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Best restaurants in Medford, Oregon?

  • j

We will be in Medford, Oregon for a week at the end of the month. Can you recommend the best restaurants in that area? Also in Ashland, which is nearby? Thank you.

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  1. 1. New Sammy's between Talent and Ashland.
    Everything else pales in comparison.
    Medford is not known for any outstanding restaurants, or any decent ones for that matter. Sandovar's (Russian) is alright. Nothing else comes to mind.
    Try Ashland--there are a number of decent places --simply search prior discussions here. Jacksonville has Gogis but last time we were there we were somewhat disappointed.

    8 Replies
    1. re: Runninrob

      WOW you hit it right on. The food in Medford is pretty GROSS. I am from the bayarea so I know good eatings! I haven't heard of Sandovar's. And that's right Ashland definitely is a much classier place to eat. If you want decent food Ashland would probably be better though can't beat the bayarea in California =)

      1. re: Runninrob

        New Sammy's has a bad rep for poor service and food that doesn't live up to the price. The very best restaurant in So. OR is Gogi's in Jacksonville. The brothers who own/run it are passionate about food.

        Gogi's Restaurant
        235 W Main St, Jacksonville, OR 97530

        1. re: Rita44

          Coquina (542 A Street, Ashland, Oregon) is much better than Gogi's. More attention to detail on the presentation without being over-the-top with the sauce bottle. Excellent service and attention to the customers. Coquina gives Amuse solid competition.

          Gogi's Restaurant
          235 W Main St, Jacksonville, OR 97530

        2. re: Runninrob

          Poor service, inflexible menu and not very good food for high prices. Been there three times because people say it is that good. It is not. Owner behind the bar is pompous about wine. I wonder why he includes horrible wines (he calls them that) on the menu.

          1. re: Runninrob

            We just had dinner at Goji's in Jacksonville. Just a few minutes outside of Medford and the food and service was excellent. Try the grilled romaine salad. Tempura portabello appetizers were to die for. The waiter recommended a great cocktail, cucumber, cilantro and I forget what else. A great summer cocktail. When we want japanese it is always Oh's Osaka and you have to get the Mr. Oh's roll and an Osaka bomb!

            Oh's Osaka
            35 N Central Ave, Medford, OR 97501

            1. re: berenty

              I think when we're recommending Oh's Osaka, the OP has run its course...

            2. re: Runninrob

              New Sammy's had a great reputation but also is one of the more expensive restaurants in the Rogue Valley.

              1. re: Runninrob

                We had a meal at New Sammy's last summer and it was wonderful - absolutely fresh and local within a few miles of the restaurant including the wine. But it is a different kind of experience - the owners/staff seem somewhat eccentric and it is definitely NOT some urban hipster spot. I recommend calling for a reservation and then just chill with some wine when you arrive and soak up the food and experience.

              2. If you like sushi, try Mr. Oh's in downtown Medford. It is west a couple of blocks from the Red Lion.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Tim Gray

                  The service was dirt on Sunday when we were down there. We also got ripped off. They automatically charged us $24 tip on a $90 meal and on top of that we had left a cash tip. Be prepared to be ripped off. The rice was not meant for sushi either. The food is OKAY for MEDFORD.

                  1. re: Temp Medford

                    Exactly- "for Medford"

                    Bad service when I went there too.

                2. Porter's
                  Bonsai Teriyaki
                  El Arriero mexican
                  Vinnie's Italian - in Medford
                  Jacksonville Inn
                  Caterina's Trattoria -in Jacksonville
                  Thai Pepper
                  Greensprings Inn
                  Il Giardino-in Ashland
                  New Sammy's
                  Arbor House
                  Bangkok's benny Thai Trailer-In Talent

                  here's a rogue valley visitor's thread.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: pepper ann

                    Thanks to all! I'll write a report when we return.

                    1. re: pepper ann

                      I had the worst Mexican food at Flores Mexican Cuisine restaurant in Medford. The "Arroz con Pollo" I tried was an awful concoction I had never seen or tasted in my life. People with even an elementary knowledge of Mexican food should stay away from it.

                      1. re: pepper ann

                        Nothing beats Jacksonville Inn Sunday champagne brunch!

                      2. Try 38 on Central its fantastic I have been there twice and have not been disapointed. I live in Portland area now and this is one of the best I have had in Medford for fine dining. If you looking for fun food try Nohos Hawiian great food and lots of it. Anything else is just like chain food.

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: mlukewow

                          I'm from Chicago and all ther restaurants I have tried in Medford and Ashland, OR are awful, it's worse that hospital food. Everything is "organic", low sodiun", "no MSG", "no garlic", "no ginger", "no hot pepper", "no trans" and the like.

                            1. re: uccellino

                              You must have chosen all the worse...I've eaten plenty of food in Chicago that was great, but plenty that wasn't too. Like all cities, you have to know here to go.

                            2. re: mlukewow

                              Now closed, owners opened up a new place in Nevada (Laughlin? Henderson?) in conjunction with a casino

                            3. It is a myth that there is no good food in Medford. Vinny's Italian Kitchen is really good. Jackson Creek Pizza is good, but expensive and probably out of your way. Ali's thai has great red curry. Guadalahara has really good soups (your basic caldo de pollo and albondagas), but almost everything else is a cheesey fake Mexican mess. Samovar was great, but I think they closed (I haven't been home in a while). The most overrated places in Medford are that horrible japanese grill downtown and that horrible place by the train tracks.

                              In Jacksonville I cannot speak highly enough of McCully House.

                              In Ashland you should make a special effort to go to Chateaulin, it's right of the plaza, the waiters are really professional and the food is always prepared perfectly. It's expensive, but it's worth it. If price is an issue just order French Onion soup or one of their amazing salads, they also don't mind splitting a dish on two plates for you. The apple cider they have there is great. I'm ordering it for my graduation party. I've been going there since I was six years old and I just love them. Alex's is nice if you like steak or drinking. They also have good salads. Quinz is really great. Thai Pepper is good- go for lunch. The Breadboard is good for breakfast. Morning Glory is amazing, but very busy for breakfast. I've never eaten at Monet, but I took a cooking class taught by the chef and the food was great. If you get tired of sit down meals and just want good basic food go to Senior Sam's and get a Jr. Big Burrito (which is more gigantic than the name implies). The one in Ashland is better than the one in Medford, but the one by the Tinsletown Cinema is the best in Medford.

                              But mostly Chateaulin. I've heard the atmosphere at New Sammy's leaves something to be desired. It was basically an unadvertized hangout for wealthy people in the know, which is not my cup of tea. They've remodeled so maybe their vibe is different now, but I won't go there.

