In planning a trip, I noticed there was very little information on restaurants on the Southern Oregon coast, so I thought I'd add some reviews from our current trip.
Florence: Craves, just at the entrance to Old Town Florence. We started with an appetizer of a warm golden beet salad with goat cheese that was my favorite part of the meal, and then had a perfectly cooked duck breast as well as an excellent seafood papardelle in a not-too thick tomato sauce. Dessert was an unusual tart tatin done in a puff pastry cup. Prices were reasonable, total about $75 including tip and a glass of wine.
Bandon: Alloro Wine Bar in Old Town ; very small, great atmosphere and service. We had appetizers of grilled radicchio in a gorgonzola sauce- yum, and six large very moist tempura shrimp with a sweet chili sauce.
The entree of braised lamb riblets with artichokes was excellent, as was an artichoke parmesan risotto which was marked down 50% because it was “Pasta Friday”. Dessert was a “Baked Bandon”, like a baked Alaska but using hazelnut gelato in the center with sugared cranberries, mint, and chocolate as garnishes. Impressive presentation but slightly too sweet for our tastes on the Italian meringue. Next time I'd order just the hazelnut gelato.
Port Orford: Go slowly along route 101 or you’ll miss The Crazy Norwegian on the west side at the southern end of town. The best fish and chips, clam chowder and homemade berry and cream pies. Plenty of food for less than $12 a person.
Gold Beach: Anna’s is a tiny place a block off Hwy 101with the food served on disposable plates and plastic silverware (which is a little weird but apparently done as a cost saving) and a very small menu but perfectly cooked food. We had an appetizer of 5 artisanal cheeses with bread. There was a good selection of wines at $4 a glass or just a couple of dollars above retail for a bottle. We ordered the tri-tip steak which was very tender and tastey, and a fresh rockfish fillet lightly breaded and pan fried, served on a bed of spinach, orzo, and brazil nuts. All that, including tip, for $45. This is the owner/cook’s 4th restaurant namend Anna, his first in Gold Beach.
We ate at these restaurants on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nightsand except for the Crazy Norwegian (had lunch there) they were relatively empty. I know it's not quite the tourist season, but it was very sad and I'm afraid a sign of the economy. We had great food and I hope they all survive.
Final note: Our first night out of Portland, we spent a night at the Heceta Lighthouse Keeper's B and B near Florence. They serve a 7 course breakfast in the morning that is wonderful. We were afraid it would be too much and too heavy, but it was well prepared and presented and not overpowering. We started with tropical fruit cup topped with a light coconut cream and some homebaked orange bread. Next we had great crab cakes with a lime caper sauce. Next was a tangy cranberry frappe, then eggs benedict on artisan bread. There were sausages from Cave junction, OR. Then, a lavendar poundcake and finally apples and Tillamook cheese. You can tour the lighthouse keeper's house in the summer, but the only way to get the breakfast is to spend the night. It's a bit spendy, but it was our vacation splurge.
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