CategoriesDining & Drinking
DateFeb, 20 2020
10 spots for great biscuits and gravy in Bend
Few forms of comfort food rival the belly-warming magic of biscuits and gravy. It’s like a soothing visit to Grandma’s house before you hit the ski slopes and hiking trails of Bend.
Since my teenagers are junkies for the stuff, my family set out to find Bend’s best spots for biscuits and gravy. We tried spicy ones and creamy ones, meaty ones and veggie ones. We all have different tastes, so every family member picked slightly different favorites.
In the end, we gave it our all to give you this list of the top 10 biscuits and gravy dishes found in Bend.
Famous for its commitment to locally-sourced food and the convenience factor of having both Eastside and Westside locations, Jackson’s Corner has another awesome perk to offer: mouthwatering biscuits and gravy.
The biscuits themselves will please those who prefer a flatter, denser biscuit, and the lightly-crisped bottom adds a crunchy bit of texture to the buttery pastry. The gravy takes center stage in this mix, with a perfect blend of spiciness and creaminess spiked with juicy hunks of sausage.
A generous garnish of diced green onion sprinkled on top seems like a small thing, but it’s a tasty twist of freshness in a rich meal. The portions here are not gargantuan, which is kind of an upside with a dish this filling. Bonus: They serve Metolius Tea here, which is my absolute fave.
While this tucked-away spot at Newport and College Way doesn’t draw the crowds that flock to some of Bend’s more popular breakfast eateries, the food at Birdie’s Café is every bit as tasty. Case in point: their biscuits and gravy.
Here, the dish is featured as part of their Classic Combo, which includes pork sausage gravy over a buttermilk biscuit accompanied by hash browns and two eggs any style. The yummy sides add a little variety to the meal, and everything on the plate is made from scratch.
This herby, ultra-rich gravy was my husband’s favorite on the list, and I’m a sucker for the sort of crispy, salty, shredded hash browns they serve. The retro booths offer a nice spot to cozy up on a snowy Sunday morning.
Original Pancake House
Yes, it’s a chain with more than 100 locations, which almost made me ax it from the list. I’m glad I didn’t, since my visit taught me a couple things: One, the first Original Pancake House started in Oregon back in 1953. Two, the biscuits and gravy began right here in Central Oregon when the owner purchased the Bend and Redmond locations and noticed there were none on the menu. Working with the chef, he set out to change that.
The result is a smooth, creamy gravy made with heavy cream, chopped sausage links, onions, and bacon. It’s served atop biscuits so fluffy, they’re almost like cake (and the square cut makes them even more cakelike).
The portions here are huge, and though it’s a popular spot for skiers en route to the mountain, Original Pancake House does a good job turning tables quickly and getting food out lickety-split. The impressively huge menu of non B&G options like Belgian waffles and Swedish pancakes provides plenty of options for members of your party who want something different.
Wild Oregon Foods
Touted as Oregon’s only farm-to-table caterer, Wild Oregon Foods is well outside the geographic circle of popular Westside eateries. You’d never guess by looking at this unassuming storefront in the Bend Factory Stores, but Wild Oregon Foods makes some of the best food you’ll find in Bend, period.
Their biscuits and gravy is no exception, and naturally, they’ve added a unique twist. Instead of pork sausage, they use locally-sourced bison. It lends a robust, hearty flavor to the dish, and the biscuits themselves are absolute perfection.
Pro tip: Come here with at least one other person who doesn’t mind sharing food. While one of you orders the biscuits and gravy, have the other order whatever unique breakfast special they’re offering that day. Sometimes it’s a creative twist on eggs Benedict, while other times it’s a farm-fresh hash with elk or pork belly. No matter what it is, it’s guaranteed to be amazing.
The D&D Bar and Grill
Sometimes, you crave a divey sports bar where you can nurse your hangover by filling your belly with homemade comfort food and a little hair-of-the-dog. That place is locals’ favorite, the D&D Bar and Grill. It’s touted as Bend’s oldest bar, and has that comfy, no-frills vibe that just feels right after a night out on the Bend Ale Trail.
The housemade biscuits at “The D” (as it’s affectionately known by locals) are on the fluffier end of the spectrum, and the gravy is heavy on herbs like oregano and basil. It’s a bit lighter on the sausage, but proportions of gravy to biscuit are solid.
