180 miles of Oregon coast travel: Astoria, Seaside, Cannon Beach, Manzanita,
Nehalem, Wheeler, Rockaway, Garibaldi, Tillamook, Oceanside, Pacific City,
Lincoln City, Depoe Bay, Newport, Wadport, Yachats & Florence.
Cunning Culinary Feats Found on North Oregon
By Andre’ Hagestedt
|Nehalem River Inn
(Manzanita, Oregon) – While it’s not nearly
as populated as the central Oregon coast, the north coast seems to pull
the most dining rabbits out of the hat and provide some the majority of
the coast’s most memorable eateries. Sometimes, you have to look
a little harder for some of them, as a few of the best are lurking in
little corners, or in coastal towns that are slightly hidden themselves.
Seaside has a few jewels just under the surface, including
Taste of Tuscany, Phannie Phat’s and the eye roll-inducing gourmet
ice cream of Zinger’s Homemade Ice Cream. In Cannon Beach, Fultano’s
Pizza cloisters some of the finest pasta on the entire coastline; while
the Warren House, known a bit more for its nightlife, provides fantastic
gourmet delights as well.
Cape Property Services.
Dozens of homes in that dreamy,
rugged stretch between Cannon Beach and Manzanita known as Arch
Cape. Oceanfront and ocean view , or just a short walk from the
All homes are immaculate and smoke free; some pet friendly (with
a fee). Some with broadband, indoor or outdoor hot tubs, fireplaces,
decks, and fire pits or barbecues. Call about tempting winter specials
that go until March (not valid holidays, however). www.archcaperentals.com
In smaller places like Manzanita, Left Coast Siesta cooks
up a storm with its nouveau fast food Mexican that must be tasted to be
experienced. Off-the-beaten-path Nehalem hides Wanda’s Café
and its wild culinary forays, as well as the Nehalem River Inn’s
dazzling upscale presentation and expertise.
Then there’s Wheeler, just south of Nehalem, which,
well, you’ll see.
|Terra Cotta Cafe
Terra Cotta Café, Manzanita
At this gem in the tiny town of Manzanita, owners Harvey
and Sandy have brought a bit of heaven to this already dreamy burgh. The
interior is done ib pastel pinks and given a romantic, intimate vibe that
is upscale yet beach flip-flop friendly.
Next door, the pair ran The Malt Shop for years until recently.
This was also famous for exquisite burgers and lots of other pleasures:
simple Americana dishes done with mouth-watering flair. They dropped that
business earlier this year, understandably, because it caused them to
work nearly 20-hour days when paired with the evening hours of the Terra
It all begins with the breadsticks. They are unique: not
hardened, upright oblong chunks of bread, but rather, limp, braided creations
that sing upon impact with your mouth. They are moist, tender and full
INTO LUXURY, HISTORY AT THE TIDES
TIDES BY THE SEA, Seaside. For over 80 years a favorite of Seaside
visitors. 51 oceanfront condos, individually owned and decorated.
Suites for couples, small apartments with fireplaces and kitchenettes,
one or two bed family units with fireplaces, kitchens and dining
rooms. Oceanview cottages sleep anywhere from two to eight, w/ two
bedrooms, some with lofts, fireplaces and kitchens. Heated outdoor
pool, enormous grounds w/ picnic tables - all at quiet southern
end of Seaside. 2316 Beach Drive. 800-548-2846. www.thetidesbythesea.com.
I suck them down like there’s no tomorrow (because,
according to the melee of my growling, starving stomach, there isn’t
another day). Another set of them comes just as my soup does, and I get
halfway into this grouping as well, voraciously nibbling on these after
dousing them with the real (oh yum) butter.
|New York Steak at Terra Cotta
Next up comes a soft, silky bisque made of artichokes and
tomatoes. This is a personal recipe of Sandy’s, and it’s wowing
to say the least. The whole thing goes down smooth and creamy, but there’s
a touch of a zing, given by the artichokes, yet subtle and far from overpowering.
Then comes the New York steak – which I must say
may be the best specimen of steak I’ve ever come across. It’s
a perfect blend of charred layers on the outside and rich, juicy meat
on the inside.
This whole experience set me back about $18.
