CHEAP EATS 2013
Old World Eats
A hearty trek through Portland's Central European feasts
Émincé Zurichoise at Café Hibiscus ($12)
Hawaii meets Switzerland at this tropically decorated Euro café that’s the proud home of “Martin’s Swiss Dressing.” Say “aloha!” to a mighty dish of émincé zurichoise—a supremely salty comfort of slivered pork (in place of traditional veal) bathed in a rich mushroom sauce alongside a mound of hand-pressed spätzle. Wash it all down properly with a frosty can of Salzburg’s Stiegl lager.
Pork Schnitzel and Cabbage Gratin at Spints Alehouse ($16)
With a menu embracing Mexican appetizers and Mediterranean shellfish, Spints seems “German” only in its hunger for global tourism. But the schnitzel is pure Alpine bliss: a thinly pounded pork loin, breaded and panfried, sided by a mustard seed–laden cabbage gratin blanketed with golden cheese. Sip from a list of lagers rarely glimpsed beyond Bavaria—we recommend the Augustiner Edelstoff.
Chicken Paprikás and Berliners at Grüner ($11)
Chef Chris Israel’s cuisine skips playfully from Switzerland to Alsace to Bavaria. For lunch, follow him down the Danube to Hungary. Start your journey with a deal on chicken paprikás, braised in a deep, paprika-spiked tomato–crème fraîche sauce and girded by a quintet of potato dumplings. End with a trio of sugar-dusted Berliners (German-style doughnuts) plumped with warm raspberry jam.
Bohemian Goulash at Tábor ($7)
Sure, this Czech food cart earned national acclaim for its iconic Schnitzelwich—but the menu rewards deeper exploration. A homey bowl of spicy Bohemian goulash, for instance, promises a food high on even the most rain-soaked day, with delicate beef steeped in caraway, then spooned over fluffy pillows of potato dumpling.
Golumpki at Bar Dobre ($10.50)
This little bar blends a touch of Portland posh with its Polish roots—dark woods, intimate tables, and sexy lighting from a hanging chandelier. Order up a “traditional Polish cocktail” (hint: it’s vodka on ice) and dig into the golumpki—two boiled cabbage leaves swaddling onions, beef, and rice, all drizzled with a subtly fiery tomato sauce.
Polish Sausage at EuroDish ($6)
The no-brainer at this unassuming yellow cart is the Polish sausage on a bun—a glorious, eight-inch monstrosity holding sautéed onions, mushrooms, and bell peppers. If your stomach is really growling, go all in with a six-piece side of cheese-stuffed pierogi ($4.50)—boiled crescents of melted cheese wrapped in moist dough, with sour cream for dipping.