Telephone: (503) 436-1108
Get more info....
Rostra rating: 1.5
As the result of a beautiful walk along the beach, we tumbled starving into the Wayfarer Restaurant in Cannon Beach around 1PM. The place was less than half full and things got off to a great start as the hostess was able to seat us at one of the three tables in the establishment that offer a stunning view of the near-by haystack rock. Then things fell apart. Service bi-furcated into a super efficient buss boy and drinks guy and a waitress who did not show up for twenty minutes and then disappeared again for at least half an hour. She did a lot of apologizing throughout the meal, but it was not really clear what the cause of her long absences were.
Patti declared that she was definitely not going to get the fish tacos, because she always did and they always sucked. By the time that we finally gave our orders to Ms. AWOL, however, she did in fact order the fish tacos, and she was right, they sucked. The “cumin-scented” local rockfish was actually fine for fried fish, but it came buried underneath a huge glop of stuff that defied disentangling even with menu guidance. Tacos are supposed to be finger food, but you had to excavate the rock fish with knife and fork through a homogenized amalgam of pico de gallo, lettuce, avocado, black beans, and corn, tons of corn.
The razor club was a culinary war crime. Wonderful large razor clams were somehow tortured into a patty and then deep-fried into hockey puck-level toughness, served with uncrispy bacon, limp lettuce, cardboard masquerading as tomatoes, all on a soft and soggy “ house made” hamburger bun. Now that’s real eatin’. I must say, however, that I failed to detect the jalapeno-lime jelly. The accompanying fries were stale and barely warm.
Dungeness crab cakes must also be added to this gastronomic indictment. In fact, a former president of the Montana State Bar very graciously described them as bland and uninteresting. Supposedly these glutton free masterpieces are held together with shrimp mousse. Like the mysterious yet ubiquitous jalapeno-lime jelly, however, one suspects that the description of such substances is honored more in the breach on the Wayfarer menu, which does wax rhapsodic on its selection of spendy, and in the case of the crab cakes stingy, bad food.
The exception that proved the rule was clam chowder. It was very thick, creamy, and clammy. Obviously made well ahead of time, it took our waitress and the kitchen only about 30 minutes to get a bowl of it to our table.
TripAdvisor gives the Wayfarer 4 out of 5 based on 861 reviews. This should dismiss forever the notion that the wisdom of crowds can be employed to any culinary benefit. Indeed, TripAdvisor is the most influential but not the most egregious. No rating site gives this abomination less than 3.5, and Open Table actually tops TripAdvisor at 4.3. The conclusions are inescapable, either most diners are idiots or they are duped by sites that have a vested interest in generating inflated positive reviews. As our local Longmire might say, what do you think?
The saving grace behind this ridiculous culinary farce is that it is Oregon after all. And while they will gouge Montucky hicks for really bad food in touristy venues that make their numbers on one-time sales, they simply refuse to sell bad beer or wine. And that stuff seemed to show up a lot faster than the food, hmmmm.