                              11 Replies
                              1. re: elleshellmo

                                Stopped at Ali's because we missed the exit for Thai Pepper on the way home. Had panang curry, prig khing kung, and nam sod. Ugh. Probably the worst versions of all of those dishes I've ever had. The panang tasted like a bland peanut sauce with shoe-leather instead of beef. The prig khing sauce was gravy-like and more like a very bland red curry than a dry curry. (And when I say bland, I don't mean not-spicy, though neither of these were even remotely hot; I mean they were insipid.) The green beans seemed frozen, entirely undercooked, with occasional bits that were so gristly, if that can be used to describe vegetables, that they were inedible. The nam sod was mediocre, but not offensive. The ginger was old and bitter, the pork overcooked, and there was little or no toasted rice powder. The dressing tasted almost entirely of lime. Prices were cheap, but portions were small -- not that I wanted any more. One of the five worst Thai restaurants I've ever eaten at and I only put it in the bottom five because I can't remember some of my earliest random bad Thai meals. Bottom two in the last two years, the other contender being Tasty Thai in Eugene.

                                1. re: extramsg

                                  Ha I've eaten Tasty Thai, no good.

                                2. re: elleshellmo

                                  Vinny's is under new management. The father of Vinny and owner of a failed effort on McAndrews is now in charge. Bad service, mediocre food and high prices make this a place to pass. When a restaurant swamps the food in tomato sauce, you can bet it is because the ingredients are sub par. Pass on this joint.

                                  1. re: Rita44

                                    And the food is so salty it is inedible!!

                                  2. re: elleshellmo

                                    Myth? Are you insane?

                                    Jackson Creek- grease bomb
                                    Vinnys- closed
                                    Guadalahara- WORST, and I mean WORST mexican in town. We waited 15 minutes to be seated, and got no drinks and no chance to order for another 10. We walked.

                                    Ashland is VASTLY overrated. Go if you like to spend a lot but not taste a lot, because almost everyone puts health before taste. Even the best places pale in comparison to Eugene where I'm from. Morning Glory is even better in Eugene.

                                    There is ONE place out there however, the Breadboard. Its became our go-to spot for breakfast.

                                    Senior Sams is OK for the price, but varies a lot depending on who's making your stuff. Burrito Boy in Eugene would absolutely kill it here.

                                    Rogue Valley = low standards, hard to make it (since everyone here eats at Red Robin and Olive Garden), and no variety. So bad. Its what you get in the Conservative Republican capital of Oregon; bad food. Think about all the cities known for food (sf, LA, NY, Portland, Chicago), all liberal cities.

                                    1. re: Dman21

                                      I'd be very surprised if Morning Glory in Ashland has anything to do with the one in Eugene; the owner of Morning Glory in Ashland makes no mention of it in her history (<http://morninggloryrestaurant.com/wp-...); also, the one in Eugene is vegan/vegetarian, and the one in Ashland definitely isn't.

                                      There are a couple of places in Ashland that go way into the healthy over taste mode, but Ashland is more like Portland: half of the town is vegetarian, and the other half puts bacon in everything. For the flavor-conscious, try:

                                      * Smithfield's: meat-centric, great charcuterie, great brunches, none of it light
                                      * Morning Glory: also great breakfast and lunch, with no real concept of "portion control"
                                      * Taroko: Chefs/owners from San Francisco, and brought that sense of what Asian (mostly Japanese and Chinese) food should be from there. Amazing hamachi collar, only xiao long bao between Portland and San Francisco?
                                      * Kobe: Love the beef tataki, a bunch of the rolls, beef bulgogi
                                      * Coquina: the chef does *amazing* duck, totally nails the moist meat with crispy skin. Also anything she does with quail will be excellent

                                      Ashland is anything but Conservative Republican. It's like being in Berkeley!

                                      1. re: w0x0f

                                        Yes, you're absolutely right about Ashlands orientation, and I shouldn't lump them in with the rest.

                                        1. re: Dman21

                                          Hey, folks -- please leave the politics=food scene aspect of this sub-thread alone. It's off-topic here, and we'd like to keep things focused.

                                    2. re: elleshellmo

                                      Just got back from Sr Sams 10 minutes ago.

                                      Food on the walls and floor. Smelled of old dishwater. Cups had not been dried, so there was old moisture in them from the stacks. Meat looked as though it had not been stirred for several hours. Anything that needs to be heated is microwaved. Napkin dispenser labeled "for takeout customers please". Clearly visible mop-streaks throughout the place. Disgusting ground beef.

                                      We left without finishing, as did 2 other couples while we were there.

                                      1. re: Dman21

                                        Yeah, I just don't get the local fascination with Senor Sam's. My friends who like it talk about how healthy it is; maybe that's the case, as the carnitas, at least, the one time we were there, was just in a steam table bucket and was wet with no crispness or fat at all.

                                        I much prefer Agave, although I tell them to leave the pico off as it's way, way too wet. I have yet to find a good source of burritos-the-size-of-your-forearm in the Ashland area, as one would find in the Bay Area almost anywhere, but that's just life.

                                        1. re: w0x0f

                                          I'd really like to see Burrito Boy migrate down from Eugene. I think they'd wipe out Sr Sams and Muchas Gracias.

                                    3. Also, do yourself a favor and don't eat any Chinese food in the valley. The Thai food is good for some reason.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: elleshellmo

                                        Yes, the Chinese is lacking seriously.

                                        Golden Dynasty in Ashland I'll give an 'ok' rating. That's it.

                                        1. re: Dman21

                                          Taroko. Seriously, if you haven't been there, you need to try it. It is *not* cheap Chinese. like Chun's used to be, but it is really, really good, especially if you like dumplings.

                                      2. Well, now we have lived in Medford for a year and a half. There are few good restaurants in the area, but those I can recommend include:
                                        McGrath's Fish House -- yes, I know, it's a long way from the ocean. But we have found the seafood to be fresh, the fisherman's stew flavorful and the desserts sublime.
                                        McAndrews Grill -- excellent food. If you love Bananas Foster, this is the place to get it.
                                        Bambu, Asian Fusion.
                                        El Arriero, Mexican out on West Main, Albertson's center
                                        Jackson Creek Pizza, great margeurite pizza with homemade pesto included along with fresh tomatoes and fresh mozzarella

                                        We haven't found a good Chinese place either in Medford or Ashland. There is a new one out on West Main, Medford, run by a San Francisco transplant. Will let you know about it later. No Vietnamese restaurants, no Korean. Several Thai but we have only tried one and last time we were there, a new cook didn't produce what we ordered. So we will try the others and report back.

