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June 23, 2016 01:00 AM

Ever since his sly 2007 breakthrough — the witty Craigslistlieder — songwriter-guitarist-pianist-composer Gabriel Kahane has rightly resisted the classical label originally affixed because of his music’s relatively sophisticated arrangements and instrumentation and the fact that his dad, Jeffrey (with whom he’ll share the stage at the Oregon Bach Festival), is a renowned classical pianist and conductor.

June 23, 2016 01:00 AM

Mandolinist whiz Chris Thile did not begin his career with an innate love of classical music.

“Until I was 15 or 16, I couldn’t have cared less about classical music,” Thile tells EW. “I grew up playing fiddle tunes where the whole point is getting people’s bodies to move, and I thought classical music was completely divorced from the body.”

June 23, 2016 01:00 AM

What was the last puppet show you saw? An after-school special maybe? Or perhaps a storybook hour staged by librarians with their hands stuck up some glorified socks?

Portland’s Tears of Joy Puppet Theatre wants you to throw out that imagery entirely. 

June 16, 2016 01:00 AM

Buy local: It’s a mantra repeated with such frequency in the bountiful Willamette Valley that it’s almost lost all meaning. Let’s take a step back and look at some numbers. According to the Willamette Farm and Food Coalition, a 2010 analysis estimated that Lane County consumers are spending less than 5 percent of their food money on locally produced food. 

“OK, but locally produced food is hard to find,” you scoff.

Actually, that’s wrong! Lane County has an astonishing variety of locally grown foods — milk, veggies, fruit, herbs — and now that the Lane County Farmers Market is open on Thursdays as well as Tuesdays and Saturdays, locavores have even more opportunities to buy fresh produce. 

June 16, 2016 01:00 AM

local ice cream maker Coconut Bliss has built a nationally recognized brand name without sacrificing its core values of independence and integrity. Coconut Bliss marketing communications manager Elizabeth Reilly says these Eugene-style priorities are partially what make her company so unique. “We are one of the best examples of a family-run company in the region,” Reilly tells EW.

June 16, 2016 01:00 AM

I’m here to report that the Euphoria Chocolate Company in west Eugene bears little resemblance to the delicious Byzantine splendor of Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory. Sadly, no orangey Oompa Loompas mobbed me at the entrance when I visited, and Euphoria proprietor Van Glass is practically the antithesis of that passive-aggressive tyrant Willy Wonka, whose benevolent disregard sent poor Augustus Gloop up the tube.

June 16, 2016 01:00 AM

Since the 1970s, Genesis Organic Juice has prided itself on providing a product that’s local, sustainable and 100-percent organic.

And in that mission, it’s taking on Big Soda.  

“Odwalla is a Coke product. Naked is a Pepsi product,” says Jonah Alves, president of Genesis Juice. “This new one, Suja, is a Coke product, and Evolution is a Starbucks product.” 

June 16, 2016 01:00 AM

In Eugene, we take comfort in having local stores and markets dedicated to wholesome organic food, from The Kiva and Sundance Natural Foods to Market of Choice. But where do they get their ingredients? For herbs, teas and spices, one top supplier is Mountain Rose Herbs.

June 16, 2016 01:00 AM

Traditional capitalism teaches bigger is always better. Not so with Lane County-based Sweet Creek Foods. 

“It isn’t sustainable to grow too large,” Sweet Creek owner and founder Paul Fuller tells EW. “You lose the flavor if you’re trucking everywhere.” 

Located near Elmira, family-owned Sweet Creek Foods works with Eugene-area farms and food producers, co-packing and preserving food for consumers from Bellingham to San Francisco. “We believe in a static growth,” Fuller says. “To go national takes fighting the big boys. We like the idea of being a regional player.” 

June 16, 2016 01:00 AM

Stroll through the Lane County Farmers Market on a Saturday morning and you’re bound to see Patricia Garcia's cheerful face at her colorful salsa stand. That same cheerful face is on all of her products, inviting salsa lovers to give Salsa Garcia a try.

June 16, 2016 01:00 AM

Granola is a health food and a symbol of the natural foods movement, and the word itself is sometimes used as a mildly derogatory epithet to describe a health-obsessed hippie. 

Whit Hemphill and Brad Averill, co-owners of Wildtime Foods, which produces Grizzlies Brand granola, say they embrace granola and all it stands for. 

April 7, 2016 03:00 AM

Born and raised in Eugene, NorthWest Burgers owner and chef Garrett Kirsch says he knows what Eugeneans want: “They want local, house-made products. I wanted to take something as simple as a burger and see how it goes.”

NorthWest Burgers, tucked away in the upstairs of 5th Street Public Market, puts a homemade twist on typically mass-produced “All-American” food. 

