Live Oregon

Tacos with fresh rockfish, plentiful year-round, offer a winter getaway for the palate.

A Rockfish by Any Other Name

written by Thor Ericksonphotography by Tambi Lane Order rockfish at a restaurant in New York, and you’ll likely get a striped bass. Place the same order in California, and you could end up with a vermilion rockfish. Here in Oregon, rockfish can be anything from quillback, pygmy, shortbelly, longspine, yellow-eye, to widow, canary, chilipepper, thornyhead and the old standby—red snapper. Oregon sport and commercial fishermen regularly catch more than twenty-five species of rockfish. Many of these rockfish have similar characteristics and are difficult to tell apart. According to the Food and Drug Administration, a single fish species can go by multiple names from the time it’s caught until the time it ends up on your plate, and many kinds of fish can legally be sold under a single name. The good news is that all these species of Oregon rockfish taste relatively the same. The flesh is versatile and can…

After a stretch at sea fishing for rockfish, the trawler Ms. Julie arrives at port, where its catch is unloaded.

Rock On: The Oregon Rockfish

Rockfish rebound in Oregon’s waters, and one man’s catch is another one’s delight written by Sophia McDonaldphotography by Jon Christopher Meyers In 2000, the waters off the Oregon coast had been so severely overfished that it was declared a federal disaster zone. Scientists with the National Marine Fisheries Service predicted that even if drastic action was taken, commercial fishing would not rebound in the area until at least 2030. It turned out they were sorely mistaken. In 2011, trawl fisherman catching rockfish and other species landed 3.5 million pounds of their scaly, slippery prey. In 2018, they netted 25.3 million pounds. In 2019, the number was closer to 25 million, according to Yelena Nowak, director of the Oregon Trawl Commission. Rex Leach of Coos Bay, who has been a commercial fisherman since 1978, was on the Oregon Trawl Commission when regulations to restore the fishery were enacted. He and many…

The Farmhouse overlooks the pastures of Tabula Rasa Farm in Carlton, a leader in the regenerative agriculture movement. Relax on the deck and watch cows graze.

Home Stay

What makes an Airbnb retreat feel special? Two popular Oregon hosts offer tips for your home or rental written by Melissa Dalton Tabula Rasa Farms: A Scandinavian-Influenced Farmhouse in Carlton The Airbnb reviews of The [email protected] Rasa Farms are effusive. “This home was beyond amazing,” reads one. “If you appreciate design, this is your spot,” goes another. One really makes their case: “Every single light has a dimmer in the entire house.” After all, when the farmhouse’s owner, Brenda Smola-Foti designed the farmhouse more than a decade ago, she paid careful attention to the details, especially lighting. “I did a lot of things to get north light, because that’s the steady light that a painter likes,” said Smola-Foti, who grew up working on her father’s cattle ranch in Oklahoma, and now describes herself as “an artist who made the jump to farmer.” In 2008, Smola-Foti bought twenty-three acres of farmland…

A covered deck lets you take in the bucolic scene from The Farmhouse at Tabula Rasa Farm.

DIY: Tips for a Successful Airbnb

MAINTAIN INVENTORY No guest wants to have to run to the store for a sponge or toilet paper on vacation. Higgins uses Amazon’s subscription service to stay on top of supplies for the River Cabaan. “A lot of the admin of an Airbnb is the stock and the cleaning,” said Higgins, so streamlining the process with regular deliveries is a time-saver. Have on hand things that visitors commonly forget to pack as well, such as extra toothbrushes and deodorant, said Smola-Foti. DON’T FORGET THE OUTDOORS While the Carlton farmhouse has a lot of dedicated outdoor space, including a deck and covered porch, Smola-Foti makes sure to populate it with ample seating so that guests can take advantage of finding a place in the sun. Likewise, at the River Cabaan, there’s a hammock, too. KEEP IT FRESH No one wants to dry off with a towel that’s lost its fluff, or…

Award-winning essayist Laurie Easter pens a rich memoir, All the Leavings.

