Sunday, December 2, 2012


Located just off SE Foster, across from the bike shop on 60th. This is one of those "cool" new hangouts that are popping up in the evolving Foster-Powell neighborhood. I found it to be a rather comfy joint to enjoy a drink, good company, and perhaps some decent Mexican grub. I tried not to be too judgmental of the plethora of plaided and mustachioed clientele. Alright alright, I wear plaid all the time.

Sorry for the crappy pictures.

I hate the name. The name is the reason it took me so long to check this place out. We get it, ok? Portlandia... hardy-har-har. Now STOP! With a name like that, I expected little more than bland white rice, mill-worm-textured black beans straight from a can, and two pumps of sour cream. But I heard good things, so I decided to check it out.

It was a Sunday night, around 6:30. The place was packed, and as I looked around I noticed everyone had a number sitting on their table. One dude was cooking away in the kitchen, another guy taking orders and making drinks. Ok, I thought, this could take a while... so I ordered a beer and prepared to settle in.  At least the space was cozy, and my beer tasted fine.

40 minutes later, and the burritos finally show up. Apparently, this is not the place to go if you are looking for a fast, cheap, on-the-go burrito. I'm sure they aren't always this busy, so maybe you can catch them at an off-hour. I am not patient when I'm waiting for a burrito to stuff into my face, but luckily the beer tided me over.

Carnitas del Diablo Burrito

Ingredients: Carnitas sauteed with habanero and jalepeno peppers, borracho (drunken) beans, rice, cilantro lime crema, oaxaca cheese, habanero salsa.

Price: $8.00

Size: Plenty filling

Sides: Beer. No salsas needed.

A descriptive menu can be a good sign, or an indication of mediocre food being covered by flowery language. This is an example of the former.

What a beautiful burrito. A decadent mass, thoughtfully sliced at an angle, the halves arranged in an overlapping burrito love pile, stabbed through the heart with a toothpick, cilantro sprinkled on top, and two sweet little lime wedges on the side.  Presentation wins a 10.

The tortilla's crispy outer crust can be attributed to a well-executed, post-wrapped grill job, sealing this steamy sucker closed. The inner gooey gastrointestinal goodness, well encapsulated within its flaky brown toasted skin. Whole, complete, newly brought into existence, only to be mercilessly chopped in half moments later. The cheesy life blood oozes free from it's confining shell, a healthy layer of translucently orange porky grease following suit. Sacrificed for aesthetics and pure culinary enjoyment, the beast screams "EAT ME!" with it's dying breath.

The stimulating strings of succulent swine, sauteed with jalapeno and habanero peppers, warmed the cheeks and got the blood a-flowing. The ambrosial borracho beans allured and alleviated my tongue, complimenting the peppery pig morsels. A thick, generous dose of creamy oaxaca queso slid down my gullet in globs of fluttery, buttery, heart palpitations. A fresh squeeze of lime every now and again brought an astringent undertone to the palate, whirling about in the dynamic mesh of rich, savory, tingly, glutinous amor.

My tastebuds didn't register the "cilantro lime crema," perhaps if this were placed on the side for dipping, it's subtle, cooling capabilities would become more prevalent.

A contemplatively distinct burrito. Not your simple traditional taqueria concoction, and unlike the boring bland gringo wrap that is generally expelled from such "Portlandia" establishments.

The Rating

4.4 outta 5

The wait was pretty crazy, and 8 bucks is a pretty high price for a burrito, but I would do it all over again my friend.


In subsequent visits, the burritos have never been this good, in fact, I would have to drop the rating down a full star, to 3.4.