clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile
Fall Bridge at Lithia Park, Ashland, Oregon
Lithia Park in Ashland.
Tiffany Rucker/Shutterstock

The 20 Essential Restaurants in Ashland, Oregon

Where to find moules frites, banh mi, biryani, and burgers in the hilly home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival

View as Map
Lithia Park in Ashland.
| Tiffany Rucker/Shutterstock

For nearly eight months out of every year, the artsy community of Ashland Oregon, nestled into the leafy hills just above the California border, revolves around the Oregon Shakespeare Festival — a season of theater that runs from April through December and draws 120,000 visitors annually to a town of fewer than 22,000 residents. During this time, all rhythms of life — including where and when to eat — necessarily sync with curtain calls and theater locations. But there’s plenty here to keep palates entertained the rest of the year, too, with izakayas, fine dining destinations, and farm-to-table palaces spread throughout the town. Here, then, are the essential places to eat and drink in Ashland, Oregon, the theatrical gateway to the Pacific Northwest.

Note: Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission.

Read More
Eater maps are curated by editors and aim to reflect a diversity of neighborhoods, cuisines, and prices. Learn more about our editorial process. If you buy something or book a reservation from an Eater link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics policy.

Breadboard Restaurant

Copy Link

This old-school cafe at the north end of Ashland is open for breakfast and lunch only. While it can be a little daunting to pull up on a weekend morning and see dozens of people already waiting for tables, don’t fret — the wait is usually less than 15 minutes, and once you’re seated the rest happens fairly quickly. The specials board out front may win you over before you’re ever seated, but know that the popular Benedicts are a sure bet, as are the cafe’s house-baked scones and muffins. Sit out on the patio in good weather if you can.

Brothers' Restaurant

Copy Link

A downtown institution for decades, Brothers is a favorite among locals for breakfast and lunch, and on weekends it can be tough to find a table. Brothers is famous for its “Brothers Mothers” chicken soup and other delicatessen staples like corned beef hash, cheese blintzes, and a killer lox and bagel platter. When it comes to beverage, the cappuccinos here are lovely.

Dobrá Tea

Copy Link

Need a moment of Zen? Dobra is Plaza adjacent, serving luxe teas in a sunny Moroccan setting. Quiet your mind and indulge in a beautifully scented tea, a nourishing raw vegetable bowl, and a meze plate or a delicate pastry. So very Ashland.

Osteria La Briccola

Copy Link

This Northern Italian restaurant is known for its house-made, fresh pastas, available in a variety of preparations — pappardelle tossed with a lamb ragu and pistachios, bucatini with pancetta and peas. Pasta is the move here, but those who are looking for something gluten-free may prefer the smoked, wild-caught Alaskan king salmon with horseradish, or the restaurant’s shellfish-packed take on cioppino. Over at the bar, cocktails incorporate Italian liqueurs, fortified wines, and amari.

Greenleaf

Copy Link

An institution on Ashland’s plaza for more than two decades, and with three times the menu choices of nearly any other restaurant in town, there’s something for every appetite at Greenleaf. Grilled polenta alongside the vegetable-dense Ashlandistan omelet will bolster you through a hike in Lithia Park, just down the block, while lunch and dinner offer choices from piccata to bacon-wrapped meatloaf to wild Pacific cod. Plus — as the owner’s daughters have celiac disease — it has a huge, entirely gluten free menu. Eat creekside if you can, but the booths inside are cozy too.

Mix Bakeshop

Copy Link

On the best people-watching corner of the Plaza, Mix serves Stumptown coffees, gelatos, and French-ish pastries. Come here for the finest fresh croissants Ashland has to offer, and a fabulous lemon tart.

Taj Indian Cuisine

Copy Link

Locals and visitors embrace Taj’s unfiltered take on Indian cuisine. It’s all the biryanis, tandooris, vindaloos, masalas, curries, and paneer dishes you know and love, as well as dishes like malai kofta (mixed veg, nuts and cheese sauteed in a cream sauce), or aloo gobi (cauliflower and potatoes simmered with garlic and ginger).  All of those dishes are served in a cool vintage building and loads of comfortable seating.

Blue Toba

Copy Link

This casual Main Street restaurant is one of the few Indonesian restaurants in the state, specializing in classics like a rich, fall-apart-tender beef rendang and peanut-sauce-laden gado gado. The restaurant’s opor, a Javanese candlenut curry, is an earthy, gently spiced curry well complemented by the restaurant’s house-made sambal.

