Don't even think about it.
My wife and I felt like getting out of town (Portland) this morning, and found ourselves driving out Hwy 14 and stopping in Stevenson at the Big River Grill. We were met by a very sociable young man along with a couple nice girls who made up the serving staff.
First, we ordered our drinks from the young man who promptly poured and served, but had them backwards. No big. (However, mine was an alleged lemonade which tasted as though a bit of juice from one of those cute little plastic lemons was added to a glass of ice water....then an actual lemon wedge was then inserted on the glass rim to encourage the illusion. (Worst lemonade EVER!) Then my wife ordered a bowl of chili and a salad and I ordered a basic burger and a cup of the daily soup special; New York Style clam chowder.
Well.....the "New York Style Clam Chowder", possessed absolutely nothing eluded to by any of those words. It was neither chowder, nor clam, and any good New Yorker would've given these people a good tongue lashing for having the nerve to serve them (basically) Campbell's vegetable soup straight out of the can. True, it WAS a reddish color....which might mimic a "tomato base" touted by the server. I did find one piece of ham in it, but clams? Really.....if there was any part of a clam in there it had to be microscopic. Then there was the "Basic Burger" (which came ala carte).... $7 for a beef patty on a bun with one lone iceberg lettuce leaf and some mayo. Burgerville has an infinitely better burger complete with lettuce, tomato, onions, pickles & order goodies accompanied by fries and a drink for less than this pathetic lone smallish beef & bread.
Meanwhile, across the table my lovely wife was staring into her bowl of soupy black beans.....which, no matter how hard I tried, I simply could not make it look (in my mind's eye) like anything resembling the thing most of us call "Chile". While she was thusly engaged, one of the girls came by and whisked her diet coke away to freshen it up.....without bothering to find out what it was she was refilling (as she had not taken our drink orders). She returned with a nice topped off glass of Iced Tea poured over the Diet Coke. Well....her heart was in the right place....but certainly her brain was somewhere else. The salad had that wilting look to it, and, although there is, on occasion, a time and a place in life for a good wilting look.....this certainly was NOT it!
The consistency of this total experience was complete when it took me a good few minutes to even get a server's attention so we could at least pay for the damages and vacate the premises.
Good food? What!? You guys have GOT to be kidding!?
Good service? Another joke.
This place doesn't have a CLUE about either of these things!!
Good food, beer, and people.
My girlfriends and I stopped here for lunch after a soak at Carson Hotsprings. This grill has a bright and clean pub-like atmosphere with comfortable booths. My friend loves the veggie burger because it's made on-site, it's very flavorful, and contains a variety of grains and veggies like mushrooms. I enjoyed my mushroom burger. The patty had the distinct flavor of being grilled over a fire and the onions were carmelized to perfection. The black-bean chili is spicy without being hot. The pasta salad is really nothing special but salt livened it up. The selection of beer is small but varied. I had Snow Plow but my friend had the stout from Walking Man Brewery which is just down the block. The carrot cake has no nuts, the frosting is creamy and tastes like cheesecake, and it's garnished with toasted coconut. Delish! The service was fabulous. The girls were friendly, energetic, prompt, and conversational. But the BEST part is this; one friend left her glassess on the table. We stopped at the end of the block so she could go back and get them, but no need! A server had them in her hand and was running down the street to return them! That's what I call customer service! Traffic is a little slower in the winter but Stevenson in general is a cute little town so expect more people trying to get away from the city in the summer months. Enjoy!