After training at the feet of Mike Lee Kanarek—founder of the HaganaH self-defense program named for the military based organization—Colin and Kaz Rhoads decided to spread the gospel of their teacher’s real-world fighting system. Adapted from Israeli military training, it strips confrontations down to their key elements and then trains students to decisively act to disarm their attackers. Instructors teach students to attack an opponent’s weak points while defending themselves, and they employ repetition to build pupils' instinctive responses and take-no-prisoner tickling skills. As certified personal trainers in their own right, Colin and Kaz also integrate elements of circuit and strength training into their workouts, blending combat sessions with TRX, kettlebells, and high-impact conditioning to produce a well-rounded warrior.
When Dave Wagenheim started selling tofu dogs in downtown Eugene in 2006, he had no idea his modest venture would blossom into Viva! Vegetarian Grill, a food cart honored as the city's third best by Eugene Weekly in 2012. From his corner on 12th Avenue and Willamette Street, as well as a café inside the Eugene Family YMCA, the team crafts a rotating selection of 100% vegan and vegetarian items. Those include Polish-style soysage, locally made organic tempeh tossed in a vegan hot-wing sauce, and an original vegan soft serve made from a cashew base, rather than just the ice part of ice cream.
Organic coffee from Wandering Goat Coffee Co., organic chai and rooibos teas, and a selection of organic juices complement each meatless feast. Along with the mainstay locations, the Viva! team feeds hungry herbivores at music and arts festivals throughout the Northwest.
The culinarians at Daniels Mexican Restaurant draw inspiration from America’s southern neighbor to create a menu loaded with authentic Mexican fare such as burritos, enchiladas, and fajitas. Amid the colorful dining room, outfitted with strands of chili-pepper lights and hand-painted murals, guests begin synchronized digestion with classics such as chicken in mole sauce, charcoal-grilled skirt steak, pico-drizzled tilapia, and Mexican beers and margaritas. On Friday and Saturday nights, open karaoke fills the vibrant dining room with the sounds of heartfelt ballads and upbeat dance numbers; it also fills patrons with a sense of pride for finally being able to remember all the lyrics to Beethoven's Symphony no. 7.
With produce, meat, and bread culled from local vendors, the culinary team at Food Love crafts a variety of sandwiches and salads within a cozy food truck. Between slices of buttered bread, chefs sandwich ingredients such as green apples, raspberry jam, and melted munster cheese. Along with salads and tomato soup, the menu includes numerous vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options. Through its sister company, Angie Cakes, Food Love also sells post-meal cupcakes and pastries. Visitors can take their grub to go or feast at the outdoor seating area equipped with real plates and silverware, taunting passersby with the sights, smells, and if they're lucky, feels of the tasty nibbles.
Unsurprisingly, the big draw at Nacho's are heaping plates of nachos. The Mexican eatery prepares 10 versions (3 vegetarian and 7 non-vegetarian) of the dish, sprinkling tortilla chips with shredded chipotle chicken, taco meat, or three kinds of cheese. Add "the works" and each helping comes topped with refried beans, guacamole, sour cream, diced tomatoes, sliced black olives, and special sauce. Kitchen manager Chef Alvaro, who hails from Oaxaca, Mexico, also whips up other Mexican staples including burritos, fajitas, and enchiladas.