My Famous Five: Restaurateur Micah Camden of Portland, Oregon

Blueberry bourbon basil doughnut from Blue Star Donuts
Blueberry bourbon basil doughnut from Blue Star Donuts

With 15 total locations of Little Big Burger, Blue Star Donuts, Boxer Ramen, Son of a Biscuit and the upcoming Hop Dog, chef and restaurateur Micah Camden has built one of Portland’s most prominent dining empires.

In this edition of “My Famous Five,” he tells us his personal favorite item from each of his restaurants.

Cheeseburger with chèvre from Little Big Burger

Cheeseburger with chevre from Little Big Burger

“This is a pared down version of the burger that put me on the map at my first restaurant, Yakuza. I was the first to put chèvre on a burger in Portland, and the tartness of the cheese balanced well with the fat content of the Kobe beef I was using on that particular burger at the time.”


Spicy red miso ramen from Boxer Ramen

Spicy red miso ramen from Boxer Ramen

“We took the thick pork bone tonkotsu broth that made us famous and added organic red miso paste, butter, Calabrian chiles and Parmesan cheese to it. It’s a virtual umami bomb in your mouth.”


Blueberry bourbon basil donut from Blue Star Donuts

“Once again, I’m paying homage to one of my original recipes at my first restaurant. I had an Old Fashioned cocktail that I used to make with muddled blueberries and basil and it was one of my best sellers, so when I was making up the recipes for BSD, I tried that out as a glaze and it was a huge hit.”


Fried chicken and mac and cheese from Son of a Biscuit

Fried chicken and mac and cheese from Son of a Biscuit

“The fried chicken is an obvious, but I’m truly partial to the mac and cheese! My partner Matt Lynch was wanting the mac to be something truly special without trying to be gourmet, so he went kinda ghetto gourmet on it and used half Velveeta and half vintage cheddar cheese, and then added a bit of fish sauce to it! It came out amazing. It was rich, it was creamy, it had the perfect amount of nostalgia to it and just the right amount of funkiness from the fish sauce!”


Chili dog from Hop Dog

“The concept isn’t officially open till May, but we’ve been in the kitchen cooking more hot dogs than I care to admit and we are really excited about our chili dog. It’s going to be based on a Cincinnati-style chili where we are going to add bittersweet chocolate, garam masala, fresh onion and then freshly grated cheddar.”

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