Harvey’s Place in Ashland, Oregon

Harvey’s Place in Ashland, Oregon – Restaurant, Bar & Grill

I had breakfast at the Morning Glory on Sunday, and during a conversation with a very nice woman from Washington state who visits regularly, she said, “We love to come to Ashland to see what restaurants have gone, and what’s new in town.”

Last October, during my last visit, Harvey’s Place had been open for a short time, in the space on Main Street previously occupied by the French restaurant Chateaulin for many years. Owned and operated by the same great folks from Beasy’s on the Creek, it’s a very nice, new and upscale “bar & grill” concept downtown on the Plaza.

Harvey's Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey’s Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey's Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey’s Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey's Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey’s Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey's Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey’s Place in Ashland Oregon

They have Beer, many on tap, Wine, by the glass or bottle, and a full bar with daily specials if you need a cocktail, shot or other “adult beverage”.

Harvey's Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey’s Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey's Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey’s Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey's Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey’s Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey's Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey’s Place in Ashland Oregon

They have a very nice menu, a happy hour from 3-5:30pm daily and a late night menu from 9pm until they close (Sunday-Thursday at 10pm, Friday and Saturday at midnight).

Harvey's Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey’s Place in Ashland Oregon

I had a ticket to the theatre, and didn’t want to eat too much, but needed something good before going to the show. I settled on the “appetizer” size order (3) of Roy’s Ribs and just water to drink. Too much food and almost any alcohol before seeing a show just makes me sleepy during the performance. It didn’t take very long before my food was delivered. The ribs were terrific! Tasty and cooked perfectly, with a sweet and spicy, tangy sauce. I don’t know if it was intentional, but I was a little disappointed that the third rib was an end piece and more like a half rib, tucked under the two full sized ribs in the picture below. I mentioned it to my waitress, but decided not to make a big fuss about it.

Harvey's Place in Ashland Oregon - ROY'S RIBS!

Harvey’s Place in Ashland Oregon – ROY’S RIBS!

I thought about going back after the theatre and having more food and a cocktail when the show was over, but the place was almost empty and it was getting close to closing time.

NOTE: I was also still thinking about the short rib hidden on my appetizer plate, and that ended up being a deciding factor, which ultimately cost them my return patronage that night. I enjoyed the ribs and liked the menu and the concept. We know the owners, so I’ll probably eat there again on my next visit to Ashland.

Harvey's Place in Ashland Oregon

Harvey’s Place in Ashland Oregon (Notice the “Tourist Tax” added to the check)

Bottom Line: Three ribs (actually two and a half) for $11 plus tax and tip? Do the math, that’s ~$5 per rib. So, I hope they’re still open next time I come to town…

All photos copyright 2015 JoshWillTravel.

Harvey’s Place – 50 E Main St, Ashland OR 97520 (541)488-9511 http://www.harveysplaceashland.com

Beasy’s on the Creek – 51 Water St. Ashland OR 97520 (541)488-5009 www.beasysonthecreek.com

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Yo-Yo Ma and Dinner at the Patina Rooftop Grill at the Hollywood Bowl!

Yo-Yo Ma and Dinner at the Patina Rooftop Grill at the Hollywood Bowl!

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Another Thursday night concert at the Hollywood Bowl on a beautiful summer evening in Los Angeles! The staycation-vacation continues!

5:45pm Arrive at the Bowl and pay $18 to stack park the car in the “B” lot on the hill.

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl – Auto $18 stack parking (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Very early! We had a 6pm dinner reservation at Patina Rooftop Grill, so we were allowed in  before they opened the house to the public.  I took a couple pictures of the empty Bowl:

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl – empty house before opening (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl – empty house before opening (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

And after dinner, I took this pic of the Bowl filling with people from the same spot:

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Dinner at Patina Rooftop Grill

Dining al fresco on the open air patio is a real treat at the Hollywood Bowl.

