Bend Oregon Restaurants reviewed. I frequent Bend restaurants as often as I can. If you're looking for a place to eat in Bend, Oregon I'll give you my opinion of what I've tried and where you can find it.
Bend Restaurants Q and A - April 30
Apologies for last week's lapse in my new Q and A feature. I'm a busy guy. Keep the questions coming. I love them.
Here is this weeks video. It's only 4 minutes this time.
Normally I would start off with some info about the Pup Hut and how awesome their hot dogs are but instead, just look at this:
How awesome is that?!?! Look at the grease from the real cheddar, the meaty chili, lack of onions (optional, but only douche bags get onions on a hot dog at lunch), and HUGE WIENER. Oh man, call me whatever you want but there is nothing worse that a little wiener when going after some serious meat. I need a large, thick hot dog made of grade A pork(ish) products. Pup Hut does not fail in any way. $5 for any hot dog of their hot dogs and you can choose from like 8 options.
The Chili Dog is the only Hot Dog that I've tried so far but I'm sold. I'll let you know if something changed my mind.
Pup Hut A little trailer in the shape of a hut on the corner of 9th and Wilson Open from 11-2 and it's not always there.
New feature, you can either read all the questions and answers or simply watch the movie.
I've been having fun with the questions that I've been getting through my Q&A Service. It's a site where anyone can ask me anything and they can be anonymous or leave their name. I added the app to the right side of this blog so you can simply ask me anything you like.
I got a nice T&G sitting next to me and the creative juices are flowing. Lets see where this goes!
Q: I am looking at your blog posts archive on the bottom right hand side of your blog. Looks like your posts follow a similar curve to the stock market. Up in 2007 and 2008 with a massive plunge in 2009. Do we need a BOR rescue plan too?
I'm not going to lie to you, my ass is broke! I had a great 2007 and was wining and dining the Wife at all the hot spots. But as I got fatter, and poorer, I didn't go out as much or have the will to write as much. Thanks for reminding me of better days. Now I'm just a fat tub sitting on the couch with off name tonic water in my top shelf gin.
If you see me out on the town, how about you say hi and buy me a drink? That would be way cool of you.
Q: Have you hit Amalias yet (on Wall, next to the Tower)? If so, what's your take?
I do not hit women. I ain't no Ike. Ha. Ha.
The Wife and I went out for drinks and appetizers a couple of days after Amalias had opened. We walked in and they were pretty packed on the one side of the restaurant that they were open. We ended up going to the Blacksmith and ordered an SS from Hardy. AWESOME drink!
Q: Hi there- We are on our way to Bend from Seattle. Can you recommend some spicy thai food?
Chicken Red Curry, 3 stars, at Toomies. There is Angel Thai, Typhoon!, and Toomies as far as Thai restaurants go. There is also the Thai on the Fly, (Taste of Thailand) which is a drive through only option.
Your question confused me a little, why does the Thai food have to be spicy? I know that most Thai restaurants have spicy menu items but not that the whole menu is spicy. What crazy Thai goes on in Seattle? You should go back there.
Q: Hi, I'm in Bend for a few days. Can you recommend the best asian restaurant here? Something authentic and not too watered down? Thanks!
Hi! I'm Brian Fellows!
You're in Bend, Oregon asking for authentic Asian?! That's classic. Who waters down Asian food?
I like Toomies for "Asian" type food to put in my belly.
Q: I know your a bend guy, but you honestly need to go to Redmond and try La Frontera. Their Sopa's and Gorditas are the best thing in the world. Any Chance you'd do an official review?
NO! Damn it, stop asking! I'm BOR, the BEND Oregon Restaurants Blogger, not ROR. Start you're own blog damn it.
Q: what are hours for lunch at Olive Garden in Bend and days available for lunch
I don't even want to take the two seconds to look that up for you. Instead, I'd rather write on for a bit about how stupid your question is. Does your Netscape browser even have a search function? Do you know how to use the internet? What are you typing into Google that gives you the WRONG answer to this question? Is it "glive oarden Bregon oend"? Are you trying to type in numbers from the dewey decimal system instead of words?
Did you read my review of Olive Garden? Why would I want to help you?
Q: Thanks for answering my question about T-icky my man. But, I have to tell you; those suggestions are not true “Teriyaki.” To put it another way, it’s like buying a hooker from craigslist and then realizing it’s your sister at the door!
What?!?! My sister is on craigslist?!? Well, at least she's embracing another marketing channel.
I guess I have never had real Teriyaki then. A friend of mine said that he has had some amazing teriyaki in Seattle. I don't really know what I am missing so I don't really care.