Wild Terrain

A writer living off the grid navigates the wilds of nature and the human heart interview by Cathy Carroll Laurie Easter lives off the grid on twenty-eight forested acres in a funky little cabin on the edge of wilderness in southern Oregon. Her essays have been awarded fellowships by the prestigious Vermont Studio Center and Playa in Summer Lake, published in many literary journals and anthologies, nominated for a Pushcart Prize and listed as notable in The Best American Essays 2015. She holds degrees from Southern Oregon University and Vermont College of Fine Arts. All the Leavings, being released in October by OSU Press, is her first book. The memoir navigates the rugged terrain of an alternative lifestyle and the hazards of the human heart, from encounters with cougars and the dynamics of mother-child relationships, to the destructive power of wildfires, the home birth of her second child and community…

French doors open a room to create a more spacious feel, refreshing it with natural light.

Form, Function, Financially Fit & Fabulous

Oregon designers spill the smartest ways to use $50,000 in home equity written by Melissa Dalton In the past year, our homes have taken on new significance. We relish the comfort they provide, while pondering possibilities for making them even better. We asked three Oregon designers to weigh in on how they’d recommend homeowners spend $50,000 in home equity. Turns out, a little can go a long way, if you know where to use it. HOUSE OF MILO, BEND Sarah Westhusing | Remodel a kitchen or bathroom People tend to look at the question of remodeling in two ways, said Sarah Westhusing, interior designer and founder of House of Milo, a Bend-based studio which tackles everything from new builds to renovations. “The first are the people that really focus on return on investment,” she said. They only want to invest an amount in updates that they’ll recoup when they sell…

Whit Peters walks between cranberry bogs at Peters’ Cranberries in Sixes.

The Tart-Sweet Oregon Cranberry—Bogged Down

Cranberries, as American as Thanksgiving, bring Oregon flavor to fall dishes written by Sophia McDonaldphotography by Amanda Loman Around the time Portland was welcoming its first train passengers, Morrow County was being incorporated and the Grants Pass Daily Courier was delivering its first newspapers, farmers began forming bogs and filling them with cranberry vines along the southern Oregon coast. These tart treats have been an important agricultural crop in a region which has been better known for animal-based foods such as seafood and dairy since 1885. They also deliver a fine option for locavores who can’t imagine a holiday season or a turkey sandwich without a spoonful of the ruby-red berry sauce. This thoroughly American berry (one of the few fruits native to North America) has been Whit Peters’ business for most of his life. He and his mother, Sara Osborne, own Peters’ Cranberries in Sixes, about twenty miles south…

Nick Byron Campbell. Photo by Elisa Terrazas Campbell

Deeply Rooted

Left Vessel’s music uses living trees as instruments Written by Ben Salmon Nick Byron Campbell will say that he has been making music in the “normal” sense since his mid-teens. What’s normal? Playing instruments. Writing songs. Starting bands. Touring, recording, even signing to a record label. “It was an amazing experience,” said Campbell, who lives in Bend. “Wildly intense.” After a while, though, he felt his perspective shifting at about the same time the music industry was being revolutionized—not necessarily in a good way—by easily accessible recording software and digital streaming platforms. “I still love playing with bands, releasing records—that’s still a huge thing for me. But there’s just so much music and it’s been so intensely devalued as a good,” he said. “I think I just subconsciously started wondering how I could do this differently from the way 10,000 other people are doing it.” Inspired by a childhood encounter…

DIY wainscoting in this bathroom adds dimension, interest and a shallow shelf, too.

DIY: Tips for Installing Wainscot in Your Home

Wainscot, or wood-paneling installed on the lower section of wall in a room, can have a big impact, as seen in the custom treatment in Stephanie Dyer’s bathroom. Apply wainscot to one wall as an accent, or wrap the room, for instant depth and character. Here are our basic tips. MIND THE PROPORTIONS The key to getting wood paneling to look appropriate is to get the proportions right. First, measure the height from floor to ceiling. One approach is to have the height of the wood paneling, including any trim, be either ⅓ or ⅗ of the total wall height. Pay attention to how the paneling height will interact with all of the other elements in the room, such as windows, light switches, towel bars, the mirror and existing trim. Use a level and a pencil to draw a light horizontal line around the room that marks the desired height….