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Vietnamese At Lac Viet Market – North Market Columbus

To visit my brand new nephew, I had to take a trip to america’s heartland – Columbus, OH. When I landed, we headed right out for a quick lunch at North Market. It’s like the West Side Market in Cleveland, or the Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia, or like a ghetto version of the Ferry Building. But then every market is a ghetto version compared to Ferry Building. There is a farmers market outside on Saturdays. Inside, there are a wide variety of food vendors.

My bro picked out Lac Viet, a little vietnamese counter. Their menu only has thirteen items, which is awesome. The more focus, the better! They also have a proper restaurant in the suburbs. The prices here are dirt cheap. Their banh mi is supposed to be out of this world.

It was a thousand degrees out so I could not bring myself to eat pho. But my nutjob of a brother did. Yum! The broth was great, which is always my sign for excellent pho.

I ended up having something I’ve never had before. I love vermicelli bowls, and I equally love rice plates. But I always get one or the other. On the Lac Viet menu, the vermicelli bowl/rice plate items are listed as being together with a particular topping, with your choice of rice/noodles. I thought this was for picking either rice or noodles. So I ordered grilled chicken with noodles. Then he replied with, so no rice? And I said no, just noodles. And then I said, wait, I can get both? And he said of course! I didn’t know you could do this! So that’s what I got in the end, a combination vermicelli bowl/rice plate with grilled chicken. And damn, it was glorious. There were noodles, broken rice, all the veggies that come with the vermicelli bowls, nuoc cham, and heaps of delicious grilled chicken. It was a surprising delight! Now, every time I go to a vietnamese place, I’m going to want this!
Lac Viet on Urbanspoon

Espresso Stouts Galore In Oregon

Oregon loves their beer and their microbrews. They love it as much as they love coffee and flannel. So we took advantage of the fact that so many different microbrews were available, from near and far, and drank a whole lot of espresso stouts. We purchased these at whole foods, and the check out girl actually chuckled at us after she rung everything up and was telling us how much it was. You don’t want to know. But hey, when in Oregon! The Overcast Espresso Stout, probably my personal favorite. It was super smooth. I don’t know what the open container laws are like in Oregon, but we drank it in Drake Park anyway. Arrest us, we don’t care!

The only non-stout that somehow snuck into our purchases was the Maui CoCoNut Porter. I think I saw this on tv once. It’s a good beer, but it does not have any kind of coconut taste in it, at all! Slightly false advertising. But a good beer.

Here’s the Laurelwood Espresso Stout, another favorite. J just happened to pour it out into a mug for espresso. It was just a coincidence. Also quite smooth, a bit stronger than Overcast.

Here’s where things start to get not so tasty. These two stouts by Mikkellen, Barrel-Aged Black Hole, are brewed with coffee, honey, and vanilla, and aged in either whisky or wine barrels. We thought these would be amazing. We were wrong. These just tasted strong and bad. And they were freakin’ expensive too. Coffee stout fails!

Dark Truth Stout. Ok, so this one was the worst one. It tasted like ashtray.
The Yeti Imperial Stout from Great Divide Brewing. This one was ok, but really strong, not necessarily in the best way, and just not really drinkable. I mean it wasn’t bad, but it certainly wasn’t great. And there you have it! And no, we did not drink all of these in one sitting. Drink responsibly!

Stop In Eugene

Eugene ended up being a good half-way stopping point for the long journey from the coast back to Bend. Plus, we had to stop so that J could watch a World Cup game. Much to my surprise, the Eugene Saturday Market was taking place, which of course had a farmer’s market along with it and a food court. Everything was locally grown and looked fabulous. There were berries everywhere.
White raspberries!

And all kinds of cherries!

But really, what everyone had, and what looked the best, were the oregon grown strawberries.

There were veggies as well, of course. Here are some beautiful cherry tomatoes of different colors. Although I know that tomatoes are actually fruit.

There were also tons of root vegetables, like these turnips and beets. Potatoes were also all over the place.

Along with some cucumbers and some onions and some even more gorgeous red torpedo onions.

This dude was selling crazy mushrooms that he grows. I wonder what other kinds of non-food mushrooms he grows? Because after all, this is Eugene, and man, hippies abound!

Dungeness crab is everywhere in Oregon, and you can even find some here.

Here, they were selling freshly homemade salsas as well as fresh corn tortillas that a lady was cooking up, right on the spot.

There were food vendors in the proper food court, which was part of the regular craft vendor part. But in the farmers market, there were also a few food vendors, including this pastie shop.

J got some fish tacos. He liked these, but was surprised by the spicy salsa that was plopped on top.

I got a little teriyaki bowl from a food court vendor called “nice rice”. My nice rice bowl was brown rice topped with teriyaki chicken and veggies. It was perfectly fine. All the produce looked amazingly fresh, and if I lived in Eugene, I would hope to get my fresh fruits and veggies here all the time!

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