Q: Worst overall restaurant experience in Bend? Worst actual dish in Bend? Biggest disappointment in Bend?
My worst overall restaurant experience in Bend was definitely at the River Mill Grill. You can read all about it.
The worst actual dish that I've had must be the fish and chips at Rivals.
Biggest disappointment in Bend has to be how much I paid for my house, how much my house is worth now, the lack of good Indian food, the fact that everyone wants to tell me their opinion like I actually care, people say "round-a-bouts", your dog, your kids, your huge ass truck that sticks out 4 ft into the lane on Bond or Wall, OLCC, seeing a "make local habit" bumper sticker on a subaru in the drive thru at McDonalds, and the day Don Don closed its doors.
Q: Have you ever had a date with the Porcelain Gods after a Bend restaurant experience?
OH man, could you imagine? That would be the worst date ever. Do I light candles? Do I make a move after dinner and try to get some? I wonder if that could be a movie like Mannequin with that chick, Gracie Law.
I think what you meant to ask was "have you ever PRAYED to the porcelain gods?" And the answer is no. Now I've had the hersey squirts a time or two for sure!
Q: Do you fear your wife as much as you appear to? I think you should, but I'm just wondering if you do.
The Wife? She's just a beautiful butterfly. I'm not scared of her. I call the shots 'round these here parts.
Q: If Guy Fieri from 'Diners, Driveins and Dives" came to Bend, where would you tell him to go?
To go to hell in a handbasket! Is that a saying? I don't even want to look it up. No, I would recommend a slice from Cibelli's, a trip to Jake's Diner, and a burger from Dandy's. But he better ask me to join him for something. I even have a wrist band like he sports.
Q: Hi, I love the street vendor SPORK in fact I jones for their breakfast burrito it is excellent! Try it you won't be disappointed.
A lot of people have emailed, twittered, formspringed, and facebooked me and asked if I could review the street vendors downtown. I wasn't really looking forward to it as I'd rather sit at a table in a restaurant vs standing on a street corner like a hobo. Don't get all pissy at me for calling hobos, hobos. They dont have internet access and wont read this.
Well on a rare, nice spring day a friend and I went on a tour of street vendors starting with El Sancho right next to the Blacksmith Restaurant.
Joel, formerly one of the top chefs at the Blacksmith, runs the Mexican street food cart El Sancho serving up tacos, enchiladas, and tamales. For starters I asked for an pork enchilada - $2. Joel grabbed a tortilla and threw some enchilada sauce into his pan and tossed the tortilla on top fusing the two together. A quick flip, more sauce and then he added some pork and let it heat through.
He lined a paper bowl with aluminum foil, added a bed of black beans and topped it with my enchilada. Then he topped that with romaine lettuce, radishes, onion, cilantro, and cotija. For $2, I dont know if it gets any better.
The taco ($1.50) is pretty much the same thing without the beans and enchilada sauce. El Sancho throws a little oil in the pan, add tortilla and fries it real quick. He takes out the tortilla and hangs it on a make shift clothes line to form the traditional taco shell shape.
Both are great and if you have the opportunity to take advantage of El Sancho's tacos or enchiladas, then you should jump at the chance. Of course I'm going to honk as I go by and laugh at your hobo looking ass!
Last week I posted some questions and answers that I got through my Q&A Service. It's a site where anyone can ask me anything and they can be anonymous or leave their name. I added the app to the right side of this blog so you can simply ask me anything you like.
Q: born and raised in Tacompton, WA. whats up with no Teriyaki joints in Bend? do you by any chance know of a good substitute?
What up Tacompton! I was not aware that WA had the Teriyaki capital of the world within its boarders. I know that BOR Jr always gets chicken teriyaki at Mio Sushi when we go there. I've gotten the Salmon teriyaki there a few times but I recommend you ask for light sauce as they tend to have a heavy hand.
I know you can get Teriyaki at Kona Mix Plate, Sumi's, and Soba. Stop your whining. At least you can get some teriyaki in Bend. I haven't had a good Vindaloo in ages. We need Indian food!
Q: Just how much do you love yourself?
Great question. There is nothing more that I like to talk about than myself. I'm the best...ARO-OUND...Nothings ever gonna keep me down!! Look, I like what I like. If you don't like it, get the hell out.
Q: 10 Barrel. Pulled Pork Pizza. Dude. Gotta have it.
Not really a question. Pulled pork on a pizza is not something that I'm ever going to order. I have had the pulled pork sandwich and a pepperoni pizza and they are both good. I don't have an official review ready just yet though.
