Have you noticed how hip it’s become lately to name restaurants and shops with a blunt, one- or two- syllable noun. In fact, “Blunt” would be a good name for such a place — a shop that specialized in bludgeons, clubs and fishwhackers.
For instance, one of the most very hot restaurants in Eugene right now is the place called Belly, across the street from the 5th Street Market.
In fact, this is such a great name that there is an unrelated restaurant in Portland also named Belly.
So, for today’s interactive reader activity we present a list of names of restaurants in Eugene and Portland. Frankly, most are in Portland, as we believe that this trend, as is true of most trends, is way more evolved and, frankly, over the top in the lovely Rose City than here in our own provincial backwaters.
Your task is to identify which are real and which are made up. There is at least one that I have made up. Or maybe several. The first person to leave a comment correctly identifying all of the fictional names will win a fabulous prize — which will remain a surprise until I can think of what it might be. Stuff like this is way less fun since Google came along, but we’ll try it anyway.
(Yeah, I realize this post isn’t really about bicycles or Eugene, but don’t worry, we’ll get back to both of those things next time.)
Anyway, here are the names, with a brief description of each place. (The descriptions, even of the real places, may be embellished or fabricated outright in order to protect the satirical nature of this blog.)
Beast: As in roast, per the Dr. Seuss story wherein the roast beast is carved lovingly by the Grinch after he turns his hateful heart away from the Whos down in Whoville and rages against the innocent animals slaughtered for their gastronomic pleasure. Meat-heavy and delightful.
Debt: Exquisite prix fixe dining and high-end wines.
Scratch: Fine food for the gluten intolerant and anyone prone to food-induced rashes and hives.
Backspace: A Mac Book embedded into every table, this tech-savvy coffeehouse and music venue touts itself as the “ultimate Third Place” — which means it’s like Facebook, but you can actually touch the other people and look into their eyes. But you don’t because you’re staring into the Mac Book.
Carb: Hole-in-the-wall pasta shack. Fast. Good. Cheap.
Spill: An ultra kid friendly brunch place with great French toast and an indoor playground. Mimosas, microbrews and bloody Marys for Mom and Dad. Basically a Chuck E. Cheese for hipster parents. Packed on weekends!
Gravy: A big-crowd-waiting-on-the-sidewalk kind of breakfast spot noted for merging humble Mom-style breakfast fare with a touch of the exotic: The unexciting sludge known as oatmeal meets the delectable crème brûlée, for example.
Hash: Amsterdam-style establishment serving breakfast and lunch using sustainably harvested greens.
Grub: Hipster atmosphere meets truck stop food. If you are wearing skinny jeans, you can pay extra to have a real trucker beat you up in the parking lot.
Fats: Menu is divided into sections: saturated, unsaturated, polyunsaturated and trans.
Crush: Happy hour hotspot with a diverse menu that features both Mac and Cheese and nine varieties of martini.
Cog: Lunch spot with a cycling theme, and sandwiches named for storied bike races. The “Paris-Roubaix,” for example: foie gras, camembert and mud on a baguette.
Toast: This eatery delivers a gourmet twist, with prices to match, on the old standby of a slice of bread, lightly grilled on both sides.
Tube: Serving drinks and bar food, it is named after the London subway. It is dark, smelly and prides itself on being such.
Nib: A restaurant with an emphasizes the bold mixing of sweet and savory flavors, there is a piece of chocolate at the center of every dish.
Rim: Ultra hip coffee shop popular with fixie riders. There’s a drive through for bikes only, but you must be able to squeeze between a permanently parked bus and a lightpost. If your handlebars are wider than the front page of the Oregonian, you won’t be able to fit through. No cars on the premises, please.