Stumptown Lunch at Disney World?!

‘Tis the season to get the heck out of the rain and snow and cold, and get ye to warmer climes. (At least the lucky and/or smart people do that.) So it’s no big surprise that one of my friends happened upon one of the Stumptown Lunch signs at a Five Guys in Orlando. Coolest of beans!!!

[Thank you, Bernstein! Enjoy your vacation in the sun, and I’ll probably see you in freezing D.C. sometime soon.]

P.S. We’ve been on a mini hiatus due to LOTS of IRL changes going on. We’ll be back in the New Year with more reviews, videos and all-around fun Stumptown Lunch stuff!

Here’s to a splendid 2013!

CHEERS!

News: Stumptown Lunch and DRY Soda Meetup!

What are you doing Thursday evening? No plans?? Why not come out, have some fun and get some cool stuff!?! [Um, some FREE stuff!! Keep reading….]

This Thursday happens to be Last Thursday, that one special day of the month the Alberta Arts District turns their charming little neighborhood into a spectacle of art and entertainment for all ages to enjoy. Even better, DRY Soda’s Savor the Flavor Tour is making Last Thursday their official Portland stop that night!

So what better place for me to hang out with my pals from DRY Soda and meet up with some of my other favorite pals: YOU GUYS!! I’m officially inviting all of you to come hangout and enjoy the festivities with us, rain or shine—but let’s hope for some sunshine!

Not only that, but if you stop by the DRY Soda Truck and tell us the “secret” password (see below), you’ll get a special treat from Stumptown Lunch and DRY Soda!

Could anything be cooler than that?

Well…the DRY Soda Truck is going to be parked right outside Salt & Straw (they make delicious small-batch, homemade ice cream that even Oprah loves), so you can pop in and buy yourself a couple of creamy scoops for dessert! That’s pretty darn cool, too! (Again, let’s hope for sunshine….)

Here’s the information:

When: Thursday, March 29, 2012
Where: DRY Soda’s Tour Truck will be parked just outside of Salt & Straw
Map: 2035 NE Alberta Street
Time: 5  to 8 p.m.
Secret Password: Put A Bird On It!

Feel free to shoot me an email or tweet me to let me know if you’re going to stop by! Hope to see you Thursday!!

Cheers!
The Lunch Lady
xoxoxoxoxo

Stumptown Profile: Beaverton Foods

Beaverton Foods
Website | Twitter | Facebook
By Sarah Keech
Photos by Matt Wong

If you’re anything like me, you’ve loved Beaver Brand mustards and horseradish products for a long time. But, did you know they’re all produced in the Portland area? Did you know the entire company came out of the trials and tribulations of a young mother just trying to survive the Great Depression?

I was recently invited to tour Beaverton Foods, and learning the history and visiting the spot where these quality products are made has certainly made me a lifelong fan…well, it really didn’t take too much convincing!

The History

Times were tight in 1929 in Beaverton, Oregon, so when Rose Biggi needed to put food on her family’s table, she became resourceful. She ground and bottled horseradish from her family’s farmland and traded it for local butcher’s meat to use in her spaghetti sauce.

A few years later, Rose had a chance meeting with Eve Meyer, the wife of Fred G. Meyer, who at the time was just opening up his first supermarket in downtown Portland. Rose began selling her horseradish at the new Fred Meyer store, which was no small feat as, at that time, traveling to downtown Portland from Beaverton was an all day journey and there were no paved roads. (And you thought travelling on Highway 26 was bad!)

Those small initial endeavors have evolved into what is now Beaverton Foods, the largest specialty condiment producer in the United States.

Rose’s son, Gene Biggi, now 83, is the current president and the driving force behind the company’s expansion in the condiment market, but growing this specialty company took many years and many, many taste tests to get to where it is now.

Gene initially expanded the business by creating the company’s first mustard, which all came about while he was on a date with his girlfriend at a Chinese food restaurant in Beaverton when he was only 19. Inspired by the flavor the restaurant’s hot mustard, Gene asked the chef how it was made and then set out to recreate the product in a more consumer-friendly manner. The resulting product, Hot Chinese Mustard, took two to three years for him to develop and perfect, and it can still be found in stores today.

With a keen eye for what his customers are looking for, Gene is also responsible for the first gourmet Sweet and Hot Mustard made in the U.S., and first Honey Mustard to be made and sold anywhere.

A constant innovator, Gene is credited as one of the first in the condiment marketplace to realize the importance of using plastic squeeze bottles instead of glass in the bottling process to ensure safety, freshness and ease of use for his customers.

The Company Today

More than 80 years and four generations later, the company remains loyal to its Washington County roots and business is thriving. Beaverton Foods is the corporate umbrella for many of the condiment brands you see in your grocery store and restaurants, including Beaver Brand and Inglehoffer. In fact, their products can be found in 98 percent of grocery stories in the U.S.

The business remains controlled by the Biggi family, with Gene’s son, Domonic, is the Executive Vice President and his grandson, Jeffrey, serves as the Food Service Manager.

Innovation and an eye for the future are still very important to their business. Some of their latest products to hit the market directly incorporate a growing food trend: bacon. But unlike similar bacon condiments (i.e., bacon mayonnaise), their products are healthier (low in fat, cholesterol and calories), yet the bacon flavor is bold.

