OR Coast/Willamette Valley Next Week
Looking for restaurant recommendations for Cannon Beach area (one night), Gleneden Beach area (one night) and the Dayton area of Willamette Valley. We're open to any type of food and any price range. Prefer upscale, sophisticated settings rather than family-oriented places.
I have made some progress on booking, mainly in the Willamette Valley area. I've booked dinner at the Joel Palmer House (definitely going for those mushrooms!), with no hesitations.
Also booked Tina's in Dundee. Has anyone been there? www.tinasdundee.com
As for the coast, I checked out the suggestions and have some questions about dinner places. . .
Nehalem River Inn looks good, but is it formal or stuffy feeling?
And The Bay House looks great, but are the $35-53 entrees worth it? I have no objection to paying those prices but want to make sure the food lives up to them.
Back to wine clountry, is it OK to ask here about winery recommendations? If so, what's not to be missed in terms of hard to find wines of any thype?
Apologies for taking so long to report on the restaurants we went to while on the OR coast and in the Willamette Valley! But, finally, here it is . . .
In Cannon Beach we went to The Bistro and were very, very happy with our meal. We started with the sautéed razor clams (with arugula and roasted red pepper aioli, $8.75) and a salad of pears, walnuts, bleu cheese, and organic greens with port dressing for $7.75. Our entrées were the fish stew (prawns, halibut, ling cod, steamers, oysters, and scallops in a spicy red sauce – a dish for which they are so rightly famous. I don’t think I’ve ever had ling cod before and it was the star of the stew! Our other entrée was lamb tenderloin marinated in ginger, garlic, and curry with banana almond chutney for $24.75 – great! We had a 2006 Silvan Ridge Reserve Pinot Noir ($48) and ended the meal by sharing blueberry pie with both vanilla and coffee ice cream.
In Gleneden Beach, we had dinner at The Side Door Café, which is fun and funky in a very good way. We started with a portabello stuffed with crab and topped with sweet hot mustard vinaigrette and served with carrots, zucchini, and lettuce. Our entrées were parmesan encrusted halibut (with capellini pasta and artichoke-tomato balsamic vinaigrette for $24) and a 12-oz charbroiled rib eye with pan-fried oysters crème fraiche mashers, and cabernet herb demi glaze. Very yummy and very huge portions. For wine, we had a 2004 Dobbes Family Estate Pinot Noir ($42).
On the way to Dayton, we had breakfast at the Otis Café – a tiny, not-to-be-missed roadside place at the Otis junction with great food and a sassy, but very nice, waitress. We had eggs with oysters and spinach, served with toast that was an inch thick. They also have their bread for sale by the loaf to take away. While waiting for a table, we passed the time by buying dahlias from the unmanned, honor-system cart placed outside the café – stunners that were $4 a dozen!
In the Willamette Valley, we stayed in Dayton and had dinner at the Joel Palmer House and at Tina’s. At the former, we had the Mushroom Madness menu, which was:
Wild mushroom risotto with Oregon truffle oil
Mushroom soup with crème fraiche
Morels and portabello caps with melted cheese
A 3-mushroom tart
Entrées (the only choice you have to make):
Salmon with mushroom duxelle and chimichuri sauce
Lamb with jalapeno corn bread
Cheesecake with a candy mushroom cap on top and black hazelnut torte with black truffle ice cream
We brought a 2006 Deux Verres Pinot Noir, which Torii Mor recommended to go along with mushrooms. Their wine list is not available on-line, so we brought our own, having been warned above of high mark-ups. I believe the corkage fee was $20. It was a divine evening in every way!! And the family that owns the restaurant – and works the kitchen and dining room – could not be more passionate about their food and the area’s Pinots.
At Tina’s, we had another wonderful dinner of:
Warm Cypress Grove chevre with roasted garlic ($7)
Roasted duck breast with corn soufflé, 4 braised kales and ginger fig sauce ($27)
Braised short ribs, dark beer, chocolate, spring onions, and grilled polenta ($27)
2005 Domaine Serene Evenstad Reserve ($80)
At Tina’s, salads are included in the entrée prices. After we had our goat cheese app, our entrées arrived, with no salads in sight. Our waitress was aghast and agape when she was standing there with our entrées in-hand and we told her we had not been served our salads. We offered her a deal – we would take our hot entrées and skip the salads, if she would comp us dessert. She happily agreed while apologizing profusely. Then she comped us some other goodies in addition to the almond cake! Very generous.
The food we enjoyed at the coast and in the valley was only surpassed by the gorgeous scenery of both places! Thanks for your help in picking perfect restaurants!!
Last time I was there a few years ago, the Side Door Cafe in Gleneden was pretty good. Horrific website, but pretty good food: http://www.sidedoorcafe.com/page3.html I had the panfried oysters and the pork medallions for dinner that night and it was good.
We stay in Manzanita at least 3-4x/yr. and have eaten at almost every place in Cannon Beach, some of them more than once. No more, nothing is really worth the money or the time there. I would drive from Cannon Beach to Nehalem River Inn http://www.nehalemriverinn.com/restau... Best food on that part of the coast, bar none, we go there whenever we are near there. It's an adult only place, too. I would steer clear of the Stephanie Inn (two horrible overpriced dinners there) and though Gower St. is OK, I think the drive to Nehalem is worth it for a much, much better meal.
We have had very nice meals at the Bistro Restaurant at 263 N. Hemlock St. in Cannon Beach. (This is a different restaurant from the Gower St. Bistro mentioned above.) It is a relatively small, intimate setting, perfect for couples, definitely not family-oriented.
Also, we usually stay at the Stephanie Inn. Last time we were there (Nov 2007), we had dinner at the Inn's restaurant one evening and, to our surprise, it was fabulous.
oops forgot. if you are in cannon beach i'd suggest you head a couple miles north there to gearhart to try pacific way bakery and cafe. doesn't sound like much but it is definitely worth the trip and the food/service is better than anything you'll find in cannon beach. yeah, i'm biased :-)
just north of gleneden beach is lincoln city which has lots of places. one of the nicests/pricy is the bay house just on the south end of lincoln city. great wines $$$, great view, and very good food. another place is salishan which is a very well known spa/hotel/golf resort. food there used to be very good but we haven't been there for a couple of years. good luck!