New Sammy’s Cowboy Bistro, Talent, Oregon – U.S.A.

By Sandy Driscoll

Cowboy 1Exterior of New Sammy’s (all images displayed on this post are by Sandy Driscoll and are ©2010 by & Sandy Driscoll)

New Sammy’s Cowboy Bistro
2210 S. Pacific Hwy.
Talent, OR  97540
Wed. thru Sun.
Lunch 12-1:30
Dinner 5pm-9pm
Reservations necessary

New Sammy’s Cowboy Bistro does not have a website.   They do not advertise. Their short and ever-changing menu is not published anywhere.   Charlene and Vernon Rollins, who opened New Sammy’s about 20 years ago have one of the most unique dining spots you will find anywhere!    Charlene is the cook, and Vernon is the wine expert.   He has an incredible wine cellar and encyclopedic knowledge of wine.   When you are seated for dinner and the waitress asks “Would you like to have Vern stop by and help you select a wine?”, say yes!  Many of the vegetables, herbs and ingredients are grown in the Rollins’ garden.
I discovered New Sammy’s about 20 years ago when a tiny tout was published in Gourmet magazine……one of those “Have you heard about……” notes.   Over the years, word got around.  This is civilized dining and drinking at its finest.   If you are anywhere near Talent, Oregon (between Ashland and Medford) make a reservation, sit back, and enjoy one of the best dining experiences you will ever have.
The following photos are of my latest meal which was a two course prix fixe plus a dessert choice for $45.   Knowing that Vern always pairs the perfect wine with food, and wanting to try as much as possible,  I asked him if I could please have 1/2 glass servings?   Sure, he said!  As always, the wines went perfectly with the food.   When he poured the dessert wine, he commented that it was the only one that went well with ginger, which was the main dessert ingredient. For more information/background/diner comments, you can google the restaurant name.

Cowboy 2The original restaurant, with only six tables.   The “new” one is somewhat larger, but still intimate

Cowboy 3 Colorful entrance to New Sammy’s

Cowboy 5Amuse – Beef Empanada with Yogurt Sauce

Cowboy 6La Quertcia “Prosciutto Americano” with sauteed apple, walnuts, raisins, polenta, onion jam and walnut oil/banyuls vinaigrette

Cowboy 7Pan roasted Alaskan true cod with asparagus, sugar snap peas, spring onion, potatoes & shitakes and meyer lemon, shallot creme fraiche

Cowboy 8Cream puff with ginger ice cream, rhubarb-orange compote and butterscotch sauce

Cowboy 9Chocolate covered grapefruit (dessert amuse)

Cowboy 10L’addition


2 Responses to “New Sammy’s Cowboy Bistro, Talent, Oregon – U.S.A.”

  1. Rob Gischer says:

    I’ve heard the bad news that Sammy’s built a new place. I guess everything changes, but….anyway, I was curious, the chef Charlene Rollins is mentioned, but nothing about her partner/husband, who always added so much to the dining experience. Is he still part of the operation? And does the fact that they are serving lunches detract from the evening dining. I know I’m hymming and hawing, but it was always such a special place to use, that we hate to think they have gone mainstream.
    Rob Gischer, Bellingham, WA

  2. Steve Boone says:

    Had dinner there last night, May 1. Vernon Rollins is the best sommelier I’ve seen. He has an incredible knowledge of wine, but is not a wine snob. His style works with novices as well as serious wine buffs – non intimidating. There are hundreds of great wines from the 70’s and 80’s at very fair prices. He buys them when released and does not raise the price much over the years. He said “I keep the prices low because I buy them for people to drink.” The food was simply wonderful. As good as it was before the remodel. We’ve been blessed to be able to enjoy many of the great restaurants around the world and consider Sammy’s one of the best.