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 41 - 60 of 402 in total

BEST RESTAURANTS

The 4 Most Memorable Portland Restaurant Moments of the Year

A handful of standing ovations are in order for the year's best menu, dish, spread, and cuisine.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 10/09/2015

BEST RESTAURANTS

Portland Monthly's Rising Star Restaurant of the Year: Nomad.PDX

Two upstarts transform a shabby urban space into a modernist showcase—tweezers, Wonder Bread, and beauty in tow.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 10/09/2015

BEST RESTAURANTS

Portland's Best Spot for Pig & Booze: Hamlet

A slinky, single-minded Pearl District bar gives you three reasons to go whole hog.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 10/09/2015

COOKBOOK REVIEW

Inside Ruth Reichl’s Post-Gourmet Blues Cookbook

With a fine new book in tow, My Kitchen Year: 136 Recipes That Saved My Life, the once and forever food critic, Gourmet editor, and arbiter of good taste is coming to Portland. Here’s what you need to know.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 10/07/2015

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

Portland Gets a Taste of Southern Appalachia at Mae

Former Beast sous Maya Lovelace gives her grandmother’s Appalachian cooking the Portland treatment: 10-course pop-up dinners, food cart experiments, and more.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 09/30/2015

BREAKING NEWS

Sushi Lovers, Listen Up: Nodoguro Adds a Second Night

At Southeast Portland’s house of casual Japanese cool, sushi heaven is no longer reserved for Sunday.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 09/24/2015

WORD OF MOUTH

3 Portland Restaurants You Must Try in October

Portland Monthly food critic Karen Brooks dishes on the restaurants, obsessions, and under-the-radar finds of the month.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 09/21/2015

THE BITTER TRUTH

Everything You Need to Know About Bitters from Mark Bitterman's Groundbreaking New Book

The obsessive 'Bitterman’s Field Guide to Bitters and Amari' reveals the wild, wide world of the once-humble cocktail dropper.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 09/21/2015

WORD OF MOUTH

3 Things You Must Eat in Portland this September

Portland Monthly food critic Karen Brooks dishes on the restaurants, obsessions, and under-the-radar finds of the month.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 08/24/2015

PHOTOGRAPHY

The Surreal Beauty of the Portland Farmers Market

Food critic Karen Brooks explores the wondrous world of local flowers, vegetables, and fruits with her point-and-shoot lens.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 08/24/2015

BREAKING NEWS

Sandwich Expansion: Bunk Sandwiches Opening in Brooklyn this Fall

Williamsburg is about to meet its new favorite sandwich, and Eat Beat has the exclusive details on the cross-country development.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 08/21/2015

TREND WATCH

Are Tomato Leaves Portland’s Hottest New Ingredient?

The fragrant nightshade greenery is popping up all over the city. We’ve got the scoop on where to find it.

  • By Benjamin Tepler
  • Published 08/13/2015

BREAKING NEWS

Portland’s Little Big Burger Sold to Chanticleer Holdings, Inc.

Local burger barons Micah Camden and Katie Poppe sell their popular chain to focus on their other popular chain—Blue Star Donuts.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 08/03/2015

BREAKING NEWS

Ataula Owners to Open a Paella Restaurant and Churros Bar

The masterminds behind Portland’s popular Spanish eatery will launch two projects: Chesa and 180, both on Northeast Broadway.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 07/31/2015

SNEAK PEEK

A First Look at The Big Egg's NE Alberta Sandwich Shop

Portland’s cult food cart steps up as a bona fide restaurant on July 31. We take a look around.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 07/29/2015

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

True Tuscan Flavors at SE Division's New Pinolo Gelateria

Serious gelato heads, listen up! In a sweet space next to Xico, a Pisa native is churning intensely wonderful flavors, freshly made daily.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 07/22/2015

WORD OF MOUTH

5 Things You Must Eat in Portland this August

Portland Monthly food critic Karen Brooks dishes on the restaurants, obsessions, and under-the-radar finds of the month.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 07/20/2015

RESTAURANT REVIEW

From Russia, With Love

Portland's veteran chef reclaims the lost culinary world of his childhood—and creates one of the year's most dynamic dining experiences.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 07/20/2015

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

Rose VL Deli Opens Another Door to Vietnamese Soup Heaven

Dinner is on at SE Powell’s new soup-and-bahn mi shop, from the founders of 82nd Avenue’s famed HA&VL breakfast and lunch spot.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 07/07/2015

BREAKING NEWS

Biwa Owners to Open Kotori, a Sidewalk Yakitori "Restaurant"

On July 9, hardcore Japanese grilling hits the streets with beak-to-feet specials and a covered tachinomi bar for 20.

  • By Karen Brooks
  • Published 07/07/2015
Displaying articles 41 - 60 of 402 in total