I'm in Portland for a few days at a planetarium conference and just had a terrific lunch at Soju, a Japanese/Korean place on Congress st. I had their version of a bento (they call it a lunch box). Choice of chicken, beef, salmon or tofu teriyaki, served with miso, salad, rice, fruit, shrimp & veg tempura and a choice of california, tuna or cucumber maki. I had the tofu and the california...underwhelmed with the maki, but the rest totally rocked. Tofu was deep fried, excellent teriyaki sauce, tempura perfect, salad, miso...everything very good, and $8.95. They also brought over the usual Korean pickles...kimchi (very garlicky, but not very spicy, oddly enough) pickled black beans, cucumbers and potatoes...never encountered that one, before. Staff was eager to please, green tea was good, and I was way too full to finish. Quite good.
On the trip up from Mass. I stopped for lunch in Ogunquit at Bintliff's on rte. 1 for one of the best lobster salad sandwiches I've ever encountered. Toasted croissant, lobster mayonnaise, and side mesclun salad (or hash browns). They had a roasted shallot vinaigrette that sounded more intriguing than it tasted, but the sandwich was perfect: not too much mayo, and no peppers, celery or onion cluttering the thing up. If I get there in time for brunch on my way back I may have to try their homemade corned beef hash.
Most of my trip will be conference food (!) but I have another couple of meals free...any other place in or near the arts district I should not miss? Staying at the Eastland Park hotel on High st.