Truck Yeah

dieselboi

CLOSED
Location:
NE MLK at Lombard

The Story:

When I heard of this new truck’s name, I asked my friend to repeat it so I could hear the emphasis on the Yeah! Say it loud – Truck YEAH. Love the ingenious naming.

Truck Yeah, a fully mobile truck for you looking for one to come to your wedding, opened this past month at a new pod on the corner of NE MLK and Lombard. There has been an espresso stand there for awhile and now they are refitting the lot with electrical and other amenities to support food carts. By year’s end, there will be 3 different pods on NE MLK alone. One way to revitalize this piece of NE Portland’s history. Truck Yeah is the first to setup shop with a menu consisting of fish and chips, salads, gyros and falafel. [Read more…]

Magic Beans

dieselboi
Magic Beans

Magic Beans

CLOSED
Location:
N Mississippi at Skidmore in Mississippi Marketplace

Description:

Mississippi Marketplace is now full. All the spots are taken and the final cart to open is Magic Beans. This bright yellow cart has been drawing curious eyes for the past month of people wondering what they are going to offer. The pod has so much great food, who can come in and add more? Magic Beans opened in mid November and according to one of the owners, Scott, has been selling out a majority of the days. I guess they hit the mark.

Magic Beans specializes in falafel sandwiches or ghanoush. They managed to shoehorn a fryer in the back of the cart, which allows them to make the falafel along with some tasty fries. The menu is pretty straight forward from first glance, but upon ordering, I was peppered with some extra questions – what flavor of hummus, what kind of salt for the fries. I had to think a bit – do I go for red pepper or one with jalapenos? Do I get lemon pepper salt or rosemary? And to think, I was getting “The Real Deal” a sandwich, fries and a drink for $6.

Falafel and fries from Magic Beans

Falafel and fries from Magic Beans

The falafel sandwich was tasty. The falafel were soft, yet crunchy; the spicyness of either the ghanoush or the hummus was flavorful without being overpowering. The cheese was feta, but didn’t have that dryness you sometimes get and mixed well with the spices. The fries were fresh cut and I chose the lemon pepper seasoning which gave them a great flavor. I’m the guy who always salts the fries and this time, the fries stood out without any need for extra salt or ketchup. A great lunch.

Magic Beans is the collaboration of Jordan, Scott and Jason. I really enjoyed chatting with them while ordering – they are engaging and have a good sense of humor – a trait needed when engaging customers on a very cold day at a cart. The meal was a great deal. All that food for $6, you can’t go wrong. Being brand new, they may still be working out the kinks like schedule and such, but for now, they are open most days at 11 and into the late afternoon. They hope to be a late night cart, but currently, there is no lighting at Mississippi Marketplace, so it is difficult to see where the carts are. Soon. Next time you are down there, stop by and say hi, order up a falafel sandwich and tell them Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu:

  • Falafel sandwich – $4
  • Falafel sandwich with fries and drink (ice tea) – $6
  • Ghanoush – winter squash or anaheim pepper – $4
  • Hummus – red pepper flavored
  • Housemade fries – lemon pepper or rosemary seasoning – $2
  • Most items are gluten free

Hours: Daily plus weekends open @ 11am. Closing time late afternoon with goal of late night
Contact: unknown

INSERT_MAP

Fat Kitty Falafel

Food Carts Portland
Fat Kitty Falafel

Fat Kitty Falafel

Location: SE 21st and Division

Description:

Falafel. It sounds simple enough, doesn’t it? A popular Middle-Eastern specialty of chickpeas and/or fava beans and spices fried or baked up into balls or patties, most often served with yogurt or a tahini-based sauce.  However, its nuanced flavors and the variety of shapes, sizes and side dishes make it almost elusive. Filling, satisfying and abundantly tasty balls of fried goodness, that’s my primary motivation when seeking it out, to be honest.  I’ve happily charged myself with sampling the city’s vast array of falafel, and it’s been a fine ride. And there is definitely some great falafel in this town, make no mistake. Last week it was brisk and slightly drizzly, so, while walking in SE Portland with a friend, we decided we wanted some falafel. Quickly! And that’s when we happened along Portland mainstay and falafel slinger extraordinaire, Al Herre and his Fat Kitty Falafel cart on the south side of 21st and SE Division, in front of Mirador Community Store.  It’s not just falafel, it’s an experience.