Q: if you had to choose between The Sagebrush Classic and the Ghost Tree dinner - what would you choose?
I've never been invited to either so they can both go to hell.
Seriously, Come on! Give me the hook up! I want to go to both!! I'd love to do a write up on either. Fans, work on getting me invited will ya?
Q: Do you know why Hardy's Hotwings and Hamburgers closed, stoped selling wings, and changed their name? That was a very bad move, in my opinion...
I've only had Hardy's wings a couple of times. They were good. I've had their burger and didn't really think it was anything special. I'll have to give them another try now that they are just focusing on the burgers and ice cream. Maybe they are running from the bank and changed their name like all the furniture stores that are constantly going out of business just to reopen two weeks later. I want to open up a furniture store called "Going Out of Business Sale." I mean, that would be the permanent sign on the building. Love it.
Q: Two questions on your most recent post (Olive Garden): 1. how much was the total bill? 2. was your waitress as hot as the one in the youtube video? If so, it was worth every penny.
I put the price of each dish and drink next to them. If you run Windows (which EVERYONE SHOULD...seriously just shut your damn Apple IIc using ass and get a real machine) just go to Programs > Accessories > Calculator. Add it up!
Our WAITER was alright, not hot but doable...if you know what I mean.
Q: Best resturant in bend OR downtown? Is it a good place for children? - AWESOME LADY
I hate "best" lists. That's why I haven't done a second one. My first Best Restaurants of Bend was sort of fun to write but it's just my opinion. You all are fools for listening to any food reviewer. Of course, I am always right so maybe you should just follow me like drones.
It is too difficult for me to say who has the Best Restaurant in Downtown Bend. I have not been to all of them. I have never eaten at the D&D, who knows, they could be the best. If you're old as dirt, your favorite should be Pine Tavern. Slightly younger than the old as dirt crowd, your favorite should be Zydeco.
I just call it like I see it folks. Zydeco is hella good but damn if the patrons aren't all over the hill. I'm always the youngest in there. I really like going to Joolz, Blacksmith, Zydeco, and Toomies. None of which I would classify as a good place for children. A good place for children is to be in their seat with arms folded sitting quietly. If you pull that off, then you're the tops in my book. Quit catering to your kids. They need to buck up and eat something other than Dino Nuggets or mini wieners. It won't kill them to try some truffle oil mac'n cheese. Get them off the microwave diet AWESOME LADY!
Again, this is not a question. ASK me anything! It's the first damn word! ASK. Can a brother get a question mark?? Alright rude butt, I still like Jake's Diner. Cheap, fast, huge portions. Jake's is my favorite restaurant on the East Side and it's TOTALLY East Side!
Q: Where is the best place for Easter Brunch, you heathen!
I have no idea. I don't celebrate Easter. I don't even understand it. There is no consistency with this day and that just pisses me off. Sometimes it's in March, or the end of April. There is a mutant rabbit running around neighborhoods, breaking into houses, stealing food and then hiding it in places and if you don't find it, it rots and stinks up the house.
This entire thing doesn't make any sense. Don't go out to eat on days like this. Make some deviled eggs with your left over colored eggs (wait, can we still say colored eggs? Is that cool? I don't think we should be talking about this), make up a batch of twice baked potatoes, asparagus, and get yourself some sort of glazed ham. That's how you celebrate Easter. You can't have Easter with EA*T.
Hey is Deschutes Brewery a child friendly place?
Judging by the ALWAYS wandering child walking around like he/she works there, yeah it's pretty kid friendly. There is an battalion of high chairs by the L bar at all times and the staff is quick to clear out the huge mess made by all the infants, toddlers, and drunkers that make a mess at the tables. Yup, quite kid friendly.
The kids menu is pretty solid with your normal bar food kids menu. The kids pizza is money.
Q: We live in Portland, will be in bend for our sons 22nd birthday, and would like to find a unique. restraint to celebrate at. In the past we have gone to Benihana , the Melting Pot, Gustav’s, City Grill. Thanks for the help
I haven't been to any of those places. It's your son's 22nd Bday. He wants to drink without you guys. Go to Deschutes cause you're from Portland and you have to go there for a sampler tray, then head over to Blacksmith for a steak. After dinner you and your husband/wife head back to the Phoenix in since your 22 yr old is living in a tiny apartment with some stoner roommate (yeah, that bong is his roommates, honest) leaving your son to party it up at Blacksmith After Dark. Whooop Whooop!
You have a great website and I love reading where to get great eats in Bend as there is no other website like it for the area! My question is where to eat for Easter Brunch this year? So many places plan poorly for this big occasion.
