On the street across from my office building sits a long row of trailers dispensing a wide variety of food: waffles, burritos, Thai food, vegan (including deep-fried Oreos...?), gluten free, Indian, Middle Eastern, gourmet soup, and the most recent addition: meatballs.
I first began working in the building I now work in 20 years ago. At that time, hardly any food options existed in the vicinity. Then we moved across the river to Lloyd Tower, and several years ago we moved back into the old building near Portland State. At that time, a burrito cart sat across the street from the office. Eventually a handful more food carts surfaced. More food options existed than in 1990, but pickings were slim compared to what we'd left behind in the Lloyd District.
All that has changed now, especially with the recent FOOD CART REVOLUTION! The cart foodies even have their own Facebook page.
And now CNN and Budget Travel have bestowed Portland with a heady honor: we were named #1 in best street food...in the whole world! Singapore and Thailand, two of my favorite locales for street food, rank near the bottom of the list. Portland has arrived.
My personal favorites on my local Food Cart alley are Dosirak, a Korean place that does teriyaki chicken and brown rice with salad; Buddha Bites (the gluten-free place), which does a great Greek salad with salmon and Mike's favorite--a chicken/avocado sandwich on actually tasty gluten-free bread; New Taste of India (which does a great lunch special for $5...but I have not eaten there in awhile since I'm trying to eat healthier...); and the Portland Soup Company, which makes to-die-for soups and is owned by the son of some friends from church.
I tend to go to Dosirak most often, because the portions are large and last me for two lunches (for just $6!). The Korean owners are unfailingly friendly and alas, have taken the month of July off so they can go to Korea for a visit. I'm in withdrawal!