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Have yurtself a good time

March 3, 2012

The great thing about Oregon is that you can enjoy the outdoors any time of year.  Of course, in the winter, it helps to have some shelter from the rain.

Enter:  the yurt.CIMG0733

The yurt is awesome.  It’s heated, has lights, and contains a futon and a bunkbed, so 5 people (or 3 people, a dog, and a baby) can sleep comfortably.

However, all the cooking and so on happen outside.  It was a good thing that Rick and his crew of Eagle Scouts put up a tarp because there was a good amount of hail on Saturday:CIMG0737

The leftovers from the previous night made an appearance in breakfast each morning.  (Pork eggs with cheese and guac, crab eggs…)CIMG0739

When there was a break in the hail we took a little hike around the campground and into the trees.  Then we went into Newport with two missions in mind:  crabs and lunch.

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Mission one was accomplished – live crabs right off the boat!

Mission two, however…CIMG0747

It started out looking promising (well now that I look at this picture, I’m wondering if the missing apostrophe might have tipped us off).  The menu looked like a typical seafood/sandwich place and the people sitting by the window gave us a thumbs-up and said the chowder was amazing.  It was relatively empty so we could fit our big group, but we didn’t find that unusual because it was a bit later and most people were probably at the food and wine festival.

We started having doubts when they took our drink orders and someone asked for an Arnold Palmer (iced tea + lemonade) and the waitress responded with, “We don’t serve alcohol.”  We quickly learned it was best not to argue.  They gave us two waitresses for our table of 10 because there were about 5 waitresses and 3 cooks hanging out with nothing to do, which would have been fine if the waitresses hadn’t been giving us conflicting information.  Take the salads, for example.  Sarah asked for honey mustard but they “didn’t have any” – only to see Jeff’s salad appear with none other than honey mustard dressing.  Half of the pre-plated salads were missing toppings (tomato, mushrooms etc).

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They brought out 4 pieces of bread (for 10 people, remember) with a giant steak knife for butter.  Maybe we were supposed to cut the bread up smaller?  With no bread plates?

Things got really weird when we asked about soup/sandwich combos.  What kind of sandwich do you get?  Anything on the menu?  “Well, it’s like two pieces of bread… and there’s something in the middle, like bologna…”  Bologna?  Finally Tabby established that you could indeed get any sandwich, which resulted in an extra turkey sandwich that the waitress ended up eating.

The food was hit or miss.  Sarah and I loved our fish and chips (well, the fish part), but Jeff and Erica’s fish seemed soggy/reheated.  The chowder was apparently good but the stack of giant cans of clams in the open kitchen weren’t that reassuring.

We quickly exited the restaurant and found ourselves an impromptu wine tasting, followed by ice cream.  Much better.  I was glad to finally get to try Willamette Valley Vineyards wine since we drive by it on the way to Portland all the time.  For the price ($22-ish), the first pinot we tried was very good (spicy, with a long finish).  The $42 bottle was much smoother, but I thought it was lacking in flavor.  They also have a whole cluster pinot that I really want to try, so we definitely need to go to the winery sometime soon.

While crabs were boiling that evening, a few of us took a quick trip to the beach (my third that day… the first two ended in hail storms).CIMG0750

I decided I needed to scale this giant muddy, rocky slope.CIMG0753

The surf & turf (steaks and crabs) with mac & cheese and my random “roughage salad with pear-cider dressing” was really fun to eat.  The next morning Jeff and Erica made us delicious French toast.  It was a great weekend at Beverly Beach!

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