22 Mar Slam Dunk: Delicious Bites and Sips for March Madness
Whether you’re consumed by college hoops and bracket mania, or just looking for an excuse to get together with friends and savor delicious (and local) bites and beverages, we’ve got you covered.
March Madness tournaments call for some serious snacking! Enticing rematches? Yes, please. And we’re not just talking about teams. We have great food and drink to match the NCAA rivalries.
Key March Madness Dates:
- Men’s Sweet 16® March 23-24
- Men’s Elite Eight® March 25-26
- Men’s Final Four® April 1
- Men’s National Championship Game April 3
- Women’s Sweet 16® March 24-25
- Women’s Elite Eight® March 26-27
- Women’s Final Four® March 31
- Women’s National Championship Game April 2
Let’s not waste any time.
Sweet Snacks for the Sweet 16 (Keepin’ It Local, Keepin’ It Real):
Rude Rudy’s Caramel Noogies
These salty, sweet, puffy nuggets are Newport Avenue Market’s own solution for what to crunch when the score gets tight.
The OMG Brownie
When you’re screaming at the screen, OMG, follow it up with our OMG Brownie. This brick of mad chocolate deliciousness is a slam-chunk. We’re talkin’ it’s layered with cream cheese and dipped in a decadent chocolate coating. It’s another Newport Avenue Market creation that’s certainly a game-changer.
Little Slice of Heaven Cheesecake
With more than 40 flavors of homemade cheesecake, it’s almost as many as NCAA tournament games. Newport Avenue Market is the one who brings these scrumptious, individual, made-in-Bend slices to you.
This small-batch ice cream is made with pure ingredients from the Pacific Northwest and thoughtfully handcrafted by Bend artisans Juli and Jeff Labhart. The winning team of signature flavors includes Dulce de Leche with Sea Salt, Vanilla Bourbon Pecan and Peanut Butter with Theo Fudge. (Stay tuned for summer season flavors such as Lemon Cream and Candied Ginger, Rainshadow Farms Mint Chip, and Roasted Strawberry Rhubarb).
Best Ever Pear
This hybrid of the Comice and Louis Pasteur pears, bred at the Southern Oregon Experiment Station in 1935, has truly earned its name. The sweet, juicy fruit is known as an outstanding dessert or can be sliced and served alongside a selection of cheeses, according to Brian our produce expert.
At least a dozen more sweet sensations in our bakery case are top challengers—from cakes, cupcakes, pies and cookies to macarons, eclairs, mousse and fresh fruit tarts.
Elite Eight Sausage Fest
Newport Avenue Market’s handmade sausages come in a flavor for each game in this round. Brown them and tuck them into our delicious buns, slice them and serve as an appetizer, or stuff mushrooms with them. Our expert butcher and meat department manager Johanna recommends:
1. Cascade Mountain Hogwash
A ridiculously flavorful smoky pork sausage packed with bacon, smoked gouda, bacon, garlic, bacon, spices and more bacon. Go Ducks? (Oh, wait, that’s a different kind of sausage.)
2. Black Butte Bratwurst
Yep, Deschutes Brewery’s Black Butte Porter is the not-so-secret ingredient along with ground pork shoulder, pepper, garlic and cheddar cheese.
3. Hot or Sweet Italian Pork Sausage
Made with garlic, olive oil, lemon juice and spices that’ll take you down the court.
4. Mediterranean Chicken Sausage
This leaner sausage gets a flavor assist from European spices.
5. Bitchin’ Chicken Sausage
With spices that add some heat, this one’s really cool, hence the name. You won’t get fowled with these.
6. Irish Bangers
Serve this pork sausage made with Guinness stout even though Notre Dame’s Fighting Irish didn’t progress past round two. Next year UND… Next year.
7. Pollo Verde
This Spanish-style chicken sausage will make you drool.
8. Garlic Chicken Sausage
This is a flavor layup that scores big.
What’s a game without chips, salsa, dip and a crowd-pleaser cheese? Here’s the tip-off from our cheese expert (and self-proclaimed salsa connoisseur) Jeff:
Juanita’s chips, made in Hood River. Or check out Carmen’s Tortillas Chips made in Eugene.
Salsa de Wela made in Redmond, Bend’s Prima Salsa, Los Jalapenos and O-Hana Salsa.
De Casa’s Organic Mexicali Bean Dip and Organic Black Bean Dip, made in Eugene.
Beecher’s Flagship, with a rich, creamy taste and texture, pleases children as well as sophisticates. And, don’t forget Washington State’s own Cougar Gold, a cheese that never misses.
When the stakes are high, serve the highest of steaks.
Behind our meat counter you’ll see our dry aging case, a temperature controlled dehumidifier. Behind the glass, 20-pound slabs of meat hang for two weeks, producing some of the most flavorful and tender meat you’ll ever taste—it’s a method found in premium steak houses and butcher shops.
At Newport Avenue Market, we dry age Oregon Country Beef (an Oregon-based cooperative of family-owned ranches, dedicated to humanely raising natural, delicious, tender beef).
Each week, our expert butchers hand cut the ribeye and New York steaks that go into our case. You need to be quick with your pick-up, though. They typically sell out by Friday night each week.
“We have people call us from Portland and say, ‘We’re coming in tonight, can you set aside four for us?’” says Butcher Johanna.
Swish, Cheers, Beers!
Of course, a game is nothing without a cold brew. Make a fast break to our Wall of Beer, and our premier selection of 500+ beers in 35 categories; from stouts, porters and red ales to IPAs, lagers and barrel-aged beers. Our beer experts will guide you and suggest which pairs best with whatever you’re noshing.
Earn Beer Rewards, Too.
For every $50 spent on our selected Beer of the Week, you’ll receive $10 in our store cash, Moolah. Oh yeah!
We’ll leave you with our three-pointer:
Life is short. Eat good food. Have fun doing it.