Location: NE MLK and Graham at Dreamer’s Marketplace
Hours: Tues-Fri, 9am-2pm; Sat, 9am-1pm
We always want to revisit some of our old favorites in the food cart scene. Pepper Box has been feeding Portland their amazing New Mexican style cuisine now for almost 3 years. While the lot they are in doesn’t have any other vendors, they have stuck it out and become a beacon for eaters traveling up and down MLK. Well done Jim!
There are so many types of breakfast foods available for someone in this city. Whether it be waffles or the greasy spoon or bagels or fast food, Portlanders have an abundance of choices. With the opening of Pepper Box, we have yet another choice, a cart serving up New Mexican influenced breakfast tacos and quesadillas.
Jim Wilson, the former sous chef from both Roux and Mint with 12 years of culinary experience is the man behind Pepper Box. Jim visited and then moved to Portland a few years ago and completely fell in love with the city. Who wouldn’t? After working in some great kitchens here in the city though, he decided to go out on his own and Pepper Box was born.
Breakfast tacos are a love I discovered a few years back and they have never let me down. There are a few places in the city where you can enjoy them whether they be Mexican or Texan influenced. Jim is influenced by his New Mexican roots and uses green or red chili sauce as the topping upon his egg, potato and cheese tacos. The best part for me was the fresh handmade wheat tortillas. For meat eaters, you can add in chorizo or bacon or go veggie and top the scramble with sliced avocado. The chorizo taco with the spicier green chili sauce was excellent with the tortilla acting as a wrapper to keep all the goodies in. The green chili sauce was perfectly spicy, but not overwhelming. These are sizable tacos and two may be too much for some. We had leftovers.
Pepper Box isn’t just breakfast tacos. They also do quesadilla sandwiches and salads. The other evening when Dreamer’s Marketplace opened their doors for happy hour, Jim came around with samples of his marinated chicken and tri-tip. The plate was cleared in just a couple of minutes. I can’t wait to get a larger sample. Pepper Box is open at the new Dreamer’s Marketplace on NE MLk blvd. Head on down for a visit, say hi to Jim and let them know Food Carts Portland sent ya.
- Breakfast Taco: homemade tortillas filled with eggs, potatoes and Tillamook cheddar cheese; choice of chorizo, bacon or avocado; green or red chili sauce – $3.50 each or 2 for $6
- Albuquerque Turkey Quesadilla Sandwich: turkey, avocado, bacon, arugula Tillamook pepperjack cheese, green chili creme fraiche – $4 or 2 for $7
- Primo Quesadlilla Sandwich: pastrami, Tillamook pepperjack cheese, pickled peppers, onions and chipotle creme fraiche – $4 or 2 for $7
- El Tocino Quesadilla Sandwich: bacon, tomatoes, green chili, arugula Tillamook cheddar cheese and chipotle creme fraiche – $4 or 2 for $7
- The Farmer Quesadilla Sandwich: rotating local veggies – $4 or 2 for $7