Share a sourdough waffle at Heim Bakery
Jenn Plitzko’s little German-ish bakery in Roseway charms with cheesy, peppery scones and Zwetschgenkuchen (plum coffee cake) in a chamber decorated with comfy couches, cookbooks, and old photos. Order a sourdough waffle to share: a pretty, crisp-edged pleaser heaped with tart whipped yogurt, bee pollen, and berries, with a little bowl of maple syrup on the side for max decadence. Danke.
Fork into late-night “Chicken Caesar” at OK Omens
OK Omens is at its best during late-night happy hour (10 p.m.–midnight, all day Sunday), when the food gets a little grubbier, awesome, affordable wine pours drop to $6, and whole bottles of natural wine ring in at $28 (that’s $5.50 for five people). Our favorite late-night find is the chicken Caesar, a gussied-up version of the wine bar’s “El Torito” salad, slicked in creamy cilantro dressing, crunchy corn nuts, and gobs of cotija cheese. The special ingredient? Szechuan peppercorn-dusted fried chicken, which lends a spicy, mouth-numbing crunch to an already excellent salad.
Wolf down cast-iron pizza at Pizza Jerk’s SE Morrison outpost
It doesn’t look like much. But the tiny, no-frills second location for Pizza Jerk (Northeast Portland’s standout punk-rock family pizza joint) hasn’t missed a beat. The menu is smaller than the original, with fewer wild specials. But the Jerk classics are here: thin-crusted, char-spotted and oh-so-delicious, with daily slice options and whole pies to eat in or take out. The pepperoni is a Jerk signature for good reason, but only a fool passes on the crunchy-edged cast-iron pizza, puffed with Wisconsin brick cheese.
Devour banh mi at Mehka Grill
Southeast Division’s Mekha Grill turns out a truly stellar, full foot-long banh mi for a mere $7. Sweet, salty pork marinated in ginger and lemongrass cooks down into a thick, meaty stew, topped with carrots, cucumbers, and jalapeno and stuffed into a light, crunchy bun. It’s one of the best lunchtime steals in the neighborhood.