503 Burger Co.

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burger food cart

503 Burger Co.

Location: N Mississippi and Skidmore, Mississippi Marketplace
Hours: Mon-Wed, 11-5; Thurs-Sat, 11-5 and 8pm-2am; Sun, 11-5

The Story: “I am an FBI Agent!” One of the best lines from Point Break. Also, the first thought I had when seeing the menu at 503 Burger Co, a new food cart at Mississippi Marketplace.

A few years back, North Portland was blessed with some great burgers out of food carts at Mississippi Marketplace. Hand crafted with love. 503 Burger Co. has brought back the thunder and I thank them. The 503 opened quietly in July. I happened across them on a jaunt through to see who’s new. (You may remember a few vendors closed at the Marketplace, providing new opportunities for others.) A cool cabin like cart serving burgers and tots. What’s not to love? The menu at 503 harkens back to the age of my youth with burgers named Thunderdome or Road House and even Maverick. On my first visit, I picked up the Johnny Utah with Tillamook cheddar, bibb lettuce, pickled onion, tomato, ketchup, and a smokey chipotle aioli served on a brioche bun. Clean, straightforward, uncomplicated. Divine! Second visit – Back to the Future – a simple burger with cheddar and all the fixin’s. Both burgers sated my cravings and have brought me back. Portland is in a giant burger phase where everything but the kitchen sink is added to the patty. While flavorful, they are just over the top. At 503 Burger Co, the burger was untroublesome, flavorful, a bit messy, without adding pork belly or pickled eggplant. They realize you don’t need all that schtuff to make a great burger. Add tots or maybe event a shake, 503 Burger Co. has it all.

burger food cart

Burger, Tots, Beer

I’m excited to welcome a great burger vendor to Mississippi. If you’re a burger fan, it is in your interest to visit and check out 503 Burger Co. Heck, go twice. Let them know Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu:

  • Back to the Future – ketchup, mustard, Tillamook  Cheddar, bibb lettuce, pickles, brioche bun – $8
  • Road House – pepperoncini cream cheese sauce, fried leeks, butter lettuce, tomato, brioche bun – $8.50
  • Thunderdome – beef and pork patty, bacon, Gorgonzola, arugula, BBQ sauce, brioche bun – $9.50
  • Maverick – Munster, arugula, caramelized onion, truffle aioli, brioche bun – $9.75
  • Tots – $2.50

Website: 503Burger.com
Facebook: 503 Burger Co.
Instagram: @503burgerco

Miss Kate’s Southern Kitchen

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Miss Kate's Southern Kitchen

Miss Kate's Southern Kitchen

Location: N Mississippi and Skidmore, Mississippi Marketplace
Hours: Weds/Thurs: 10am-5pm; Fri/Sat, 10am-8 pm; Sunday, 10am-6pm

The Story:

Miss Kate, Charles’ grandmother, was from Vicksburg, Mississippi and Charles, the owner of the newest cart in Mississippi Marketplace is bringing the tastes of Mississippi to the street.

When Kate passed, Charles’ took control of the hundreds of recipes that Miss Kate had collected over the years from her time with the ladies at bridge and garden clubs. They would sit around and simply write down their favorites on the bridge pads, so some of the recipes don’t have titles. Charles takes the recipe and puts the ingredients together without truly knowing what the outcome will be. These are true southern dishes made by a descendant of the founders of Vicksburg. Charles loves to cook and it was at the cajoling for friends that he opened the cart. He also loves to tell stories – did you know the first bottle of Coke was made in Vicksburg by the Biedenharn Candy Company in 1894?

At Miss Kate’s Southern Kitchen, you can discover some amazing southern dishes like coleslaw, mac and cheese, succotash, chicken salad, meatloaf, turkey, pork roast, biscuits and gravy and their awesome pimento cheese. They also have southern fried chicken with biscuits which is what I enjoyed that opening week. I didn’t grow up with crispy homemade fried chicken, so as an adult, I’ve been seeking it out whenever I can. With just salt, pepper and flour, Charles creates an amazing crust that keeps the meat juicy and savory. The biscuits that come with the meal are something special. Sweet cream butter was a dominant taste in the biscuit, but the secret is actually a brown sugar/butter glaze that creates the sweetness I so loved. I’m excited to have Mississippi food now on Mississippi boulevard in my neighborhood.

