Blue Star Donuts
3753 N. Mississippi Ave., Boise
While Voodoo Doughnut, with its long lines and anti-establishment atmosphere, is an important pilgrimage for foodies, locals head straight to Blue Star for delicious donuts and much more manageable lines. The vibe here is decidedly more buttoned up, with tall ceilings and subway tiled walls, and the flavors to match. You won’t find any cereal-themed donuts here—instead, opt for sophisticated flavors like brioche, lemon poppy buttermilk, blueberry bourbon, or the famous apple fritters. There are three other locations in Portland, in Northwest Portland, Downtown, and Sunnyside.
3713 N Mississippi Ave., Boise
While it doesn’t garner nearly the lines of the more famous Salt & Straw, many locals argue that Portland's best ice cream is actually at Ruby Jewel. They have three locations (one in each major neighborhood, in Boise, Richmond, and Downtown, and while ice cream is as advertised, they’re really famous for their ice cream sandwiches, with flavors like lemon cookie with honey lavender, dark chocolate with fresh mint, and “The Chub,” their way-better take on a Chipwich.
¿Por Qué No?
3524 N. Mississippi Ave., Boise
This taqueria is a local favorite for its elaborate offering of Mexican fare, especially their next-level tacos. The corn tortillas are made fresh onsite and filled with sustainably-sourced, unconventional-yet-delicious ingredients, including calamari, chorizo, and barbacoa-braised beef brisket straight from nearby Cascade Farms. Quick counter service and picnic tables for outdoors dining (weather permitting) make this a great casual spot to people-watch. There's a second outpost in Richmond.
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