Exploration Foodie



Lost in Portland. Okay, not really lost, just unable to find the Sok Sab Bai restaurant. The last time I was here [daytime], it wasn’t yet open. This time after circling the block, in car and on foot we still couldn’t locate the place, (Google maps said we’d arrived!). Found Fifty Licks [ice cream] along the way. After walking up to a deserted house-like building there was the answer: It was closed. First it was the wrong time, now apparently the wrong day, seems like Sok Sab is only open 3 days a week. Still not entirely sure that’s correct. TBA* Ah, maybe the third time’s a charm.

Where to next? It was either Cambodian or pizza, so it was off to Ken’s Artisan Pizza. I had heard it was comparable and even better than Asholl’s Pizza (less wait time/pizza under $20/not so pretentious). The place was packed but cozy. We got there a bit late by my standards (obviously this wasn’t the first plan) so unfortunately a wait for seating was involved. The waiters happily obliged patrons who wanted to drink some wine while standing but I chose to stare at those already eating what looked to be such delicious pies. This place might be more accommodating to larger parties, or it was just super busy and hard to seat just two. Service seemed a little inefficient, but I could hardly care once we got to eating.



Appetizer: I’m always looking for delicious veggie options and this definitely brought something more creative to the menu. Three different offerings on the wood oven roasted vegetable plate. Two of them tied for my favorite, and the last one had flavors that I had never considered together, and am still not sure about.

{counterclockwise from top}
1. Sweet potato/yam, kale and ricotta in a red pepper sauce cooked to perfection
2. Tender juicy brussel sprouts, onion/shallots, breadcrumbs on top
3. Savory spiced pear and carrot, (cumin/corriander were two main spices on them)


Soppressata aka the “tomato sauce mozzarella basil and spicy Calabrese”. Spicy anything catches my eye, but I’ve also had a few Soppressatas to compare to.
Is this place worth the hype? The pizza breakdown– Toppings: generous salami and fresh aromatic herbs, authentic amount of cheese. Marinara base: Average, good but nothing spectacular; not a lot to judge on as there isn’t a crazy amount sloshed on. Crust: Chewy blistered goodness all around, thin Italian style similar to what I had in Florence!


Gotta love a place that offers chili pepper flakes… even if they aren’t actually “hot”–