                                        Some to stay away from:

                                        Red Lion, holiday buffets OK, otherwise mediocre and greasy
                                        Bonsai Teryaki, good until last time when waitress insulted us
                                        Vinny's, unless you like huge servings with loads of olive oil
                                        Porter's, good food but cavernous building (old train station) and super busy, sometimes hard to hear people at your table

                                        Thanks to others who posted.

                                        6 Replies
                                        1. re: JanT

                                          We liked Porters, but I could see how some wouldn't.

                                          An Elvis impersonator came through and shook all the Men's hands at each table. That was awkward.

                                          1. re: JanT

                                            McGrath's a long way from the ocean?? Excuse me, but Medford is two and a half hours from the Pacific. Chicago, we're not!!

                                            1. re: pilotgirl210

                                              Does any of the commercially fished seafood from Crescent City (the nearest harbor with a commercial fishing fleet) make it fresh to the Rogue Valley? If not, it doesn't matter if we're two hours or two days; the seafood will have been frozen.

                                              1. re: w0x0f

                                                The Wharf on West McAndrews in Medford has totally fresh seafood counters and a restaurant to boot. Definitely not a chain.

                                              2. re: pilotgirl210

                                                Isn't/wasn't McGraths a chain? The fish could come from anywhere. And I don't mean that as a criticism.

                                                1. re: c oliver

                                                  Yes. But some places round these parts do use local catch.

                                            2. Why do people keep recommending dumps to us? We live in Medford, Oregon, not the center of culinary creativity, true. Still, we are constantly told to eat here or there and when we go it's a dump. On Chowhound, recommendations have been for NoHo's (great name, huh?) and Ali's Thai. Holy cow, they're dismal. Sticky bottles, cheapest of furniture, sullen servers. So, stop it Medford folks. There are some really good places here -- McGrath's Fish House, Bambu, Vinny's (select items), Jackson Creek Pizza, and more. But stop it, stop it, sending us to the dumps. We're tired of it.

                                              5 Replies
                                              1. re: JanT

                                                JanT, have you tried 38 on Central? It looks inviting, but we haven't indulged.
                                                Mc Andrews Grill has repositioned their menu with more reasonably priced entrees too.

                                                1. re: JanT

                                                  So right JanT. There are some great places in the valley. Bambu-tops for asian inspired fusion and great prices. Chinese-all lousy. Pizza-#1 is Jackson Creek Pizza, Kaleidascope has interesting combo's. Fine Dining- Amuse is #1 (presentation, textures, balance and taste, good service) and with Peerless taking so much experienced staff (Chef Steve and perfectionist Manager Bill, others) from Chateaulin I put them vying for #2 with Chateaulin (Dave T. is awesome chef). New Sammy's is in a category for Wine/Food geeks with an amazing Wine List. My last 2 experiences with Porters (someone else said the horrible place by RR tracks) is my last exp.! 38 on Central has potential but inconsistent service (our waitress actually wondered if we had been served yet!). Trevor ( wine guy there) says they are making better efforts now and we will be there again next weekend. McGrath's needs the qualifier of ordering fish items only, steaks are abysmal. Went to McAndrew's twice in the last 2 weeks, (ask for server "Jane". BTW) 1st time my "Allen Bros." steak came out purple it was so rare. Looked to me like they seared it and then forgot to cook it off. Return trip was much better, one complaint at table was they used plain white button mushrooms for a beef medallion dish. Vinny's was rated great! ouch, not to me. Samovar the russian place is closed and replaced with Elements a spanish tapas bar that is kind of trendy. Bill Prahl just sold Gogi's in J-Ville last week, it was bought I think by the sous chef. Have not tried El Arreiro so thank you. All in all I went to Peerless again last night. Perfect service! Try the Ahi appetizer, potato leek and garlic soup was best I have EVER had. Halibut, Duck, and Filet are all very good and the Pistachio nut crusted cheesecake is awesome if you share it. Sorry about the rambling but hope this helps.

                                                  1. re: JanT

                                                    38 on Central is very good. Bambu is had best Thai in town. If you are looking to go anywhere else its 50/50.
                                                    How do you prefer to dine?

                                                    1. re: JanT

                                                      Even the places you mentioned are dumps. That's all we have!

                                                      1. re: JanT

                                                        There's a place downtown grants pass I believe it's called Thai BBQ but they are really good menu is a little complication service is great. Inviting everything out here in medford seems overrated and sort of tastes the same boring food but what do you expect from a small town.

                                                      2. I would say the new spot to eat at in the medford area is at the Nunan house out in jacksonville. The chef use to own firefly and does great presentations and the food is immaculate and priced to please. I eat out in ashland alot, mainly the peerless, thai pepper, and Amuse from time to time, but this place takes the cake

                                                        1. I'm holding out hope beyond hope that Medford/Ashland grows into a new culinary scene. It sits perfectly halfway between Portland and Sacramento and thus I'm perpetually hoping to find a good lunch there.

                                                          On my last trip down, I went to Si Casa Flores. Not bad, not great.

                                                          7 Replies
                                                          1. re: SauceSupreme

                                                            Mr.Sauce, there is a lot of pretty good Mexi in the Rogue Valley.
                                                            Try La Tapatia
                                                            Grocery Store/Carneceria
                                                            on The Southbound side of 99 in Phoenix next time you are thru town. (Closed Tuesdays)

                                                            1. re: bbqboy

                                                              By far the best mexi in the valley bbqboy. Great advice, we go there every Monday for dollar tacos.

                                                              1. re: bbqboy

                                                                The family ate at tapatia last night (the place on on hwy 99 behind the auto dealer) and it was abyssmal. Food was all overcooked, tasteless, touristy tex-mex glop. There were 7 of us and we ordered a variety of dishes including several of their house specials. None of us got sick but we were all disappointed. It's definately not a place we'll return to.

                                                                1. re: Sisiutl

                                                                  El Tapatio IS NOT La Tapatia. Sorry. I would agree with your assesment.

                                                              2. re: SauceSupreme

                                                                Medford culinary scene has been growing over1st, The Chefs Table on Main, 2nd, 38 central, 3rd, Elements Tapas bar and lounge. All have different products and atmospheres to choose from.

                                                                1. re: SauceSupreme

                                                                  Ashland for lunch: Morning Glory, 7 days, is the best breakfast or lunch in town. Lela's, Wednesday through Saturday, has a really good ladies lunch (lots of salads, especially the shrimp toast salad). Hana Sushi on the Plaza is doing good, reasonably-priced sushi, teriyaki, and tempura. Lark's is always reliable. Harper's is also a good bet.

