The Gaufre Gourmet


The Gaufre Gourmet

Cart closed. Restaurant GIGI’s Now Open in Hillsdale
SW 9th and Washington
Hours: Mon-Fri, 7am-3pm; Sat, 10-2pm

The Story:

Some believe that opening a cart in the dead of winter in Portland is a bad idea, yet, there have been a few very successful launches in the last couple of years that are still going strong. Portland appreciates their carts and supports them even during the cold and rain. The Gaufre Gourmet is one of those carts that has that confidence.

Gaufre is French for waffle. Charline Wesler and Michael Susak are the chefs creating these amazing treats. The Gaure Gourmet focuses on liege style waffles made with a brioche style dough mixed with pearl sugar they import directly from Belgium. Pearl sugar is just what it sounds like – sugar in the form of little pearls. These aren’t the traditional waffles you get at your local diner, they are smaller, but thicker and fluffier. The cart is located on the corner of 4th and west Burnside at the Chinatown gate and the entrance to old town. I asked Michael if they had experienced any issues being in Old Town and surprisingly enough, they hadn’t. During the dead of December, when business was both slow and the weather was colder than normal, they decided to offer up free waffles and coffee to the area residents as a way to give back during Christmas week. That goodwill has resulted in them being welcomed into the community.

The Original

The Original

Michael stated that in Europe, the liege style waffle they serve are like snacks on the go. The Original, about the size of one’s hand, is a single waffle topped with powdered sugar. With the pearl sugar, some melts and some doesn’t, so you get a sweetness throughout and bits that didn’t melt to create a sugary crunch. One thing I will warn you about – don’t breath in while taking a bite or you get powdered sugar down your throat. If this is snack food for the French, I gotta respect their choices. While the liege style waffle is the cart’s specialty, they expand on it by adding local ingredients to create either sweet or savory concoctions. The Porklandia is a cornbread jalapeno liege style waffle topped with pulled pork, cabbage and apple slaw. You definitely need a fork for this one.

The Porklandia

The Porklandia

I enjoyed visiting the cart for lunch, but after enjoying that simple waffle, I now want to put it on my morning routine. They even serve up coffee drinks using illy brand coffee. Charlene and Michael have something new to offer the cart world and even the late night clubbers of old town. If you’re looking for a new treat, small or large, head on down to The Gaufre Gourmet and let them know Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Update, June 2011: Gaufre Gourmet has moved to NE 20th and Everett and will be open there as of June 21.

Update, October 2011: Gaufre Gourmet has moved to SW 9th between Alder and Washington and no longer offers late night nosh.

Sample Menu:

  • The Original: liege style waffle with vanilla powdered sugar – $2.50
  • Belgian Chocolate: liege style waffle drizzled with chocolate – $3.25
  • Maple Bacon: bacon, need they say moreĀ  -$4.50
  • ABC Waffle: arugula, bacon, Camembert and fig – $6.50
  • The Milk and Honey: goat cheese mousse, pistachios, balsamic caramel sauce – $6
  • Banana Split Waffle: bananas, 3 ice creams, caramel sauce, chocolate sauce, raspberry sauce, whipped cream, toasted almonds – $6.50
  • Porklandia: pulled pork on jalapeno cornbread waffle with cabbage and apple slaw – $6.75
  • Coffee and Espresso from illy – all kinds.

Hours: Mon-Fri, 7am-3pm; Sat, 10-2pm
Phone: 503 888 2333
Website: The Gaufre Gourmet
Twitter: @gaufregourmet Facebook: The Gaufre Gourmet



  1. Did they use to work at the Waffle Window? The menu looks familar.

  2. I love this cartf for its incredible coffee and waffles. I am not a waffle fan and this cart changed that. We often use this cart for our after dinner/lunch for coffee and a fruit waffle. The couple that own it are nice as well.

    This location has potential to take off. It started off with lots of great carts that are now closing/moving. It’s easy to find, drive on 20th between Sandy and Burnside. Great parkign, lots of clean covered seating, atm and clean bathrooms.

    If Gaufre Gourmet leaves this location too, it’s over!

  3. Effective November 1st, we are located in downtown Portland at 9th and Washington. Our new hours are 7 am to 3 pm Monday through Friday and 10 am to 2 pm on Saturday. Check us out on Facebook at The Gaufre Gourmet, or on twitter @gaufregourmet for our weekly specials.

    Charlene Wesler
    The Gaufre Gourmet

  4. I just ordered the banana waffle with nutella and caramel sauce. It cost me $6, and basically was one waffle about 3″ across, tons of nutella and caramel sauce and about 8 slices of bananas. Oh and some pecans on top. Way, way too much sugar product and with a waffle, no means of scraping it off. I expected more of a dough fix versus a sugar fix. Not sure I’d go back, because of the price and the overload of sugar.

  5. Has this cart moved again? I tried looking for it the last few days at the pod between 9th and 10th to no avail.

  6. Kdar,
    They haven’t moved. The are in the middle of the block on SW 9th between Alder and Washington

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