Restaurant Review- Bend Bulletin

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The Stihl

Typically, the first people to greet a visitor to The Stihl are fedora-hatted bar manager Cameron Springstun and bearded bartender Davidson Small. Both are happy to make recommendations from a selection of more than 350 whiskeys, to be enjoyed in the ambiance of a low-lit speakeasy.

Some of the bourbons find their way into the menu as marinades for beef dishes such as the Stihl bourbon burger ($15) and the loco moco gringo ($17), with garlic mashed potatoes, zucchini, mushroom gravy and a sunny-side-up egg. On past visits, I have enjoyed the bourbon steak fingers ($9), a starter-sized plate of lightly breaded and fried sirloin, served with horseradish and house-made honey mustard dressing.

But the two young tag-team chefs, Cody Hahn and Garrett Marsh, also do a whale of a job without whiskey supplements. Jason Gartz, founder and owner of The Stihl, raves about their dedication and creativity. I can only speak to the food, but it is delicious.

My favorite dish in recent visits was the elk shepherd’s pie ($18). Tender elk meat, seared and chopped, was swirled in a mushroom ragout with carrots, peas and corn. This was served atop mashed potatoes with green and pickled red onions, Parmesan cheese and a balsamic reduction. It is a superb rendition of an English favorite.

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