The Rock House Grill

Rock House Grill

Rock House Grill

Location: Cartlandia, SE 82nd and Harney
Hours: Daily and weekends, breakfast, lunch and dinner

The Story:

In a trailer that reminds one of the 50’s or maybe a boardwalk vendor, The Rock House Grill creates some great food to sate your needs- morning, noon or night.

At Cartlandia out in east Portland, James has opened his shop after years of working in restaurants and honing his skills at the grill. He’s worked in small bars, been a line cook and even catered for concerts. If you can manage a crowd of rowdy rockers, you’ve proven you can man the grill.

NY Steak Sandwich

NY Steak Sandwich

With an extensive menu of breakfast items, sandwiches, burgers, burritos, pork chops and steaks, there is something for everyone. Instead of ordering what I would normally order, the burger, we asked James what his signature dish was. The NY Steak sandwich is what he prepared. Ordered medium rare, just before we went to sit down, he yelled out the window “leave the fat on or off?” I’ve never been asked that, so again, deferred to his discretion – fat on. The large steak came atop some melted cheese on a toasted bun with some grilled onions and peppers sliced tomato and a salad mix of finely chopped cilantro, spinach and leaf lettuce. At first bite, you could taste the amazing steak, cooked perfectly medium rare and juicy, the veggies and a hint of horseradish that was pleasantly spicy, but not overwhelming. Having the fat left on gave it a great little buttery flavor. An excellent sandwich and one of the best I’ve tried in awhile.

The Rock House Grill is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and will feed you until you’re full. The portions are large and satisfying and James is a character who will bring your food to the table and make sure you’ve had a satisfying meal. Drop on by and let him know Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu: by far not everything

  • The Big Badass American Outlaw Burrito: steak, chicken or pork with all the fixins – $8
  • NY Steak and Eggs w/hash browns or fried potatoes and toast – $10
  • Pancakes – $6
  • English muffin, ham, egg and cheese – $4
  • NY Steak Dinner served with salad, rice or fried potatoes or baked potato, beans and a dinner roll – $10
  • Double Double style burger-  double meat, double cheese – $8
  • Single Steak Burger – $5
  • NY Steak Sandwich  – $10
  • Patty Melt – $6
  • and more

Hours: Daily and weekends, morning to evening
Contact: unknown




  1. The best thing about James is that he is always out to please the customer. I’ve been too busy enjoying his burgers to try anything else he makes, but everyone I’ve seen eating there always goes away happy!

  2. So far everything I have had there is perfectly cooked, lightly seasoned to bring out the flavor of the meat and fresh fresh FRESH. He also has some great salads with mixes are wonderful with a bit of cilantro. We just had the pork chop sandwich last night and it was cooked perfectly with moist pork, melted cheese, and delicious bread. And a giant portion. The chef is so friendly and talks to you like an old friend and is really interested in how you like the food.

  3. mostcartsarenotgreat says

    That steak sandwich looks decent but the bread is a joke. It looks like he is using the costco style hot dog buns on it and the bottom half has completely vanished from the drippings. What a soggy mess!

  4. Looks are deceiving, that thing called a NY sandwich is freaking awesome, just melts in your mouth you should try it the bread is really soft and fresh, then again looks are not everything.

  5. verry awesome burgers, fair prices, and a nice place. i love how fresh the food is, and the size of the food. will go there often to eat the awesome food AWESOMENESS!!!

  6. I love the king kong burger, Finnaly a burger that can fill me up without the need for a ton of fries.

  7. James has the BEST food I have ever had out of a food court. My husband and I stop by often and have never had anything less than excellent! Big portions, friendly service and completely addicting… you will crave his food 🙂

  8. I had never been to cartlandia when I first tried rock house grill. I was making my way around all the carts and saw rock house had a lot of people waiting for food. James let us know he was running a little behind on orders. Thats when I heard someone before me ordering say “you are well worth the wait my friend.” jackpot. I knew this place would be good and it was. I had a fat breakfast sandwich called the lumberjack. Eggs, bacon, ham, sausage, hashbrowns and cheese on a sandwich. Does it get any better? Great food. good prices and even tho james was really busy he went out of his way to make me a super dank ass sandwich! it really was WELL WORTH THE WAIT! I will be back

  9. Christina says

    WOW. This place is Awesome. First time eating here today, and I will definitely be going back. I had a Bacon Cheeseburger and it is the best I have ever had. My boyfriend got the NY Steak sandwich and his exact words were, “Wow, its going to take me a while to eat this, I ate half of a half and I’m already full.”
    The portions are huge. It is definitely worth the money. And if you are there are a busy day, HE is well worth the wait!!!

  10. Well I don’t know much, but I know that this is some REAL food. If you are on a diet or watching you carbs or cholestrol…this is NOT the place for you…bacon, eggs, hash browns, cheese, beef !!!!!, pork !!!!!….no tofu in sight (whew) This is old fashioned good food….tastes great…really bad for you….I lost two perfectly good artery’s today on a sandwich and am already to go back.

  11. James is a man among men and works his kitchen right! Double Double with bacon is where it’s at!

  12. Joe ONeill says

    My first impression was a little skeptical. It was a Saturday, the whole of Cartlandia was packed, it took 15 mins to find a parking space and several more to negotiate the crowds to finally arrive at what at first glance seems like it should be sitting in a carnival midway. The guy in the window was reminiscent of an old school carnival barker long hair, braided beard and a foul harried disposition.
    I ordered our meal which came to $24.00, when I produced a $100 bill I was promptly informed that they could not cash it. I asked him to begin my order and I would acquire change at which time he shared the unfortunate news that it would take a minimum of 20 mins for my burgers. I was able to change my bill with the beer and wine vendor and paid for the burgers. When I returned 20 or so mins later to retrieve my food, I was greeted by a different guy this one happy and agreeable, offering warnings of the potential damage to our attire from the oversized burgers. Still somewhat apprehensive I reached for the sack and almost dropped it. It must have weighed 40 lbs. (3 burgers). I returned to my office with my bounty and upon opening the package I couldn’t believe my eyes, a veritable plethora of delicacies. This was the best burger I can remember eating in my whole adult life (I’m 53). The last time I had eaten a burger even close to as good was as a child in LA at Fatburger. The rock house Grill is now officially my very favorite place to eat burgers now and I will return again soon. only next time I’ll bring a bib.

  13. Michael J says

    Food is phenomenal and the portion sizes are way too big, but man IT’S THE BEST BURGER IN TOWN HANDS DOWN!

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