- Typhoon! with a twist at Restobar
While Typhoon! has a vast menu of traditional - and not so traditional - Thai dishes, Chef Kline bills Bo Restobar, as more of an "artisitc approach" to Asian foods, blending Korean, Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese dishes, and tossing in some choice Thai recipes for good measure.
Keeping with the Klines' honed sense of interior space and clean, atmospheric décor, Bo Restobar greets diners with lots of glass, a sleek bar and a wall-sized fountain. Tropical floating flowers adorn the tables and stylized portraits of Chef Kline grace the walls.
The menu is diverse, separated in choices of small- or large-portioned dishes, including Orange Tandori Chicken, Opened Faced Massaman Beef, Pulled Pork Panang, New World Sashimi and Peking Duck Spring Rolls, in highlighting a few.
The soups at Typhoon! are the restaurant's strong point, always highly recommended, and Bo Restobar is no different. The Kobacha Pumpkin soup is sublime and the Lemon Grass Clam Chowder is wonderful, even if the clams were a bit gritty. Even so, the well-blended flavors of lemon grass and cream give Chef Kline's chowder an edge over standard faire.
A predominant coconut flavor and creamy texture marks the Tom Yum, but masks the other flavors and textures of this otherwise ebullient choice. Because of this, I have to say that of the three the Tom Yum was not my favorite.
Diners I know who sampled Chef Kline's Koreadilla (a Korean quesedilla stuffed with spicey pulled pork and goat cheese) before I had the chance gave it rave reviews, but for my taste the bell pepper was too plentiful, putting a damper on the expected stand-out flavor of the spicey pulled pork.
The Crab Club is noteworthy - especially for die-hard fans of the Club Sandwich - with three slices of egg bread holding Chef Kline's delectable crab cakes, bacon, avocado and tomato in beautiful display on a rectangular dish, and accessorized with baby greens.
But topping my hand-picked menu was the Tuna Tartar - reminiscent of poke with the added texture and flavor of tobiko (flying fish row) and julienned pear.
Bo Restobar boasts a full bar, and I would say that once it notches a few weeks into its belt, they will be serving Singapore Slings, or whatever your favorite cocktail may be, for happy hour. The orignial Portland location's happy hour is hopping, with a choice list of discounted house drinks and beer accompanied by finger foods like dim sum, pork pot stickers, Thai spring rolls, BBQ pork, steamed mussels and noodle bowls.
Geared toward off-meal hours, Bo Restobar promises a welcome change for downtown Bend, well as another much-needed late night option. Bo Restobar stays open until midnight weekdays and until 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights. Never mind that the stoplights start blinking at 9 p.m. in this town - Bo Restobar caters to the late night crowds, wherever they may roam.
Franklin Crossing Building at Franklin and Bond Downtown. M-Th 11:30am - midnight; Sat. Noon - 2am; Sun 4:30pm - 12am. 617-8880