April 7, 2016 03:00 AM

Tradewinds Café & Catering Company co-owner Abbie Shadrick is on a mission to provide tasty, nutritious, Middle Eastern-inspired food on what used to be the site of a quiet, empty church at 4th and A Street in downtown Springfield. 

“We’re part of the restaurant incubator program here at Sprout!,” Shadrick says, gesturing around the welcoming space where diners are feasting on Tradewinds’ signature dishes, along with fare from neighboring restaurants, all housed in a cheerful, open dining room with high steel tables and plenty of light. 

April 7, 2016 03:00 AM

Padma Prakash worked as a prep cook at the Oregon Electric Station for more than three decades, she says. It was a hard pill to swallow when management changed in 2014 and slashed her pay.

Unsure what else to do, Padma Prakash— with help from her youngest son, Jayant Prakash — opened Crazy Curry, the bright yellow Indo-Fijian food cart on the lonely corner of River Road & Thomas Lane.

April 7, 2016 03:00 AM

For more than 60 years, the University of Oregon’s Erb Memorial Union has anchored campus, serving as a study hall, food court, meeting place and event space for generations of students. The building was constructed in three phases between 1950 and 1973, and although parts of it are architecturally valuable and are being preserved, the building overall no longer seemed suitable for today’s students. 

April 7, 2016 03:00 AM

Provisions Market Hall, located within the 5th Street Public Market, offers a nearby option for downtown Eugeneans to shop for meals, where once there were limited grocery store options, says Karl Zenk, executive chef for Provisions. 

“I used to live on 2nd and Pearl, just up the street, and this area was a real food desert,” Zenk says. “So this is really a great resource for all the people who live around here.”

April 7, 2016 03:00 AM

What do you call a giant sushi roll? A sushi burrito, of course.

“It really just made itself,” says Toby Helms, owner of Unami Sushi and Asian Grill in Springfield. “ It doesn’t have a tortilla or anything like that — it’s just a large roll, with our sushi ingredients.”

April 7, 2016 03:00 AM

Once unheard of, boba tea, or bubble tea, features chewy tapioca, or “boba” balls that patrons slurp down with a wide straw, along with a milky iced tea. 

“It started in Taiwan in the 1980s,” says D.I.Y. Tea & Beyond owner Richard Zheng. “Now it’s all over the world.” 

March 10, 2016 01:00 AM

The Dexter Lake Club is iconic. The roadhouse-esque building sitting near the shore of Dexter Reservoir looks about the same as it did in the 1978 film Animal House when Otis Day called out to the film audience, “It feels so good to be back here at the Dexter Lake Club.”

It does feel good to be back at the DLC. The movie history has long drawn visitors the 12 or so miles out Hwy. 58 to the DLC, but for locals in the Dexter, Lowell and Pleasant Hill area, it’s also the fact it’s the hometown bar that draws people back each week. And while the building has remained largely the same since the days of John Belushi, the DLC’s ownership and management have switched hands over the years. 

March 10, 2016 01:00 AM

Two Turtles releases the spring-loaded plunger, and a small steel ball rockets up the chute and begins its arcing trajectory across the candy-colored table. Wearing a beard and T-shirt that reads “I’m kind of a big deal,” Turtles’ focus is locked on the dazzling array of lights glowing from a 40-year-old pinball machine called “Wizard!”

Turtles is a regular here, a fixture on Wednesday nights when Blairally hosts Pinball Knights, its weekly double-elimination pinball tournament. And he’s destroying me. 

March 10, 2016 01:00 AM

Dear Oregon: You, or rather your drinking habits, are moving up in the world. In last year’s edition of Swizzle, EW reported that, according to the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC), Oregonians bought Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey more than any other distilled spirit in 2014. 

March 10, 2016 01:00 AM

Late-night bar trivia is only fun if you occasionally know an answer or two. Otherwise you end up quietly resenting your teammates for knowing so much about 1980s sports and leisure. Not that I’m speaking from experience.

So when I heard about Star One, Eugene’s science fiction and fantasy happy hour at Starlight Lounge downtown, I squeaked with delight. The nature of the event varies month to month, but when I attended in February, trivia maven Dr. Seven Phoenix had taken the helm and was orchestrating a killer game of science fiction-themed trivia.

March 10, 2016 01:00 AM

What’s up with Springfield?

Rumor has it, Eugene’s scrawny, hardscrabble counterpart is fast becoming a nightlife hotspot. But the streets are dark and empty on Saturday night. There’s nobody around. I barge in on a “supper club” at Claim 52’s The Abbey, where a small flock of clean-cut types gather around a table to sip craft-made half-beers. The folk duo onstage at the Growler Underground almost outnumbers its audience.

It’s kinda depressing.

January 28, 2016 01:00 AM

Ask around the area of Eugene near the UO campus: “Where can I get a good burrito?” 

Odds are, the answer will be spoken in reverential tones of cult-like devotion: “Chachi’s.”