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Chow! EW's quarterly restaurant guide

April 3, 2014 01:00 AM

Eugene chef Beverly Lynn Bennett is on a roll — specifically, a gluten-free, dairy-free roll sprinkled with chia seeds enclosing a veggie burger made with chia seeds, alongside a salad made of chia seed dressing and chia sprouts. Bennett’s new cookbook is called Chia: Using the Ancient Superfood, and it’s all about this member of the mint family. 

April 3, 2014 01:00 AM

Bread isn’t just bread for those who can’t tolerate gluten — it’s a gut-wrenching problem food. And pasta? Forget it. About one in 141 people have celiac disease, according to the National Institutes of Health, and it causes an immune response when people eat gluten, a common protein in wheat, rye and barley. Another condition, gluten sensitivity, makes gluten a no-go as well.

April 3, 2014 01:00 AM

Baker Butcher, the newest addition to the international cafés at Fifth Street Market, is rustic-chic and simple. There’s a chalkboard menu, Mason jar chandeliers and colorful wallboards. The kitchen sits in front of your eyes, and the periodic dull horn from the nearby train over the muted chatter of eaters creates an energetic hum that sets a perfect brunchy atmosphere.   

April 3, 2014 01:00 AM

The building at 1290 Patterson is among the West University Neighborhood’s last remaining examples of early 20th-century architecture. Prime for foot traffic, the building, a former coin laundry and tanning salon among other things, is located near the UO campus and PeaceHealth’s university location. Only adding to the desirability of the address is a brand-new, five-story mixed retail and residential development right across the street. 

April 3, 2014 01:00 AM

With summer threatening to emerge in bursts of sunlight, one’s mind wanders to warm-weather cuisine: watermelon, lemonade and wieners fresh from the grill. If you’re like me, it’s hard to wait for the rain to stop before satisfying that craving. So I hit the pavement in search of hot dogs. The following is what I found.

January 30, 2014 01:00 AM

Walk into Noisette Pastry Kitchen and you know you’re somewhere special. Sun pours through the glass walls and, even in winter, the open kitchen with its bustle and chatter makes the place feel alive and exempt from cold-weather hibernation. Noisette’s menu is visual, with names of dishes written on the parchment paper lining cases of sweet and savory pastries, sandwiches and salads.

January 30, 2014 01:00 AM

Settled where The Bier Stein used to pour pints for locals lies The Cannery, a hip but homey restaurant where owner Mike Wares is “trying to put an honest culinary effort behind pub fare.” The restaurant has 20 beers on tap, a full bar and a menu that boasts homemade food with a true Northwest feel.  

January 30, 2014 01:00 AM

Eating locally year-round can be intimidating, even to people who are adventurous cooks. Though we have an abundance of farms and produce here in the Northwest, sometimes it can be hard to know what to eat in February when the potatoes have run out. Author Elin England is trying to make that easier. Her first book, Eating Close to Home, is a seasonal guide to what’s available in the Pacific Northwest and what to do with it. Her newest book, Further Adventures in Eating Close to Home, covers beans, grains, nuts and seeds. 

January 30, 2014 01:00 AM

If there’s one thing that everyone’s got an opinion on, it’s pizza. Folks get downright adamant about the “best” in town. We decided to visit a few of the local favorites for some pizza and put together a little guide to who has what. One thing that is hard to get around is the fact that pizza is amazing.

January 30, 2014 01:00 AM

Reviews on Yelp for the Tiny Tavern range from “Ever wonder what the gateway to hell looks like? Check the men’s bathroom” to “Smells like pee.” The Whiteaker’s classic dive bar suffered from an unfavorable reputation, but in recent months the oldest bar in Eugene has undergone an extraordinary transformation. With new management, the Tiny Tavern is serving exceptionally tasty bar food, offering live music and entertainment throughout the week and is slowly returning to the epicenter of Eugene’s bar scene.

August 29, 2013 01:00 AM

“No foams, no gels,” says Sara Ellis, self-proclaimed “serial entrepreneur” and owner of the soon-to-open Carmelita Spats. Although the name invokes Mexican seafood (Carmelita is the name of her Chihuahua, and spats refers to mollusks) this is not really representative of the direction of the restaurant. It is more representative of the unique style of this restaurant.

August 29, 2013 01:00 AM
#MUTLIPLE#

There’s a new kid on the block in Whiteaker’s culinary community. Grit is dignified but rough around the edges. And in keeping with Eugene’s passion for the slow food movement, Grit will offer an entirely farm-to-table menu that will change weekly if not nightly.

