Salmon Sushi Burrito from Sushi Lover PDX
Salmon Sushi Burrito from Sushi Lover PDX Suzette Smith

Portland is rich in sushirrito carts. We are truly blessed by this abundant resource. However, it's a little less common to find a cart that makes sushi rolls, in addition to sushirittos. And practically unheard of to find a cart that—for the completely reasonable price of eleven dollars—will stick some Cheetos inside that seaweed wrap for crunch.

So where is this magical cart? It's in a pretty magical cart park out in Hillsdale!

Who knew that Hillsdale had such a nice pod? Though it overlooks SW Capitol Highway, the pod's elevation nicely buffers traffic roar while the proximity places it directly on a busy bus line. It's convenient. It's shady. The ample quantity of trees offers a feeling of seclusion, and the acorn shell-covered ground conveys a level of crunchy class. A lot of planning went into this cart. There's even 20-minute parking at the nearby Wilson High School.

Sushi Lover PDX's rolls range in price from fairly extravagant affairs, like the Caterpillar Roll (which artfully arranges eel, avocado, and cucumber atop avocado), to economical five-dollar-range rolls of carrot, avocado, or cucumber. The flexibility makes sense for their high school-adjacent location. And if you visit Hillsdale Food Park, the musical "shut up!"s of teenagers is something you are likely to encounter.

I am simultaneously clenching my fists that Wilson High's youth won't have to subsist on a steady diet of egg rolls, as I did in high school, and also happy for them. Good nutrition builds sharp minds for our future water wars.

Chili Roll from Sushi Lover PDX
Chili Roll from Sushi Lover PDX Suzette Smith

The sushi burrito at Sushi Lover PDX was terrific—tightly-packed so it didn't fall apart in my hand, containing plentiful quantities of fish, which was tasty and refreshing. There weren't actually that many Cheetos, but they crunched in all the right places.

Despite my excitement to find a cart that provided rolls, Sushi Lover PDX's didn't have much heat. The Chili Roll (tuna, salmon, imitation crab meat, avocado, cucumber, and a liberal topping of jalapeños) had no spice, despite the welcome quantity of jalapeño. I liked it, but it struck me as woefully safe.

Still, the combination of a quaint pod, economical price, and easy location means I will absolutely return whenever I find myself out in Hillsdale. And if you get out that way, I heartily recommend it.

Sushi Lover PDX, 6238 SW Capitol Hwy, (971) 985-7025,