                                                                  1. re: w0x0f

                                                                    Hana Sushi in Ashland is a good new addition and worth checking out - as is the Black Sheep Pub, Always a treat, open late (which is good for after the plays if you are going) and also on the Plaza.

                                                                2. Nothing good going on in Medford. Ate at the worst Indian food restaurant down there over X-mas. I should have just orded the hamburger and stuck with what they know about.

                                                                  1. I find it hard to liisten to all of the negative posts, I like to look at this site to get ideas of where to go not just a lot of critics telling me how terrible there service was or how drab the food is. Come on people if you dont have anything good to say then just stop posting. sounds like a bunch of middle school children bitching because they are spoiled.

                                                                    I would rather hear you talk about the good places not the worst service or worst places you've been treated wrong or had your feeling hurt.

                                                                    16 Replies
                                                                    1. re: mlukewow

                                                                      I agree. Last time I was there, I ate at that converted train station place downtown and it was quite good. I sat at the bar, drank some different beers, ate a bunch of small plates, got really nice service and left very satisfied. Go Medford!

                                                                      1. re: MichaelG

                                                                        I have lived in San Francisco and now live in Washington, DC - but come back to Medford about once a year to visit family. Is this a thriving culinary scene? No, not really.

                                                                        For excellent Mexican food, I always make sure to either visit Octavio's La Burrita (the original on jacksonville highway) or Muchas Gracias (looks like a dump - but food is great).

                                                                        I agree that excellent, or even really good, asian food is hard to find here. I've had some pretty decent Thai at Natalie's Thai Kitchen and a great lo-mein at Yummy Yan's.

                                                                        1. re: hppyheather

                                                                          Try Kobe in Ashland. Trying hard to be authentic Japanese (minus tatami rooms) with some Western influences.

                                                                          1. re: w0x0f

                                                                            Following up to myself:

                                                                            For Asian (mostly sushi plus Korean plus dumplings), try Taroko, in the old Kat Wok/Motif space near Oak and East Main. The owners are from San Francisco and bring Asian styles with them (e.g., xiao long bao, chicken salad with spicy mustard dressing). Excellent dishes like hamachi collar and house-made potstickers and dumplings. Definitely a favorite, and open for lunch.

                                                                      2. re: mlukewow

                                                                        I have to disagree with censoring negative posts. I read these boards to understand what food people find both good and bad. If I want to eat out, I'd like to know where to eat and where to avoid. Very useful when driving into town and your first and maybe second choices are closed for some reason.

                                                                        Also, if someone is being whiny, doesn't that show their character enough to let you decide to ignore their information?

                                                                        1. re: evergreengirl

                                                                          When someone says nothing good in a whole city, then rags on a place without naming it
                                                                          and no detailed reasons why, it doesn't accomplish much.
                                                                          I'm still trying to figure out which Indian place was at fault.

                                                                          1. re: evergreengirl

                                                                            So many snobby little whiners on this thread (not directed at evergreengirl). It is hard to take reviews seriously when they go off on a diatribe about how Medford/Ashland food sucks - then go off an say McGraths fish house is good. Really? FYI it's a chain. That's like saying Applebees is the best spot in town!

                                                                            I have a little advice for all you whiny babies: 1.) Explore beyond 1000 ft from the freeway exit, 2) try yelp dot com, 3) remember that you're in the rogue valley not SF, PDX, SEA, or any other Million people plus city.

                                                                            In terms of places (that have been in the rogue valley for a long time and are not listed here despite being way better than anything this bitchfest listed), try:

                                                                            Thai Pepper - Ashland great Thai food
                                                                            Cucina Biazzi - Ashland pri-fix Italian and a must go for any date night
                                                                            Kobe - Ashland - pretty good sushi
                                                                            Greanleaf - Ashland - if you're into vegan.
                                                                            Morning Glory - Ashland great breakfast and brunch.

                                                                            Luigi's (subs) - Medford - get a garbage grinder, if you don't like it, you're the problem
                                                                            Back Porch BBQ - Solid lunch spot
                                                                            Octavio's La Burrita - Someone did mention this already - run down but good food

                                                                            That's probably enough for now. But I don't think this list will help most of the people on the thread because in time it will become stale. And without the nerve and desire to explore, you'll be back here ranting about the inequities of Southern Oregon cuisine. S.O. has good food and good places to get it, you just have to be willing to explore.

                                                                            Morning Glory
                                                                            1149 Siskiyou Blvd, Ashland, OR 97520

                                                                            La Burrita Restaurant
                                                                            2716 W Main St, Medford, OR 97501

                                                                            Thai Pepper
                                                                            84 N Main St, Ashland, OR 97520

                                                                            Cucina Biazzi
                                                                            568 E Main St, Ashland, OR 97520

                                                                            1. re: ntchows

                                                                              Can't say I agree with this rant.

                                                                              1. re: runninrob

                                                                                I come to Medford a few times a year on business with an associate. Been coming about two years. Initially I would agree with some of the harsh comments about the restaurants here but I have to say, after doing some research, eating at a lot of different restaurants, there is good food to be found here!

                                                                                Bamboo used to be great but the chef recently left and its not the same as it once was. Too bad. Maybe the new chef will prevail.

                                                                                Elements has always been very good. A group of us went there this week, the service was a bit spotty and slow but the food was as usual, excellent. The dates, bean dish and pork empanada dishes are wonderful.

                                                                                38 Central is very good and nearby Elements downtown. We found this place for the first time on this trip, ate there twice and were very happy with the food and service. Very nice Caesar salad (I'm picky) with awesome croutons. I had a Rockfish special of the night that was excellent. Enjoyed the Fish and Chips (comfort food). They know how to fry foods light and tasty (Calamari was pretty good, the batter a tad too think for me). We may have lost Bamboo but are happy we found 38 Central to replace it.

                                                                                For breakfast, we used to go to Mrs. Q's. Funky and not bad but this trip we found Roosters which blows it out of the water. Excellent service, huge portions and really good food. The salsa was home made and fresh. The Polish sausage in the omelet was very tasty. Order one Cinnamon roll and split it with three people. They are HUGE. I figured out that you can order them without the extra super sweet white glaze and they are much better. By default, they come with super sweet glaze which is overkill. Fresh out of the oven, they don't need that glaze one bit. We ate there nearly every morning for over a week and loved it every time.

                                                                                Had lunch today at Organicos, also on Main, not far from Elements and 38 Central. Used to be called Gorilla Bites or something. Beautiful large and very fresh salad bar. They weigh the bowel so be careful here. I also had a burger with green chili which was very good. Nice bun, meat cooked to order, super fresh and tasty tomatoes. I plan to go back.

