By Margot Bigg
Stretching for 363 miles between the mouth of the Columbia River and the redwood groves of Brookings, the Oregon Coast offers casual wine bars, quiet beachfront getaways, locally caught seafood and some of the most scenic driving routes and hikes in the state.
There’s no shortage of spots to stop for a sip along the Oregon Coast, from Astoria’s Fortune & Glory Cider Company to Chetco Brewing Company in Brookings. While beer and cider often take center stage in this area, you’ll find plenty of tasting rooms showcasing Oregon’s finest wines, particularly on the North Coast. Popular choices include the Seaside branch of popular Evoke Winery and Pacific City’s intimate and personable Twist Wine Company, as well as The Winery at Manzanita, where you can sip small-batch Pinots while cozying up next to an outdoor fire pit. The Central Coast also has a few standout options, from the casual Depoe Bay Winery to Otter Rock’s blufftop Flying Dutchman Winery, best known for its endless ocean views.
It’s no surprise that seafood abounds in Oregon Coast restaurants. You can go for a casual meal of fish and chips at any number of spots, including South Bay Wild Fish House in Astoria, Ecola Seafoods Restaurant & Market in Cannon Beach, Sea Baron Fish & Chips food truck in Garibaldi or The Crazy Norwegian’s Fish & Chips in Port Orford. Sample Dungeness crab or shrimp ceviche while overlooking the ocean at Newport’s Clearwater. Depoe Bay’s Gracie’s Sea Hag and Florence’s Krab Kettle are known for their classic clam chowder, and Buttercup in Nehalem is known for its creative spins on the classic. Lincoln City and Astoria both have great food-cart pods. Fine-dining options with great wine lists include Fedé Trattoria in Astoria, Restaurant Beck in Depoe Bay, Local Ocean in Newport and Alloro Wine Bar & Restaurant in Bandon.
To experience the Snake River’s spectacular scenery for yourself, start at the north end of the valley in the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest. The Wallowa mountains are sometimes billed as North America’s “Little Switzerland.” To see why, hop on the Wallowa Lake Tramway for a 3,700-foot vertical ascent to the top of Mt. Howard, where alpine views (and walking trails) extend in every direction.
If outdoor adventure isn’t your thing, there’s still plenty of western style to be had. Visit Lostine’s
M. Crow, a 107-year-old general store now owned and operated by a local designer selling handmade clothing, mercantile items and fresh-baked pizzas with an expansive out-door seating area. (There’s a second location in Manhattan, naturally.)
Accommodation options abound on the Oregon Coast. Constructed atop pier pilings in the Columbia River, Astoria’s Cannery Pier Hotel & Spa entices travelers with its sleek, light-filled rooms and free nightly wine hour featuring pours from Silvan Ridge in the Willamette Valley. A clapboard castle just a short drive south of Cannon Beach, Arch Cape Inn features 10 individually adorned rooms plus a free daily cheese-and-wine hour. Literature fans can book a stay in one of the many author-themed accom-modations at Newport’s Sylvia Beach Hotel, from the whimsically witchy J.K. Rowling room to the mildly steampunk Jules Verne-inspired digs. Farther south, WildSpring Guest Habitat features five luxe cabins tucked away in a forest overlooking the waters of Port Orford.
This article appears in the 2023-24 Oregon Wine Touring Guide. Order your free copy today.