The Bite Of Oregon
I went to the Bite Of Oregon, in Portland, on Saturday. It’s a rather overwhelming festival, full of music and food. It’s $8 for adults to get in, and free for 12 and under, but then you have to pay for the food, usually $3 or $4 for the food. But it’s not about the money; it’s about the delicious bites.
When we got in, the food carts called to us. And they were indeed the best food there, in my opinion. Garden State: The meatball slider was delicious, not suffering from soggy bun syndrome like most saucy sandwiches I’ve had. The chickpea one wasn’t quite as good, but was still delicious. PBJ’s: The Hot Hood was spicy, bacon-y, but I didn’t really taste the peanut butter: it was a good sandwich but not a PB & J sandwich. The Oregonian was delicious, blue cheese melding with marionberry, but again not PB & J. Whiffle’s Fried Pies were fantastic, both the barbecue and the chicken curry. But they were very heavy, and the tiny ones were enough. The Burgerville Nomad vegetarian burger was quite good, though not the best there. The sauce was good. I do love aioli.
We didn’t eat from many of the restaurants, but here are the few we did: The Nitro Whipped Sorbet in Black Peppercorn Cone with Balsamic Syrup from H50 Bistro and Bar was quite delicious all together, though the cone wasn’t very peppery. The Seafood Paella at Rafati’s Encore 310 was very, very good. Nothing special about it, but very good. And the fondue at The Rheinlander & Gustav’s Pub & Grill was very cheesy, but in the end just kinda meh.
Aaah, the desserts. These sounded good, but we really…well, we really only tried two because the cakes were just that good. I don’t really think we missed much, though. The filling in the mini pies at Pie Spot were good, but the crust wasn’t flavorful or buttery at all. But the cake…we got four slices of that cake, from Konditorei in Salem, and it’s great. Better than the other desserts there. The German Chocolate Cake was everything you’d want in a German Chocolate Cake, sweet and coconutty with ganache and moist cake. The one with yellow cake and chocolate frosting was good and buttery, but not quite as good as the german chocolate. The carrot cake was just okay, with too much pineapple and frosting that was too sweet. But the dark chocolate cake was great, just a great chocolate cake. Yum. I’ll definitely have to go there, just avoid the non-chocolate ones.
The Chef’s Table was good, but really not a lot better than the other stuff. There was boring, but good enough Thai food from Bambuza Vietnamese Bistro’s chef, and a great pork belly sandwich and corn soup from Belly’s chef (not the Eugene Belly, I’m afraid…). There was a spicy curry from East India Company’s chef that was great with the buttered bread he served it with, and a Summer Gazpacho with Truffled Popcorn and Yukon Potato Blini with Wild BBQ Shrimp and Maryhill Peach Guajillo Mousse from Kincaids’ chef. It was as fancy and pretentious as it sounds, and really not that great. And finally, there was a lame, boring corn salad with hazelnut oil from that annoying guy on Top Chef, Dave Martin. It was very, very meh.
Overall, the food at The Bite Of Oregon was quite good, and it was fun to walk around the festival. I am definitely going back. And you should too.