $3
- Hushpuppies – $2
- Tater tots – $2
- Cheesy tots – $3
- Okra bites – $2
- Mashed potatoes – $1.50
- Mac and cheese shells – $2
- Stuffing – $2
- Thanksgiving: mashed potatoes, stuffing, vegs – $5
- Mix and match any 3 dishes – $5
- Smorgasfry: curly fries + tots + onion straws – $5
- Battered and deep fried candy bar – $2-$3