Falafel from Fat Kitty

Falafel from Fat Kitty

Al’s menu is simple and straightforward. $5 will get you a fresh hot falafel wrapped in a pita with lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes and your choice of tahini (plain, cilantro and spicy) and optional hot sauce.  Beverages available for an additional $1. The end.

The best part may be Al’s crispy falafel is served up with some of the best conversation in town. Go for the falafel, stay for a little bit of Al’s philosophy of life in Portland, his escapades in New York City, or his insight on the burgeoning Portland food cart scene.  Al is here to stay, and so is his falafel (voted several years in a row by the Williamette Week as the best falafel in the city, incidentally.)

I encourage you all to judge for yourselves. Crispy, flavorful and an ample serving for $5; I’ll definitely be coming back. Al is a Portland fixture that you will not soon forget. He’s friendly, open and full of conversation; I guarantee you will not leave without an opinion of Al and his falafel.  Fat Kitty is why I love this city! All vegetarian, all the time, with vegan tahini sauce available upon request.

Normally open 5 days a week for lunch, 11am – 5pm, call ahead if you’re not sure he’s open. He’ll take your order by phone and have it ready for pick up. 503-995-2724. www.fatkitty.biz. Al is seriously considering Twitter, and I hope he does it soon, as I’d happily follow his falafel anywhere. When you visit, tell him Food Carts Portland sent ya.

[Updated 6/2010 – Fat Kitty moved from SE 21st and Division to E Burnside at 7th]

Sample Menu:

  • Falafel: fresh hot falafel wrapped in a pita with lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes and your choice of tahini (plain, cilantro and spicy) and optional hot sauce – $5

Hours: Tuesday through Saturday, 11am-5pm
Website: Fatkitty.biz
Phone: 503 995 2724

INSERT_MAP

Ugarit Mediterranean Meals

dieselboi

Ugairt Mediterranean Meals

Ugarit Mediterranean Meals

Location: SW 10th and Alder (on Alder)

Description:

Up of SW 10th avenue, years before the most recent food carts arrived, Ugarit has been serving up gyro and falafel to Portland’s lunch crowd. Specializing in Mediterranean food, Mohammad, the owner, greets you with a smile and sometimes a sample of his daily soup. That is what occurred last week when I visited. I arrived and was checking out the menu when I realized I didn’t have any cash. Before I could walk away to find a bank machine, Mohammad handed me a sample of the Red Lentil soup he was offering. That little bit of soup was amazing and quicken my pace to and from the ATM.

Ugarit get the name an independent kingdom from 18th century BC in what is now Syria. The people of Ugarit were perhaps the first to recognize that human speech consists of only a finite number of atomic sounds. They devised 30 symbols from which the alphabets of all phonetic languages are derived.

Super Halal Lamb Gyro

Super Halal Lamb Gyro

Ugarit offers up salads, appetizers, sandwiches, main dishes and even deserts and coffee. The menu is rather large, but there are handy pictures if you are unsure of which meal you really love, but don’t remember the name. I’m a sucker for gyro and when I saw they offered up a lamb gyro, I couldn’t resist. The Super Halal Lamb Gryo comes with strips of lamb served with hummus, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, tzatziki in a rolled pita. I was offered up hot sauce and decided to partake. The gyro was great. The lamb was tender, the hummus garlicky, the tzatziki sufficiently creamy. Even though it was messy with the innards spilling out at the bottom, I ate every bite.

