Karen Brooks holds one of the most prestigious titles in the food world: winner of the James Beard Craig Claiborne Distinguished Restaurant Review Award for 2017. This was her second time as a national finalist. After this, it’s all gravy.

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 and film/TV junkie and author. She’s penned nine books to date, most recently a deep dive into Portland’s punk-rock food scene, The Mighty Gastropolis: A Journey Through America’s New Food Culture. 

WOMEN'S HEALTH ANNUAL

Menopause: Flash Forward

What to expect when you can no longer expect

09/06/2012 By carin moonin

WOMEN'S HEALTH ANNUAL

Heart Health: Can I Get Your Number?

Knowledge and action give women power to prevent cardiovascular disease.

09/06/2012 By carin moonin

Article

Time-Based Art Festival Preview

TBA celebrates its 10th birthday with a global lineup, some returning stars, a new curator, and a fancy new late night setup at Washington High School. Here are our picks for Week 1.

09/06/2012 By Aaron Scott

gallery grazing

First Thursday Sampler

Industrial and rural landscapes, masked men, abstract fleshy forms, and more!

09/05/2012 By Anne Adams

MENU WATCH

Menu Trend: Padron Peppers

These peppers are popping up on menus across town, so we did a little research to help fans of peak summer produce stay informed.

09/05/2012 By Allison Jones

Food Lover's Guide

The Food Lover's Guide to Portland

You want it? We got it.

09/01/2012

Desirables

FLOR Space Opens in the Pearl

Buying a carpet can be intimidating. It requires commitment. It tends to be an investment – an intimate one, and long-term.

09/01/2012 By Kristin Belz

Article

Interview with Portlandia's Carrie Brownstein

In preview of the new season, we talk with the Portlandia's co-creater and co-star, Carrie Brownstein, about the reaction Portlandia's garnered across the country, and about what's new in Season 3.

08/31/2012 By Aaron Scott and Eden Dawn

Fashion News

Nicole Richie's Collection for Macy's

The pint-sized boho queen launches a lux looking 70s inspired collection next month for Macy's contemporary department.

08/29/2012 By Eden Dawn

Food Lover's Guide to Portland

The Food Lover's Guide to Portland: The Shops

We've wrangled all of the local shops where you can find the ingredients for your own culinary conquests.

08/27/2012 Edited by Rachel Ritchie and Karen Brooks

BREAKING FOOD NEWS

Robert Reynolds, 1942-2012

Longtime Portland culinary mentor Robert Reynolds has passed away, and his passion for life in and out of the kitchen is remembered by friends and colleagues.

08/27/2012 By Karen Brooks

Plant This!

Showy Late Summer Blooming Perennial Flowers

The weather's finally warm enough to sit outside and and enjoy the garden with a cup of tea in the morning or a cold drink in the evening.

08/24/2012 By Kate Bryant

Feature

Tilting at Landfills

Fifth-generation farmer Ramsey McPhillips and a motley crew of neighbors wage a quixotic battle to stop North America’s largest garbage company from growing even bigger in the heart of Oregon's wine country.

08/23/2012 By Aaron Scott

Feature

Collective Memory

A new museum at the Oregon State Hospital takes visitors behind the walls and through the history of the enigmatic facility.

08/23/2012 By Emily Grosvenor

Feature

Fall Arts Preview: The Collaborative Way

Portland artists routinely team-up to break new ground. We've singled out a half-dozen partnerships for this fall's season preview.

08/23/2012 With Randy Gragg By Aaron Scott

Article

One-Sentence Stories

If brevity is the soul of wit, our one-sentence news nuggets belong in the Hilarity Hall of Fame.

08/23/2012 By Zach Dundas

Article

Excerpt: The Mighty Gastropolis

Food editor Karen Brooks’s new book charts the rise of America’s most original food destination.

08/23/2012 By Karen Brooks

Food Lover's Guide to Portland

The Food Lover's Guide to Sweets

Portlanders have a serious sweet tooth. Cheese Bar boss Steve Jones points out classy confections.

08/23/2012 By Rachel Ritchie With Karen Brooks

Food Lover's Guide to Portland

The Food Lover's Guide to Seafood

Local culinary enthusiasts seeking outstanding oysters would do well to follow our expert explorers.

08/23/2012 By Benjamin Tepler With Camille Grigsby-Rocca

Food Lover's Guide to Portland

The Food Lover's Guide to Destination Markets

For these food impresarios, grocery shopping isn’t just business. It’s personal.

08/23/2012 By Karen Brooks With Benjamin Tepler