While everyone crowds into Beast following chef Naomi Pomeroy’s James Beard win, turn 180 degrees and bolt across the street for Expatriate’s yellow, curried Burmese coconut noodles, a cousin to Thai khao soi, but souped up here with fried duck confit, a ramen egg, and tamarind. Wave across the street to Pomeroy: it’s her recipe. 5424 NE 30th Ave
ONE TO WATCH
After a slow start mired in precious oddballism, Måurice, Kristen D. Murray’s “pastry luncheonette,” is dialing in its meticulous flavors, expanding its reach (from a “vermouth hour” to prix fixe brunch), and emerging as an original destination—part France, part Scandinavia, all one woman’s romantic gamble on quality over quantity in a chow-down town. Sugar-dusted, rosemary-currant scones the size of a banana loaf set a new bar for morning treats, and the delicate polenta clafouti tastes like a cosmic grits soufflé. And from a woman who once eschewed chocolate altogether comes a fantastic “chocolate box” (pictured) on the “dessert only” night menu: black sesame seed cake, banana mousse, and chocolate mousse. Who needs protein? 921 SW Oak St
ONLY IN PDX
Of course we have a food cart that doubles as an artisan market and Oregon cheese shop. Cheese Plate PDX has morphed into a whole new category of pavement gourmet, stocking curated food finds to match its seasonal cheese plates, homemade crackers, and vegan specials. Cart favorites like Masala Pop (the irresistible Indian-spiced caramel corn) line custom shelves, and a teeny fridge holds a small collection of Oregon cheeses. 2231 NE Alberta St.
Yes, this dish looks like a beating heart conjured by gore master John Carpenter, but I could eat Aviary’s mad, Mid-Eastern beet salad every day. Crack into the balloon-like dome of slivered beets to find bright asparagus and delightfully bitter fronds of frisee lettuce. A roast of beets, black olives, and tart sumac dances around the base, and the whole plate is swirled in candied sunflower seeds, yogurt, and za’atar. 1733 NE Alberta St