Best Food cart pod community 

The Friendly Garden 2758 Friendly Street. 

Nestled in one of Eugene’s best neighborhoods, commonly known as the Friendly Area, The Friendly Garden is our 2022 Best of Eugene staff pick for Best Food Cart Pod. Located right on Friendly Street, directly across from the Friendly Market — in this part of town, friendliness can clearly be counted on — there are five food carts, including Fruit and Vine Beverage Cart serving beer, wine and non-alcoholic beverages; Masa’s Yatai Japanese Restaurant; Silva’s Taqueria, serving authentic cuisine of Oaxaca; a Eugene staple, Bartolli’s Pizza; and Uumami Mediterranean.

There’s covered and sidewalk seating at The Friendly Garden with heaters in the winter, making it a great place to go for al fresco dining in the fall and winter, with special events like music and trivia. Owned in a partnership that’s also behind nearby housing developments, Mel Bankoff says mixed-use is always what the partners had in mind for the property, and that community support has been strong since The Friendly Garden opened two years ago. Bankoff and his partners all live in the neighborhood, so it’s a personal relationship, Bankoff says. “We try to keep a track on the pulse and the feel and beautify it with plants, trees and vegetation for good ambiance,” Bankoff says. 

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