Our restaurant experience was pretty great in Oregon. While our campground and the weather were “meh,” eating in Oregon (on the southwest coast anyway) is not to be missed. We had meals in Newport and Florence, OR. It turns out we also ate at restaurants whose clam chowder ranks in the top 10, according to Trip Advisor.
Georgie’s Beachside Grill
In all of the restaurants we went to, there was lingering evidence of the pandemic when we were in restaurants as well (read about our mask experience at our campsite here). One bartender explained they were very close to being at full capacity within a few weeks. Turns out that we may have just missed the full opening of Oregon. On June 30, Gov. Kate Brown lifted all restrictions. So life may be a little more relaxed on the Oregon coast now.
Georgie’s Beachside Grill in Newport, had a view of the ocean that was fantastic. We tend to gravitate to supper club-style restaurants. The menu was heavy on the seafood side, but had a decent selection of burgers, steaks, chicken and salads as well. We had delicious clam chowder (on the thick side), a wedge salad, I had crab cakes and Joel ordered shrimp.
They were all very tasty. The clam chowder was definitely our favorite (turns out it was ranked #1 on the Trip Advisor list of Best Clam Chowder on the Oregon Coast). Had we known that before we went, we both would have ordered a cup. Reservations are recommended (which you can do on their website). We saw customers being turned away without reservations. But they were also not at full capacity at this time.
Clearwater is also right on the waterfront in Newport, but it’s along a bay near the docks within the city’s very cute downtown. It’s a tight squeeze down there so pack your patience if you’re driving, or consider walking down. At this location we would also recommend a reservation (you can do it right on their website). It is a two story restaurant with floor-to-ceiling windows.
Joel had a delicious steak (I think it may have been their daily special) and a cup of clam chowder, and I had their crab melt. And WOW! I had never had a crab melt and I was so excited that when it came to the table I forgot to take a picture until I was a few bites in. It was packed full of crab and the bread was nice and crispy. We loved the chowder there too (number 7 on the Trip Advisor list). Their menu also had burgers and raw bar options. They also boast gluten-free pasta (don’t forget to confirm they are using fresh water when cooking gluten-free noodles) to go along with one of their entrees.
We were able to sit at the bar at this location and they had prosecco by the glass — if anyone’s wondering!
Mo’s Seafood and Chowder
It was a sourdough bread bowl filled with Mo’s Clam Chowder and topped with bay shrimp. It was good and definitely filling, but the chowder, in my estimation was not as good as Clearwater’s or Georgie’s, although it landed at #6 on the Trip Advisors list (specifically their Lincoln City location — but we’d assume the clam chowders across the company should be pretty similar).
There’s also not a full bar at the Mo’s in Florence (not sure about the other locations) and the atmosphere is pretty casual with bench seating. So if you want a place where you can kick back and talk for a while, Mo’s isn’t really it, in our opinion.