MÄS is the passion project for chef Josh Dorcak, who — when he isn’t flaunting his chops at the new brick-and-mortar incarnation of his adored pop-up — is busy winning the Ashland Culinary Festival’s Chef’s Showdown or landing on the New York Times’s 50 best restaurants list. His multi-course tasting menus tease, challenge, and entertain with dishes like aged duck breast with acorn miso and maple blossoms and corn dashi chawanmushi with King crab and goat milk.

From the team behind MÄS, Nama is one part izakaya, one part omakase, with a gorgeous wine and sake list. At the izakaya, chef Sarah Cook serves dishes like miso-glazed trout and black cod with corn succotash, alongside a lengthy raw bar menu featuring dishes like Washington oysters on the half-shell, shooters with ponzu and matcha, and kampachi with grapefruit and fennel pollen. The omakase is a collaboration with MÄS, which means you know it’s going to be spectacular. Produce comes from Orange Marmalade Farm, and oysters are generally Pacific Northwestern.

Larks Home Kitchen Cuisine

Copy Link

Serving upscale comfort food in palm-strewn surroundings, Larks celebrates the farms, orchards, creameries, and wineries of our valley. One of the first restaurants in Ashland to embrace the idea of farm to table, Larks continues to feature the wares of anywhere from nine to 22 local Southern Oregon purveyors in any given week. It’s both neighborhood-y and a foolproof place to celebrate. Cider-brined pork chops with huckleberry chipotle glaze, seasonal fish with roasted poblano corn polenta, and mussels steamed in garlic, white wine, and house lamb chorizo broth will smooth over any rough edges you might have accrued throughout the day.

Hearsay Restaurant, Lounge & Garden

Copy Link

Ashland is laid back, but Hearsay is one of those places that makes you want to pull out your Friday-night finest. A sleek venue with a jazzy speakeasy vibe, Hearsay multitasks like a pro. Diners can unwind in the cool, deeply upholstered lounge during happy hour, linger over Sunday brunch in the garden, and dine swankily on Columbia River steelhead and duck leg confit in a grand piano-dominated dining room.

Tacos sit on a wooden counter at Hearsay in Ashland.
Tacos at Hearsay.
Hearsay

Cocorico

Copy Link

Originally based at the Green Springs Inn & Cabins near the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument, Cocorico has moved into town, steps away from the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Here, horn-shaped campanelle arrive alongside Aleppo corn puree and confit cherry tomatoes, roast chicken comes with both plum chutney and peri peri, and the house burger is made with Ashland-raised Box R Beef. The restaurant’s particularly nice braised lamb gets a floral touch from rose harissa, sitting on a bed of Israeli couscous.

Alchemy Restaurant and Bar

Copy Link

Beyond its well-deserved reputation as the defacto choice for any special-occasion meal, Alchemy hits all the modern restaurant buttons: whiskey bar, inventive bistro offerings (foie gras “Butterfingers” with honeycomb toffee and huckleberry coulis, steak tartare with bagna cauda), elaborate wine dinners, and a jaw-dropping wine cellar curated by owner-certified sommelier Drew Gibbs. It’s impossible to have a mediocre meal here, but get the crispy duck confit with morels to be sure.

Noble Coffee Roasting

Copy Link

Coffee obsessives can stroll down to the Railroad District for a quality coffee and watch the roasting in action. Owner Jared Rennie knows his beans, and his place is a welcoming mix of industrial comforts, Wi-Fi inside and out, and house-baked muffins, scones, and pastries daily.

Morning Glory Cafe

Copy Link

The breakfast at Morning Glory deserves a place on every Ashland bucket list, thanks to dishes like ricotta-stuffed French toast and au gratin potato crepes. Comfy booths, bright surroundings, and an enchanted back garden are tailor-made for lingering over a newspaper or book. The especially friendly, gentle, and unobtrusive service makes that all the more possible.

Sammich Ashland

Copy Link

Ashland’s location of the beloved Portland sandwich shop, Sammich smokes and cures the meats for its sandwiches in-house, including its perpetually popular pastrami. Fans of the Bear can also find a knockout version of a Chicago Italian beef here, a baguette loaded with thinly-shaved roast beef and house giardiniera. Its location on the campus of Southern Oregon University make it a smart option for students looking for a next-level lunch.

