Review: Fishtails Cafe, Newport, Oregon

May 2, 2013 by     No Comments    Posted under: Oregon, Restaurants, Reviews
Fishtails Cafe Newport South Beach Oregon

Fishtails Cafe Newport South Beach Oregon

After a fun filled morning of crabbing on the Oregon Coast, our bellies were aching for something good to eat.  There are numerous places to eat good seafood in Newport, serving chowder, fish and chips, clam strips, oysters, and everything in between.  But we were after something different.  Something that we would take home with us in our minds to remember.  We found just the thing at Fishtails Cafe just south of Newport in South Beach.

Fishtails is just across the Newport bridge, and you can’t really miss its bright green pirate ship facade, canons included.  Fishtails is a small locally owned mom and pop restaurant.  It is clean, but not glamorous.  But there is a great charm about it.  There are mismatched plates, as well as mismatched cloth napkins of varying sizes, patterns, and textures.  I like it, it’s fun.  Fishtails is small, but there seems to be a fairly steady flow of customers going through the door.

Fishtails serves up all the common beach town fair.  But the dish we entered for was something I hadn’t heard of before:  their very own Slumgullion.

Best Slumgullion in Newport Oregon at Fishtails Cafe

Fishtails Cafe Newport Slumgullion

Fishtails Cafe Newport Slumgullion

Slumgullion starts off as a heaping bowl of clam chowder, but then bay shrimp are added, and the whole thing gets topped with tons of white cheese.  It is then baked in the oven until the cheese is melted and slightly browned.  Wow!

Fishtails chowder is very creamy, and doesn’t have any potatoes in it.  I actually really appreciate that there aren’t any potatoes.  So many chowder places give you more potatoes than anything else.  But rather than fill up their chowder with spuds, Fishtails fills theirs with huge chunks of sweet clams.  Delicious!  Then with the steamed bay shrimp and all the white cheese (Asiago and Parmesan I think), it is freaking outrageously delicious.  My bowl had so much cheese in it that it was almost like eating a clam and shrimp fondue!  Well, that may be a bit of an exaggeration, but seriously, every bite was pulling long strings of gooey melted cheese.  I found that I needed to add salt and pepper, but other than that, this slumgullion was a perfect seafood delight.

Fishtails serves their Slumgullion with garlic bread, which is grilled on the flattop until toasted.  To me, the garlic was a bit overpowering at times, and somewhat conflicted with the slumgullion.  I think I would have preferred just plain grilled bread instead.

Perfect Apple Pie Made by Barbara Abshire of Fishtails Cafe

Fishtails Cafe Newport Oregon Fresh Baked Apple Pie

Fishtails Cafe Newport Oregon Fresh Baked Apple Pie

At the end of my meal, I excused myself to visit the restroom.  On my way back, I complimented a man that seemed to be one of owners, or the owner.  He said thanks with a big smile on his face, then beckoned me to follow him into the kitchen.  He took me over to a back corner counter with a beautiful fresh baked apple pie on it.  He pointed out that it was still warm, and with a bigger smile, told me I’d be really missing out if I didn’t have some.  The smell was intoxicating.  How could I refuse?  I was beguiled, and I did eat.

This pie was perfect.  It was made with granny smith apples, which were perfectly tart and firm.  There was the perfect amount of brown sugar to compensate the tartness, and it was made with just the right amount cinnamon.  If there was nutmeg, it was so subtle that it was hard to pick up.  This allowed the flavor of the apples to come through more, which was excellent.  The crust was great too; flaky but with a nice chew.  And I loved the cinnamon sugar garnish put on the whipped cream it was served with.  All in all, this was some of the best apple pie that I’ve ever had.  Great job Barbara!

If you find yourself in Newport, make sure to visit Fishtails Cafe, order the Slumgullion, and tell Barbara the Bald Gourmet asked her to serve you a slice of her apple pie!

The Bald Gourmet eats Slumgullion and awesome fresh-baked apple pie at Fishtails Cafe while visiting Newport Oregon.


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I'm Jothan Yeager and I am The Bald Gourmet. After years of experimenting in my kitchen, creating delicious food and eating at amazing places around the world, I wanted a place to share my experiences with everyone. Thus the Bald Gourmet was born. I hope to open the doors of great food and great cooking to you, to inspire you to reach beyond prepared boxed meals, and to teach you of a world of deliciousness that has brought joy to me and those around me. Please enjoy the adventure which is The Bald Gourmet and share it with those you love.