Prices at The D are among the lowest you’ll find, and they make the perfect no-frills bloody Mary that’s awesome without needing 12 kinds of garnish and a fancy glass. This is a nice spot to hang at the bar to watch the game, and maybe stick around through lunch to sample some of their scrumptious, homemade soup.
Looking for a bit of variety in your biscuits and gravy? McKay Cottage has your solution. If you’re familiar with this cozy little eatery with fabulous baked goods, then you already know they make mouthwatering scones.
What you may not know is that their scones make the perfect substitute for biscuits in their spin on a classic B&G. They’re not overly sweet, but still add a unique note of flavor to this otherwise savory dish. Their gravy is on the spicier side, which makes for a perfectly-nuanced dish with sugar and spice and everything nice.
Their housemade potatoes make an ideal side dish, and the homey atmosphere here is worth the (sometimes lengthy) wait to get a table.
The Victorian Café
I started to write that you shouldn’t come here if you’re starving, but that’s not exactly true. The portions here are huge and delicious, so you definitely want your appetite. But the popularity of The Victorian Café means you should expect to wait an hour or more on busy weekends.
Don’t let that dissuade you from a visit to The Vic, which is famous for good reason. With a zillion twists on eggs Benedict and bloody Marys that’ll make your eyes boggle, there are endless reasons this spot is worth a wait. Their outdoor bar/coffee spot and fire-warmed waiting area makes your wait time go pretty quickly.
Once you’re seated, get ready to be dazzled. The biscuits and gravy here is served on a platter called The 18-Wheeler. Even a half-order still comes with a massive pile of housemade potatoes and an egg, plus two full biscuits and gravy. Sausage distribution is on point, with generous hunks swimming in creamy gravy. If you want to feel healthy, order a side of their roasted veggies to go with it. Then plan on having leftovers for breakfast the next morning.
True story: My kid (a biscuit and gravy junkie) has been a dishwasher at Sparrow Bakery for a couple years, and loves everything about the food they serve. From Ocean Rolls to breakfast sandos, he can’t get enough of it, which is the case for almost everyone who sets foot in this popular little eatery.
The only thing missing on the menu was biscuits and gravy, so my kid couldn’t contain his excitement a few weeks ago when the chef informed him they’d be giving it a whirl.
Sparrow’s biscuits and gravy knocks it out of the park. Finely-minced red pepper highlights this scrumptious gravy heaped with generous amounts of pork sausage. The biscuits here are among the best around, and if you arrive early enough, you might catch them just coming out of the oven.
Though you’ll be plenty full from the B&G, don’t forget to order an Ocean Roll or 12 to take home. Once you try one, you’ll be back to Sparrow each time you visit Bend. Promise.
Full disclosure: I did not expect to enjoy the vegetarian biscuits and gravy at Chow. Second full disclosure: It ended up being one of my very favorites on this list.
Oh, they’ve got regular, meat-tastic biscuits and gravy made with plenty of pork sausage and a deliciously-dense biscuit. But the vegetarian version with its flavorful, oniony gravy and juicy, meatless sausage—I seriously have no explanation for the magnificence of this dish. How did they do it? I don’t know, but the next time I visit Chow for biscuits and gravy, I’ll pick the veggie version, and I’m not even a vegetarian.
Like Jackson’s Corner, the folks at Chow are committed to serving as much locally-sourced food as they can get their mitts on. I adore the corned beef hash made with 14-hour beer braised corned beef, caramelized onions, house taters, and two eggs. Whatever you do, make sure someone in your party orders a dish with those taters. They’re simply divine.
If you’re determined to try every stop on this list, you may reach a point at which you’re feeling burned out on biscuits and gravy. That point is when you should head for Riff Taproom.
Their spin on this standard dish is unlike any others on the list. It starts with a cornmeal cheddar biscuit that’s crunchy and cheesy and deliciously different. Next, they smother it in a chorizo gravy that adds a spicy kick to the dish. It comes with a side of baked egg (yum!) and some salty, crunchy Hill Meat Co. bacon.
Want to give your taste buds an extra treat? Add a small side of their Kale-Yeah, which is a massaged kale Caesar with shaved pecorino romano, chili lime crostini, and a smoked Sriracha Spanish anchovy dressing. Throw in a mug of their cold-brewed coffee, and you and your taste buds are now wide awake.
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