Food Editor & Critic

Karen Brooks eats, drinks and thinks about food for Portland Monthly, where she continues her journey as Portland’s opinionated, trend-spotting food critic. She pens monthly restaurant reviews, writes and photographs the print magazine’s Word of Mouth column (aka: what I’m obsessing over now), drives the annual Best Restaurants issue, contributes to various food-cover packages, and breaks news for the magazine’s food blog, Eat Beat.

Karen began her journalism career at alt-weekly Willamette Week, doubling as food critic and Arts & Culture editor. Then she jumped ship to the Oregonian, doing double-duty again as Arts czarina and Food Critic while creating two of the daily’s most enduring sections: the weekly A&E and the annual Diner guide. At Portland Monthly since 2010, she’s continued her mission of ferreting out new restaurant models and maverick thinkers defining Portland’s food voice.

In her spare time, Karen is rabid NBA baller, film/TV junkie, and food author. She’s written nine books to date, most recently a book on Portland’s punk-rock food scene, The Mighty Gastropolis: A Journey Through America’s New Food Culture. 

Displaying articles 221 - 240 of 458 in total

BEST SANDWICHES 2014

25 Sandwiches That Will Change Your Life

Why Portland stacks up as America's great new sandwich city

  • By Karen Brooks and Rachel Ritchie
  • Published 03/03/2014

BEST SANDWICHES 2014

Five Ways Portland Redefines the Hamburger

What can a burger be? Meet these revolutionary takes.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 03/03/2014

BEST SANDWICHES 2014

Vegan Grilled Cheese to Buttery Sausage Biscuits: Five Portland Sandwiches Built on Obsession

Passion unbound, no apologies: that’s the secret ingredient to sandwich happiness.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 03/03/2014

BEST SANDWICHES 2014

Jalapeño Pickles to Raspberry Jam: Five Portland Sandwiches with Crazy-Good Condiments

To cut the mustard in Pickle Town, it is advisable to craft your own artisan extras.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 03/03/2014

BEST SANDWICHES 2014

String Beans, Coffee Mayo, and Chocolate: Five Portland Sandwiches That Break All the Rules

The coup de grace on a true, Stumptown-style sandwich? A renegade cry of “Anything goes!”

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 03/03/2014

BEST SANDWICHES 2014

Five Phenomenally Meaty Portland Sandwiches

Portland meats are serious business: smoked, brined, and charcuterized. (They don’t call us Porkland for nothing.)

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 03/03/2014

BEST SANDWICHES 2014

Five Portland Sandwiches Made with Killer Bread

Artisan bakery loaves, custom-ordered rolls, and an “I Baked It My Way” mindset aren’t merely options in Portland. They’re the law.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 03/03/2014

INTERVIEW

Q&A: Clyde Common’s New Chef Johnny Leach

Fresh from David Chang’s Momofuku empire, a Beaverton native gives a taste of things to come from Portland’s most anticipated menu makeover.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 02/04/2014

EAT HERE NOW

Leena Ezekiel's Thali Supper Club

Offering bright and colorful bites of regional Indian classics, a seasoned Portland cooking pro delivers flavor on a silver platter.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 02/03/2014

EAT THIS NOW

Dessert at Trifecta Tavern & Bakery

At Ken Forkish's bread-centric Portland hangout, pastry chef Eve Kuttemann gives us three reasons to order some sweets.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 02/03/2014

RESTAURANT REVIEW

Mideast Muddle at Levant

Scott Snyder's “French-Arabesque” hot spot on East Burnside needs flavor talks and concept negotiations.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 02/03/2014

BREAKING FOOD NEWS

Boke Bowl West to Open This Spring

A second branch of Southeast Portland’s popular ramen-for-all shop readies to open at Northwest 18th and Northrup in April

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 01/27/2014

EAT THIS NOW

Neo-Pop Noodle House Boxer Ramen

Three reasons to slurp the goods at Micah Camden’s new experimental ramen epicenter.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 01/02/2014

ROUNDUP

Ten Things to Devour in 2014

Welcome to Portland's hunger games! Follow this guide to the city's most promising plates, and there will be no sacrificing flavor in the new year.

  • By Karen Brooks and Stuart Mullenberg
  • Published 01/02/2014

EAT HERE NOW

Lauretta Jean's: Biscuit Sandwich Heaven

With an expanded menu, Portland's premier pie shop emerges as Division's dessert destination, breakfast sandwich epicenter, and date night find.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 12/10/2013

BREAKING FOOD NEWS

Monday Night Pizza Coming to Ned Ludd

Jason French's Northeast Portland house of eccentricity will transform once a week with checkered cloths, hip hop, and wood-fired pizza.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 12/10/2013

PITCH IN

Portland's Best Sandwich?

Attention sandwich citizens: In 2014, Portland Monthly will build the ultimate sandwich list, but we need your help!

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 12/05/2013

RESTAURANT & BAR UPDATES

Portland News to Chew

Great news for lovers of all kinds of pie, the Ruddick/Wood Tavern opens its doors, and Gabriel Rucker does Portland proud (again).

  • By Roxanne Davis and Karen Brooks
  • Published 12/04/2013

ROUNDUP

Cooklandia

From books revealing the secret recipes of Portland's top chefs to essential DIY guides from local cooks, editors from New York to San Francisco are working the 503 area code.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 12/02/2013

DREAM TEAM

From Russia, With Love

USSR-born, Juilliard-trained, James Beard award-winning notables Vitaly Paley and Anya Von Bremzen, author of the buzzy Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking, are collaborating in PDX.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 11/27/2013
Displaying articles 221 - 240 of 458 in total