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Covered bridges are a charming rememberance of a time in the U.S. around the early part of the 20th century. Most are made of wood and are one-lane. There is an excellent and well-maintained example just west of Sutherlin and not far from U.S. Interstate 5. The Rochester Bridge is one of the longest in Oregon and spans the Calapooya River. Designed and built by Floyd C. Frear, the white-painted bridge has wonderful arched window openings.
Written May 28, 2006
Address: On Stearns Lane
Not your typical coffee and tea house, the White Horse is owned and operated by Kristin and Leo Lusk. Kristin is an accomplished gourmet chef and creates many of the yummy pastries that sit in the display case. The hearty cinnamon roll is not to be missed! It is huge, fluffy, with a bold butter/cinnmon flavor and topped with a light cream cheese frosting. Yum! She also cooks up great breakfasts each morning that consist of eggs, bacon, sausage, omelettes, pancakes, french toast and waffles. There is also a small lunch menu. She is also an artist creating paintings and sculptures, many of which adorn the walls and exteriors of the restaurant. Leo is in charge of the coffee roaster. Roasting on the premises is something that will assure you that the coffee is fresh roasted and of the best quality.
Stop in, get some coffee or tea and a pastry and check out the paintings and sculptures. They also have live music on occassion. It's just a nice place to hang out, have a light breakfast, and read the morning paper. FYI - The White Horse is not open for dinner.
Favorite Dish: Hearty cinnamon rolls, tea waffles (yes, there are tea leaves in the batter which give them a unique taste); fresh roasted coffee.
Updated Jun 1, 2006
Address: 960 East Central
Good and authentic Mexican food in Oregon? It is so and Si Casa Flores has it. Their large menu includes your typical favorites and combinations, but also has Mazatlan and Jalisco specialties with the former focusing on seafood and the latter on fajitas and meats. Portions are ample and filling. Try the sangria as well which was a bit on the sweet side but a nice accompanyment and alternative to cerveza. But if you're in for appetizers, or even if you're not, get an order of pork wings. Named because of their resemblance to chicken wings, these are pork ribs French trimmed leaving a large amount of bone for gripping. The pork is slow cooked to a tender perfection, easily chewed off the bone. Served with really good french fries (in a Mexican restaurant?) and a BBQ dipping sauce, these are the most innovative dish I've ever seen in a Mexican restaurant and well worth the order.
Favorite Dish: Seafood enchiladas, tacos de camarones, pork wings, sangria
Written May 28, 2006
Address: 330 Dakota Street
Located only a half-mile from I-5, Pedotti's offers home cooked Italian dishes and is defintely worth passing the various fast food joints that surround the exit from I-5. The atmosphere is cozy with tables in the middle of the dining and booths along the walls. Sauces and soups are homemade and it shows in the taste. I had the spaghetti and meatballs and the sauce and homemade meatballs were excellent and quite a deal at $9.95. It also came with a salad (or soup) with very crisp lettuce, tomato, olives, and an excellent Italian dressing (my choice) that I'm also told is homemade. Great service and a nice list of Oregon wines on the small wine list. Rita had the interesting chicken alfredo lasagne which came doused in an alfredo sauce. While the taste was great it was much too rich to eat too much. The portion was also huge!
Definitely pass the Burger King and McDonald's and seek out this cozy and tasty restaurant. It's also just across the street from the tourist information center.
Favorite Dish: Spaghetti and meatballs; great salad
Written May 28, 2006
Address: 1332 West Central Avenue
This is next door to the Sutherlin Inn and is lit up bright and pink. 24 HOURS -- food. Something interesting we noticed is that there must be NOTHING to do in Sutherlin. Outside the gas stations, mini-marts and even outside this retaurant, young folks were hanging out on the sidewalk and smoking cigarettes.
Anyway -- at 11:30pm, there were 5 people in the restaurant. The waitress, the cook, a fellow traveler (he checked in to the hotel just after us), Mark and I. Actually, after the waitress took our orders, she had to get the attention of the cook, who was outside, smoking a cigarette.
Favorite Dish: The food was fine. Nothing amazing, but it tasted fine and went down well on an empty stomach. I'm trying to remember, and I just can't.... but hey, if you've been driving all day and are ready to eat something, this is a fine place to do it.
Updated Sep 9, 2004
Address: 125 Ponderosa Dr, Sutherlin, OR 97479
Phone: (541) 459-2632
For the past 4 or 5 years on Memorial Day weekend, the owners of the Sutherlin Inn have run a two-day cycling tour out of their hotel. The casual tour riding is through some less traveled roads that feature some of the beautiful scenery in the area. There are lots of valley views with farms and the slopes of local mountains covered in pines. The weather plays a big part in the beauty with clouds often hugging the mountain tops and providing a misty atmosphere among the tall pines. Food is the focus as there is a group breakfast at the White Horse Coffee Shop on the first morning, a lunch stop in historic Oakland at Tolley's, and a gourmet dinner at the White Horse in the evening. The second day features a picnic with provisions purchased at a local grocery store at a picnic ground along the banks of the scenic Umpqua River. Saturday's ride is 26 miles while Sunday's is 43. The pace is very casual averaging 12 mph.
SAG is provided so people can decide to ride as much or as little as they want and also serves as protection for the riders on the few busy sections of road. The folks who do this ride are all very fun, nice, and interesting. And the organizers are two of nicest guys and characters you'd ever hope to meet. It's a great way to experience the area.
Rides start and end at the Sutherlin Inn. Be sure to ask for the bike event discount when making your reservations.
Equipment: Bikes and associated equipment
Updated May 28, 2006
Address: 1400 Hospitality Place