Thursday, October 21, 2010
Greenleaf Restaurant | Ashland, OR
In a town where world-class theater is expected by its visitors, the same can be said for the demand in high-quality food. Now, that’s not to say that the local restaurants and eateries are in direct competition with the latest revival of Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” or a modern twist to Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice,” but to keep up with the diverse tastes of the audiences attending these fine programs, many of Ashland’s finest chefs have had to reinvent and redefine the way we eat. Take, for example, the Greenleaf Restaurant.
Located just a short walk from the downtown venues that house the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, the Greenleaf Restaurant is the brainchild of chef and owner Daniel Greenblatt, who opened this quaint establishment in 1985. With a friendly wait staff and a varied menu that includes selections made from local ingredients, diners are treated to a warm and inviting dining experience.
Seating is available upstairs and downstairs, but as lovely as that appeared on the day of our visit, we elected to take advantage of the nice weather and chose to sit out on their back patio. This was especially charming since we were able to overlook Lithia Creek as well as take in the sights and sounds of Ashland’s open-air market.
I know what you’re thinking, what about the food? Atmosphere and personality aside, let’s get to the things that are really important.
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner is the order of the day, and it all gets started at 8:00 a.m. every morning. Choices during these hours include omelets, frittatas, and scrambles. There are also a variety of waffle and pancake combinations. And when the clock strikes noon, entrees range anywhere from a variety of pastas, two kinds of flatbread pizzas, over twenty different wraps and sandwiches, and over ten hearty salads.
Looking for just an afternoon snack? Select appetizers include exotic selections such as a feta pate, a hummus plate, dolmades, Italian fries, and garlic mushrooms. A favorite of ours was their tofu satay, cubes of organic tofu fried crispy and served with a side of the Greenleaf’s own spicy peanut sauce.
Oh, by the way, everything on the menu is available for those on the go, meaning that the Greenleaf is known for their boxed meals, which can be enjoyed as a picnic in nearby Lithia Park or in the OSF courtyard as you wait for the show to begin.
But don’t just take our word for it. Stop in for a bite when visiting Ashland. “Fresh, healthy, and delicious.” This is what the folks at the Greenleaf promise to all of their customers, and that’s certainly what they deliver.