Quick Bites: Pullman, WA

Birch & Barley burger

My report on Walla Walla reminds me that I’ve yet to write up two restaurants I visited during one day in Pullman earlier this year. Though as much as Walla Walla was off the mark, I’d much prefer the food there compared to what I ate in Pullman. But what more could I reasonably expect from Pullman, other than hope that my quest for Cougar Gold would somehow pay off?

My first stop after airport landing was Birch & Barley. I ordered the Cougar Burger, salivating at the thought of a half-pound beef patty topped with Cougar Gold white cheddar on a fresh baked bun. When the server came back and told me that medium rare wasn’t possible, I suspected trouble. So I went with the least-cooked medium I could ask them to manage. The beef was dry, and there wasn’t nearly enough cheese to legitimately call this a cheeseburger.

Birch & Barley burger open

The biggest problem, though, was the bun. It’s bad enough that the meat-to-bread ratio was deficient, but the brioche bun from Panhandle Artisan Bread (in Moscow) was heavy and “dark,” thereby dominating the burger. I quickly discarded most of the bun. With a little garbanzo bean salad on the side (the best part of the meal), this turned into a protein-heavy lunch.

South Fork Public House

But, wait…there’s more. Dinner took me to South Fork Public House. Still hankering for a real taste of Cougar Gold, I opted for the Mac & Cheese, which is actually penne pasta tossed in Cougar Gold cheese sauce, then topped with bacon and green onions. Definitely more cheesy than the burger above, but still not as rich as I would have liked. Next time to Pullman, I think I’ll have to go to the Creamery and dive directly into a can of Cougar Gold.

Birch and Barley on Urbanspoon

South Fork Public House on Urbanspoon

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