Fried Chicken from Miss Kate's

Fried Chicken from Miss Kate's

Charles and his cart Miss Kate’s Southern Kitchen are open Tuesday through Saturday for the morning hours through the afternoon. You can enjoy some biscuits and gravy or grab a full meal. Charles has an extensive menu, so you can try all that he has to offer. I’m looking forward to some southern succotash. Drop on by this brand new cart and welcome them to the neighborhood and let them know Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu:

Biloxi Biscits (Savory Biscuit)

  • Biscuit and Bacon Gravy – $3
  • Biscuits with Pimiento Cheese – $2.50
  • Biscuit with Maple Syrup and Butter – $1.50
  • Breakfast Biscuit with ham, bacon, or sausage – $3
  • Biscuit Sandwich with choice of meat and egg and cheese with port beer cheese sauce – $4
  • Vicksburg Beignet – 2 for $1.50, 6 for $4; Baker’s Dozen – $7.50

Sandwiches:

  • Papaw’s Turkey Sandwich – turkey grilled in gravy, whole cranberry jam, onion cream cheese, greens, tomato, on grilled Italian white bread – $7.50
  • Aunt Pat’s Ham Sandwich – country baked ham, pimento cheese, dill mayo, greens, tomato on grilled swirled white and rye – $7.50
  • Mamaw’s Chicken Salad – rosemary chicken, cranberries, pecans, greens, tomato, Creole mayo, on grilled Italian white – $7.50

Other:

  • Vicksburg Southern Fried Chicken – crispy fried chicken with a little kick – 2 pieces and served with cornbread or biscuit – $6
  • Creole Beans and Rice with Cornbread – $5

Hours: Weds/Thurs: 10am-5pm; Fri/Sat, 10am-8 pm; Sunday, 10am-6pm
Phone: 503 724 7878
Facebook: Miss Kate’s Southern Kitchen

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Koi Fusion Mississippi Marketplace

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Koi Fusion Mississippi Marketplace

Koi Fusion Mississippi Marketplace

Location: N Skidmore and Mississippi, Mississippi Marketplace
Hours: Daily and weekends, 12-8pm

The Story:

Koi Fusion opened a second permanent cart at Mississippi Marketplace. Serving up their signature Korean tacos, burritos and other items.

Website: KoiFusionPDX.com
Twitter:
@KoiFusion
Facebook: Koi Fusion

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Native Bowl

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vegan food cart portland

Native Bowl

Location: N Mississippi at Skidmore in Mississippi Marketplace
Hours: Wednesday-Sunday, 11am-3pm

The Story: 

Changing of the guard happens every so often at the carts. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. I’m happy to report that Native Bowl has new owners and will continue to serve the quality and flavorful bowls we have come to expect. Mmm, BBQ Soy curls for the win! Suzzette and Ted Easton who live in the neighborhood and own and operate the Akemi Salon on Williams took over the cart in November of 2013 after working with Jay and Julie to master the menu. The bowls are the same, but expect some new items to hit the menu in the future. Welcome to the food cart world Suzzette and Ted!

Our original article about Native Bowl:

When we were over at Mississippi Marketplace showing an out of town guest the carts, we decided to grab one of the dishes from Native Bowl, another vegan cart in the pod. The dish had what they called “crack gravy” a gravy so good, you’ll get addicted to it like crack. I only got a couple of bites, but it was enough for me to return the following day and meet the owners and try one of their bowls.

Native Bowl is another brand new cart in the pod. The owners Jay and Julie have been open for about 4 weeks and are fully vegan. Jay relayed a story that one day their 8yr old son came home and asked if they could try vegan and it went from there. The Native Bowl specializes in what we would traditionally call rice bowls. A layer of rice (in this case, jasmine rice), then some sauce, some protein like marinated tofu topped with veggies. Pretty simple concept, but if you prepare each item very well, you come out with an amazing dish.

vegan food cart portland

Couch Bowl from Native Bowl

I chose the Couch Bowl (pronounced cooch) per the owner’s recommendation. I’ll be the first to take someone’s advice, keeps me from hand wringing over all the choices. While they prepared it, I walked over to PROST!, the German pub in the lot, grabbed a table and ordered a beer. Before I knew it, Julie was actually bringing me my bowl. I don’t think this is standard, but what a great gesture. Upon opening the bowl, I was overwhelmed with the bright colors and savory aromas. The top of the bowl was a mixture of freshly chopped green onions topped with a savory sauce and sesame seeds. Just below the onions were bean sprouts, some mixed greens, chopped carrots and then marinated tofu and the rice. I’m the eater who prefers to mix everything together so you don’t end up with one single item at the end of the meal, yet this bowl was a mix of amazing flavors from top to bottom. The sauce had some spice to it also, something I didn’t expect but was glad was there.

