The Border Stop introduces diners to Bulgarian food and culture from Stateline, Idaho | Food News | Spokane | The Pacific Northwest Inlander
Stateline, Idaho, is a blip on the journey radar, with less than 40 residents, a lot of fuel stations and a number of enjoyment venues — a strip club, biker bar, state and western dance hall, and racetrack — contributing to the border town’s raucous standing. It is really the final location one may possibly count on to see a cafe serving French-motivated crepes and reliable Bulgarian foodstuff, but which is what you will obtain at The Border Quit.
“Everybody is definitely awesome and pleased there is a different cuisine in the spot,” says Dimitar Gerov, who opened the Border Cease this spring with wife Heather Gerova.
Bulgarian cuisine is various, nevertheless as element of the Balkan location, it truly is also common. Bulgaria’s japanese flank sits on the Black Sea, with Turkey, Greece and North Macedonia to the south, so some of the flavors on the Border Stop’s menu remind of Mediterranean meals. Serbia and Romania are to the west and north of Bulgaria, respectively, nevertheless, lending Slavic things to the delicacies, much too.
The princessa ($8-$12), for case in point, is a person of several open up-deal with baked sandwiches that could possibly show up on a usual Bulgarian breakfast menu or a road vendor’s cart. The Classic ($12) features seasoned pork, beef and onion, with sharp white cheddar cheese, although the Balkan ($11) contains salami, sharp white cheddar, Bulgarian seasoning and lutenitsa, a thick condiment of tomatoes and roasted purple peppers.
“Lutenitsa will differ in diverse regions and in different households, every single family members getting their individual recipe they move down to generations,” Gerov says.
The red peppers he’s used to are called piperka and have sweet, nutty notes very similar to a Spanish piquillo, but with more warmth.
Gerov routinely imports components to seize the authenticity of Bulgarian delicacies he grew up with. For case in point, he brings in natural and organic Bulgarian feta cheese created the “aged university way,” and features it on major of the garlic bread ($7), in the shopska salad ($10.50) with cucumber, kalamata olives, tomatoes and bell peppers, and in banitsa, a cheese-filled savory pie only out there in the sampler plate ($13).
Banitsa, which is in Bulgarian, brings together flaky phyllo pastry dough, Bulgarian yogurt, eggs and feta, Gerova describes. It is so labor-intense, she can make it significantly more compact than how it would ordinarily be served, pairing it in the sampler plate with garlic bread, lutenitsa and sarma, the Bulgarian remedy to Greek dolmades or stuffed grape leaves.
The Border Prevent is found higher than A1 Smoke Shop in a space the prior proprietors applied as a cigar shop and wine bar.
Inspite of the uncommon spot, the eatery’s interior is cozy and inviting. A half wall in the most important dining and bar spot overlooks the smoke shop below, but it is really not intrusive. Black ceilings, resin-topped tables with a swirly style, dim lights, fake vegetation, and jazz from an overhead speaker create a soothing ambiance. You will find a television at the rear of the bar but alternatively of the cacophony of sporting occasions, it shows magnificent mountain scenes in a continual loop.
Look for rotating local breweries on tap, says Gerov, and the “occasionally skunky Pilsner from Europe,” moreover a lot more German beers ahead of Oktoberfest. The wine checklist is modest — a handful of from France and New Zealand — with more bottles staying included gradually.
Outdoors, the Border Quit incorporates a patio and occasional stay songs.
The restaurant’s Facebook page is a great place to check out for activities and the newest food items specials like kebapche or grilled Bulgarian kebabs ($10.50) or terrator, a cold soup with Bulgarian yogurt, cucumber and dill ($5).
Gerova does much of the cooking at Border Halt, having learned from the resource: Dimitar’s mom and his grandmother, or baba. No a person writes anything at all down, says Gerova, so she videotaped the Gerov matriarchy in their household kitchen.
“[Dimitar] stated I went through Grandma’s cooking college,” says Heather, who met Dimitar in her native Alaska.
The pair, who relocated to Liberty Lake in 2019, tried out but haven’t fairly mastered baba’s recipe for Bulgarian yogurt, Gerov suggests. Though it is very similar to Greek yogurt, it can be tangier, he provides, and Bulgarians provide it with all the things.
“Yogurt is a enormous offer in Bulgarian lifestyle as you can envision with its heritage,” he adds.
Entertaining actuality: Bulgarian scientist Stamen Grigorov is credited with the discovery of lactobacillus bulgaricus, the bacterium that the natural way and magically transforms milk into yogurt.
Baba may be the originator of most recipes on Border Stop’s menu, but Dimitar’s mom is the inspiration for the crepes.
“For the crepes we use mom’s recipe,” Gerov states. It is really a loved ones solution and incorporates “a very little of this and a tiny of that,” he states.
The Border Prevent serves almost two dozen sweet and savory crepes. Some are common combinations like the Cubano ($12) with Swiss cheese, ham and dill pickles, the rooster shawarma ($14) with Center Japanese-spiced chopped chicken, or the Virtually Elvis ($11) with banana, peanut butter and honey. Other folks reflect a lot more unconventional components like the dwelling-made cream and oreo cookie crepe ($12).
“We sell what we like to eat,” Gerov says. ♦
The Border Halt • 7200 W. Seltice Way, #2 (within A1 Smoke Store), Put up Falls • Open up Wed-Fri midday-8 pm, Sat 10 am-8 pm, Sun 10 am-5 pm • theborderstop.com • 208-619-6856