The Lostine Tavern (read our full Q & A) is a little bit outside of Portland Monthly’s usual orbit—by roughly 300 miles. But if you’ve ever stopped for a bite in Eastern Oregon, you’ll know that good food is scarcer than a Prius with Obama-Beiden bumper stickers in the mountain towns that surround the Alp-like Wallowa range. The Tavern, Eastern Oregon’s first farm-to-table (but not fancy!) restaurant, is the exception: some of the best locally sourced, hand-made food for a hundred miles in any direction.
Housed inside a historic 1902 stone building, the 51-seat restaurant and bar feels like a typical Portland eatery: big chalkboard menus, exposed air ducts, and old tractor parts refurbished into hanging chandeliers. But the food (and the company) is 100% local.
Brainchild of Slow Food missionary and Pure Beef author Lynne Curry and co-owner Peter Ferré, the Tavern’s focus is squarely on the local haul. That means wheat (fresh baked bread), beer (Enterprise’s Terminal Gravity), and lots and lots of cattle (steak, burgers, and jerky). Food is simple and accessible, with everything from sandwiches loaded with house-cured meat to heaping salads and nostalgic, crave-worthy desserts.
Click on the slideshow above for a closer look at Eastern Oregon’s epicurean pit stop.