Omar's Fresh Seafood and Steaks

Copy Link

A salute to old-school glamor, with deep red upholstered booths, New York steaks, lobster, and escargot, Omar’s is an Ashland classic that’s been in operation since 1946. The bouillabaisse is worth its own celebration, filled with snapper, shrimp, and calamari.

Little Shop of Bagels

Copy Link

People who won’t stand in line for anything queue up for the bagels at this tiny hole-in-the-wall shop in a strip mall uptown. The house-made schmears are equally excellent, and go early if you have your sights on an onion bagel — they tend to sell out.

Caldera Brewery & Restaurant

Copy Link

A south Ashland beacon for craft beer lovers, the acclaimed Caldera offers a menu of upscale burgers, pizzas, sandwiches, and salads, alongside beer recommendations by the helpful staff. If hops aren’t your thing, Caldera also brews its own craft soda.

Breadboard Restaurant

This old-school cafe at the north end of Ashland is open for breakfast and lunch only. While it can be a little daunting to pull up on a weekend morning and see dozens of people already waiting for tables, don’t fret — the wait is usually less than 15 minutes, and once you’re seated the rest happens fairly quickly. The specials board out front may win you over before you’re ever seated, but know that the popular Benedicts are a sure bet, as are the cafe’s house-baked scones and muffins. Sit out on the patio in good weather if you can.

Brothers' Restaurant

A downtown institution for decades, Brothers is a favorite among locals for breakfast and lunch, and on weekends it can be tough to find a table. Brothers is famous for its “Brothers Mothers” chicken soup and other delicatessen staples like corned beef hash, cheese blintzes, and a killer lox and bagel platter. When it comes to beverage, the cappuccinos here are lovely.

Dobrá Tea

Need a moment of Zen? Dobra is Plaza adjacent, serving luxe teas in a sunny Moroccan setting. Quiet your mind and indulge in a beautifully scented tea, a nourishing raw vegetable bowl, and a meze plate or a delicate pastry. So very Ashland.

Osteria La Briccola

This Northern Italian restaurant is known for its house-made, fresh pastas, available in a variety of preparations — pappardelle tossed with a lamb ragu and pistachios, bucatini with pancetta and peas. Pasta is the move here, but those who are looking for something gluten-free may prefer the smoked, wild-caught Alaskan king salmon with horseradish, or the restaurant’s shellfish-packed take on cioppino. Over at the bar, cocktails incorporate Italian liqueurs, fortified wines, and amari.

Greenleaf

An institution on Ashland’s plaza for more than two decades, and with three times the menu choices of nearly any other restaurant in town, there’s something for every appetite at Greenleaf. Grilled polenta alongside the vegetable-dense Ashlandistan omelet will bolster you through a hike in Lithia Park, just down the block, while lunch and dinner offer choices from piccata to bacon-wrapped meatloaf to wild Pacific cod. Plus — as the owner’s daughters have celiac disease — it has a huge, entirely gluten free menu. Eat creekside if you can, but the booths inside are cozy too.

Mix Bakeshop

On the best people-watching corner of the Plaza, Mix serves Stumptown coffees, gelatos, and French-ish pastries. Come here for the finest fresh croissants Ashland has to offer, and a fabulous lemon tart.

Taj Indian Cuisine

Locals and visitors embrace Taj’s unfiltered take on Indian cuisine. It’s all the biryanis, tandooris, vindaloos, masalas, curries, and paneer dishes you know and love, as well as dishes like malai kofta (mixed veg, nuts and cheese sauteed in a cream sauce), or aloo gobi (cauliflower and potatoes simmered with garlic and ginger).  All of those dishes are served in a cool vintage building and loads of comfortable seating.

Blue Toba

This casual Main Street restaurant is one of the few Indonesian restaurants in the state, specializing in classics like a rich, fall-apart-tender beef rendang and peanut-sauce-laden gado gado. The restaurant’s opor, a Javanese candlenut curry, is an earthy, gently spiced curry well complemented by the restaurant’s house-made sambal.

MÄS

MÄS is the passion project for chef Josh Dorcak, who — when he isn’t flaunting his chops at the new brick-and-mortar incarnation of his adored pop-up — is busy winning the Ashland Culinary Festival’s Chef’s Showdown or landing on the New York Times’s 50 best restaurants list. His multi-course tasting menus tease, challenge, and entertain with dishes like aged duck breast with acorn miso and maple blossoms and corn dashi chawanmushi with King crab and goat milk.