The menu consists of a few pasta specialties, many kinds
of seafood, and meat and chicken dishes – all with an innovative
flair that would make these plates at home on some cable TV foodie show.
Prices generally range from $17 to $25. Manzanita. (503) 368-3700.
|Inside The Bistro
The Bistro, Cannon Beach
It’s hard to beat this legend on the north Oregon
coast for consistency and sheer pleasure, with a fierce following that
is so devoted it’s almost like a cult. Eat here once and you’ll
be converted too.
Ocean Lodge. There will not be another property built
like this in Cannon Beach in our lifetimes. Rare, premiere ocean
front location; handsome, dramatic architecture and tasteful, fun
(nostalgic) beach interiors. Overlooks Haystack Rock. 100 percent
smoke free. Imaginative special occasion packages. Massive wood
burning lobby fireplace. Library w/ fireplace, stocked with impressive
book collection. Pet and family friendly. Lavish continental buffet
breakfast. In-room fireplaces, mini-kitchens. Jacuzzi tubs in select
rooms. DVD players, complimentary movies. Morning paper. Warm cookies.
888-777-4047. 503-436-2241. 2864 Pacific Street. Cannon Beach, Oregon.
From the outside, it appears to be a hole in the wall:
the title “Bistro” furthers that impression. Inside –
just like that Dr. Who character’s time-tripping spacecraft –
it’s a lot bigger than it looks. But the food here, as well as the
drink mixology, seem to defy the laws of physics.
The bar sits at the very front, in a tiny room that contains
three tables and about six or so places at the bar. Behind that structure,
their booze-craft enters brave new territory with loads of inventive drinks.
All sorts of wild, brilliant colors show up in ingenious martinis, or
you’ll see them putting together some wacky concoction using fire
and sparks – as if some ancient knowledge of wizardry has been passed
down to this generation of bartenders.
|Linguini and meatballs
Next to the front room, another much larger space opens
up, with high, vaulted ceilings and a feel not unlike some backwoodsy
French eatery in a forest.
Their meals often start off with this stunning Greek Lemon
soup that is sleek and silky smooth. The orzo rice are tender and delicate,
but there’s a bit of tang to this glorious creation. It is warming
but light, a perfect segue into the heartier territory to come.
Their breads are magnificent, reminding me again of something
you’d find in an old country inn in rural France. They are rustic
and woodsy; a bit of white, sourdough heaven.
at Cannon Beach. Beautifully wooded natural setting at quiet
south end of Cannon Beach. Great during winter storms with a new
book by the fireplace – or when the sun is out for family
fun and beach strolling. Handsome beach cottage-style architecture.
Lush flowering gardens and naturalized courtyard pond. Warm, inviting
guest rooms. Continental buffet breakfast. Warm Cookies. Family
and Pet Friendly. Welcome gifts. Smoke-free. Complimentary Wireless
Connectivity. Wine and book signing events. 800-321-6304 or 503-436-9085.
Hemlock At Surfcrest, Cannon Beach, Oregon. www.atcannonbeach.com.
There is a wonderful spaghetti and meatballs that is offered,
but not usually on the menu. It’s like a secret you have to know
about: apparently reward for being part of this cult of fans. In this
case, no actual spaghetti noodles were on hand, but instead linguini,
which was just as fine and just as outstanding.
|Outstanding mixology at The Bistro
The sauce is this thick, bold and flavorful thing, yet
still delicate. Big, fat mushrooms add an earthy touch, while green peppers
bring an occasional zing. The whole thing is rich and hearty and feels
like a garden is unfolding over my palate.
The meatballs are gargantuan: a bold blend of spices and
almost tangy. I’m a sucker for great meatballs and relish every
At one point, I realize the only thing this is missing
is more sauce. For some reason, my dish was a bit low. Just as I was thinking
this, the wise and observant waitress asked me if I’d like some
more sauce. Just in time.
Their famously imaginative menu includes a bundle of interesting
entrees and flavors, with influences from all over Europe and the Mediterranean.
There are pansotti (swiss chard and cheese-filled triangles with walnut
pesto and marinara sauce), sautéed oysters served in a lemon sauce,
broiled chicken with a Thai slant, a famous seafood stew with fish changing
regularly, and a broiled lamb with an eggplant relish I heard someone
cooing about all night. Items range from $15 to $25. 263 N. Hemlock. Cannon
Beach, Oregon. 503-436-2661.