 

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Dining al Fresco at Patina Rooftop Grill at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Patina Rooftop Grill at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Dinner at Patina Rooftop Grill at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

On The Menu: Ahi tuna poke, caesar salad, bread & butter, BBQ grilled shrimp, Tillamook mac’n’cheese, classic cheesecake with berries and whipped cream, a coke, and a double espresso. (Made steak the night before and had a steak sandwich for breakfast, so I went with the tuna and shrimp starters and mac’n’cheese side instead of the steak entree.

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Ahi Tuna Poke at Patina Rooftop Grill at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Caesar Salad at Patina Rooftop Grill at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

BBQ Grilled Shrimp at the Rooftop Grill at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Ribeye Steak at Patina Rooftop Grill at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

House Wines at Patina Rooftop Grill at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Dessert! Classic Cheesecake with berries, whipped cream, and a double espresso (not pictured) at the Patina Rooftop Grill at the Hollywood Bowl  (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

7:45pm Dinner completed. Time to find our seats for the show!

Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

Showtime! Yo-Yo Ma at the Hollywood Bowl (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

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Dinner at Gyoro Gyoro Izakaya Japonaise Encino

Dinner at Gyoro Gyoro Izakaya Japonaise Encino

We were going for dinner tonight at Sushi Hirosuke and instead found this sad news taped to the door:

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Sad News! Sushi Hirosuke RIP (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

My friend Hiro, the sushi chef, opened this place in the early 90s and we used to have dinner here twice a week. He sold it to a nice couple who ran it for a long time. It was a good place, not great, but it was reasonably priced, local, and always good enough.

My friend Hiro-san now owns the amazingly awesome Sushi Ichiban Kan in Tarzana (you can read about it and see the pictures in my previous blogs).

There’s a lot of sushi competition in the neighborhood! On Ventura Boulevard, between Sepulveda and Reseda, there are more than fourteen sushi restaurants: Katsu-ya, Midori, Yamato, Benihana’s, Okamura, Cho Cho San, Dancing Wasabi, Octopus, Four on Six, Sushi Ajito, Crazy Tokyo, Sushi Tsune, Makoto, and our new destination for dinner Gyoro Gyoro Izakaya Japonaise Encino.

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro Izakaya Japonaise Encino (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Upstairs in the mall where they shot “The 40 Year Old Virgin” is a new Japanese restaurant. I had heard nice things about it, but this was my very first time dining there. Ride the escalator or elevator to the third floor, enter the restaurant and enjoy the asian food and drink experience.

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

The Bar of Tokyo at Gyoro Gyoro Izakaya Japonaise has a great selection of sake and a full bar! They have a Happy Hour menu and specials from 3-6:30pm and after 10:30pm.

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Bar of Tokyo (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Bar of Tokyo (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Bar of Tokyo (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Bar of Tokyo: Great Selection of Sake!(copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Bar of Tokyo: Beers on draft. (copyright 2014 JoshWillTravel)

The Restaurant!

Tuesday at 7pm, the place was empty. When you enter through the restaurant you are greeted at the Host Desk by the Giant Face seen below.  There’s a glass enclosed covered patio with a nice view of Ventura Blvd, the Sushi Bar area and a Dining Room area. We sat inside in a booth, which was too low for the table, wasn’t very comfortable for my back, and felt very cramped and claustrophobic. I did have a view of the glass enclosed kitchen, but could only see the grill from where I was seated. 

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Welcome!  (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Sushi Bar (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Sushi Bar (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Patio Dining (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

 

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Kitchen & Grill enclosed in glass (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

It’s a very pretty restaurant, done in very modern Japanese design. We were seated, greeted and provided with drinks while we perused the menu and decided on our food choices. They have a massive menu with sushi, salads, rolls, entrees, sides, and desserts….and it’s very confusing. They also have an ala carte sushi and sushi roll menu and a yakitori menu with all kinds of traditional (chicken, beef, vegetables) and weird things (intestines, livers, and other parts) grilled on a skewer. Mark those menus with a pencil.