The Native Bowl is another great addition to the Mississippi Marketplace pod. Jay and Julie are kind and welcoming to everyone who walks by. If you’re up in North Portland and need a great dish, check out Native Bowl and tell them Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu:

  • Bowls are all vegan, $6.50
  • Mississippi Bowl – peppercorn ranch sauce, BBQ soy curls, house coleslaw, scallions, and jasmine rice
  • Couch Bowl – seasoned tofu, sesame bean sprouts, Kochujang sweet and sour sauce, jasmine rice, lettuce, carrots, scallions and sesame seeds
  • Alberta Bowl – seasoned tofu, house-made fire-breathing dragon sauce, jasmine rice, shredded cabbage, carrots and scallions

Website: TheNativeBowl.com
Twitter: NativeBowl
Facebook: Native Bowl

Homegrown Smoker Natural Barbecue

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Location: N Mississippi and Skidmore, Mississippi Marketplace
Hours: Tues-Thurs, 12-7pm; Fri/Sat, 12-8pm; Sun, 12-4pm

Description:

All Vegan Barbecue. Got that? All Vegan. I know that immediately throws a curve ball, but once you’ve tried it, you will say to yourself – “where has this been all my life?”  Homegrown Smoker is taking barbecue in a different direction, yet with reverence to barbecue’s history and style.

What is vegan anyway? Vegan is a the choice to neither use nor consume animal products of any kind.  Vegan is taking vegetarian to the next level. Homegrown Smoker decided to head in that direction and is succeeding. Having been open now for only a month or so, they are keeping busy. We visited the other evening for some take home dinner and I wanted to try everything. Luckily, I was with my partner in food crime, so we did try everything. We opted for the two plates of HomeGrown specialties – smoked soy curls, field roast chorizo, chronic tempeh ribs, mac-no-cheese, BBQ beans, chipotle slaw, and corn on the cob.  All meals come with molasses gluten-free cornbread.

The meal was great. Flavorful, unique, and very filling. The tempeh ribs were sliced chunks of tempeh marinated in BBQ sauce and then put on the grill. They had a smokiness I hadn’t tasted in a long time, especially with veggie faire. Homegrown, in standard BBQ tradition, uses fruit wood and other hardwoods to create the smoke that gives the food that unique smoky flavor. One immediately smells and tastes that element when diving into Homegrown’s meals. The veggie sausage was chorizo style, so, along with the BBQ sauce they put on, it had some kick. The soy curls tasted just like thinly sliced brisket. The mac-no-cheese is just as it sounds, mac and cheese without the cheese. It isn’t dry or flavorless, just the opposite. The beans and slaw kept up with the standards we had tasted so far – simple and great tasting.

HomeGrown Smoker is launching a new adventure for Portland’s food carts. Vegan barbecue. If you’re out and about in NE SW North and are looking for something new and unique, check them out. Tell them Food Carts Portland sent ya.

[HomeGrown Smoker moved to SW 4th and College in April 2010. This post was originally published in August, 2009 and updated in May of 2010]

[HomeGrown Smoker closed their location at SW 4th and College. They are not located at Mississippi Marketplace – November 2012]

Sample Menu:
Full Menu Posted Here

  • SloMoFo – Carolina style sandwich w/ smoked soy curls, slaw and sauce on a bun – $7
  • Macnocheeto – tortilla stuffed with MacNoCheese, TB Beans, peppers and onions, bbq sauce and more – $6
  • Loafaroni – slow smoked meatloaf, bbq sauce, MacNoCheese, on a bun with a side – $7
  • Chili Dawg – smoked chipotle sausage smothered in chili, cheese and onions.

Hours: Monday-Friday, 11am-7pm
Website: Homegrownsmoker.wordpress.com
Email: homegrownsmoker@gmail.com
Twitter: Homegrownsmoker

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