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Bite of Bend Blew Chunks

Bite of Bend 2007

I was looking forward to the Bite of Bend this year especially because it was going to be in Downtown Bend. Last year's Bite was in the Old Mill. It was a HOT day without any shade so being Downtown should be more fun like when they run the festivals down there.

Uhhh, after walking through the cramped in food court we were asking ourselves where are the restaurants? For the most part the only "restaurants" that showed up were caterers, taco stands, Thai, and some BBQ. There were a few places like Baldys, Staccato, Hans, and 28 that were offering samples of their meals.

The whole festival was poorly organized, boring, and disappointing. I left hungry and sad. I am still trying to figure out what happened. It's the Bite of Bend, doesn't that mean that Bend restaurants should be there dishing out samples of their cuisine? Where were the good restaurants? Was it because the event was downtown that most of the downtown restaurants decided on not having a booth?
Oh and the beer "garden" was the worst. It was written up in the Source as Beer, Wine, and Spirits...what are spirits? I thought that spirits referred to hard liquor but there wasn't any, just beer and wine.

Slow moving lines and few options when you finally made it to the front made me pissy. That's really the best you could do? Why not just fill a garbage can with ice and sell PBR pounders for a $1?

If I was a tourist and went to the Bite of Bend, I would start to get my plans to move here and open a restaurant together. Cause if this is the best Bend has to offer, any restaurant would be successful.

$2.50 Fish Taco from La Costa's taco stand:

$6 Duck and Prawn skewer from Kokanee Cafe:

$5 Pulled pork sandwich from Oregon Dan's BBQ:

$1 Lemon Tart from Staccato (she gave me two since these were the size of a quarter at best):

Highlight of the day was the $1.50 Beef Tongue taco from Rico's taco stand/gut truck:

Photo of the Iron Chef competition with an annoying announcer and no way of possibly seeing what's going on. How about a TV monitor or even a mirror so we could see what's up?

There were many people on stilts walking around and then these two ladies that were dressed as French Poodles. I'm confused. I don't know what this is or how it made me feel:



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9What? Got something to say?

Blogger dkgoodman said...

Definitely too crowded.

I also thought the Iron Chef thing sucked because you couldn't see what was going on. What were they thinking?

Why was this held downtown anyway? Seems to me this hurts the merchants there by blocking off their stores.

June 18, 2007  
Blogger Chillable said...

Yeah, I hear ya...the food selection was horrible. So bad, in fact, that after a few bacon-wrapped chorizo-stuffed $1 dates, we all left and went to Marz for dinner. Who wants festival fare and booth food when there's plenty of great restaurants nearby?

June 18, 2007  
Anonymous Jon said...

The Bendistillery was selling lemon drops, cosmos, and the like, so there were spirits in attendance. However, they were packed with ice in little plastic cups.

I didn't stop to see any of the Iron Chef competition this year. We walked by it, but that's about it.

Overall, I thought it was decent. Not as good as the Summerfest, not by a long shot, but still.

Of course, we were there for lunch, and had expectations set appropriately. ;)

June 18, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The poodles were just a bit disturbing, more so because I watched for more than just a quick second. Perhaps they might fall which is only why I suppose so many kids watched with their parents. (Mommy, why did Daddy throw them a dollar?) Performance art has its place but at the Bite?

Too bad about the food. When the local establishments begin to weigh the costs of showing up against the potential benefits of enhancing tourism and promoting commerce, you know that your city has finally grown-up.

Who can blame them. Where was the incentive - the write-off in business parlance - to spend any money on showcasing your wares?

They needed a charity!

We will pay for your tasty and exotic morsels.

We need a charity too!

Give me great food!

Make me spend some money.

June 18, 2007  
Blogger shannon said...

I really liked the bright green shirts at Bite of Bend that said

Feed Frequently.
Add Cold Drinks.

June 19, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a boring filthy mess! It was fair food (Deschutes County fair) and alot of slop! the prices were outrageous and the food was not a good mix. Tongue tacos? Could I chase that with a dose of madcow and e-coli? who ever organized it should be publicly flogged. Was Merenda's to busy counting his big bucks to show his face?

June 20, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree about the lack of restaurants.I thought the desserts from Hurricanes were awesome, finding these incredibly rich and distinctive goodies from a place I'd never heard of was well worth my attendence.

June 21, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We were feeding 3 adults and 2 kids from the festival food booths. Finding a seat was very difficult. Food was mediocre and pricy. The Iron Chef first competitors Saturday had no stove hookups. Not good organization. Though we were happy to see Jen's Garden of Sisters take the Iron Chef competition on Sunday. Great place. The judges did show the presentations of each chef at least. The announcer was really annoying to the chefs as he kept putting a mic in their faces during their most stressful last five minutes. One of the judges Saturday had never had gazpacho before (Where do they get these people?) and had to ask another judge what a chive was!

June 22, 2007  
Blogger melanie said...

Amen, glad someone is writing about how horrible the Bite was. Crowded, boring food options, lame "beer garden", trippy poodle show... I hope the organizers know they bombed! We spent about 15 minutes, long enough to drink a beer, decide we didn't want to wait in any lines and get through the crowded area.. then off to the brewery to better fare.

July 06, 2007  

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