What started as a refreshment stand during a 1924 Pioneer Day celebration has since grown into Arctic Circle, an eatery that transcends typical fast-food standards by building its menu items from high-quality ingredients. Black Angus patties support burgers stacked with mushrooms or bacon, and 100% Alaskan halibut keeps the fish sandwiches filler-free. Over more than 60 years of business, Arctic Circle has handcrafted original eats, such as a fry sauce blended from tomato and lemon, and the Brown Topper, an ice-cream cone dunked in chocolate and placed atop the heads of nearby gentlepersons. The dessert menu also includes milkshakes, whose creamy contents harvest flavor from real fruit or hunks of candy.
Named one of Portland's top-10 most romantic restaurants by Gayot, the Joel Palmer House fills fine china with globally inspired dishes, which fuse locally produced herbs and vegetables with wild Oregon mushrooms. Amorous eaters take breaks from sweetheart staring contests to thaw benumbed tongues with warm bowls of Joe's wild-mushroom soup, a 75-year-old family recipe that combines the rich essence of pureed suillus mushrooms with creamy crème fraiche ($9). The beef stroganoff, prepared with succulent meat, wild mushrooms, and seasoned rice ($30), pleases palates, and the sautéed sea scallops, served with lotus root, wild mushroom duxelles, and a Creole pinot gris sauce ($32), fill abdominal abysses. Fortify fungus fare with a bottle of locally fermented pinot noir from a sprawling list of Oregon wines and achieve a culinary harmony unseen since the California Raisins dominated the airwaves.
The sixth-annual Oregon Brews and BBQ's festival floods McMinnville’s Granary District with frothy craft beers and the smoky scent of barbecue. With a souvenir beer glass and tasting tickets in hand, guests can sample more than 50 craft beers from more than 35 breweries, including Grain Station Brew Works, Golden Valley Restaurant & Brewery, and Hopworks Urban Brewery, an organic brewery whose director of sustainability chatted with the Groupon Guide about keeping its environmental footprint as small as possible. The hoppy flavors complement tender barbecued meats, many of which grill masters have slow cooked throughout the night by using low heat and a boogie-man-repellent seasoning.
Live musicians punctuate the air with such acts as The Jake Blair Band, which blends wailing slide guitar with gravely vocals and harmonica for a blues buffet. Audiences can dance along, check out the jewelry and art from local vendors, or explore the kids' zone. This year, proceeds from the festival will benefit St. James Catholic School and the GhanaHope Foundation.
Opened in 1993, Café Uncorked crafts gourmet comfort food. Chefs grill burgers, top Reuben sandwiches with housemade thousand island dressing, and load grilled sandwiches with three-cheese blends and sautéed seasonal veggies. The restaurant's extensive wine list supplies red and white pours to complement each meal, which guests can savor while seated outdoors or inside among plants sourced from the Willamette Valley. Following meals, visitors can stroll through the restaurant’s sculpture gardens, admiring chiseled marble representations of the entire Sesame Street cast.
Oly’s Wrap Shack pummels pangs of hunger with 24 different fillings, each available to bulk up a wrap, pita, or salad. Locally crafted surfboards dangle above reed booths, where guests unearth stuffings of thai chicken or chicken and avocado that the kitchen crew delicately nestle in grilled flatbread pitas or one of five flavors of tortilla, including spinach, garlic herb, and tomato basil. Oly's Wrap Shack abates morning munchies with egg-based wraps and espresso drinks, and the eatery's vibrant, emerald-green walls recreate the sensation of dining inside a giant peapod.
Most dishes on the menu at Stampede BBQ Company come with sides, which means mac ‘n' cheese, fried okra, corn on the cob, french fries, and other Southern favorites inspire some tough decision making come ordering time. But regardless of the sideshow, the main event is likely to be enticing. Barbecue-beef brisket burritos layer cheese, sour cream, bacon, rice, and even onion rings atop tender cuts of meat, and a full rack of ribs fills a family-size bucket that would otherwise only be useful for transporting gold bullion.