The "food dude," the brains behind Portland's www.portlandfoodanddrink.com, a go-to site for foodies, recently predicted the "Ins & Outs" of food trends in 2010. "Out" was bacon; "in" was comfort food. But bacon is comfort food, dude. He also declared that foams are "out" and, most notably, food carts are "in." Cue Bend's rolling comfort emporium, Spork.
If you haven't heard of Spork, then snap out of that mid-winter coma because this mobile streetfood kitchen - housed in a '62 Airstream trailer and rocking iTunes from a subwoofer - is serving some of the most creative and affordable food in Bend.
Chef Jeff Hunt, formerly of Marz Bistro, is in charge of the stoves, with Chris Lohrey and Erica Reilly (formerly of The Grove) lending support in as many ways as you can cook an egg (that's a lot of ways). Spork is a from-scratch kitchen, cooking globally inspired cuisine with high-quality ingredients. They also have "green" ethics, visible in their compostable serving ware and biodegradable cleaning products - refreshing alternatives to other food service establishments.
So off I went in search of Spork - a mobile streetfood kitchen. They could be anywhere, right? Quite the contrary since their website (www.sporkbend.com) and weekly mailing lists their current location, weekly menu, events, catering, contact info and hours. Spork is also on Facebook and Twitter to be friended and followed.
Using the website as my locator tool, I found Spork outside of Skjersjaas. My companion and I shared the Breakfast Burrito ($6), and the Lomo Saltado ($7). Packed with pan fried cage-free eggs, Oregon potatoes, peppers/onions, spiced beans, ham/bacon, queso fresco and salsa, I had a hard time giving up my burro until I saw what my friend was rapidly devouring. Generous slices of local beef sirloin, pepper/onions, potato with soy, tomato, cumin topped with fried egg and beautiful radish salad. It was perhaps a touch over seasoned, yet I couldn't believe I was sitting in my parked car eating such delicious food.
My next visit to Spork was for take-home dinner. The Roast Pork Belly Sandwich ($6) was out of this world. Served in a grilled Torta bun with mortadella, local pork belly, Hoisin bbq sauce, scallion, sriracha mayo and pickled slaw, this easy-to-hold sandwich is a globally inspired local success. A self-appointed "sporksperson" that I met claims he eats two per day. The Grilled Vegetable Coconut Red Curry ($6) with an addition of grilled Cascade Natural flank steak ($2) was warming and well balanced (not all coconut milk).The Korean BBQ ($7) came with jasmine rice, spinach, sesame and homemade kimchi. Properly handled (and organic) tofu is worth coming back for again and again.
With all of that said, between bites of yet another Pork Belly Sandwich, I propose this to the Food Dude for 2010: Spork is definitely "in" and bacon will never, ever be "out."
Check Sporkbend.com for current location and hours