When a friend invited my wife and I to celebrate her birthday at Tasty n Sons, I would have been much more excited if I had realized this was a new restaurant by the owners of Toro Bravo (my current favorite). Don’t let the silly name fool you, this place makes seriously good food. Located on North Williams Street, Tasty n Sons introduces the unique idea of tapas-style brunch, and with a menu as diverse and flavorful as this, you’ll be glad you get to try multiple dishes.
The atmosphere was comfortable. High ceilings and large front windows add a lot of space to an otherwise narrow dining room. Even though the menu items were elegant, the simple decor of natural woods and an exposed ceiling belied any sense of pretension. A giant chalkboard on the wall listed local farms where food is sourced, and a large silhouette of an old-fashioned bicycle painted on the wall gives enough character to keep it from feeling sparse.We were there with eleven people. Normally, I think tapas restaurants are better enjoyed with a small to medium group, but our large party gave us a chance to explore a lot of the menu, even if most dishes failed to make it all the way around the table. Almost everything was worth ordering again. We worked our way through more than a couple orders of mini biscuits and gravy; the stars of this dish were a spicy Spanish sausage and small pieces of red peppers in the gravy, betraying just a hint of a Spanish (or maybe even Cajun) influence.
One of our favorite dishes was the fried green tomato BLT. The tangy tomato offset the meaty house-cured bacon perfectly in a complex layer of flavors. My wife loved the dessert-like griddled bacon-wrapped dates with maple syrup and almond. These sweet bite-sized morsels exploded with flavor and almost melted in your mouth, and we had to order a couple more after our first few. Also excellent were the sweet biscuits buried under mounds of fresh Oregon berries, the roasted apple with lardons and cheddar, the chocolate potato donuts with crème anglaise, and the polenta with sausage ragu.
The one disappointment was the potatoes bravas. These were bite-sized chunks of potato in a red sauce topped with over easy eggs, but the sauce tasted like little more than ketchup with a dash of Tabasco, neither of which should be a forefront flavor in any dish.
In all, I’m definitely keeping this place in my back pocket. It sounds like the menu will be rotating regularly, so I can’t wait to see what they’ll have next time.