Ugarit is one of the old guard of food carts here in Portland. If you are looking for something different and want a tried and true meal that Portland has been eating for years, give Ugarit a chance and tell them Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu:

  • Greek Salad – lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, feta cheese, black olives, lemon juice, olive oil and home vinegar – $5.50
  • Tabouli – Arabic parsley with bulghur, tomatoes, green onions, mint, lemon juice and olive oil – $3
  • Super Falafel – deep-fried garbanzo bean patties served with hummus, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber and tahini sauce in a rolled pita – $5.50
  • Super Halal Lamb Gyro – strips of lamb with hummus, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber and tzatziki in a rolled pita – $6
  • Super Baba Ghanouj sandwich – roasted eggplant puree served with lettuce, tomatoes and cucumber in a rolled pita – $4.50
  • Hummus plate – garbanzo been puree with tahini paste, garlic, lemon juice and olive oil, served with tomatoes, cucumber and pita – $6.50
  • Mezza plate (choose 3) – hummus, falafel, tabouli, dolmeh, baba ghanouj, tzatziki, served with pita – $6.50
  • Bakhlava – sweet confection of walnuts, cinnamon, homemade orange-rosewater and buttery phyllo pastry – $2
  • Turkish coffee – $2

Hours: Monday through Saturday, 11am-6:30pm
Website: Ugarit Mediterranean Meals
Phone: 503 327 4664

INSERT_MAP

Wolf & Bear’s

dieselboi

Wolf & Bears

Location: N Mississippi south of Shaver by LAND. moved 10/2011 for winter

Description:

Field Trip. That’s what I call it. See, I work downtown, so it is pretty easy to visit most of the carts in a given lunch hour. When you expand to the east side though, then we call it a field trip. We line up, hold hands, count off and get on the bus; two by two by two…. Seriously though, I had my time concerns for lunch, yet Wolf & Bear’s made it worth the trip.

Wolf & Bear’s is a new cart run by a young couple with both ties to Israel and it comes out in their food. I hadn’t heard of it until a friend of mine tweeted that she took her daughter there and the owners were so excited that she pronounced the name of one of their sandwiches properly. The Sabich (pronounced s-ah-biqh) is a traditional Jewish/Middle Eastern breakfast sandwich which I would eat as an every day meal. With a fresh large pita, they put together hummus, grilled eggplant, hard boiled egg, onions, cucumber, pickles, parsley and salad greens topped with house tahini sauce and amba (mango pickle.)

Sabich from Wolf & Bears

Sabich from Wolf & Bear’s

When I saw the reference to breakfast and the inclusion of eggs, I wasn’t sure what they were concocting, but boy was that a great pita. The pita itself was chewy and fresh, the hummus garlicky, but not overwhelming. The grilled eggplant mixed with the fresh onions, cucumbers and greens gave the entire sandwich such a bright fresh flavor. I have been enjoying fresh veggies all summer from the garden and the veggies they used had that same freshly picked flavor. I devoured that sandwich at the provided picnic table while sitting under a large umbrella with my house made lemonade.  Not a bad way to escape from the office for an hour and relax.

When you read through Wolf & Bear’s menu, you see they have taken their time to put together some signature dishes. Each dish is vegetarian and can be made vegan at request. They pride themselves by making the hummus and labneh (creamy cheese made from uncultured yogurt) from scratch. All sauces and dressings are vegan For those concerned about gluten, they use sprouted garbanzos in the falafel so those are gluten free. What more could you ask for.

You need a break today from the downtown hustle. I suggest a field trip. Put on your backpack, grab your permission slip and head on over to Wolf & Bear’s – and tell them Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu:

  • Roadside snack – homemade labneh or hummus on pita topped with salad greens and drizzles of olive oil – $5
  • Sabich – (Jewish traditional breakfast) – pita filled with hummus, grilled eggplant, hard boiled egg, diced onions and cucumbers, pickes, parsley and salad greens topped with tahini and amba – $7
  • Falafel – pita filled with hummus, caramelized onion, roasted red peppers, grilled eggplant, fresh falafel and salad greens topped with tahini – $6.50
  • Out to Lunch – pita layered with labneh, gorgonzola crumbles, caramelized onions, roasted red peppers, falafel, salad greens and ground pepper – drizzled with olive oil – $7
  • Salads – $5.50
  • Housemade lemondade with mint – $2
  • Kombucha – $3
  • Cold brewed iced coffee – $2

Hours: Wednesday/Thursday 12pm – 8pm; Friday/Saturday 12pm-10pm
Phone/Contact: unknown
Website: Wolf & Bear’s on MySpace
Twitter: WolfandBears

INSERT_MAP

css.php