The prices are VERY REASONABLE!!! You can eat a lot of different things, share them, try stuff you might never try if you feel adventurous, and just have a really big meal Japanese meal for a good price. The drink prices are also GREAT!

ON THE MENU: hot sake, cucumber with sesame sunomono, grilled shishito pepper, avocado & negitoro (spicy tuna), fried calamari, spicy tuna roll, Wisconsin roll (salmon and crab), sushi – salmon, yellowtail and albacore, potstickers, chicken meatball and pork kalbi skewers and an iced green tea. We also ordered the live Uni pasta, roasted eggplant side, and a big Spicy Tuna and Rice bowl (we asked for brown rice, but got steamed white rice instead).

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Hot Sake! Large size! (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

 

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Cucumber with sesame sunomo (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – grilled shishito peppers (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – avocado and negitoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – fried calamari (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – chicken meatball and pork kalbi skewers (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – potstickers (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

 

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Wisconsin roll: salmon over crab (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – spicy tuna roll (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Sushi! Salmon, yellowtail and albacore. (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Everything was good! The fish was good quality, fresh and tasty. The cooked stuff was also done right. The fried calamari was excellent! I also enjoyed the spicy tuna dishes quite a bit. The avocado and negitoro was a good choice. Next time I’ll have the pork kalbi salted instead of sauced and forget about the cucumber and sesame sunomono.

They’re open late weeknights, and really late on Fridays and Saturdays, so I might have to go back soon….

Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro – Enjoying my dinner! Tasty Japanese Goodness! (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

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Gyoro Gyoro (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Into the Sunset on Ventura Boulevard…Time to Blog This. (copyright 2104 JoshWillTravel)

Gyoro Gyoro Izakaya Japonaise – 17401 Ventura Blvd., B21, Encino, CA 91316 http://www.otootorestaurant.comhttp://www.ramla.net

 

I Posted These Travel Answers About Las Vegas!

Las Vegas: Great food, not outrageous price, near Aria Casino?

Aria Resort - Las Vegas, Nevada (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Aria Resort – Las Vegas, Nevada (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Q: We will be traveling to Las Vegas this summer, looking for great places to eat within walking distance of the Aria Casino that are under $30 a plate. Looking for a tasty meal that doesn’t break the bank.

Late lunch spot for a couple, near the Wynn Hotel?

Q: My wife and I are landing in Vegas around 1:30 and want to stop for a late lunch on our way to the hotel. I normally would just go to Joe’s for some stone crab, but thought there might be a new place for us to try. We are staying at the Wynn, but any recommendations are welcome. We are fine (and might prefer) eating at the bar.

A: There are so many restaurants and places to eat, and they change constantly in Vegas.

Here are five options for great food at a reasonable price near (but not walking distance to) the Aria Resort and Wynn Hotel:

Grand Lux Cafe, Venetian Hotel - Las Vegas (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Grand Lux Cafe, Venetian Hotel – Las Vegas (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

A reasonably inexpensive meal can be found at the Grand Lux Café (inside the Venetian and Palazzo Resorts). I like the hand tossed, wood-fired pizzas and you can get them “to go” in a pizza box. (~$16.00 per pizza) http://www.grandluxcafe.com/locations.htm

Venetian Hotel - Las Vegas, Nevada (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Pizza from Grand Lux Cafe –  Venetian Hotel, Las Vegas (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Go off-strip to this “hole-in-the-wall” #1 in the USA rated Thai Restaurant, the Lotus of Siam. Not really a secret, because the the locals and most “foodies” know about this amazing restaurant! (~$9.00-21.00 per dish and they have lunch & dinner specials) http://www.saipinchutima.com