Beaverton Foods is also taking on a new product line, authentic wasabi. In December 2010, the company purchased Pacific Farms of Florence to expand into the real wasabi market—which is very rare outside of Japan. With wasabi, the company added new equipment to their facility for processing and they hope to increase their wasabi sales as the national sushi trend continues to flourish.

The company employs about 80 people at their Hillsboro manufacturing plant, and the Biggis are pleased that even through the tough days of our recent recession they never had to lay anyone off.

The Biggi family and Beaverton Foods certainly exemplify Oregon’s pioneer spirit that hard work, ingenuity and innovation do pay off.

So let us know: What’s your favorite Beaverton Food product?

NEW Stumptown Lunch Contest!

OK, you know we love Five Guys Burgers and Fries, right? Did you know that all across the country Five Guys uses some of the quotes from our review on their in-store marketing displays? Mind you, we’re not in all of their restaurants, but we are in a lot of them. Like here. Here (in a ShayTards video!). Here. And here. So cool!

Here’s your mission: Find one of our signs in a Five Guys, take a picture of yourself and the sign, then tweet it (@stumptownlunch) or email it (sarah@stumptownlunch.com) to us. Easy, right?!

The first person to do so will win a $20 Five Guys gift card, a $10 iTunes gift card and a few other nifty Stumptown-centric items!

Just DO IT…we know you want to!

Good luck!

Hint: This is what you’re looking for….

Gallery: Some Summer 2011 Food Porn

Oh, summer, where have you gone? Didn’t this summer seem to fly by faster than usual? (Maybe that was because summertime weather didn’t arrive in PDX until about August?) Of course, as we look back at these photos, we realize we certainly made the most of our eating opportunities over the past few months. Here’s our (actually short) gallery of some of the tasty tidbits we consumed. Enjoy!

Are you going to Bite?

Ready for The Bite of Oregon this weekend? We are!! It’s our favorite summer food weekend of the year. We love to taste-test delicious tidbits from all around our beautiful state. Great food, delightful drinks, rockin’ entertainment and a fun crowd…all that, and it benefits Special Olympics Oregon! Awesome! :)

Here are the deets:
FOOD
WINE/BEER
ENTERTAINMENT

WHEN
Friday, August 12, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Saturday, August 13, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Sunday, August 14, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

WHERE
Tom McCall Waterfront Park, Portland

ADMISSION
$15 Weekend Pass
$10 One Day Pass
$5 Early Bird Special (Friday entry before 2 p.m.)

[NOTE: Admission does not include the price of food or beverage.]

We sadly missed the 2010 event, but check out our seriously fun photos from 2009. Gallery: Bite of Oregon 2009

Five Guys love from a ShayTards video….

pocatello-fiveguys

Who knew we were up in Idaho Five Guys restaurants?? Well, I didn’t until I saw this on a rather old ShayTards video.

You can fast forward to 12:16 to see their visit to the Pocatello Five Guys!

Stumptown Lunch News: Where we’ve been….

It’s been a few months since we’ve updated the site—and we apologize. Like so many others in Stumptown, 2009 has been a rough year for The Lunch Lady. Not only are we looking for a “real” job, but a series of electronic equipment catastrophes have whittled our budget and exhausted some of our Stumptown spirit.

First, our beloved laptop crashed suddenly one morning—and by crashed, we pretty much mean committed suicide, taking a lot of precious information/moments/settings with it. As if that wasn’t enough, a few weeks later our digital camera decided to go into hiding (i.e., we accidentally misplaced it).

Since The Lunch Lady’s unemployment checks barely allow for the occasional lunch out (when someone else isn’t paying), we had to take a break from Stumptown Lunch to recoup our expensive losses.

But things are looking up! We have a new netbook (we love Fry’s), and just today we finally broke out the wallet to get a new digital camera (we also love Best Buy). So we are back in the lunch review business—especially the cheap lunch reviews, because we are STILL unemployed!

Thank you to all the readers who have been coming back—even if we didn’t have any exciting new content. (We approved about 20 comments today because we’ve simply been too depressed to check them recently.) We now have a new poll up (thanks to some help from our Burgerville friends), a few reviews in the pipeline and Bite of Oregon is just over a week away!

We’re back! We’re just warning you!!!!

Cheers,
The Lunch Lady

Stumptown Lunch News: Beers at Burgerville?

This is an interesting story. While it’s common to see alcohol served in fast food joints in Europe, it’s pretty unheard of here in the U.S. But that might be about to change if a new Burgerville in Vancouver gets their liquor license approved.

If approved, the Burgerville location will offer beer and wine along with their burgers and fries. If the plan is successful, the company might consider expanding alcohol sales to all of their restaurants. (Um, I don’t think this is very likely to happen in Oregon with our rigid OLCC, but who knows!)

No word if you will be able to get a brew to-go at the drive-thru!

Do you think serving beer and wine at a fast food restaurant is a good idea? Vote in our new poll!

Stumptown Lunch News: The economy sucks!

This is gloomy, but not unexpected, news. The Oregonian reports on the sad state of the local restaurant business. We’ve had to pinch our own dining-out dollars recently and this awful, crappy weather doesn’t help! If you have the means, visit your favorite local eateries. We don’t want Portland to become a bastion of just Burger Kings and Taco Bells!