Kay's Bar and Grill

6903 SE Milwaukie Avenue, 503-232-4447

It was a dark and stormy Sunday afternoon, and I was starved. I popped in to several bar/grills; nothing but cheery, rosy-cheeked youngsters. Feh. I'm miserable. I want isolation. I want Kay's, a dark, friendly place in Westmoreland that harbors the majority of the neighborhoods remaining gruff workaday folks. Here, waitresses will mother you, and serve you huge, well-prepared grilled sandwiches and burgers. Kay's, and a pint of PBR, are the perfect match for your loneliness and misery. Just don't try the fresh hot turkey sandwich, it'll REALLY make you miserable. PL

Enrique Salvadorian Restaurant

123rd and Powell, 503-761-4667

It's not Mexican, though they do serve typical Mexican dishes. Salvadoran food is homier, more savory and less spicy than the Mexican stuff. It's worth the drive for the fresh pupusas con chicharron, delicious grilled corn cakes stuffed with mild cheese and crunchy pork. Also dazzling was a plate of stewed chicken in a sauce that hinted at tomatoes, mustard and oregano and served with soupy beans and yellow rice. I hate to give out secrets like this, but, oh heck, don't miss the massive thrift store across the street. PL

Cool Runnings Café

4110 NE Fremont, 503-282-2118

Despite the silly name and the location in the heart of the ladies-who-do-lunch district, I'm really excited about this new Cajun/Caribbean spot. The food here can be inauthentic, an almost made-up fusion of New Orleansian influences. But the chef is clearly talented, and a great chef can make almost anything taste great. I tried the catfish po boy, which is traditionally fried but was instead blackened, and topped with provolone, lettuce, and tomato. It was delicious. The accompanying Cajun potato salad was sheer bliss, the best potato salad I've had in years. Expect a full review once they roll out the dinner menu. PL