Guido’s Ristorante, Wheeler
|View from Guido's
Overlooking the Nehalem Bay, tiny, six-block-long Wheeler
has a lion’s share of great restaurants: there are three packed
into this miniscule but addictive place. There’s the growing buzz
of the Sea Shack, the legendary experimentations of the Treasure Café,
and then there’s Guido’s.
Rockaway Beach. All rooms are immaculate and have TV’s, VCR’s
and in-room phones with data ports. Oceanfronts all have a queen
bed, a double hide-a-bed, kitchen, cozy firelog fireplace and a
private deck. Both types sleep up to four people. Others are appointed
for a two-person romantic getaway, yet still perfect for those on
a budget. Elaborate oceanfront Jacuzzi suite has two bedrooms, kitchen,
double hide-a-bed, fireplace and private deck, sleeping as many
as six. For family reunions or large gatherings such as weddings,
some rooms can connect to create two-room and three-room suites.
Some rooms are pet friendly.523 N. Pacific St., Rockaway Beach.
(503) 355-2112 - 1-800-824-0938. www.tradewinds-motel.com
This charming eatery was once home to the famous Nina’s
Italian eatery, which wowed the north coast for a couple of decades until
its demise two years ago. Then, the first version of Guido’s entered
the building, with some truly amazing pizza creations that were out of
Now, the newest version may not have that cutting edge
gourmet vibe, but it’s still a wonderful inheritor of the legacy
of Italian food joints in this spot – and it has its own exceptional
slant on the genre.
|Exquisitely retro lounge in the back of Guido's
Their pastas and pizzas are becoming well known for being
simply good quality family fare with a homemade feel. First, you’re
greeted with a lovely little collection of antipasto: good cheeses and
meats, along with fresh vegetables.
Their minestrone soup is fabulous, and introduces you to
the made-with-loving-care sense you get from all the meals here. It’s
a soup like your grandma would’ve made – if she was a really
good cook. Lots of spinach adds a nice touch.
Their garlic bread is tasty in this Old World kind of way,
again like a sweet relative made it from scratch.
become addicted to the calzone ($11.95), which is somewhere between pasta
and a pizza, and probably shows off what their capable of in both worlds.
The meat sauce covering this golden, glazed beauty of a crescent is hearty,
thick and rich with meat and flavors. The crust is juicy and moist, adding
much to the total of the layered flavors.
The whole dish is presented nicely, with cantaloupe and
Inside the calzone, it’s packed with a potpourri
of stuff. Beef, sausage, mushrooms, olives and gobs of cheese form a nice
rush of tastes from this gleefully varied, inverted pizza.
The view here is addictive. It’s hard to not
stare out at the bay and Neahkahnie Mountain and become almost hypnotized.
It’s likely the most beautiful dining view on the coast that isn’t
of the surf. 675 Hwy 101, Wheeler. (503) 368-7778.
Beach Rentals, Lincoln City. Perfect for large family
vacations all the way down to a getaway lodging for two - with
over 25 vacation rental homes to choose from. A breathtaking collection
of craftsman or traditional beachfront homes, or oceanview houses
– from one to seven bedrooms. In various areas of Lincoln
City and overlooking the beach, with some in Depoe Bay. All kinds
of amenities are available, like hot tubs, decks, BBQ, rock fireplaces,
beamed ceilings and more. Some are new, some are historic charmers.
Lincoln City, Oregon. 1-(503)-232-5984. www.a1beachrentals.com.
Sands Condominium Motel, Lincoln City. Free, fresh baked
cookie upon check-in is just the start. All rooms beachfront and
up against Lincoln City's most famous stretch of beach: the D River.
Each room comes as a suite or mini-suite, and has a kitchen and
balcony or patio. Some w/ gas fireplaces, while all have a DVD Players;
movies to rent come with free popcorn. Heated indoor pool, a spa,
and this fabulous beach is lit at night. Rooms sleep from two, four
to six - including a deluxe fireplace suite. Gift certificates orspecial
occasion packages. www.dsandsmotel.com.
171 S.W. Highway 101. 800-527-3925.
Paradise Suites & Vacation Rentals - Seaside
Unique Luxury Accommodations in Seaside. 1BR Suites,
1BR & 2BR Duplex Units and 3BR Houses, units for 2-8 people.
