Just like meals at home, the chefs at Captain Dillie's Starlite Coach like to mix things up?because who would serve their family the same dinner two days in a row? From their Tiffany-blue truck, they serve up classic blue plate specials, meatball sandwiches, and slabs of homemade lasagna alongside fruit spritzers and banana pudding.
Three generations of kitchen expertise inform the mouth-melting meals at Lorena’s Mexican Restaurant, a new restaurant with no shortage of seafood specials and tender carnitas combos. General manager David Robles calls on the expertise of Mama Robles in classic meals such as the chorizo burrito with huevos, the Chili Colorado with slow-cooked beef and red sauce, and the house’s signature cocktail, the Prickly Pair Margarita. Those in the mood for a light snack might simply pair the complimentary chips with a flight of dips—queso, bean, and guacamole—which allows diners to choose which sauce best matches their shirt.
With two walk-up and drive-thru stands—and one storefront—Frankie's Franks keeps Portland residents' hot dog, burger, and street-food cravings in check. Foot-long Coney Island dogs bask in a heavy dose of chili and cheese, Frankinator meals pair a double cheeseburger with a polish dog and chili fries, and cinnamon and sugar dust lightly buttered elephant ears. Slushies, tacos, and personal pizzas are also available at each location.
Gaberielle Gonzalez has been cooking since she was a child, but she didn't start out with Mexican recipes. Her interest in Mexican cuisine blossomed when she met the man she would marry. His fond recollections of the cuisine in his hometown—Tepic, Nayarit—inspired her to try and re-create those memories for him.
Years later, Gaberielle has mastered the cuisine of the Nayarit region. Inside the Tamale Mama's food truck, she fashions from-scratch tamales and enchiladas while prioritizing local ingredients, including Draper Valley chicken and hormone-free, antibiotic-free pork from Tails & Trotters. Sourcing the best catches local fishermen and mermaids, Gaberielle stuffs fresh crab and bay shrimp go into zesty tacos. Grill-sizzled pork chops and citrus chicken round out her south-of-the-border repertoire.
Cuisine Type: Casual Cuban
Most popular offering: Cuban sandwich
Reservations: Not offered
Delivery / Take-out Available: Yes
Alcohol: Full bar
Number of Tables: 25?50
Outdoor Seating: Yes
Parking: Parking lot
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Pro Tip: Ask for extra mojo on the side to dip your sandwich in. It's amazing.
In your own words, how would you describe your menu?
Our menu is small, simple, casual and Cuban. The bowls, plates, and sandwiches offer a combination of foods that you would eat at your home in Cuba. Rice, black beans, a meat, tropical fruits, and plantains are staples in any house in Cuba. The food isn't fancy or complicated in Cuba, but holds an array of flavor combinations such as citrus, garlic, and bay, and that is what our menu re-creates here in the PNW.
Do you use any family recipes at your restaurant? Whose family do they belong to (the chef, the owner, or someone else)?
Much of our menu is inspired by I grew up eating in Havana, Cuba. It varies from Miami-style dishes, and is, of course, somewhat different due to the ingredients available and some creative improvements.
What?s the best reaction you?ve ever gotten from a customer?
We love it when people who grew up in Cuba come in and tell us that our food tastes just like what they ate at home in Cuba. One person even said that our beans were better than his mama's. Another regular customer went to Miami, came back and said, "You ruined my trip to Miami. Your food is so much better than what I ate when I was there that I was disappointed the whole time."
When the owners of Que Pasa Cantina renovated the restaurant almost a decade ago, they looked to Mexico for inspiration. As a result, the cantina feels like a portal to Mexico itself?tin and glass stars dangle from the ceiling, portraits of poppies decorate walls, and vibrant, striped blankets counterbalance dark woodwork. As for the menu, it strikes a balance between traditional and original. Among traditional options, margaritas contain hand-measured proportions of tequila and fresh lime, and posole brims with hominy, roasted chicken, and spicy tomato broth. A handful of the contemporary entrees rank among the most popular. In particular, the chicken enchilada casserole merges green chilies, corn, and cheese into a stick-to-your-sides entree that?s as comforting as a nap in a bed of mashed potatoes. The restaurant keeps eight Mexican beers on hand and four beers on tap.