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Sandwich Eating Tour through Portland

Written by Biggie on June 1, 2015
Biggie Bread in Portland Oregon Hi Portland

My wife had a conference in Portland and I had the opportunity to check reconnect with family and visit Rip City again. The last time I visited I Oregon, I was 12 years old.

I like to research when I go to a city. I refuse to eat at a big chain and of course anytime I can eat a sandwich somewhere delicious I will try to be eat there.

When I drove into town from Seattle my 1st stop was seeing family and lunch with them at Besaw’s one of Portland’s oldest bar and restaurants. Established in 1903.

It was awesome seeing them and it was fun to spend time with them. I enjoyed telling them all about Deli Fresh Threads since they didn’t know too much about what I did. Besaw’s had a wide range of selections on the menu. I ordered the Breakfast Burger– it was open faced so can’t really call it burger but it hit the spot.

Breakfast Burger from Besaws

Have you ever watched the show Portlandia? If you have never been to Portland- Yes the show is on point. When your city’s slogan is “Keep Portland Weird” you know you want to be different. It is definitely a fun, but “weird” city.

Portland Weird

Portland is similar to Seattle in their use of local fresh ingredients. They have a huge Food Cart community there. Many of the restaurants I visited were once carts turned storefronts.

The 1st sandwich restaurant I visited in Portland was Pine State Biscuits. I saw them featured on Diners, Drive Ins and Dives and then again on Unique Eats. I knew I had to eat here. Their specialty is chicken biscuits and I LOVE chicken biscuits! When we walked in I could see them brushing the top of those fluffy biscuits. I was so excited. I knew this would be good.

Biggie and Pine State Biscuits in Portland

I ordered the Reggie. Fried chicken, bacon & cheese. I asked for the sausage gravy on the side.

Reggie at Pine State Biscuits in Portland Oregon

My wife ordered the Special that day- Earl’s Blue Ribbon– A Chicken Biscuit with Tasso Ham, cranberry mustard, Swiss cheese, and butter lettuce.

Earl's Blue Ribbon Pine St Portland Oregon

Pine State Biscuits was so good. I can see how they went from selling at the Portland Farmers Market to having 3 locations. It is also the reason why I ate there twice while in Portland. I had it for dinner and breakfast.

I visited Meat, Cheese, and Bread for breakfast. I knew I wanted something light since I had a long day of sandwich eating. I ordered the Turkey – roasted turkey, Havarti, bacon, sweet onion, mayo, lettuce on rustic sourdough. I saw their Steak and Egg sandwich and it looked fantastic but I just didn’t have enough room!

Meat Cheese Bread Portland Oregon

Inside Meat Cheese Bread Portland Oregon

Turkey at Meat Cheese Bread in Portland Oregon

I read about Lardo Sandwiches and their love for bovine and swine. It was close by to Meat, Cheese and Bread and I decided to walk over and have lunch there. Lardo originally started out as a food cart in Portland in 2010 and by 2012 he had opened his first brick and mortar location.

Inside Lardos in Portland Oregon

I ordered the Pork Meatball Banh Mi with pickled vegetables, sriracha mayo, cilantro, and cucumber. This sandwich was so good that after my wife saw the picture of it on my instagram feed she wanted to have it too. So we had it for dinner the same night. That’s how good it is. When we had it for dinner that night we had the Pork Meatball Bahn Mi and Korean Pork Shoulder sandwich with house kimchi, chili mayo, cilantro, lime.

Pork Sausage Bahn Mi at Lardo Portland Oregon

Pork Sausage Bahn Mi at Lardo Portland Oregon

Empty plate at Lardo Portland Oregon

Thanks to twitter I was referred to an ice cream sandwich restaurant called Ruby Jewel Scoops by @Pechluck

I had heard about Salt and Straw for great ice cream in Portland but I was excited to be introduced to Ruby Jewel Scoops. Ruby Jewel Scoop first sold Ruby Jewel ice cream sandwiches out of a cooler at Portland farmers markets and her treats quickly garnered a loyal following – you can now find Ruby Jewel ice cream sandwiches in grocery stores from Alaska to Los Angeles. The Ice cream and cookies are handcrafted daily in their North Portland kitchen.

