This West Coast Destination Is The Perfect Addition For A Foodie Bucket List

There's no denying good, local eats enhance the overall travel experience. After all, food tourism has significantly increased over the past few years, with more and more travelers prioritizing culinary aspirations when planning their trips. Perhaps this travel trend can be linked to popular foodie figures, like Anthony Bourdain and Padma Lakshmi, or destinations offering some seriously beautiful restaurants. However, regardless of the reason, some hotspots around the globe have been more sought after thanks to their offerings of stellar eats.

The obvious contenders for the hungriest of travelers are the likes of New York City, San Sebastian, wine regions in France, and Italy in general. However, some of the best foodie spots are a little less known and within the United States. Portland, Oregon, for example, flies far under the radar when it comes to having some of the country's greatest eats. If eating well is a priority when you travel, you'll want to add Portland to your bucket list pronto.

A city full of food carts

What about Portland makes it such an exciting culinary destination? For starters, Portland has a wide abundance of food carts. The city has upward of 500 options when it comes to street eating, with a range of cuisines from Vietnamese to Egyptian to Senegalese.

While there's nothing wrong in choosing, one of the most ideal street foods is falafel, and a great spot to grab one is at Kafta House. Afterward, swing by Rachel & Rose for a glass of cider or wine. For a big bowl of chewy noodles, head to Stretch The Noodle, a food cart dedicated to dumplings and hand-pulled noodles, well equipped to satiate your appetite. If you're in the mood for something meaty, DelToro Steak ought to do the trick, where you can grab a ribeye right from a food cart.

Portland's street food scene is so booming that it's been deemed the city with the best street food and food truck city by major outlets such as CNN. Most carts throughout the city accept credit cards, however, if you're visiting, you might want to have cash handy just to be on the safe side.

Food for all types of travelers

One of the best aspects of eating throughout Portland is the city is no stranger to dietary restrictions, and has offerings for all types of travelers. Whether you're vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, allergen-free, you name it, Portland doesn't skimp out on the options. A 2023 study by WalletHub found Portland to be the most plant-based-friendly city in the United States. 

It might sound out-of-character for a Thai restaurant to function as allergen-free, meaning no peanut, dairy, or gluten products, but leave it to Portland to make it happen; Thai eatery Bang Bang eatery is just that. Portland is also home to plenty of gluten-free bakeries, including but not limited to Gluten Free Gem, Petunia's Pies & Pastries, and New Cascadia Traditional. Speaking of bakeries, the famed bakery Voodoo Doughnut originated in Portland, Oregon, and the store's first location can be found right in the city.