LOCAL FAV’S: 12 Great Family-Owned Diners, Cafes, and Restaurants Along The Southern/Central Oregon Coast
Oregon’s spectacular coast, with its pristine beaches and panoramic ocean vistas unequaled anywhere in the world, is a huge magnet for visitors from all over the globe, whether they are day trippers or vacationers. More than 6 million overnight visitors, many of them RVers, traveled along the Southern and Central Oregon Coast in 2021. According to the Oregon Tourism Bureau, that number is expected to be even greater when the 2022 count is tallied.
One commonality shared among the millions of tourists traveling along Oregon Coast Highway 101, which skirts the coastline from the California border to the Columbia River, is enjoying great meals wherever their coastal destination might be.
How To Find Great Places To Eat
Finding quiet beaches to walk and picturesque vistas to capture is easy along the Oregon coast. So are places to eat because there are hundreds of places along the Oregon coast to grab a meal. The challenge Oregon tourists face is finding great places to eat, places with delicious food, good portions, and friendly service.
But if you want to really get a flavor for the local cuisine—and take the guesswork out of whether the eatery will be a good one—ask the locals where they like to eat! Local residents’ favorite diners, cafes, and restaurants rate high for a reason: a solid reputation for good service and good food, the latter’s ingredients usually sourced from the local region.
Variety Is The Spice Of Travel Life
So, where do the locals like to eat along the southern Oregon Coast? We’ve compiled a list of a dozen family-owned eateries in the coastal towns of Bandon, Coos Bay, North Bend, Charleston, Winchester Bay, and Florence that the locals say they like to go to enjoy a nice meal and take their visiting guests.
We chose primarily small eateries that have been established in the area for many years. Some of these serve only breakfast and brunch; some offer all-day dining; others specialize just in dinner. Vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free items are becoming more and more popular to go along with a variety of local seafood selections as well as more traditional American cuisine.
By no means does this list cover the only places along the coast that provide great food and service. We’ve just cherry-picked a few local fav’s that are family-owned, contribute to the local economy, and have some sort of RV parking on-site or within easy walking distance. There are even a few that are very close to RV campgrounds! Bon appétit!
Where The Southern Oregon Coast’s Locals Eat
Traveling north from the southern coast of Oregon, you’ll want to stop to sample the following eateries.
Historic Wilson’s Market & Deli
If you are traveling through Bandon, located on the southern portion of the Oregon Coast, and have a hankering for a mouth-watering basket of BBQ while restocking the RV fridge, Historic Wilson’s Market & Deli is the place to stop. Established in 1938, Wilson’s is light on the wallet and heavy on flavor. Best to get there before noon as the BBQ is apt to sell out!
Alloro Wine Bar Restaurant
A half mile south in Old Town Bandon is the Alloro Wine Bar Restaurant, highly touted for its award-winning Italian-inspired coastal cuisine dinner menu and fine Pacific Northwest wines. They source most of their ingredients from the local region and serve it in a “relaxed, delightfully upscale atmosphere.” Vegan, gluten-free, and vegetarian options are available as well.
Shark Bites Café
In Coos Bay, 24 miles north on Hwy. 101, is the Shark Bites Café located right on the waterfront. This little eatery has a fun, kicked-back atmosphere inside and out, and the locally-sourced seafood used for their signature fish tacos, grilled oyster sandwiches and Dungeness Crab Cakes doesn’t get any fresher. You’ll also find a full bar and great burgers on the menu.
7 Devils Brewery
Locals love to eat at the 7 Devils Brewery a few blocks west in downtown Coos Bay, named after the original coast road between Coos Bay and Bandon. It’s known for its locally brewed beers and a great “agritourism” menu with locally sourced ingredients and fresh-from-the-dock seafood. You’ll also find vegan and gluten-free friendly menu items and live music. This family-owned business is proud to be part of the Wild Rivers Food Trail.
Speaking of fresh seafood, the Portside Restaurant in nearby Charleston has been a favorite for locals who want to dine out and watch the fishing boats come and go from the Bay Area’s largest marina. The Portside opened in 1979 and is renowned for its seafood menu and quaint marine ambiance. It has excellent RV parking, and it’s conveniently located for those heading to/from Sunset Bay and Shore Acres State Parks.
In nearby North Bend, along Sherman Avenue, is Mom’s Kitchen. As the name implies, this is an old-fashioned diner with a super friendly waitstaff and cook, insanely good food, big portions, and a cozy, comfortable atmosphere. This tiny place is renowned for the breakfasts and lunches; locals say the chicken fried steak and cheese-covered stuffed hashbrowns are the best on the coast. There is RV parking within easy walking distance.
A mile north of the famed Conde B. McCullough Memorial Bridge is a unique place to dine—Clausen Oysters. The company has been harvesting large oysters in Coos Bay and supplying them to wholesale and retail buyers since 1981. Now they have a store, deli, and restaurant on the premises. Chef Patrick “Paddy” Glennon serves a knock-out selection of oyster meals and baskets, including half-shell, BBQ, PoBoys, chowder, tacos, and fried. Or, get your fresh oysters to eat the way you like. RV parking is available.
Double D’s On the Rocks
Twenty minutes farther up Hwy. 101 is Double D’s On the Rocks, a little dockside seafood diner in the ocean port of Winchester Bay. It’s a fav of those living in and around the area—or staying at the Winchester Bay RV Resort. Locals rave about Double D’s homemade clam chowder and fresh-out-of-the-bay oysters. The weekend dinner specials, such as prime rib, are also a big attractant. RV parking in the area is plentiful.
Blue Box Seafood Company
A brand new seafood place also located in Winchester Bay’s Salmon Harbor is the Blue Box Seafood Company. This seafood market’s unique outside dining/take-out offerings have gained a big thumb’s-up from locals because the simple menu features a variety of delicious boxed meals made from “freshly caught fish directly off of local boats from fishermen we know by name.” Excellent RV parking and a leisurely stroll from the big RV campgrounds nearby.
Don’s Main Street Family Restaurant
A 10-minute drive north is another culinary gem that’s been a local favorite to eat at for nearly 50 years—Don’s Main Street Family Restaurant. This all-day diner is located right on Hwy. 101 in mid-town Reedsport serves big portions of delicious homemade pies and cakes, all-day breakfasts, and a separate vegan/gluten-free menu. The main menu is enormous and includes seafood, chicken, steaks, salads, desserts, soups, and burgers. Off-street RV parking nearby.
Darling’s Marina & RV Resort
Farther up the coast is another little hidden gem the locals keep secret: the pub/café at Darling’s Marina & RV Resort on Siltcoos Lake between Dunes City and Honeyman Memorial State Park. The Southern-style BBQ offerings like huge sandwiches and burgers are second to none. Residents in Florence, six miles north, drive here to savor the food and adult beverages while sitting on the porch looking out over the lake. Having the RV park and marina on-site is also a huge bonus for traveling RVers.
Little Brown Hen Cafe
Locals also rave about a terrific breakfast stop in Florence called the Little Brown Hen Cafe. This little diner sits on Hwy. 101 and offers wonderful food and service. The big homemade biscuits and jams are the best anywhere. The meals are bountiful, with an excellent array of Vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options on the menu. This is a very popular place, and it’s not unusual to see hungry diners waiting to get inside. But the wait is worth it! Cash only with an ATM on the premises. RV parking is close by.
Plan Your Trip Up The Oregon Coast
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