Obviously I'm not the fastest to respond to anything. My bad. Hope you had a good holiday.
Ugh. How about you sit down to a regular portioned meal instead of shoveling piles of mashed potatoes trip after trip trying to time it just right so you can get an extra thick slice of prime rib from the guy that cuts em fat? Buffets are not good. I can't tell you how much they disgust me.
Everyone touching those tongs with their dirty ass hands, the "sneeze" guards are about as good of security as the Smile Greeter at Walmart, and the staff could give a damn about the tub of egg salad they need to get out onto the line where it gets to sit for hours. Yumm!
How do I get the recipe from VictorianCafe for Pistachio/banana pancakes?
Good old Olive Garden. I know what I'm going to get before I even sit down...mediocre pseudo Italian American food that is lacking in flavor and originality. Chicken Parmesan, fettuccine alfredo, spaghetti and meatballs, and of course, the best salad and bread sticks in the WORLD!
"But BOR, how can you form your opinion about a restaurant that you haven't been to?" asks the East Sider or transplant from the Midwest.
Because I've been to an Olive Garden a couple of times before, and in a couple different locations. They are all the same. You get the same exact experience no matter which one you go to. That is the way of the chain restaurant.
The much anticipated opening of the Olive Garden in Bend has kept the place slammed non stop. I tried a couple of times to visit while we were out in that direction but I refuse to wait for a table at a place like Olive Garden.
Finally the opportunity arrived and I was able to talk the Wife into going to the OG. It was an off hour for most restaurants but the Garden was still packed. Tables packed closely together and most of them filled with families containing young kids. They really packed the tables in. Many times the wait staff had to get uncomfortably close to the table while another passed behind them.
Looking over the menu of your typical "Italian" dishes that you find at almost all American Italian restaurants I couldn't quite decide on what to get. Our waiter had already taken our drink orders (me - Stella Artois $4.65 / Wife - Lime Mint Fresco $7.25) and before those arrived, he had already asked us what we'd like to order. Water wasn't even on the table but whatever. Turn and burn customer service IS hella fast.
When he came back with drinks and asked again if we were ready (I think we'd been at the table all of 4 minutes) we ordered an appetizer. I thought that would keep him at bay for a bit. It didn't.
Twice more we said we needed more time to look over the menu. They must not be used to people that don't know their entire catalog of dishes. Maybe they just assume we're out for a super fast Soup, Salad and Breadsticks just for two:
We went ahead and ordered. He was back shortly with our appetizer but also with the world famous, and only thing anyone can say is good about the Olive Garden, the salad and bread sticks.
The point of ordering the appetizer was to get it before the salad and bread sticks. It turned out ok since the appetizer was a big disappointment. We went for the Create Your Own Sampler Italiano - "Choose from: calamari, stuffed mushrooms, fried zucchini, chicken fingers, fried mozzarella or toasted beef and pork ravioli." I love fried anything (normally) so we went with mozzarella, toasted ravioli and calamari $10.95.
The plate was cleared away with most of the food still on there. The fried mozzarella was the only good part. The ravioli was way over cooked and very dry, and the calamari was incredibly under cooked. The breading was floury and almost doughy. It was weird.
For my entree I selected the Seafood Alfredo - $16.95 "Sautéed shrimp and scallops tossed with creamy fettuccine alfredo."
I'll wager anything that the shrimp was not sauteed at all. The shrimp and scallops seemed as if they were steamed or boiled. The fettucini was cooked well and there was tons of it. I ate to my fill, picked out the shrimp, left the scallops and was done with more than half left.
The Wife got the Tour of Italy but the photo didnt come out - $17.95 - "Homemade lasagna, lightly breaded chicken parmigiana and creamy fettuccine alfredo." She gave me a taste of the lasagna and the chicken parm. The lasagna was ok. She says that she'd get it again if she had to go back. The chicken was overcooked.
The best part of the meal (of course) was the salad and bread sticks. The salad is just a simple iceberg salad with too much red onion, two olives (why only two OG, why?), a couple slices of tomato, peppercinis, and tons of croutons. The bread sticks are like sticks of buttery crack.
I showed the photo above to the Wife as I felt it came out really good. She said "Yup, that sums it up, the only good part as usual." She also had a nice quote as we paid the bill. She said "Well, that's exactly like I remembered it."
A few weeks ago I created an account at Formspring.me. It's a site where anyone can ask me anything and they can be anonymous or leave their name. I added the app to the right side of this blog so you can simply ask me anything you like. I was dorking out on it and blasting answers to my twitter account which then gets posted on my facebook page. It was too much so I stopped posting the answers. Then I stopped answering the questions. So I decided to post them all at once. Might be a fun read, might just be a waste of time.
