Who knew some of the best BBQ to be had was in Central Oregon? Check out the great a la carte lunch deals, including the beef brisket sandwich for $6.25, add fries or mashers and slaw or beans for an extra $1.50 and make it a platter. Baldy's relatively inexpensive, unpretentious, powerfully flavorful approach to down-home dining is pretty much unparalleled in these parts. Whether it's hickory-smoked beef brisket, chicken, pulled pork, or baby back ribs that tickle your fancy, you're bound to be satisfied. And don't forget the award-winning sauce. 235 SW Century Dr. 385-7427.
BEND BREWING COMPANY
The BBC brews up expertly crafted micro-brews and tasty pub food at its Mirror Pond location. Check out Local's Night on Tuesdays starting at 4 p.m. when the pints are $2.25. Make sure to try some of the seasonal ales like the Nitro Nut Brown - yummmm. We love the atmosphere, the fries, and did we mention the beer yet? 1019 NW Brooks St. 383-1599
COREY'S BAR & GRILL
This little salt-of-the-earth bar will take you back to the olden days when everybody smoked and the haze was part of the atmosphere. Hair of the dog is served up with eggs and burgers for low diner prices. At Corey's no one will be surprised if you order your breakfast with a beer. A true downtown holdout and a favorite among blue collar locals and long-time Bendites. While we're down with the early liquor service, non-smokers may struggle with air quality. American. 928 NW Bond St. 317-0788.
D & D BAR AND GRILL
The "D", as it is affectionately called, is a Bend institution and a favorite spot for a nightcap or a greasy craving, complete with lottery machines and pool tables. At the D, you get ginormous portions straight off the grill. You can also get one of the best Bloody Marys in town made with house pepper vodka and crowned with seasoned salt. For good old small town evening bar time, you can't go wrong with the stiff drinks and good company. 927 NW Bond St. 382-4592.
Redevelopment displaced the truck stop, but Jake's lives on and is still the favorite among those seeking serious quantity when going out to eat. Jake's never fails to fill you up with "greasy spoon" cuisine at its best, including all-day breakfasts and extra-large plates with gravy over everything. Don't miss the Mega Burger (with a fried egg and bacon) or, for the very serious, the one-pound burger. We also love the Elvis cinnamon roll. 2210 NE Highway 20., 382-0118.
Kebaba, Bend's only Middle Eastern eatery, has a comfy atmosphere, consistently good food and is easy on the wallet. It's the only place to satisfy your craving for hummous, taboule and schwarma sandwiches. Standouts include the falafel, karnabeet and the fattoush salad. Just get there early since Kebaba gets pretty crowded. 1004 NW Newport Ave. 318-6224.
Tucked in an unlikely spot in the Old Mill office park, the Phoenix has come to meet the needs of a multitude of hungry desk jockeys. Dishes from the Mediterranean, Thailand, France and Mexico, among other places, fill the breakfast, lunch and dinner menus. Definitely try the crab, asparagus and corn chowder and the homemade tri-color chips and salsa. While a bit cramped and hard to find, the Phoenix Café is worth the hunt. 384 SW Upper Terrace Dr. 317-0727.