August 29, 2013 01:00 AM
#MUTLIPLE#

There are a lot of businesses around Eugene that claim to have “The Best Reuben in Town.” The sandwich itself is iconic across the country: Rye bread loaded with either pastrami or corned beef, topped with sauerkraut and either Thousand Island dressing or Russian dressing. We decided that it would be fitting to find out who, if anyone, deserved the title for “the best.” Many Reubens were eaten. Lengthy discussions were held.

August 29, 2013 01:00 AM

The biggest mistake one could make when eating at downtown Eugene’s Noodle Bowl is to order a noodle bowl. It’s a delicious dish but a safe Americanized choice as EW’s Best of Eugene Korean gem. “When the people come, if they want to try Korean food, I want them to ask the servers and get a recommendation rather than just getting a noodle bowl,” says Jae Lee, server and son of owner Sue Lee.

August 29, 2013 01:00 AM

For eight years, Bret Ford exchanged his chef’s hat for gardening equipment, but he recently had the desire to get back into the cooking world. The former chef at Ambrosia, among other restaurants throughout Oregon, wasn’t looking to go back to the same environment, however. More than 20 years after his wife’s grandfather suggested running a restaurant on wheels, he and his wife took it to heart. And that’s how Bacon Nation began — a place that serves much more than what its name suggests. 

August 29, 2013 01:00 AM

Only a year and a half after opening Falling Sky Brewing’s pub, co-owners Rob Cohen and Jason Carriere didn’t expect to open a second location. But when they found the place at 790 Blair Blvd., they fell in love with it.

June 13, 2013 01:00 AM

Mitchel Hescheles’ grandfather woke every morning at 2:30, tending his farm before heading to work at a factory. After retiring, he refused to get out of bed before 11:11 am. Hescheles is unclear why his granddad picked such an arbitrary time, but he decided to pay homage to his hardworking grandpa when opening Chow, his new restaurant on South A Street in downtown Springfield. 

June 13, 2013 01:00 AM

Securing a seat at certain times was nearly a sport at chef Gabriel Gil and restaurateur Cory Stamp’s first restaurant incarnation in Eugene, the Rabbit Bistro and Bar. The space was tiny and Chef Gil’s creativity was staunched by a lack of storage space, famously leading to a “no substitutions” clause on the menu. And that “no ketchup” thing? “That truly was because I forgot to order ketchup,” Gil says, laughing.

June 13, 2013 01:00 AM

Eating healthy as a taste snob can be a chore. But not at Tru Veg.

Crystal DuBoyce and Brian Igarta, and their 12-year-old daughter Skye, serve up plant-based foods packed with both flavor and nutrition from a tiny white trailer in the parking lot of an automotive business on Chambers Street. They’ve divided the menu at Tru Veg in two: cooked vegan food and raw, or living, food. 

June 13, 2013 01:00 AM

When Chef Walid “Willie” Saleeby makes traditional Lebanese food, he’s replicating the dishes his mother and grandmother made for him in Lebanon when he was a boy. It’s not about working off a recipe, he says, but remembering all those tastes and textures — that’s what makes the best traditional meals.

June 13, 2013 01:00 AM

While Kopi-O is the first restaurant that Azam Ismail has ever owned, chances are that you have enjoyed some of his creations before. “My dad was a chef at Ring of Fire, Adam’s Sustainable Table and Lucky Noodle,” his son Aaron Ismail says. “This is a dream he has always had, and we’ve always wanted to make it happen for him.”

June 13, 2013 01:00 AM

If you are wondering why all Chinese restaurants in Oregon don’t serve an eclectic menu ranging from eggplant to frog, it’s because there’s only one Tony Luo. Kung Fu Bistro’s chef sticks to his roots and stays away from Americanized fare. 

Americans are used to a certain type of Chinese food, Luo says, but Kung Fu Bistro introduces you to the real thing. That means a menu of 100 entrees featuring frog, eggplant and fish, as well as staples like chicken, pork, beef and shrimp. And as the frog dish indicates, some of the meals are far from ordinary Americanized Chinese. 

June 13, 2013 01:00 AM

Summer is shining ahead of us, and one of its brightest parts is plodding through the dirt to gather Oregon berries in the morning sun. Fortunately, u-pick farms surround Eugene, making the experience easily accessible. Check out these farms (and there are many more!) for their u-pick options; we’ve organized them by distance from the Park Blocks that host the Lane County Farmers Market.

June 13, 2013 01:00 AM

Morsels of restaurant news