Good Restaurants in Bend?
I like Bend. I've been here for just about 10 years and I came from a major city. I came to Bend because I didn't like all the traffic, the noise, the hustle and bustle of a major city. I came out here because I liked the slower pace, the quiet, the lack of humidity, how it gets freezing cold at night, how the lights blink red and the town is quiet at 10pm, how most people are really friendly, and an overall better quality of life.
I enjoy cooking food. I love to go out to eat. I read recipes and restaurant reviews. One point I can agree on in the Bend Bubble 2 thread is the misleading of media here in town. In particular, the restaurant reviews are horrible. Has there been one bad word said about ANY restaurant by the reviews at the bulletin, the source, and Gusto?
Why would these guys say anything bad about a restaurant when they have to turn around and sell them ad space? I would be more apt to buy an ad from your rag if you say how awesome my place is. “Your restaurant is sweet! Check out this great review we have written for you. Oh hey, let me transfer you to our account team, it looks like you’re due to renew your ad campaign”.
The lack of an honest opinion about the restaurants in Bend by the media and so called restaurant review magazine is one of the main reasons I started this little blog. I found myself disagreeing with many of the reviews I was reading. I know what I like and try to do my best to let you know where you can find good food at a good price, in my opinion. I don't get paid by anyone to write any of the posts and the money I make from the Google Ads will be donated to COCAAN to help feed the need.
But why do people say that there aren't any good restaurants here? I've said that there aren't any good Italian restaurants here. Or that Kanpai is the only good place to get sushi even though it's expensive (and because Don Don isn’t around). No there are not a million restaurants to choose from. This town is not big enough to support a huge variety.
Even great restaurants like Don Don end up leaving for whatever reason. I bet if they had a line out the door every night, they wouldn't have shut down. Oh I love you Don Don, please come back!
The idea that service is bad here is silly as well. Service can be bad at any time and any restaurant for anyone. I've had good and bad experiences at almost every restaurant that I frequent. I've had bad first experiences all over the country. But I've also had great first experiences and continued good times at many many restaurants.
Sometimes I wonder about certain people that ALWAYS seem to have a bad experience no matter where they go. I wonder how they present themselves to their waiter or waitress. I've witness people speaking down to their wait staff, insulting, and just being rude many times, and MANY of those times here in Bend. If you are rude to your waitress, don't be shocked if you don't get the best service. Dummy.
Watch the movie “Waiting” or talk to your friends who have worked in fast food or at a restaurant chain. Get an insight into what it's like and how you're treated by customers as a server.
Anyway, I forgot where I was going with all that. The point is, there are good restaurants here in Bend. They may not be exactly what you had where you came from but hey, we have Izzy's, Jonny Corinos, Applebees, Outback, Red Robin, and more to make you feel at home.
Sorry, that was mean. Just remember, you’re not in your big city anymore, you’re in that cute small town of Bend, Oregon. Remember why you moved here. It had better not been for the nightlife or the shopping cause everyone knows, we ain’t got it. Go to one of the many breweries like BBC, Cascade Lakes, McMenamins, or the tourist favorite – Deschutes. Get a pint of something that doesn’t read “Lite” on the side, and relax.
For more upscale dinning (but you can still wear jeans) you can try out The Blacksmith, Scanlon’s, Cork, Merenda, or 38 Degrees.
For some casual or family friendly dining you can check out my favorites like, El Caporal, Baldy’s, SOBA (I go there mostly for lunch), Angel Thai, and Olde Towne.
These are just quick examples. There are still many restaurants that I don’t get out to often at all.