                                                                                Based on a recommendation above, we did try Mai Thai and yes, its nothing to look at. The food was OK but not my opinion of great Thai. The soup we had was excellent but the Pad Thai and Prik King was just OK. Noodles were a bit soggy and too sweet but edible and certainly not bad. The beans in the Prik King were also over cooked and the sauce wasn't what I expected nor have had in the past. Again, not bad and certainly edible.

                                                                                Bottom line is, there are some good restaurants in Medford, you don't have to go all the way to Ashland. And speaking of Ashland, while we have had good meals there, we were taken to a beer pub there this week (Standing Stone) which was pretty awful! They ran out of the special (after we were told what it was and later ordered it), rice, ice cream and other items. Wasn't late, middle of the week. Food was pretty bad so lets not pick on Medford here and make it sound like Ashland is immune from piss-poor food and service.

                                                                                1. re: andrewrodney

                                                                                  Ate there night before leaving Medford, had an awesome dinner. The Ribeye was one of the best ever. Highly recommended.

                                                                                  Amuse Restaurant
                                                                                  15 North First Street, Ashland, OR 97520

                                                                                  1. re: andrewrodney

                                                                                    Good observations. I agree with you on Standing Stone. They're very involved from a community standpoint. I just wish they'd change things up a bit. Same basic food for the last ten years or so. I must say, someone recently raved about their burger.

                                                                                    Elements and 38 Central are some of Medford's best. Amuse is good, but very expensive, even for Ashland.

                                                                                    1. re: runninrob

                                                                                      Amuse is our go-to place when older relatives who want nice wine, white linen service, and predictably excellent but predictable food are in town. It's very, very good, but it's not going to amaze with innovativeness.

                                                                                      I think Coquina (A St., near 4th) is more like the old Firefly (when they were in Amuse's space, before the fatal move to the Plaza). Constantly changing menu, always tinkering with tastes and platings. It's where I'd go with more adventurous diners.

                                                                                      Standing Stone got a new chef a year or a bit more ago, and he's shaken it up a bit. Give them another try.

                                                                                    2. re: andrewrodney

                                                                                      BAMBU has had the same executive chef since it opened. He bought the restaurant five years ago and the food is always wonderful! Especially if you order the specials. Maybe you had it on an off day.

                                                                                      1. re: andrewrodney

                                                                                        Also agreed on standing-stone. No good.

                                                                                    3. re: ntchows

                                                                                      You have to ask yourself, is the reviewer so clueless that they actually think McGrath's is good, or does the rest of the food in the area suck SO BAD that McGraths actually competes.

                                                                                      Its sad but true. Regarding your selections-

                                                                                      Thai Pepper- Good location and ambiance if you eat outside. Average Thai.
                                                                                      Cucina Biazzi- Great unless you want anything different than how they prepare it.
                                                                                      Kobe- Overpriced, but there is no competition for high-end sushi so w/e.
                                                                                      Greenleaf- Again, location and ambiance can be good (outside), though a little steep. I liked it.
                                                                                      Morning Glory- Don't expect to eat a 'normal' breakfast, go if you're a big 'flax pancake' kind of person.

                                                                                      Don't be so defensive; the Valley sucks for food and its almost universally agreed on. Apologist attitudes like yours are what keeps it that way.

                                                                                      edit: Its not like we're a town of 10k, we should have dozens and dozens of good places (eugene does). I lived there for 5 years and had over a dozen go-to places within the first month. Meanwhile, I've "explored" the valley for 20 years and found less than a handfull, and at times even those ones disappoint! The % of good vs bad is appalling!

                                                                                      Why should we have to sift through a dozen dumps before we find a goodie? All that does is keep the flops alive.

                                                                                      1. re: Dman21

                                                                                        Lots of the "dumps" are dying off. Look in Ashland at some of the restaurants that have closed recently, and the ones that are doing well.

                                                                                        I'm mystified by your attitude about Morning Glory; have you never had their lamb burger, or corned beef hash, or chicken fried steak, or any of the other meat-centric dishes that fill the menu? It's not at all like the one in Eugene.

                                                                                2. Bambu has the most versatile menu for wonderful Asian flavors for meat-eaters and vegetarians alike. Great patio in the summer time and great service.

                                                                                  Porters has a beautiful patio and a great bar menu. Fun for a relaxing evening with friends.

                                                                                  Elements has great ambience, service and great drinks. There are select items on the menu that are really good. Dessert is really good also.

                                                                                  For pizza Kaleidescope is the place to go a lot of variety great selection for vegetarian pizza and great salads.

                                                                                  Jackson Creek Pizza Company has the most wonderful hot sandwiches.

                                                                                  Rosario's has great Italian food, reasonably priced and great patio.

                                                                                  Bonsai Teriyaki has the best sushi, freshest fish.

                                                                                  970 N Phoenix Rd Ste 106, Medford, OR 97504

                                                                                  Bonsai Teriyaki
                                                                                  130 W 6th St, Medford, OR 97501

                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: Littleman

                                                                                      littleman, Eddy's is a fine place, taken over by employees. better hours now.
                                                                                      I still like Jasper's better, but those fries at eddy's are tasty.

                                                                                      1. re: Littleman

                                                                                        Eddy's is okay for burgers. I just their new location and it was fine for a basic burger.

                                                                                        Jaspers is my personal preference for burgers. Lots of flavor and generous portions for a reasonable price. Love their jalapeno popper burger!

                                                                                    2. What a terrific surprise. Tucked down a lane in Shady Cove about 30 minutes from downtown Medford. Local produce, light sauces and exceptional flavors. Best risotto I have had in So. OR. Whole menu truly up there with Amuse in Ashland, this riverfront restaurant is a great destination. Chef Helena Darling also caters from Roseburg to Ashland.

                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                      1. re: Rita44

                                                                                        Helena's food is alway inventive and tasty. The problem has always been finding her open.

                                                                                      2. A very nice Taco Truck in Medford on 10th just east of Fir in the Auto repair/carlot.
                                                                                        Called Alvarado and run by 3 nice ladies. Very tasty Adobada and Lengua. Tacos only $1.25($1.00
                                                                                        Tuesdays) and today was $1.00 tostada day. Just West of the RR tracks near the college food pods.

                                                                                        1. I wish everyone who hasn't ID'd where the place is to go back and reply to your own post. When you're coming from Grants Pass, Medford is more doable than Ashland, esp. in winter. We don't live there anymore but visit regularly and would really like to find good to notable food in Medford.

