Pok Pok, Portland
Portland , Oregon
Tel: 503 232 1387
Concierge.com's insider take:
Originally consisting of little more than a grill, a few picnic tables, and some colorful umbrellas, the unassuming all-outdoor Pok Pok Thai restaurant was big news when it burst on the Portland dining scene in 2005. Within a few short months, this scrappy little newcomer became a local institution and opened an indoor space. What is all the fuss about? Hasn't Portland ever seen Thai food before? Well, this is Thai food like most of us have never experienced. Gone is the ubiquitous pad thai. In its place is street food, like charcoal-roasted natural game hen stuffed with lemongrass, garlic, pepper, and cilantro; rich and deeply satisfying noodle soup with house-pressed coconut milk; and green papaya salad with a spicy kick. The unusual desserts, like coconut and jackfruit ice cream on a sweet bun with sticky rice, peanuts, condensed milk, and chocolate syrup, are surprisingly addictive. The word is out these days, so get there by 5 pm to avoid a wait, or just put your name down and cool your heels at Pok Pok's sister venue, Whiskey Soda Lounge, across the street. Order Thai drinking snacks like Miang Kham (an explosion of chilies, ginger, peanuts, lime, coconut, and chicken wrapped in a betel leaf) and a Beer Chang slushie or a tamarind whiskey sour, and the wait will fly by.—Updated by Colleen Clark
Open Mondays through Fridays 11:30 am to 10 pm, Saturdays 5 to 10 pm.