Portland and Coast Restaurant Report


May 30th, 2010, 10:24 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2005
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Portland and Coast Restaurant Report

My husband and I just returned from 11 nights in Oregon starting in Portland, made our way down the coast, and returned via the interior. Here’s a rundown of our food experiences. I’ve summed up with a list of our favorites at the bottom.

Portland-Otto’s Sausage-this was a neat little place where you can walk up and order right on the street! We each had pork and thought it was good. They have sandwiches, meats and cheeses for sale inside as well. This is not located downtown so it was a bit of a drive but overall we thought it was worth it.

McMenamin’s on Broadway-we walked right past it the first time but it is located directly above Starbuck’s on the corner. Due to a late lunch at Otto’s we split a bean dip and chips along with some great brew! They did have fantastic Happy Hour specials.

Old Town Pizza-this was a unique pizza place located in what I think was an old hotel. Some of the smaller tabletops were made from old Singer sewing machines which really fit with the feel of the place. We split a pizza with all the works and we both thought it was good. It reminded us of Pizza Hut pan pizza with less grease. They don’t open for lunch until 11:30.

Voodoo Doughnut-this was a funky little place (and by little I mean little) but I just had to try one of their bacon topped maple bars. Overall the doughnut reminded me of a Krispy Kreme. It was fresh and soft with the perfect amount of maple icing and crispy bacon.

Broadway Brew Pub-great happy hour specials which we took advantage of and spent less than $10 for 2 of us on food. The homemade chili was good with some spice to it and the bratwurst (although they called it something else) was a great bargain at less than $4. We enjoyed the brew here a little more than McMenamin’s.

Wet Dog Brew Pub-Astoria-the view here is beautiful as it is right on the Columbia River. Our meal was good as I had my first ever Razor Clam sandwich (was huge) while my husband had the fried scallops.

The Seaside Candyman in Seaside-I have never seen so many flavors of taffy. I especially enjoyed the jalapeno-just about as spicy as a red hot cinnamon candy.

Rosanna’s-Oceanside-this was one of the best meals we had. The view is amazing as it sits right on the water. I had penne pasta with gorgonzola, pears and scallops and wanted to lick my plate. My husband had a seafood platter of fish, shrimp and scallops. After dinner we split a piece of peanut butter mousse pie which was plenty for 2!

Doryland Pizza in Pacific City-I did something here I have never done-ask for a refund. We went in to grab a quick lunch bite as we were starving and every other place in town was packed due to a bike ride. We were the 2nd couple in and ordered clam chowder. (We both know you don’t go to a pizza place for chowder but we were starving and thought that would be the quickest option.) 35 minutes later and we still had no chowder. It appeared there were some staffing issues going on. The pizza looked and smelled delicious. Needless to say, we grabbed corn dogs at the market next door.

Pelican Pub Brewery in Pacific City-this was our favorite brew pub for brew. The Belgian style was wonderful! I had soup and salad with a blue cheese vinaigrette that I very much enjoyed. The soup was a beer cheese soup featuring Tillamook cheese and Pelican Pub brew. My husband enjoyed the fish and chips.

Tidal Raves in Depoe Bay-this was arguably the most spectacular dining view as a playful little seal kept surfacing just below our table. I had soup and salad which featured a nice Manhattan shrimp soup. My husband is still raving about the fish tacos!

The Drift Inn-another great meal. My husband had a delicious halibut burger he’s still raving about while I had the Dungeness crab with mushrooms, rice and vegetables. We split a Marionberry cobbler after dinner as we had never had them. It was delicious with a “cake like” crust and probably my favorite dessert.

Cranberry Sweets in Bandon-we stopped in here for a quick pick-me-up and I found their jelly candies to be unique and good. The chocolates were good but I thought their caramel was better. The chocolate was slightly grainy and I found it to have an almost day-old taste. (I work in the chocolate industry so I’m a bit jaded.)

Koffee ‘N Kites in Bandon-great coffee! The strawberry latte was refreshing.

The Crazy Norwegian in Port Orford-wonderful crab cakes served over mixed greens. These were recommended by Alan, our host at the Home by the Sea B&B, and they were scrumptious. My husband loved the Dungeness crab sandwich with thick sourdough bread.

The Taprock in Grant’s Pass which is situated directly on the Rogue River was another delicious meal. I had clam chowder which was delicious and a salad with local Rogue creamery blue cheese! My husband had the fish tacos and while they were very good, he thought the ones at Tidal Raves were the best. We split a crème brulee for dessert. My husband’s favorite dessert of the trip. The Taprock was celebrating it’s 1 year anniversary and gave everyone a free t-shirt with their meal.

Cary’s of Oregon-they boast of the finest English Toffee and with good reason! We did not have the chance to visit the factory but picked up a box at Crater Lake and it was excellent!

Stacy’s Covered Bridge Restaurant in Cottage Grove-for a fantastic burger give this place a try. It’s not a burger joint but they know how to make one! The French dip I had was good (the cracked pepper horseradish was really nice) but I was envious of the burger my husband ordered.

The Back Room at Nick’s in McMinnville-wow! Portions are small but they are loaded with flavor! I had lamb sausage served over polenta and my husband had the Dungeness crab lasagna. For me, this was a close tie with my meal at Rosanna’s! We each ordered a dessert (as our dinner portions left plenty of room) and I had the profiteroles with anise gelato while my husband ordered the sea-salted caramel gelato. Both were divine!

The Candy Basket in Portland-we just happened to drive past this and decided to stop. They have a huge (bigger than life-size chocolate fountain) as you walk in the front door. We picked up an assortment of chocolates including some of their caramels and they were excellent! I found the chocolate creamier and fresher than what we picked up at Cranberry Sweets as well as their creams a bit creamier.

In summary our bests-Best View-Tidal Raves in Depoe Bay, Best Candy-Cary’s of Grant’s Pass, Best Fish Tacos-Tidal Raves, Hubby’s Best Meal-Burger at Stacy’s Covered Bridge in Grant’s Pass, My Best Meal-tie between the Back Room at Nick’s and Rosanna’s, Best Microbrewery-Pelican Pub, Best Service-the Back Room at Nick’s.
travelmonkey is offline  
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May 30th, 2010, 03:49 PM
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Nicely done. Thanks for the ideas and summary.
happytrailstoyou is offline  
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May 30th, 2010, 06:40 PM
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My kind of travel report - all about the food! Thanks, glad you had a good time. CJ
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May 31st, 2010, 02:06 AM
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Portland is on my to do list - thanks for the report. Bookmarking!
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May 31st, 2010, 05:26 AM
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Thanks! While we were out of town a new upscale grocery store opened where we live, Earth Fare. We went to check it out last night and were so excited they carry Tillamook and Rogue Creamery cheeses!

One thing I loved about Oregon restaurants was the freshness and the use of local ingredients. I think that was most evident at Taprock as their menu included a list of what was purchased locally.

I've also written a hotel review here:
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Jun 25th, 2010, 08:12 AM
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Thanks for the suggestions....where is Back Room at Nick's located?
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Jun 26th, 2010, 03:33 AM
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It's in downtown McMinnville just off 3rd Street. You can enter thru Nick's Italian Cafe (which faces 3rd Street) or you can enter directly at the back door which I think is off of Evans Street.
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