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Looking for Unique/Unforgettable Seafood/local beer experiences for July road trip leaving Seattle and driving down the Oregon Coast

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Peldog May 20, 2013 01:10 PM

Taking 4 days to drive the Oregon Coast - looking for your Chowhound wisdom to guide me to many local classic seafood stops - also best places to pick up cooked crabs/fresh oysters etc for picnic stops - Thanks in advance for your suggestions...

My early research has found the following - opinions would be appreciated
(I love to make many quick stops in a day to try small bites of local classics)

Chester's Tavern - South Bend - Fried Oysters
River View Diner - South Bend - BBQ oysters
Ship Inn - Astoria - Pints and ?
Ecolla Seafoods - Cannon Beach - take out seafood
Chowder Bowl - Nye Beach - ?
Xinh's Clam and Oyster House - Shelton - ?
The Cannery - Garibaldi - ?
Norma's - Seaside - Oyster Stew
(I will be looking for the best oyster stew and pan fried oysters on the coast)
Lunasea - Yachats - ?
Cheese Factory - Tillamook - Cheese and Icecream
Port Oxford - ?

Looking forward to eating and drinking my way through the Oregon Coast

  1. o
    oregoncook Jun 16, 2013 11:29 PM

    How about Karla's Smokehouse in north Rockaway for take out smoked fish - terrific and special when we tried it a while back. Website is requesting pre-orders now?

    http://www.karlassmokehouse.com

    I love Alloro in Bandon but not sure it fits OP's special request unless they have fish/seafood specials that night?

    4 Replies
    1. re: oregoncook
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      Peldog Jun 17, 2013 04:22 AM

      Is there a smoked fish Karla's is famous for, that you shouldn't miss
      The Alloro looks like a nice wine bar - will check it out -
      thanks...

      1. re: Peldog
        l
        Leonardo Jun 30, 2013 07:03 AM

        Karla is an old friend of my family. It pains me to say this: Karla has closed her business after 47 years. With her health concerns, she was unable to continue. This happened in May. A huge loss. She was an Oregon cultural treasure. https://www.facebook.com/pages/Karlas...
        See the notices May 9-10. Huge sad face for me...

        1. re: Leonardo
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          oregoncook Jun 30, 2013 05:46 PM

          I am so sorry to hear that. And for you personally, Leonardo.

          1. re: oregoncook
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            Leonardo Jul 20, 2013 10:24 PM

            Thank you. At least now she is out of the hospital and recovering at home.

    2. s
      Sushiqueen36 Jun 15, 2013 10:04 PM

      You might look into The Schooner restaurant in Netarts (near Tillamook). It's going to be a little out of your way but they feature local everything and have a great view. We really enjoyed it on our visit...

      1 Reply
      1. re: Sushiqueen36
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        Peldog Jun 17, 2013 04:14 AM

        Thanks - will check it out...

      2. j
        joeinseattle Jun 14, 2013 12:49 PM

        There's a hard-to-find restaurant in Newport, OR called ARR Place, that is out of this world. No signage, not even numbers on their mailbox. But looking for them is worth it.

        1 Reply
        1. re: joeinseattle
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          Peldog Jun 15, 2013 12:29 PM

          Sounds like a classic triple D diner serving great food - will have to check it out - thanks for the heads up - will be hard to decide what to order at this place, so many great choices...

        2. s
          Steve K May 26, 2013 08:07 AM

          Xinh's is a cut above excellent, but only open for dinner. Amazing preparation and flavors.

          Don't be surprised that River View Diner is just barely a shack. Superb BBQ oysters and other stuff.

          3 Replies
          1. re: Steve K
            p
            Peldog May 26, 2013 09:54 AM

            shacks are my kind of place - nothing fancy - just great food...

            Xinh's menu has a good selection - will check it out...thanks

            1. re: Steve K
              MissBubbles Jun 12, 2013 08:19 AM

              So happy to hear the River View Diner is still there and still turing out great BBQ Oysters. Haven't been up that way for 5 years but when we did we loved them =)

              1. re: MissBubbles
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                Peldog Jun 17, 2013 04:35 AM

                Thanks for the suggestion - soooo many options to choose from... can't wait for the summer to arrive

            2. s
              Sushiqueen36 May 23, 2013 09:11 PM

              You might add Local Ocean in Newport to your list. They have a fish counter/case as well as a creative kitchen.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Sushiqueen36
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                Peldog May 25, 2013 11:57 PM

                I checked out their menu - love fish tacos - are Yaquina Bay oysters as good as Willapa Bay?
                Thanks for the suggestion...

