I'm so happy to see this thread! Sorry for any potentila of derailing your thread scscr but I am was just about to post for some help in Whidbey and many questions answered here.
I am organizing a dinner for 60+ in Langely / Freeland area on Whidbey in mid Sept on a Friday night hostin. Food quality is our priority and would love a casual/fun environment. We are hosting people mostly from out of town (Bay Area, Wash DC, LA).
Prima Bistro was what we were wanting but they can not accomodate. (very nice owners!) We are considering Gordon's and Edgecliff, and now going to explore the ideas here. We are planning a festive, buffet.
Does anyone have recent experience with Edgecliff? They don't have a menu on-line.
Any other ideas from others?
We are also looking into Sunday breakfast options. Useless Bay sounds good, and I love there setting.
You know there is a really great, reasonably priced eatery on 2nd Street in Langley called The Braeburn. They specialize in breakfast and lunch and the service is good. Its really friendly and the only, downside to it (that I could find) is that the bathroom is outside. They have a really cute garden patio outside seating area and its, just hidden, warm and really good food for a good price. But I'm from Seattle where food prices are sky high, so I didn't think the prices here were bad. After breakfast you can scoot down the street to Useless Bay Coffee and get some beans for the road. Yum.
I really enjoyed Flyers Restaurant and Brewery - had an excellent steak there and my SO says their beer is pretty good. There was also a smoked fish place that was pretty tasty - I think it might have been Seabolts. Also, for breakfast, we went to a really busy place that was in the parking lot of a motel - I forget the name, but they had some Hawaiian favorites (like SPAM - my favorite!) that reminded me of home. Also, if you're looking for something fun to do - I enjoyed visiting Greenbank Cellars (and art gallery) for a tasting.
Yes, lots of good eating in Coupeville. Toby's for mussels/onion rings/bison burger, the Oystercatcher (dinner only) for fish, Christophers for lunch or dinner, Long's on the wharf has a varied menu with many Thai dishes. The County Deli on Main street has good lunches, Myriams, also on Main Street is a good place for breakfast or lunch. There is a new Thai Restaurant on Main Street, where the Cove used to be, which appears to be a bit more upscale than Long's. A special treat is buying a hot dog at Coupe's last stand, at the wharf.
Yes, lots of good eating in Coupeville - Toby's for mussels/onion rings/bison burger, the Oystercatcher (dinner only) for fish, Long's on the wharf for Thai food, Christophers for lunch/dinner and there's a new Thai place where the Cove used to be, on Main Street. The County Deli, on Main Street is a good place for lunch, and go to Myriams for breakfast. For a real old style family restaurant serving 3 meals a day, try the Tyee, on Main Street opposite the Red Apple Market.
I grew up on the island and there are a lot of great grease spoon locations. On the way onto the island right across the street by the sillos; grains; railroad after you've past the Holiday Market in Burlington its the one stop light before you get close to Anacortes. I believe it's called HWY 20 Cafe. FABULOUS grease spoon.
If you venture into Anacortes you can stop by one of the remaining park and stop A & W's where they still have the trays for your car and deliver right to you. =)
Once you get onto the island and after the bridge you'll start getting into the area for Deception Pass State Park. There is a gas station on the left which has a smoke house with the best smoked salmon and beef jerky ever!
Whidbey Island is full of greasy spoons!
Another one is Jason's which is the local haunt. It used to be 24 hours.
In the heart of "downtown" Oak Harbor there is a little Filipino grocery store. Oak Harbor has a strong Filipino & Dutch background. Its right on the left as you are coming onto Pioneer Way and it is one of the first businesses. Fresh lumpia is great!
They just got a jazzbones there.
Dugualla Bay Farms for fresh and rare ice cream in fresh waffle cones. The kids in the area pick berries there for a quick summer job and the variety of jams and jellies are fabulous!
I suggest venturing into Coupeville which is just in the middle of the island. Going into the downtown area and I'm very loose with the term "downtown" its a sweet pioneer style community with a strict building code. The downtown area was used in the filming of Practical Magic and painting white for the shooting. There are several little seafood spots for tourists and a very mouthwatering ice cream parlor. You know you've arrived because you'll spell the waffle cones! Also there is a sweet mom and pop candy shop next door with a variety of fun keep sakes to send back as souvenirs.
Hope that helps. =)
>There is a gas station on the left which has a smoke house with the best smoked salmon and beef jerky ever!
This gas station is closed but I haven't heard if there are plans to reopen it or maybe if the owners moved to a different location.
As for other suggestions...
Penn Cove mussels are a must have when visiting Whidbey! A local favorite is Toby's although I think they are actually prepared better at Christopher's (also in Coupeville) and Seabolt's (in Oak Harbor). Seabolt's is partly a retail store but they prepare hot entrees and have a few tables. It's veeery casual but the food is good.
On the north end of the island, Fraiser's Gourmet Hideaway (www.frasersgh.com) in Oak Harbor is a good choice for a nice dinner out - seafood, steaks, that kind of thing. We enjoyed having our dinner at the bar because it was like sitting IN the kitchen and we got to see everything being prepared and talk to the kitchen staff.
In the Deception pass area is Deception Cafe. It's technically north of Whidbey Island but is just a few minutes from Deception pass bridge. The service is slow and kind of spotty but the menu is varied and always good. No kidding, I think this has some of the best food in the area - Try the the veggie burger, steak, fried halibut, handmade noodles or anything really. We've never had a bad meal there. Unless you order sandwiches, the food is a little more expensive than you'd expect from the shack-like appearance ($11-25 for dinner entrees).
I'm less familiar with the south end of the island but I have been to Prima Bistro in Langely and thought it was quite good. They have a patio so you can sit outside and enjoy the breeze. The service was a little off but that's pretty typical of restaurants on Whidbey. Also in Langely, the Inn at Langley (www.innatlangley.com/dining.html) is supposed to be amazing! Local and seasonal foods - I can't wait to get there myself! Village Pizzeria has also been recommended in the past on this board, but again, I have not been there myself.
I could offer other suggestions but it would be helpful to know what price ranges you are looking for and where you will be staying.
Hope you enjoy your time on Whidbey!
There are two disparate schools of thought on the Inn at Langley. One school adores the chef as a high priest of locavores and listens to his pre-dinner summation as if it were the Sermon from the Mount. The other school finds it pretentious and ridiculously overpriced. Try it if you want but you will find that many leave there and head two blocks south to the Village Pizzaria to staunch hunger pains after dining at the Inn at $100/per.
Jen - You need to come home. The Hwy 20 Cafe is closed, and may be torn down by now. They are widening the road. The A&W in Anacortes is no longer an A&W. As mention already the smoke house is closed, but they opened up in Oak Harbor where the old Mazda Dealership building used to be.
The smoke house couldn't have closed? My step mom just went over there to pick up jerky for my father who was in training to ship to him and that was just two months ago? I'm sure it must have just moved. It's his favorite spot, he's always going on and on about it.
Hwy 20? NOOOOO!!! That's a real shame.