                                                                                          8 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: c oliver

                                                                                            A couple of my favorites that I haven't seen on on this thread that I think should be mentioned are:

                                                                                            R&D for deli sandwiches (I've heard folks rave about the Pastrami sandwich), on Riverside, no cards accepted. I go for the turkey sandwiches.
                                                                                            Las Morenas for their carnitas tacos, located on Riverside. My friend raves about their
                                                                                            Roosters for the real Turkey sandwiches and free Wifi.
                                                                                            Kaleidoscope is a staple and fun. Everything is good, butt I really like their Caesar salad and Pepperoni Supreme pizza, and the occasional Mud Pie, to share.
                                                                                            The Breadboard, if not only for the excellent homemade Marion berry jam. Of which, you can buy some to take home, not toss around the suitcase stable though. Service and food are consistently good.
                                                                                            And while you can't necessarily eat there, the Rogue Creamery in Central Point will walk you through ALL of their cheeses and provide samples. It's awesome. They also sell the best local jam from Grants Pass, Pennington Farms. http://www.penningtonfarms.net/. My favorite is the Marion berry. They can be found at the Farmers markets and sell hands down, the best Molasses cookies and Orange Tea Biscuits I've tried. I'm still trying to reverse engineer the recipe.
                                                                                            Katrina's in Phoenix has good tamales, very Americanized but good. She sells at the Farmers markets also.
                                                                                            Mix in the Ashland Plaza for the baby Salted Caramel Ice cream cones, $1.50.
                                                                                            Shiki's on Riverside for Sushi. They actually serve the Edamame hot and salted, yes, finally!
                                                                                            I second Noho's. Yes, the service is slow, yes it's kinda sticky, but the chicken is very very good.
                                                                                            And if you like Chipolte, then Muchas Gracias fits the bill.
                                                                                            Organicos for the Salmon burger.
                                                                                            Noble coffee shop in Ashland for the Cappuccinos and ambiance. They close at 4 pm though, located in the Railroad district.
                                                                                            Lela's, also located in the Railroad district.
                                                                                            Bella Union in Jacksonville on Thursday's for their oysters and ales. I've had fresher oysters but it really can't be beat for the ambiance and fun.

                                                                                            Hope you get an opportunity to visit.

                                                                                            929 NE D St, Grants Pass, OR 97526

                                                                                            1. re: mrgeorg

                                                                                              Terrific info. We've bought Katrina's salsa but nothing else - so far. Lela's is a little gift, enough off the tourist trail. We used to live in Ruch and Bella Union has remained a fave. Never had a bad meal there. Next Growers Market in GP I need to check out Pennington Farms which I've seen. I'm not a sweet eater but those two cookies sound great. Thanks.

                                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                just a note that Katrina's in Phoenix is actually their factory and is only open to the public
                                                                                                on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. The tamales are exquisite though. Inventive fillings, usually including a spinach and cheese that is mmmmmmm. :).

                                                                                                1. re: bbqboy

                                                                                                  Katrina's also sells their tamales at the Grower's Market in Medford which opens up on Thursday's in just a couple of weeks. It's open from 830 to 100.

                                                                                                  I also saw someone posted about Lela's and while agree that they have wonderful food, they aren't open for the time being, in the middle of trying to sell.

                                                                                                  1. re: yayalovefood

                                                                                                    Casa Ramos is excellent Mexican food. Fresh Chili Rellenos great Chili Verdes Burritos.... I had a great margarita for $4.49. I'm here, in Medford, a couple of times a year. Went tonight back to Casa Ramos for the second time in two years not remembering if I like it or not. I DO!! it's very good!

                                                                                                    Casa Ramos
                                                                                                    1253 N Riverside Ave, Medford, OR 97501

                                                                                                    1. re: sixshooter

                                                                                                      Just an update. The Red Lion has changed Chef's and some crew. I had a fantastic Salmon with Mango Salsa last week. They have a really great Happy Hour food menu as well.

                                                                                                    2. re: yayalovefood

                                                                                                      Lela's is no more, R.I.P. Been replaced for over a year now by Playwrights, a British-style pub; although I'm not into them, they appear to be a big hit with the locals. Maybe it's the trivia night?

                                                                                                2. re: mrgeorg

                                                                                                  Good to know on the Edamame; boy do I hate cold and unsalted.

                                                                                                  I asked medford's Bonsai to heat it and they looked at me like I was the world's biggest jerk.

                                                                                                  The waitress actually had to sneak me the heated plate of it so the chef couldn't see. Unbelievable.

                                                                                              2. My women friends and I ate breakfast TWICE at the Talent Cafe the last weekend in August. We LOVED it. It's a fairly new place that we heard about and we will return next year when we are back in the area.

                                                                                                They have blueberry pancakes, buckwheat pancakes, multi-grain pancakes, and of course the uaual "white-bread" pancakes. They have a special white marshmallow sauce which is optional for the pancakes.

                                                                                                The other typical items are available too: Bacon, Pork Sausage links, Hashbrowns, eggs, french toast ....

                                                                                                They have a "Stuffed Hashbrowns" which we ordered. Has cheese and ham or bacon or sausage inside the hashbrowns and is topped with roasted vegetables.

                                                                                                The special was an asparagus omelet. One of us had that and loved it. They get lots of requests for it but it's only available when the asparagus is fresh and local.

                                                                                                Their hours are 9- 2:30 SEVEN DAYS A WEEK.

                                                                                                Their location is a new small little strip of shops along the road. I wouldn't expect a restaurant in a place like that to be so special. But when people open their first restaurant, sometimes they can't afford the best possible location/situation.

                                                                                                The two gals who waited on us were VERY thorough and attentive. They also had lots of personality and we had a lot of fun with them. (We're like that where-ever we go).

                                                                                                I hope you'll try out this place. It definitely has a lot more to offer than a typical breakfast restaurant.

                                                                                                Talent Cafe
                                                                                                102 S Pacific Hwy, Talent, OR 97540

                                                                                                1. I just wrote under Best Restaurants between SF and Seattle about three superb restaurants in Medford. Tim's BBQ (relatively new) on Court Street near RV Mall (north I-5 exit). Pulled port sandwich with homemade fries and cole slaw for under $7 is excellent lunch fare. Also Bambu in east Medford, off N. Phoenix Road has simple but excellent menu and nice atmosphere for lunch. In downtown Medford, 38 Central which serves mainly locally grown foods and has a comfort menu (mac and cheese is outstanding).

                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                  1. re: cndoty

                                                                                                    I haven't tried Bamboo yet, kind of a 'strip-mall' feel, but that can be overcome.

                                                                                                  2. The Rogue Valley's "Best"-

                                                                                                    Porters- As 'high class' as the valley offers, and it actually delivers. Only restaurant that would make it in a larger city with real competition.