Biggie Bread at Ruby Jewel in Portland Oregon

I enjoyed their Caramel with Salted Dark Chocolate ice cream in between a Double Chocolate Cookie and the traditional Chocolate Chip Cookie.

making sandwich at Ruby Jewel in Portland Oregon

Ice Cream Sandwich at Ruby Jewel in Portland Oregon

Ruby Jewel was terrific. I highly recommend this place.

We checked out Brunch Box the night we visited Lardo for dinner. Brunch Box was also originally a cart and they make some fantastic food. You can get any of the their menu items as Angus Beef, Turkey, Fried Chicken or Vegetarian. The best part is you can choose to have your order on a bun, Texas Toast or GRILLED CHEESE!

Brunch Box Portland Oregon

We ordered the BurgerMeister and I enjoyed their food so much- I left with a Brunch Box T-shirt to bring back to Orlando. We swapped stickers and they became part of the Sandwich Eaters Club.

Brewmeister at Brunch Box Portland Oregon

Brunch Box part of the Sandwich Eaters Club Portland Oregon

On my 2nd day in Portland I got a chance to meet up with my cousin since he had never been to Bunk Sandwiches and it was on my list of places to eat. I was told that the Pork Belly Cubano was the way to go and was featured on Diners, Drive In and Dive and also Best Thing I Ever Ate so I went in knowing I would be ordering this. My cousin ordered the Fried Louisiana Gulf Shrimp Po’Boy. We split our sandwiches and enjoyed the Bunk out of them.

Pork Belly Cubano Bunk Sandwiches Portland Oregon


Shrimp Po Boy Bunk Portland Oregon

On my last day in Portland I knew I would be going to eat at Big Ass Sandwiches. I have been following Big Ass Sandwiches for a while before coming to Portland and I even have a picture of their 1st cart along with other sandwich shops as inspiration for me.

Big Ass Sandwiches Portland Oregon

Now Big Ass Sandwiches is a Cart and they are located at Carts on Foster- a Cart Pod. After seeing so many Food Cart Pods in Portland- I really wish we had these in Orlando. So I was giddy to try this place since it was the last place I wanted to try. Big Ass Sandwiches makes their sandwiches in what I call “Full Meal Sandwiches”- Because the side is included in with the sandwich. All their sandwiches come with fresh hand cut fries in them.

I of course went with the The Richwich. This is the sandwich my man Adam Richman calls “The Best Sandwich in the Northwest”. It comes with slow roasted beef, bacon, grilled onions, and hand cut fries, piled into a ciabatta roll covered with their homemade béchamel cheese sauce.

Richwich Big Ass Sandwiches Portland Oregon

When they handed me the sandwich it was this massive sandwich- looked like a burrito. I was even told eat it with the tin foil like a burrito since the sandwich was packed.

RichWich Big Ass Sandwiches Portland Oregon

I was grinning ear to ear as I ate this. I went and told the guys how great it was and told them about Deli Fresh Threads. I was excited to see that Biggie Bread had made it onto their Cart and was representing for all to see.

Giddy at Big Ass Sandwiches in Portland Oregon

Big Ass Sandwiches Portland Oregon Biggie Bread Deli Fresh Threads

It is a little bit out of the city but well worth the drive.

killed the Richwich at Big Ass Sandwich at Portland Oregon

I ate some amazing food in Portland and noticed that they all used local fresh ingredients and they took pride in the food they were serving. I believe quality ingredients make a great product.

I also left Portland stuffed and filled with the idea to keep following my passion and doing my thing and things will work out. A lot of these places started out small and grew into larger locations and some even into multiple locations. That is impressive.

Roaming around the city of Portland I came across this store called Crafty Wonderland & found this awesomeness from Brian Cook a Portland Artist – of course I bought it. I’m Stacked!

I'm stacked by Brian Cook art Portland, Oregon

I also had to get this cool Sasquatch Oregon sticker.

Squatch Out Oregon Sticker by Little Bay Root

I got to see the Multnomah Falls- a really beautiful sight and drive through the mountains- highly recommend.

Multnomah Falls