                1. re: Peldog
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                  Sushiqueen36 May 27, 2013 02:52 PM

                  Not sure - I'm not a big oyster connoisseur so I wouldn't be the right person to ask. Their menu varies based on what's fresh and the whims of the chef. I had a hot/sour soup there once with a little fried rice ball in the middle and fresh bay shrimp - it was excellent but I haven't been there again when it's on the menu.

              2. p
                PappyAustin May 22, 2013 02:30 PM

                Alloro wine bar in Bandon has great Italian.

                1 Reply
                1. re: PappyAustin
                  p
                  Peldog May 25, 2013 11:59 PM

                  My wife loves Italian - and wine - we'll stop in...

                2. g
                  GH1618 May 21, 2013 11:47 PM

                  By the way, you can stop for Tillamook ice cream in Seaside at a little place on the south side of Broadway just before the Turnaround. I forget the name.

                  16 Replies
                  1. re: GH1618
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                    Leonardo May 25, 2013 08:09 PM

                    About 15 places in Portland make ice cream that is worlds better than Tillamook.

                    Blue Heron is a tourist trap. And they don't make cheese. They do offer pony rides though. Or hayrides. Or something.

                    1. re: Leonardo
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                      GH1618 May 25, 2013 11:06 PM

                      Blue Heron did when I was last there, admittedly quite awhile ago. Perhaps it has changed.

                      I don't think the OP is going through Portland, and ice cream isn't the main thing on the NW coast anyway. The main attractions are Willapa Bay oysters (pan-fried), Columbia River sturgeon (smoked), and razor clams (in my opinion).

                      1. re: GH1618
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                        Peldog May 25, 2013 11:36 PM

                        Best ways to have/places to enjoy a feed of razor clams?

                        1. re: Peldog
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                          GH1618 May 26, 2013 12:03 AM

                          There are plenty of places serving razor clams, but I'm not up on the best places. When I'm in town (Seaside), I buy them at Bell Buoy and my mother cooks them. Most anyplace should be able to do a competent job on a simple fried razor clam.

                          1. re: GH1618
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                            Peldog May 26, 2013 12:46 AM

                            would a fried razor clam be like a whole belly or clam strip

                          2. re: Peldog
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                            GH1618 May 26, 2013 12:44 AM

                            Here are some options for fried razor clams in Seaside, varying by atmosphere:

                            sports bar: Dundee's — I haven't had their clams, I go there for a halibut burger with Tillamook cheese, which they do very well.

                            Dining with a view: Maggie's On The Prom — This place is supposed to be good, but when I tried to get there last time I was in town, their schedule didn't match mine, so I haven't been.

                            Middle-of-the-road: Dooger's is the old standby — it's been there for many years, and I have had clams there a few times.

                            Understand that when I am at the beach, I am not wanting a fine dining experience, just a highly competent job of preparing local seafood.

                            Oh, I almost forgot — get crab cakes at the Wet Dog Saloon in Astoria.

                            1. re: GH1618
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                              Peldog May 26, 2013 12:51 AM

                              Thanks for the recommendations - the summer can't come soon enough...
                              sounds like I might be doing a seafood pub crawl in Astoria

                              1. re: Peldog
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                                GH1618 May 26, 2013 01:00 AM

                                Razor clam season closes July 15.

                                1. re: GH1618
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                                  Peldog May 26, 2013 01:04 AM

                                  that's not good - I'm not on the Oregon coast until the end of July!

                                  1. re: Peldog
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                                    GH1618 May 26, 2013 01:10 AM

                                    I'm not sure how long restaurants keep fresh clams. That seems a little long. My mother insists they're just as good frozen.

                          3. re: GH1618
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                            Leonardo May 27, 2013 11:37 AM

                            OP asked for "unique/unforgettable". Someone suggested Tillamook. Their ice cream is not unique and quite forgettable. So I pointed that out.

                            1. re: Leonardo
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                              Peldog May 27, 2013 01:27 PM

                              Thanks for the heads up - are there any great ice cream stops that you know of along the coast - won't be making it to portland on this trip...

                              1. re: Peldog
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                                GH1618 May 27, 2013 04:34 PM

                                Better bring some Lovin' Scoopful with you.

                          4. re: Leonardo
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                            GH1618 May 25, 2013 11:15 PM

                            There is a review in cyberspace which claims that Blue Heron is repackaging supermarket brie as their own. I have no idea if this is true or not. If it were, wouldn't they get into some trouble over it?

                            Update: A more reliable source writes that they do outsource their cheese now. So there's no point to it.

                          5. re: GH1618
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                            acgold7 Jun 10, 2013 09:44 PM

                            For what it's worth, the place on Broadway is Tsunami Sandwich. We were there just a few minutes ago. And while Tillamook may not be the most spectacular Ice Cream around, the only other ice cream place open tonight in Seaside serves Dreyer's. The dipping Tillamook has a very different texture than the supermarket stuff, which is way too light and fluffy. Tonight's was dense and chewy and quite rich and satisfying. Not Snoqualmie, mind you, but still pretty good on a clear summer night.

