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Tetherow is a lot more than just a golf course. They are #1 for Restaurants with a view!
Having lived in Bend for over 10 years, it’s interesting to see how the dining and nightlife scene has evolved.  Or, more like exploded.

Ten years ago, there were a handful of restaurants offering up standard central Oregon dishes of meat and potatoes with little flair or variety to choose from, and the most appealing nightlife option was a crazy night at the bowling alley. 

Now, Bend is home to a diverse array of dining options inspired by cuisines from all around the globe, and a tasty selection of happening breweries, bars and live music venues. In this town, you can get anything from sushi to paneer masala to chicken mole to escargot.  And yes, you can still get meat and potatoes, in all sorts of tasty varieties. There’s definitely nothing wrong with meat and potatoes, as long as they are done well.  

One of my favorites is a good old-fashioned burger and fries, and fortunately Bend burger institution and local favorite Pilot Butte Drive-In is still around but keeping things fresh with a new Westside location. The new location serves all the goodies of the original, with fresh ingredients and locally baked buns.

If you’re looking for something a little more sophisticated, there are quite a few appealing fine dining restaurants to choose from, boasting fusion cuisine and international flair. Some of my favorite dining spots in downtown Bend are 900 Wall, Zydeco and Tart Bistro. These lovely places are among the best restaurants in town.

900 Wall has an awesome happy hour from 3 to 6 daily that features very reasonably priced wine, cocktails and food. The pork belly sliders are only five bucks and absolutely delicious. Zydeco serves up Cajun fusion cuisine in a stylish atmosphere, and the dessert is to die for.  I’ve made multiple trips there just for the key lime pie. I highly recommend having dinner on Zydeco's heated patio on a summer night.

Finally, Tart Bistro is French inspired with global elements.  It’s got a sexy atmosphere, an exotic menu (this is where you can get the escargot) and delectable cocktails.  Their lavender lemon drop is perfection.  All three places also serve lunch if you are looking for a little noontime sophistication and taste.

Bend also has some great casual lunch options.  In the last couple of years, a couple of satisfying locally owned sandwich places have come onto the scene. TuckMo Subs on the east side has tasty sub sandwiches with reasonable prices and a friendly atmosphere. Letzer's Deli is an authentic Jewish-style deli with huge sandwiches and a new downtown location. There was a feature about Letzer's new downtown deli in last week’s Source Weekly (search Letzer's Deli on www.tsweekly.com) that offered a great description of the goodness they’ve got to offer.

So, I’ve covered some tasty lunch and dinner options, but what about breakfast? Bend is home to some fabulous spots that may very well make breakfast your favorite meal of the day. Whether you are looking for greasy spoon dive bar kind of start to your day or a fresh breakfast made with organic and local ingredients, you’re covered. 

One of the consistent local favorites, and one of my own, is the Victorian Cafe`. They’ve got a fire pit outside, and there’s a reason why there’s generally people packed around it, waiting for a table.  This place is awesome.  The menu features traditional breakfast options in addition to some creative dishes, and they have a changing menu of creative specials.  They have a variety of eggs benedict to choose from, which is heaven for a girl who loves hollandaise.  The benedict I order depends on my mood, but one of my favorites is definitely the British benedict, which has roasted red peppers, artichoke hearts, mushrooms and sautéed garlic.  All of that deliciousness is made even better by friendly, attentive service and tasty bloody marys and mimosas.

Speaking of cocktails, Bend has some great spots to drink and be merry.  In addition to the old, trusty dive bars that have been serving stiff cocktails for decades, there are some more posh spots, wine bars, live music venues and breweries. One of my favorite spots to have a cocktail downtown is Velvet, which is an awesome spot for a “Ladies Night”. Its lush part urban, part forest decor makes for a lovely backdrop for sipping mate cocktails. The Astro Lounge, also downtown, echoes Velvet’s slick urban aesthetic while boasting two dollar well drinks on Tuesday nights. There are also some interesting nighttime hangouts that aren’t so easily classified, such as the Horned Hand, which opened near downtown last July. Owner Wesley Ladd describes it as an art and entertainment space, and I suppose that description is accurate but doesn’t quite sum up all that the Hand has to offer.  It’s a bar serving local beer on tap and old German lager in a can, a vintage clothing boutique, an art gallery, a movie theater and a live music venue.  Intrigued? You should be. Check it out and throw some peanut shells on the floor.

A devout lover of dining and nightlife, I’m happy that Bend’s scene is ever-evolving.  I’m looking forward to seeing what new treats the next few years have in store.  In the meantime, I will enjoy the myriad of tasty options that this town has to offer. 

 
Bend Oregon is known by many as a destination unlike any other. Central Oregon is a premier travel destination in the Pacific Northwest that boasts 300 days of sunshine annually and is full of natural scenery, outdoor activities, and a vibrant nightlife! Just to name some of the outdoor activities in this tourist hot spot you have hiking, biking, fishing, rock climbing, river rafting, skiing, golfing, backpacking, fly fishing, and so much more! Bend Oregon also has what the locals call the "Trifecta". The "Trifecta starts with a quick trip to Mt. Bachelor in the morning, followed by Golf in the afternoon, and finishing off your day fly fishing on the Deschutes River. With all this available to the locals, its easy to see why Bend and Central Oregon is one of the most desired places to live in the US. 

One of the benefits of living in a world class city is having excellent choices of first class cuisine. Bend has some of the finest restaurants per capita that you will find in the Northwest. Many of the area's best restaurants are locally owned and operated offering unique blends from around the world with a touch of the Northwest. If you look around on just about any given week of the year you will almost always find a wine tasting, live music, or outdoor event of some sort. Some highlights of the restaurant scene for 2011 were our award winners starting with Tart Bistro French Global Cuisine, Tetherow Golf Grill's breathtaking views with first class eats, The Victorian Cafe's World Class breakfast experience, Pilot Butte Drive In's myriad of gourmet burgers, Mother's Juice Cafe's Creatively Tasty & Healthy menu, Letzer's Deli NY Style meat packed sandwiches, TuckMo Subs fresh tasting sub sandwiches, and the absolute best frozen dessert anywhere in Cuppa Yo which is one of Bend's hottest new dessert places. These are just some highlights of the restaurant scene in Bend and we urge you to go hit the town and see for yourself! When you're done, please come back and let us know what you think by Voting for your favorites!