KOIN’s Cart of the Week: La Arepa


PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — La Arepa is serving up authentic Venezuelan food to Portlanders at carts in both Southeast and Northeast.

Veronica and her family run both carts — creating the menu, preparing and cooking every dish.

“Venezuelan food is amazing. It’s full of flavor and color, it’s colorful, we love the presentation of our food,” she says.

Arepas are cornmeal patties that take place of bread in many Venezuelan homes. Arepas and empanadas are filled with chicken, beef, cheese or fish. Plantains are deep-fried to make a sandwich called pantacon. 

“We have lots of influences from all over the world because Venezuela was a country that we used to receive lots of other cultures,” Veronica says.

The family was amazed by how receptive their customers were when they opened in 2010. Although the carts have moved around due to development, they’ve managed to keep a solid base and take online orders as well.

“Thankfully we have clients that are loyal ambassadors.”  

They hope to eventually open brick-and-mortar one day, focusing mainly on arepas.  

“When you have a food cart you have the limitation of space and the storage, and laws. That’s the reason why we want to go there. We have a lot more to offer,” Veronica says. 

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