Bobby Flay’s Mesa Grill is at Caesars Palace Las Vegas Hotel & Casino. Opened in 2004, the southwestern cuisine is truly fantastic (but it’s not inexpensive). From the Mesa Grill website: “Bobby developed his signature style of American cookery, marrying the flavors of southwest with his love of grilling at Mesa Grill. Bobby presents dishes like New Mexican Spice Rubbed Pork Tenderloin with Bourbon-Ancho Chile Sauce, Sweet Potato Tamale, and Crushed Pecan Butter. In a nod to the West, he also includes a Chiptole Glazed Rib-Eye with Red and Green Chile Sauce. Las Vegas’ proximity to Mexico gives the restaurant access to some of that country’s highest-quality tequila and mezcal offerings, and the expansive wine list has a global reach yet maintains an emphasis on top American wines. The combination of Mesa Grill’s magnificent decor, the exciting vibe of the casino atmosphere and Bobby Flay’s stunning range of textures, flavors and colors incorporated into his menu continue to electrify diners year after year.”  http://www.mesagrill.com/las-vegas-restaurant/index.php

or have too much amazing Bavarian (German) food and beer at the Hofbräuhaus Las Vegas. Sausages, sauerkraut, spaetzel, pork shanks, and all kinds of other Bavarian specials. A lot of food, so bring friends! (Daily specials start at $9.99) http://www.hofbrauhauslasvegas.com 

And of course, the Peppermill Restaurant is great anytime day or night (open 24/7 with a secret off-menu locals’ late night special Steak & Shrimp for cheap) and they have great cocktails too! http://www.peppermilllasvegas.com

NOTE: Do not eat at the MGM Buffet! (read my other blog)

Bon cha’nce! Bon appétit! Good luck & Good eating!

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Is it true if you eat at Tao Restaurant, you get into Tao Nightclub free and skip the line?

Venetian Hotel - Las Vegas, Nevada (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Venetian Hotel – Las Vegas, Nevada (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Q: Is it true if you eat at Tao Restaurant, you get into Tao Nightclub for free & skip the line?

A: TAO Asian Bistro, TAO Nightclub and Tao Beach inside the The Venetian Resort Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.

From the Tao website: “Dinner and Nightlife Packages – As low as $82.50 per person (excluding tax and gratuity). Enjoy an evening at TAO Asian Bistro and Nightclub! Package Includes Three Course Dinner, Nightclub Admission and a VIP Table with One Bottle and Mixers. Available on dinner reservations before 6:30pm and after 10:30pm.”

http://taorestaurantlv.com/reservations/

The menu with this package and bottle service seems a to be a pretty good deal!

I’ve heard that admission was included if you have dinner at the restaurant, but I’m sure it depends on the night of the week and the event at the club. Contact the restaurant directly for reservations and questions.

Venetian Hotel - Las Vegas, Nevada (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Venetian Hotel – Las Vegas, Nevada (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

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Bachelor party venues?

Welcome to Las Vegas (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Welcome to Las Vegas (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Q: One of my best buddies is getting married next year and as a groomsman, I’ve been tasked being one of the organizers for his bachelor party. Here’s the thing: none of us groomsman are really party animals, so we really have no idea where to start, but we just know that we want our buddy to have a good time and that we want to go to Vegas, just for the experience. Any ideas on which venues to start looking at and/or bachelor party-type activities?

A: Bachelor Party in Las Vegas!

Do you want the full blown “Hangover, part 4” or just a good time?

First, how many people will be attending? Do you have hotel reservations? Do you want to have dinner, go clubbing, go drinking, go strip clubbing, hit an ultra-lounge or three, see a show, do some gambling, ride a roller coaster, or maybe shoot automatic weapons?

Or do you want to really get wild?

You can get a nice package deal with the hotels if you have a large group (sometimes, all you need is a block of five rooms). Hotel rooms, dinner, and entertainment can all be arranged, contact the group sales manager.

Rent a limo or party bus if you want to travel around, beyond walking distance. There are companies that can arrange the whole evening, just know that they are probably getting “kickbacks” from the party venues. NOTE: Be sure to shop around, negotiate for the best deal and extras, and always check safety and consumer reports before booking with any company!

You are on your own for strippers, escorts, hookers and “party favors”.

Good luck and be safe!

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MGM Grand (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Vegas Sunset Through a Green Metal Screen at the MGM Hotel (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

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