                            1. re: acgold7
                              p
                              Peldog Jun 12, 2013 07:59 AM

                              Thanks for taking the time to reply - will let my wife the icecream expert make the call on our icecream stops...

                          6. g
                            GH1618 May 21, 2013 11:41 PM

                            At the Ship Inn — halibut fish and chips.

                            Bell Buoy of Seaside for crabs and other seafood for a picnic. The smoked sturgeon is highly recommended.

                            I always get oyster stew at Norma's in preference to chowder. Although oysters are best served pan fried and I recommend the Silver Salmon Grill in Astoria.

                            If you stop in Tillamook for cheese, go also to Blue Heron, not far from the Tillamook Cheese factory. Their brie is a better cheese for a picnic than cheddar.

                            10 Replies
                            1. re: GH1618
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                              GH1618 May 25, 2013 11:24 PM

                              Cancel that Blue Heron tip, at it seems their brie is now outsourced. Instead, try to get to Willapa Farms in SW Washington and buy their "Two-Faced Blue." This is an exceptional local cheese. Of course you can buy it in Seattle, if you know where to look.

                              1. re: GH1618
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                                Peldog May 26, 2013 12:30 AM

                                halibut and a pint sounds good - seafood cocktails/chowder worth having?

                                will for sure check out the sturgeon
                                opinion on Netart bay oysters ?

                                oyster stew at Norma's - excellent suggestion - from their menu it looks like I should also try their world famous clam chowder

                                Silver Salmon - good oyster stew? to go with the pan fried oysters

                                Thanks for the suggestions... can't wait for this seafood trek

                                1. re: Peldog
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                                  GH1618 May 26, 2013 12:36 AM

                                  Their "world famoys" clam chowder isn't what it used to be — Norma is long gone — and I'm pretty sure it's not made with razor clams.

                                  1. re: GH1618
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                                    Peldog May 26, 2013 12:43 AM

                                    is there anything like East coast whole belly fried clams out here on the West coast... or is there just clam strips

                                    1. re: Peldog
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                                      GH1618 May 26, 2013 12:51 AM

                                      I don't know what that is. I'm from Clatsop County, Ore. Our clam is the Pacific razor clam, served whole (that is, cleaned, of course). A serving is typically four clams, but I can eat six.

                                      I don't know about clam strips. When we don't have a whole clam, we make fritters or chowder.

                                      There are steamer clams from Nehalem Bay or somewhere. I'm not familiar with them.

                                      1. re: GH1618
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                                        Peldog May 26, 2013 12:54 AM

                                        clam strips are no where near as good - all coating, very little clam meat

                                      2. re: Peldog
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                                        Leonardo May 26, 2013 07:36 AM

                                        No such thing as whole belly fried clams here.

                                  2. re: GH1618
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                                    Peldog May 26, 2013 01:00 AM

                                    do places like Bell Buoy sell fresh steamed whole crabs to go, or just the crab meat...

                                    1. re: Peldog
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                                      GH1618 May 26, 2013 01:04 AM

                                      Whole, or cleaned, or just meat, fresh or canned. You might be able to get a live one.

                                      Oh, and I don't know anything about places "like" Bell Buoy. There's only Bell Buoy (in Seaside).

                                      1. re: GH1618
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                                        Peldog May 26, 2013 01:10 AM

                                        not doing any cooking on this trip - just going to enjoy the just off the boats - simply prepared - local catch - in the local establishments and as take out with a bottle or two of wine at a scenic lookout...

                                  3. l
                                    Leonardo May 21, 2013 11:04 PM

                                    Port Orford, not Oxford.
                                    In Depot Bay I had a good crab cocktail at Sea Hag.
                                    Tillamook Cheese Factory: Meh. Best public restroom on the coast.
                                    Had some good chowder at Chowder Bowl.

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: Leonardo
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                                      Sushiqueen36 May 23, 2013 09:13 PM

                                      Depoe Bay, not Depot. ;-)

                                      I think Tillamook Cheese Factory is worth a stop for the ice cream and cheese - nothing wrong with that! But they do have good restrooms, for sure.

                                      1. re: Leonardo
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                                        Peldog May 26, 2013 12:07 AM

                                        checked Sea Hags menu out - steamers, oysters and a pint!!!

                                        1. re: Leonardo
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                                          Peldog May 26, 2013 12:13 AM

                                          a chowder and the cajun oyster club sounds good - and a side of clam fritters...
                                          how is their bread pudding with brandy sauce?

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