                                                                                                    Rosarios- Best Italian in town (not hard since Olive Garden is 2nd), make sure to sit outside in the back.

                                                                                                    Bonsai (Ashland)- Decent lunch boxes and sushi, way better than medford's Bonsai. Good prices.

                                                                                                    The Store- A grocery store in north medford that had a throwback burger-deli inside. 5 bucks gets you the same combo sold for 10$ just 3 doors down at Joe's Sports Bar (same owner).

                                                                                                    Breadboard- Best breakfast in the Valley, bar-none (ashland).

                                                                                                    Mexican- Mazatlan Grill in Central Point.

                                                                                                    Pizza- Its a toss-up between Abbys and Angelos, unless you like the overpriced hype that Kaleidoscope sells.

                                                                                                    Honorable mentions: Bento, Caldera (sketchy and dark, but good), Big Town Hero (sad I know). Aside from that you're going to have a better lunch from one of the taco carts parked downtown.

                                                                                                    The Valley is a barren wasteland of low standards and tastelessness. Maybe its because Medford is a bigtime retirement destination and none of the seniors can taste anything. Ashland is mostly hype; very few of their restaurants would succeed in a larger more competitive environment.

                                                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: Dman21

                                                                                                      Pizza: Martolli's (on the Plaza, in Ashland) does a great set of pies, especially the meat-heavy ones.

                                                                                                      Breakfast: Morning Glory and/or Smithfield's. I know some people who swear by Breadboard, but Morning Glory and Smithfield's are where I put my money.

                                                                                                      Asian (Japanese/Chinese): Kobe or Taroko, although I think the edge goes to Taroko.

                                                                                                      Italian: Cucina Biazzi. Yes, it's prix fixe, but it's excellent.

                                                                                                      Hawaiian: NoHo's in Medford. Classic teenage boy food, especially the Korean Ribs; very similar to what one would get at J&J or L&L in the Bay Area.

                                                                                                      I've enjoyed a couple of meals at 38 Central, but it's an appetizer restaurant: the kind of place where you'll be happier if you order a bunch of appetizers instead of the mains.

                                                                                                      Hana Sushi (after they re-open) for inexpensive sushi, especially the evil, fried stuff like their Michigan roll.

                                                                                                      Smithfield's for giant-slab-o'meat dinners. But order the charcuterie plate, and the duck cassoulet or the buttermilk fried chicken, and you'll be a happy eater.

                                                                                                      Ashland's best restaurants are geared toward well-heeled tourists from the Bay Area, Portland, and Seattle. There are good places more off the beaten track, but they are harder to find.

                                                                                                      1. re: w0x0f

                                                                                                        I've had one good experience with Hana and one bad. I really want them to be good considering the location and their hours (hard to find late-night food).

                                                                                                        Perhaps another venture is in order.

                                                                                                        1. re: Dman21

                                                                                                          Taroko (62 E. Main) is excellent and open late most nights. Sushi not as inexpensive as Hana, however, but most regular rolls are fairly priced.

                                                                                                      2. re: Dman21

                                                                                                        Any list of Rogue Valley's best that doesn't include New Sammys is questionable in my book. Porters? Really? That is your high class?
                                                                                                        As for mex, La Tapitia should also be noted. A combo grocery store, butcher shop and restaurant. Always great. Like the tacos the best.
                                                                                                        Caldera for food? Humm. Not sure about that.
                                                                                                        On the plaza, Grilla Bites gets overlooked. Huge portion sandwich and good too.

                                                                                                        1. re: runninrob

                                                                                                          La Tapitias the little place in phoenix right? I have been there once and it was good. They had old bottled sodas too.

                                                                                                          Sry on New Sammys, I haven't been yet.

                                                                                                      3. New Sammy's definitely at the top of the list, but don't expect a typical "fine-dining-house" experience. Also, take your time.
                                                                                                        As for Medford, I'm rather surprised that nobody has mentioned Elements, at the corner of Main and (I believe) Front. Tapas and more, with a good wine list and bar.

                                                                                                        1. I agree with most of you...the food in the Rogue Valley is pretty bad. We have got to the point where we don't eat out much anymore. We save our palate for Portland and Bay Area restaurants.

                                                                                                          For those of you who mention Porters, Gogi's, or Sammy's...even those places are hit and miss.

                                                                                                          I frequent the Jacksonville Inn. Mostly for the ambiance. The food there is at least consistent...you know what you're getting if you have had it before. The service is always excellent!

                                                                                                          I have traveled alot, New York, Chicago, Dallas, San Francisco...and those of us who know and appreciate fine food must keep in mind we do live in the Rogue Valley and have to accept the trade off for the wonderful lifestyle we have, I did.

                                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: wwmacbiz

                                                                                                            I don't get the recommendations for Jacksonville Inn. Been there; seems dated, and the food and service seemed definitely targeted at tourists who don't know the area.

                                                                                                            The owners of Taroko in Ashland are ex-San Francisco, and seem to have brought Bay Area Asian with them. Coquina on A Street is excellent. A lot of the others...well, I wouldn't be eating at Coi or Manresa every night anyway; I think for what's available here, it's at least priced well vs. the Bay Area.

                                                                                                            1. re: w0x0f

                                                                                                              Dated, yes...touristy, yes...as I said though...consistent. I either eat outside on the patio or in the Bistro...very intimate and personal for the locals. My favorites are the Sauteed Mushrooms, Escargot, and the Lamb loin chops.

                                                                                                              I did visit Taroko's website...I'll go next time I'm in Ashland...Use to be a big fan of Greenleaf however, my last few visits have been a disappointment.

                                                                                                              1. re: wwmacbiz

                                                                                                                Recommended at Taroko: the hamachi collar, the xaio long bao, any of the other dumplings, much of the sushi, and the Mongolian beef. I've only missed there on the tofu-based items, probably because I'm not a fan of tofu.

                                                                                                          2. Did anyone know that Amuse Restaurant in Ashland is one of the top 5 restaurants in Oregon.. Here is my list. 1-Amuse 2- Coquina 3-Tot 4-Kobe 5-Smithfields 6-Agave 7-Rubys 8-The Wharf 9-La Tapatia 10-C-Street Bistro 11-My Way Cafe 12-Bambu 13-Arbor House 14- New Sammys.

                                                                                                            wwmacbiz you maybe should stop eating at your posted restaurants if you frequent Jacksonville Inn that must be why you have lost your palette. I hope you open your wallet to these places. Rouge Valley has wonderful bounty in locally farmed products. Eat at the top 5 of the listed restaurant and maybe you will bring support to those Southern Oregon restaurants.