Q: why don't you post a picture of yourself are you scared? Just wondering?
Yes, I am scared. I like to remain anonymous so crazy restaurant owners don't track me down and punch me in the face. The last thing I need is some crackpot that I offended to show up at my house in a rage.
I also don't want restaurant owners/chefs/wait staff to know that I am sitting in their restaurant. I usually can pull off being anonymous at least until the flash of my camera goes off. Most restaurants don't know who I am, there are a few that do. I like those places though and wouldn't you know it, they treat me very well! Shocking.
Q: Why is there no category for the best dive in Bend? You have great taste in food, but I want to hear about some 'hole in the wall' joints. Thanks!
Do we have any "dives" in Bend? When I hear "dive" I think "dive bar" and then I think D&D. So there you go, D&D wins.
Q: Is Balay hiring? And how old do you have to be to work there?
Who the hell do you think I am? Why would you ask me? (541) 323-6418 - Give 'em a call champ.
Q: are the mushroomms really dug up locally uder the juiper tree by summit high
I think you've had too many shrooms already. What the hell are you talking about?!
Q: how much is the meatball sub at trattoria sbandati?
Oh man, that sub is soooo good! I believe I paid $9 for it. You can see the photo and a small write up of the meatball sub here - Trattoria Sbandati.
Q: how do you die
In a freakish deep fat fryer accident. But then I don't really die. I get fat fryer super powers. Everything I touch with my right hand turns into fried fish and everything I touch with my left turns into chips.
Q: Rivals Sports bar on Division any good for bar food?
Somehow I won a $25 gift card via twitter to eat at Rivals. I didn't even know I had entered to win. So that same day I convince a couple friends to join me there for lunch. I ordered the potato skins for the table and then some fish and chips for lunch. The skins were tiny and dried out. The fish was NASTY. It was definitely the already prepped frozen kind. The fish inside the breading was a mushy mess. Gross.
Other than those items, I don't know since I haven't been back. I didn't enjoy my experience and I'd advise against the fish and chips.
Q: just ate at versante and you were right it was awesome food and good service great crust
Thats odd because I've never meantioned Versante in my blog. I think you have me confused with someone else. However, I did just eat there recently for lunch. A friend and I were driving down 3rd and I remembered that their menu says that they have slices for lunch. They don't.
Q: Did I miss something? Old comments about breakfast, biscuits and gravy? Why no mention of Sargents Cafe? They have been serving old school breakfast to Bend for generations. Biscuits & gravy, chicken fried steak, ham & eggs, ooh, I need to go get some.
On the one time that I visited Sargents Cafe, I didn't have the biscuits and gravy. I did order a side of gravy to dip my french fries in. MMMMmmmm so good.
Q: The Pup Hut's been on 9th & Wilson for 10 yrs...ever review it? Hot Pastrami, Kraut & Swiss, Chili, Bacon/Cheddar dogs? All beef, polish & veal dogs? Summer features the 1/2 lb dog!! Huge Bakers coming in a couople of weeks!!! Need to check it out!
THIS is where I heard about The Pup Hut! Oh man I was just on twitter and facebook asking about a hot dog place that is not Chicago Style Hot Dogs or the cart by the breezeway downtown. I knew someone told me about some place that had been around for 10 yrs. Well the review is coming soon. The one hot dog I've had so far, the chili and cheddar, was awesome. I'll be going out of my way again to get another dog soon.
Thanks for the heads up.
Q: I know you're a Bend guy. But, could you make a trip to Redmond and try BrickHouse, Diego's, One Street Down, Cross Creek (2.50 pints!) and Green Plow coffee? BTW, the only veggie on a pizza should be the tomato sauce...and maybe an onion.
That's not going to happen. I am a Bend guy. I barely want to drive to the east side of Bend let alone to Redmond. The only time I go to Redmond is to get on a plane. In fact, the last time I went to Redmond was 4 or 5 years ago to watch some Mixed Martial Arts fights and then went to the Fan after. I've only been to 5 strip clubs in my life, the Fan was teh worst.
Q: i love your food! keep up the good work.
OK I WILL!!!
Q: Have you ever had a unique dish at a restaurant and attempted to duplicate it at home? If so, what was the dish and was it successful?
For every dollar COCAAN receives, they can distribute 8lbs of food!!
Disclaimer - The Bend Oregon Restaurants blog is not affiliated with COCAAN, I am just a fan of their program and would like to do what I can to help. 100% of the funds I receive from Google Ads gets donated to COCAAN.