Timing perfect for Barnacle Bistro owner and chef

By Marge Woodfin, Pilot staff writer May 09, 2009 07:00 am

Suzanne Ector, with no experience in the restaurant business, purchased the former Paul Bunyon Burger restaurant on Ellensburg Avenue in Gold Beach.

Evan Boley had recently returned to his home in Gold Beach after seven years in the U.S. Navy working as the personal chef for an admiral, and attending several prestigious culinary schools.

The timing was perfect. The two are currently having the time of their lives building their new business, the Barnacle Bistro, which opened April 18.

As the business grows, they are continuing to remodel the premises and fine-tune the menu. So far they have changed the seating a bit and added a fenced-in patio to increase seating.

Ector, who handles the business records and also serves as hostess and cashier said, “It’s not a quiet restaurant. It’s more lively and sometimes noisy. That gives us energy.”

Boley, who spends his time in the kitchen busily creating new recipes to surprise and please the customers, said that the menu, which is currently small and simple, will continue to change and grow.

About the changing menu, Ector said, “Evan likes to wake up in the morning and decide what he wants to do.” Currently the menu includes burgers made from grain-fed ground beef mixed with special spices, pizza with dough made from scratch, soups, salads, fresh-baked bread, five different paninis, French fried sweet potatoes, shrimp quesadillas, mango prawn wraps, and fish, from cod to salmon, always fresh.

Boley is well acquainted with fish. His mother, Dixie Boley, owns Fishermen Direct Seafood at the Port of Gold Beach, and he has spent a lot of time doing some serious fishing in Curry County and environs.

Vegetables served at the bistro are also always fresh, locally grown as much as possible.

Boley, who dropped out of his sociology studies at the University of Oregon to join the Navy, said that being a chef in the Navy not only helped him make rank early, but as an admiral’s chef, he also met many dignitaries, including Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice.

Ector, who is enjoying her first foray into the food service business, said that, although she has left behind her business career in computer science, she has not left behind her lust for motorcycles. She mentioned that her riding group, Adventure Rider Motorcycle Forum, will be descending on Gold Beach May 29 and she expects the Barnacle Bistro to overflow with bikers.

Barnacle Bistro, 29805 Ellensburg Ave., is open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and closed on Sunday.

Ector’s computer science skills have been put to use in building a Web site for Barnacle Bistro, and anyone who would like to know more about the new restaurant can go to www.barnaclebistro.com to get the news and check the menu.