Restaurant of the Year: BOSA Food & Drink | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon

Restaurant of the Year: BOSA Food & Drink

With fresh pastas, great wines, an attractive interior and good vibes for days, BOSA is where Bendites want to be

While you won’t find us whipping out a fancy rubric to score our contenders for the Source Weekly’s Restaurant of the Year, we do tend to look for a few key things when our foodie team makes its selection: Great food, of course, but also a welcoming and attractive atmosphere, a bit of community buzz, and a great back-story of local owners committed to bringing something valuable to the scene.

BOSA Food & Drink checks all those boxes, earning it the Restaurant of the Year in this year’s Source Weekly Restaurant Guide.

During our recent visit, BOSA’s owners reiterated a story they’d told the Source in 2021, when Donna Britt wrote our story about the opening of what she called a “neighborhood Italian restaurant”: two chef-friends meet in Aspen, get along great and dream of opening up their own spot together one day.

The product of that dream is a buzzing restaurant on Galveston Avenue where fresh-made pasta is always on the menu, where there’s a great wine list, a cool modern-meets-rustic interior and where neighbors love to belly up to the bar and greet a friendly face. Chef-owners Bill Dockter and Nate King, along with front-of-house manager Jenny King, exude a welcoming, friendly vibe, and seem genuinely joyful about everything from the pending summer busy season to the act of twisting pasta around a fork in order to please the journalists and photographer stopping in for a photo shoot during prep time.

BOSA’s owners aimed for an Italian-French style to the menu, combining the greatest hits of Italian cuisine — Cacio E Pepe and Rigatoni, for example – with French items such as snails and pommes frites with truffles and shaved parmesan.

“When we were opening this place, the initial concept was, restaurants that were like what we saw in many different cities that we didn’t see in Bend – which is a simple, mainly Italian restaurant,” Nate King told the Source Weekly. “We didn’t want to shy away from French food either. It was mainly just to do a neighborhood style.”

Bendites have definitely responded to that concept; last year, in our annual “Best of Central Oregon” readers’ poll, readers voted BOSA as the Best New Restaurant and also voted it Best Pasta.

“The support we’ve gotten has been really overwhelming,” Dockter said. “To know that we put our heart and souls into this and to see that response reflected back is quite amazing.”

And while the goal for these two chefs has been to create a welcoming – and delicious —neighborhood place, they also get something out of it, too.

“The raw energy of the restaurant – we wanted to create that, but when it’s just a blank empty building you don’t know what it’s going to turn out to be,” Nate King said. “But it’s amazing being in that open kitchen and just feeling the energy of people walking in.”

BOSA Food & Drink
1005 NW Galveston Ave., Bend
Open Mon-Sat 4:30-10pm

Nicole Vulcan

Nicole Vulcan has been editor of the Source since 2016. You can mostly find her raising chickens, walking dogs, riding all the bikes and attempting to turn a high desert scrap of land into a permaculture oasis.
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