Rent entire property for 20-26. Close to beach, river and Broadway
Suites are designed for two adults; vacation rental units for families.
All units have kitchen and many have fireplace, deck and jetted
tub. Comfy robes, slippers, luxury bath amenities, quality linens
and more. 741 S. Downing St., Seaside. 800-738-6691. www.SeasideSuites.com
City Vacation Homes
There’s something for everyone
among this selection of wondrous homes: smaller homes with a view
to a large house that sleeps 15. All the homes are either oceanfront
or just a few steps away from the sand – all with a low
bank access and fantastic views. Most are in the Nelscott area;
one is close to the casino. You’ll find a variety of goodies,
depending on the home: fireplaces, multiple bedrooms, dishwashers,
Jacuzzis, washer/dryers, hot tubs, cable TV, VCR, barbecues; there’s
a loft in one, and another sprawling home has two apartments.
Pets are allowed in some homes – ask ahead. Each comes with
complete kitchens so you’ll have a home away from home.
Most have the seventh night free. Prices range from winter $85
to summer $230 per night. www.getaway2thecoast.com.
At Spanish Head, Lincoln City. Lincoln City’s only resort
hotel built right on the beach with all oceanfront rooms - nestled
against a rugged cliffside overlooking a soft, sandy beach. Dine
in penthouse restaurant and bar, for casual meal or candlelight
dinner. An array of seafood specialties, juicy steaks and other
Northwest favorites, including decadent Sunday buffet. Rooms range
from bedrooms to studios to 1-bedroom suites with microwaves and
refrigerators to full kitchens. Also, wi-fi, spa, saunas, exercise
room and year-round heated swimming pool. Kids will love the game
room and easy beach access. Full-service conference/meeting rooms
for that inspirational retreat; extensive wedding possibilities.
4009 SW Highway 101, Lincoln City. 1-800-452-8127 or 541-996-2161.
for Freaky, Creepy Mole Crabs on Oregon Coast Beaches The
little critters make the tideline bubble and feel really weird as they
run across your feet
Transformations of Oregon Coast Beaches Seasons change
and so do beaches, revealing different sides and a variety of eye-popping
Found on Oregon Beach May Be 80,000 Years Old - They
are the remnants of a forest apparently 80,000 years old, found at Hug
or Night Mysteries and Merriment on Oregon Coast It's
more than just nightlife that comes to life, but the beaches offer major
Coast Travel Site Goes Wireless Provides Lodging Reports
- Oregon Coast Beach Connection now has mobile lodging and dining listings,
along with weekly lodging availability reports
coast mileage chart & map
trips, suggested itineraries
Coast Lodging Specials
BeachConnection.net's 1,000 pages
Coast Real Estate
Things to Do
Beach, Oregon Lodging
Wheeler, Rockaway Beach Lodging
Beach Complete Guide
City Complete Guide
Oregon Complete Guide
TAKE THE VIRTUAL TOUR
Where the Columbia
meets the Pacific, Land of Lewis & Clark and loads of
atmosphere & history
Tillamook Head, family fun & broad, sandy beaches
lighthouse, upscale yet earthy, a huge monolith, fine eateries
& an art mecca
beaches, Nehalem and Wheeler's quirky beauty; laid back Rockaway
Barview, Bay City, Tillamook & an oceanfront ghost town
secret of the coast: Cape Meares, a lighthouse, Oceanside,
Netarts and Pacific City
A spouting horn
downtown, freaky hidden cliffs and whales, whales, whales
Time-tripping Nye Beach, a bustling
bayfront, marine science-central and two lighthouses
Constantly dramatic wave action, a mix
of the rugged & upscale
A lighthouse, ancient bayfront and miles
and miles of fluffy dunes
CLIFFTOP IN NEWPORT
POINT Newport - Offers only the finest in luxury
condominium lodging. Every unit is focused on the beauty of the
sea and the beach.
All units boast two bedrooms, two bathrooms, designer kitchens,
wireless broadband Internet, fireplaces, Jacuzzi’s and private
decks. Friendly staff dedicated to high quality and superb customer
service. 140 NW 48th Street, Newport. (541) 265-3751. (800) 870-7795.