Bendites will soon be able to get a taste of one of Bend’s popular Mexican-fusion food restaurants without traveling to the west side of town, as Parrilla Grill is planning to open a second location later this winter.
The restaurant will be moving into a 1,600-square-foot suite at 706 NE Greenwood Ave., recently vacated by Taco Del Mar. Co-owner Samantha Harber said she signed the lease in November, and added that she expects the new location to be open by February.
“There’s a lot of prep work we still have to do,” Harber said.
The west-side location opened in 1999 at the corner of NW 14th Street and NW Galveston Avenue, and has grown into a popular neighborhood spot for food and live music. Harber said she’s been looking for the perfect location for a second restaurant in Bend for the past five years but hadn’t found a space that made sense for the business until she found the Greenwood Avenue location. Ultimately, she said the growth of Bend east of downtown and the location’s proximity to a major thoroughfare made it too good to pass up.
“It’s an up-and-coming location,” Harber said.
She added that the new Parrilla Grill will not deviate much from what the west-side location has been doing, with the same name, menu and general vibe. The initial plan is to mirror the hours of the west side, staying open until 10 p.m. during the summer and 9 p.m. for the rest of the year.
“We’re really hoping to build a nightlife here,” Harber said of the Greenwood Avenue corridor.
Restaurants and shops making their name on Bend’s west side before opening second locations east of downtown is nothing new, and Parrilla Grill will be receiving help from a trendsetter. Jay Junkin, who founded Parrilla Grill before opening Jackson’s Corner in 2008, has returned to the restaurant as a minority owner to work with Harber and co-owner Jeff Dearing.
“There’s no two people in the restaurant business I would trust more than those two,” Junkin said.
Under Junkin’s ownership, Jackson’s Corner opened a second restaurant on the east side of town in 2014. Junkin said the restaurant’s location, across Neff Road from St. Charles Bend, provided a strong customer base, though he added that he’s still working to create a relationship with the surrounding community.
“It’s been better than expected, but just as hard as expected,” Junkin said.
He said he expects Greenwood Avenue to be a good fit for Parrilla Grill, thanks to the evolution of the surrounding neighborhood and its proximity to Backporch Coffee’s third location, which has occupied space at 706 NE Greenwood since the building opened in 2015.
“This is the perfect space,” Junkin said.