Next time you are visiting Willamette Valley wine country, add an extra day onto your schedule, brave the tsunami warnings and head to the Oregon coast. It is beautiful. This was my second visit: last time I stayed in Cannon Beach, which was lovely. But this visit, to Pacific City, was even better, in large part because of where I stayed.
Headlands Coastal Lodge & Spa is stunning. This sounds like hyperbole, but there’s no other word for it. It’s not cheap (my friend had arranged a media rate, which eased some of the pain), but it’s one of the best places I’ve stayed. There’s an unspoiled wildness about the beach at Pacific City, and Headlands is right on it, but sympathetically and stylishly integrated into the side of a hill. Staying here, you really feel that you are camping wild on the beach, but in discrete luxury. The area here is called Cape Kiwanda, and right next to the hotel there’s a huge sand dune. The steep climb is worth it, as the view from the top is something else.
So, eating and drinking? The restaurant at Headlands is Meridian, and we had dinner here. It has a nice menu of seasonal, locally sourced dishes. We ate simply but well, and chose two very impressive Oregon wines.
Rose Rock is the newer property from Domaine Drouhin Oregon, and the Chardonnay is really impressive. Taut with plenty of flavour.
It’s been a while since I tried Brick House’s Gamay – this is a biodynamic estate in Ribbon Ridge and they’re Gamay specialists. This was really good.