Wednesday, June 20, 2012

OYSTERS, ROGUES AND A VISITOR FROM JAPAN


Newport Fishing Fleet and
Yaquina Bay Bridge
Flag Day 2012 has us leaving Gold Beach and heading to South Beach, just below Newport, OR. (Still going north for those of you who are keeping track.)  Every town along the 101 has lined the highway with hundreds of American flags.  We feel like we are in our own Dave and Dimples parade.

In South Beach, our home is the Whalers Rest Resort, a Thousand Trails preserve.  It’s nice and fairly well maintained.  Our site is in a low lying wooded area, with no wind, so we are able to put up the awning and set up our outdoor kitchen.  Wi-Fi is only available in their clubhouses, so we have to plan ahead.  Can’t sit around in our PJs drinking wine and uploading pics to Flicker this week – oh well…

South Beach Fish Market
This weeks foraging nets, assorted spring veggies and an Auspitable rack of ribs from the Newport Farmers Market, crab and fresh halibut cheeks from the South Beach Fish Market, a nice selection of artisan beers from the Rogue Brewery and Kumimoto and Native Oysters from The Oregon Oyster Farm. Despite all of this fine in-home dining we are both loosing weight, we credit this to our newfound lack of stress.

On Friday we drive up to Lincoln City to do a little outlet shopping.  On the way back, we stop at Lee’s Chinese restaurant.  From the looks of it, this place has been around for a long while. Visualize shabby, not shabby chic.  However, the aromas convince us that this place is worth a visit. Their Mu Shu Pork is some of the best we have had and the Dragon and Phoenix dish delectable! Seasoning on both dishes is unique and the portions are good sized. Two entrees and an appetizer of Crab Pops fill us up and we have tasty leftovers for the next day.
Lee's China Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Rogue line-up of beers
On Father’s day we visit the Rogue Brewery and pub house.  The place is packed! (Guess this is where all of the Dad’s in Newport want to be on their day.) But we are smiled upon and find parking right away AND discover that we are just in time for the 1:00 PM brewery tour.  (Sweet!)  After a really interesting and informative tour we are parched and need to do some serious tasting.  Since the upstairs restaurant is packed and the wait is long, we go into the nearly empty downstairs tasting area and order two 4 shot samplers (that’s eight four ounce glasses.)  It’s been awhile since ate breakfast and don’t want to drink on empty stomachs so we also order some blue balls (meatballs stuffed with blue cheese) and onion rings. The food was scrumptious and the assorted beers exceptionally tasty in an exotic, what-would-taste-good-with-this, off the wall sorta way.  Five out of eight were “stand outs!”  The Chipotle Ale would go great with southwest cuisine, Mori Soba with Japanese, John-John Dead Guy with seafood and the Chocolate Stout and Hazelnut would make stunning beer batter pancakes and crepes. (We’ll let you know how this works out.) 

Rogue Beers are available throughout the United States and in over 30 countries.  The remarkable thing about this company is that they do not advertise. They put money that would be budgeted for ads back into their community. They buy used equipment and are rabid recyclers. They are currently expanding their operations in Newport to add 30 jobs.  This is significant in a town with a population around 10,000.  It’s all about the beer.  D&D Tip of The Week: Be a responsible drinker and order a Rogue beer if you see it on tap.

King Crab
There is so much to see, experience and photograph in and around Newport:  The Yaquina Bay Bridge spanning the bay.  Nye Beach, an artsy neighborhood with eclectic shops and charming beach architecture. The commercial fishing fleet on the north side of the harbor is a Technicolor vision. The Oregon Coast Aquarium, rated sixth in the U.S. is definitely worth a visit (although aquarium photography is something we are still working on.)

Visitor from Japan Draws Crowds
The one unexpected attraction is the 66 foot Japanese dock, ripped free by the Tsunami of March 11, 2011, taken by the Kuroshio Current north past Alaska, down the pacific coast and deposited on Agate Beach on June 6, 2012.  As more debris from this devastation arrives on our shores, we are reminded of the power within our planet.  This beautiful coast of our country sits on the active Cascadia Fault.  Quakes and tsunamis are a reality here and someday this landscape will be transformed.  Click here for more info.

We’ve also made some decisions as to the direction we’ll head in the next month. Our next stop, Rockaway Beach, is our final Oregon destination. (This time through.) Then it’s on into Washington State and northeast toward Yellowstone.  We will be staying in Yellowstone for four weeks starting late August.

Click here for this weeks photos.

Dinner on the half shell




Rogue update: The John-John Dead Guy is perfect with Kumimotos and Natives on the half shell and the Chipotle Ale compliments Chris’ home made salsa beautifully.


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