                                                                                                            4 Replies
                                                                                                            1. re: hautefood42

                                                                                                              Hey HF42, where and what is the My Way Cafe?

                                                                                                              1. re: bbqboy

                                                                                                                I'm happy hautefood42 mentioned this place because I can't wait to try it. Here's the website for the cafe, which is in Ruch, close to Jacksonville.

                                                                                                              2. re: hautefood42

                                                                                                                hautefood42...First, I cannot believe that you are calling me out on a post from July 2012..how about keeping things current!

                                                                                                                In response, I have been to many of the restaurants that you have listed...most recently the C Street Bistro.

                                                                                                                Since it is in your "Top 10" I have to say I would not recommend this restaurant.

                                                                                                                I would like to add that I find the "novelty" of Sammy's overrated.

                                                                                                                Also, my palette is just fine. I have eaten in some of the best restaurants from New York to San Francisco to Portland

                                                                                                                I will agree, Ashland does have a larger choice of cuisines and some fine restaurants...still nothing to compare with those you would find in metropolitan areas.

                                                                                                                With that being said...next time in Portland check out Luce on Burnside or OX on MLK Blvd.

                                                                                                                I live in the Rogue Valley and I'm proud of it...however, when it comes to "Fine Dining" it does not exist.

                                                                                                              3. Recently moved to Medford and scoping out the food. Glad to see the "local" and "foodie" scene picking up.

                                                                                                                Favorite: Elements Tapas Bar, good food and drinks, wonderful staff.
                                                                                                                Also good:
                                                                                                                Downtown Market for weekday lunches.
                                                                                                                Bambu, although somewhat spendy and crowded.
                                                                                                                Lark's also in Ashland but also a second place in downtown Medford).
                                                                                                                Pomodori, quality Italian.
                                                                                                                Capers, Italian/med
                                                                                                                Cafe Dejeuner, 4 meals total, one superb, 2 very good, one "meh."
                                                                                                                Lemongrass Thai, like the curry but not the pad thai.

                                                                                                                Best Mexican is by far La Tapatia, the tiny place in Phoenix - NOT El Tapatio, the restaurant next to the car dealership. There is also a Michoacan taco place on Riverside in Medford that has good carne asada.

                                                                                                                Porter's is good for drinks and Happy Hour, although not my favorite for dinner.

                                                                                                                1. Hi all. I have lived in Ashland for 6 months and I too am looking for good food here and in and around medford. Most people here agree on the same restaurants. I am surprised i have not seen SAMMICH on here. maybe it's somewhat new, and it is on the expensive side, but the house made brisket is to die for. Owner Chandra, from Chicago also makes a great Chicago beef sandwich. The bread is not that imaginative, but I go for the brisket and Chandra, who is a kick. Daily specials too. Pastrami sammich made with her brisket is $12 but sooooo worth it. It's a splurge for me, but I have to have it regularly.

                                                                                                                  ALSO, worth mentioning in Ashland is the newish CALDERA BREWERY, not the taphouse downtown, but the restaurant next to the brewery near the 2nd ashland exit. The FOOD IS REALLY REALLY GOOD. Imaginative and delicious. WE have been several times and never had a bad meal! The beer is completely outragously wonderful, with around 40 beers to choose from. Their beers, such as Hatch Chili beer, has just the perfect amount of subtle flavors as do all the flavored beers. Try the beer sampler which gives you 5 small glasses of your choice. CALDERA is probably our favorite restaurant in town now. My family convinced me to try a beer here and now I am hooked! And i didn't even drink beer before this. Peppadew pepper appetizer - excellent. Daily pairings of food & beer. Gnocchi is really great! Prawn Po Boy is one of our faves. Cheddar cheese soup is fantastic. Even the jalapeno poppers are made with real peppers and the happy hour menu is fun!

                                                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: dogs4susan

                                                                                                                    Unless it has changed a lot since then, we had a completely different experience at Caldera Brewing. Beer was ok, service was ok, but the food, for us, was absolutely awful. Took two bites of my burger and left the rest. Normally, I would think a burger to be a safe/simple choice, but they had mixed something(??garlic) in with the meat, so as to render it inedible. Nothing else we ordered was any better.

                                                                                                                    Restaurants in Ashland seem to change a lot, but for Italian, we have always had fairly good luck with Cucina Biazzi. If you do try it, you might want to know that you don't need to order their whole menu, they are pretty flexible.

                                                                                                                    1. re: cometraveler

                                                                                                                      Are you sure, cometraveler, that you are talking about the actual brewery and not the taphouse downtown? I would be shocked. I too had a burger there that was excellent. We went 2 weeks ago with 12 people after my son's concert and I tasted everyone's food! The raviolis were great, even the fruit & cheese plate had candied hazelnuts & superb cheeses on it. Like i said, it's only been open around a year and I started going 6 months ago and have had nothing but excellent food, and surprisingly so. Is the Italian place you are talking about Pasta Piazzi?or Cucina Biazzi? they sound similar!

                                                                                                                      1. re: dogs4susan

                                                                                                                        It might be a long shot but The Wharf in Medford is a really good diveā€¦ If Anthony Bourndain were to visit MFR I think he would go there for sure. Fish and Chips are solid, Chowder is solid, Peel n' Eat Shrimp. Oh and they have a full bar, or you can get a bucket of Coronitas. I saw Amuse is doing lunches thurday-saturday, so that might be a good ashland option.. Yes Sammich is a simple and wonderful meal. Chow.

                                                                                                                        1. re: dogs4susan

                                                                                                                          Pasta Piatti and Cucina Biazzi are very different; PP is more generic Italian, and is owned by the same folks who own Sesame Asian Kitchen. Cucina Biazzi is a classic five course prix fixe dinner-only restaurant: antipasti, primi, secondi, salad, dessert. PP is "let's have Italian tonight"; CB is more "where should we celebrate [fill in event]?".

                                                                                                                    2. Eat in Ashland! However, if you do want to try some places in Medford, please be sure to go to Paison's. It's next to the Library downtown - you'll see umbrellas outside. Go for lunch. They will absolutely surprise you!!! It's not just pizza -- go see for yourself, you won't be sorry. Otherwise, visit Porters, they are really special -- excellent atmosphere, excellent food, little pricey but you get what you pay for there! Another favorite is McGrath's right next to Harry and Davids. They are known for their fish, prices are excellent as well as food and drinks. I really enjoy this place -- family owned. If you're a health nut, head for Ashland! Oh, in Medford, there is one really special place - go to Bambu's. Prices are very reasonable for what you get, and the food is absolutely delicious!