Mobile Eats

Rise Up! Artisan Bread is a familiar name among Ashland grocers and restaurants. More recently, the bakery became known for pizzas made at farmers markets and baked in a portable, wood-fired oven.

Jo Ferneau and Rosie Demmin moved to Oregon from Napa, Calif., in 2007 and founded their bakery in the Applegate. This year, the operation hit the road with a domed pizza oven towed on an open trailer by a biodiesel van. The assembly can be found at the Rogue Valley Growers & Crafters Market from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Tuesdays at the Ashland Armory, 1420 E. Main St.

A small fire heats the 2-ton oven to temperatures between 550 and 800 degrees, so pizzas bake in three to five minutes. It takes a skilled baker even less time to stretch a lump of dough into a hand-tossed crust with a few quick flips into the air.

The pizza crust is the right combination of chewy and crisp while toppings range from conventional to unusual, such as bacon, apple and honey.

Rise Up! also inspires another mobile food vendor, Applegate-based Fulcrum Dining, another mainstay of local farmers markets. The food truck's two Chicago-trained chefs, Chad Hahn and Gabrielle Rysula, pair Rise Up! bread with ingredients gleaned from whatever's freshest and available from other market vendors. The result is a sophisticated menu prepared in the gleaming trailer's full kitchen.

A few breakfast items — an omelet, breakfast sandwich with house-made chorizo, bacon or ham and grits with bacon and eggs — complement sandwiches stuffed with locally raised meats and vegetables, as well as polenta topped with mushrooms and veggies. Sometimes tacos, soups or salads are on the bill of fare.

In addition to Ashland's Tuesday market, Fulcrom sets up at Medford's Thursday market and Grants Pass' Saturday market, with Sunday stops at Wooldridge Creek Winery near Grants Pass.

Recommended: Rise Up's pesto, pear and potato pie, a surprisingly harmonious combination, as well as classic cheese and basil, simple perfection with rich, pure tomato flavor; also Fulcrom's polenta and grits, made from blue corn grown and ground at a farm in Williams, offers creamy almost chewy texture and subtle, earthy corn flavor topped with a buttery mix of lightly sautéed vegetables.

Alternative diets: Vegetarian selections at both trucks; focus is on fresh, natural, local and some organic; see Fulcrum's website for a list of sources for their ingredients.

Beverages: Fulcrum offers house-made teas and punches, as well as natural, bottled beverages; but both set up where beverages are available from other vendors.

Price range: Rise Up! pizzas, $4 to $5 per slice, depending on toppings, whole pies, $10 to $15; Fulcrum's menu ranges from $6 for sweet or savory crepes and vegetable-topped polenta to $12 for beef short ribs with polenta.

Extras: Fulcrum accepts credit and debit cards; dishes served in disposable containers; seating depends on venues.

Serving: At farmers markets and special events; available for catering; check websites for schedules.

Info: Rise Up! Artisan Bread, 541-899-3472,; Fulcrum Dining, 541-218-9900,

Share This Story