Nama

From the team behind MÄS, Nama is one part izakaya, one part omakase, with a gorgeous wine and sake list. At the izakaya, chef Sarah Cook serves dishes like miso-glazed trout and black cod with corn succotash, alongside a lengthy raw bar menu featuring dishes like Washington oysters on the half-shell, shooters with ponzu and matcha, and kampachi with grapefruit and fennel pollen. The omakase is a collaboration with MÄS, which means you know it’s going to be spectacular. Produce comes from Orange Marmalade Farm, and oysters are generally Pacific Northwestern.

Larks Home Kitchen Cuisine

Serving upscale comfort food in palm-strewn surroundings, Larks celebrates the farms, orchards, creameries, and wineries of our valley. One of the first restaurants in Ashland to embrace the idea of farm to table, Larks continues to feature the wares of anywhere from nine to 22 local Southern Oregon purveyors in any given week. It’s both neighborhood-y and a foolproof place to celebrate. Cider-brined pork chops with huckleberry chipotle glaze, seasonal fish with roasted poblano corn polenta, and mussels steamed in garlic, white wine, and house lamb chorizo broth will smooth over any rough edges you might have accrued throughout the day.

Hearsay Restaurant, Lounge & Garden

Ashland is laid back, but Hearsay is one of those places that makes you want to pull out your Friday-night finest. A sleek venue with a jazzy speakeasy vibe, Hearsay multitasks like a pro. Diners can unwind in the cool, deeply upholstered lounge during happy hour, linger over Sunday brunch in the garden, and dine swankily on Columbia River steelhead and duck leg confit in a grand piano-dominated dining room.

Tacos sit on a wooden counter at Hearsay in Ashland.
Tacos at Hearsay.
Hearsay

Cocorico

Originally based at the Green Springs Inn & Cabins near the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument, Cocorico has moved into town, steps away from the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Here, horn-shaped campanelle arrive alongside Aleppo corn puree and confit cherry tomatoes, roast chicken comes with both plum chutney and peri peri, and the house burger is made with Ashland-raised Box R Beef. The restaurant’s particularly nice braised lamb gets a floral touch from rose harissa, sitting on a bed of Israeli couscous.

Alchemy Restaurant and Bar

Beyond its well-deserved reputation as the defacto choice for any special-occasion meal, Alchemy hits all the modern restaurant buttons: whiskey bar, inventive bistro offerings (foie gras “Butterfingers” with honeycomb toffee and huckleberry coulis, steak tartare with bagna cauda), elaborate wine dinners, and a jaw-dropping wine cellar curated by owner-certified sommelier Drew Gibbs. It’s impossible to have a mediocre meal here, but get the crispy duck confit with morels to be sure.

Noble Coffee Roasting

Coffee obsessives can stroll down to the Railroad District for a quality coffee and watch the roasting in action. Owner Jared Rennie knows his beans, and his place is a welcoming mix of industrial comforts, Wi-Fi inside and out, and house-baked muffins, scones, and pastries daily.

Related Maps

Morning Glory Cafe

The breakfast at Morning Glory deserves a place on every Ashland bucket list, thanks to dishes like ricotta-stuffed French toast and au gratin potato crepes. Comfy booths, bright surroundings, and an enchanted back garden are tailor-made for lingering over a newspaper or book. The especially friendly, gentle, and unobtrusive service makes that all the more possible.

Sammich Ashland

Ashland’s location of the beloved Portland sandwich shop, Sammich smokes and cures the meats for its sandwiches in-house, including its perpetually popular pastrami. Fans of the Bear can also find a knockout version of a Chicago Italian beef here, a baguette loaded with thinly-shaved roast beef and house giardiniera. Its location on the campus of Southern Oregon University make it a smart option for students looking for a next-level lunch.

Omar's Fresh Seafood and Steaks

A salute to old-school glamor, with deep red upholstered booths, New York steaks, lobster, and escargot, Omar’s is an Ashland classic that’s been in operation since 1946. The bouillabaisse is worth its own celebration, filled with snapper, shrimp, and calamari.

Little Shop of Bagels

People who won’t stand in line for anything queue up for the bagels at this tiny hole-in-the-wall shop in a strip mall uptown. The house-made schmears are equally excellent, and go early if you have your sights on an onion bagel — they tend to sell out.

Caldera Brewery & Restaurant

A south Ashland beacon for craft beer lovers, the acclaimed Caldera offers a menu of upscale burgers, pizzas, sandwiches, and salads, alongside beer recommendations by the helpful staff. If hops aren’t your thing, Caldera also brews its own craft soda.

Related Maps