Farm & Sea is a shop with a view of Oregon’s bounty. On the Coquille River waterfront in Bandon, the shop supports the tradition of south coast fishing and keeps pace with the fresh-and-local farmers market vibe.
Running a fish market wasn’t on the to-do list for Lori and Barry Osborne. After all, Oregon coast seafood is a seasonal commodity. But when the opportunity arose to purchase the seafood market at the Port of Bandon’s Old Town Marketplace, Lori started brainstorming.
Swapping the seafood-only business model for a more holistic local foods approach is working. The shop opened to an enthusiastic public reception on July 4, 2019.
“We’re actually having the best time of our lives,” said Lori. “Everybody really appreciates this business (in Old Town), and we’re open seven days a week.”
With Oregon grown (or caught, or made) products offered year round, Farm & Sea is a specialty food store for shoppers with a West Coast palate. Choose from a variety of Pacific harvest seafood, including fresh fish in season, along with frozen, canned or smoked products. Protein selections also include Oregon beef and eggs. This the summer, look for lamb, pork and poultry as well.
Meal planning is made easy with shelves of sauces and jams, salts and spice blends, pasta and rice, even fresh bread. Browse a tempting selection of wines. On tap are beer and soda from 7 Devils Brewing plus hard cider from Bandon Rain. (Purchase a Farm & Sea growler, or bring your own.) A few items are imported, such as Italian balsamico, but Oregon products make up most of the shop’s inventory.
Lunch specials are offered at the Friday and Saturday seafood cafe– sample freshly prepared treats such as seafood cocktails, fish tacos, tuna or egg salad sandwiches, or mac and cheese with crab or veggies.
Much of the store’s local catch comes from commercial vessels in Coos Bay and Port Orford. Some of the boats are owned by Osborne friends or extended family members.
“We try to buy off of local boats as much as possible,” said Lori. “In the summertime, we offloaded more than 20-thousand pounds of tuna right here in Bandon.”
The Osbornes’ connection to the Coquille River waterfront includes a bit of family history: Barry’s parents moved from California to Bandon in the late 1960s and opened the first fish market in Old Town Bandon.
In 2015, Lori and Barry reinvented their Bandon liquor store business when they opened The Beverage Barn. The destination wine, beer and liquor store features Western decor with an open wood-beamed ceiling, displays of vintage bottles and canteens, and antique animal mounts. The Osbornes opened a second wine and beer storefront at the Old Town Marketplace. And, in 2018, Lori adopted the Farm & Sea handle, serving lunch fare at the weekend farmers market.
Finishing touches in the new Farm & Sea store reveal the Osbornes’ attention to detail. Decorative wood accents with custom counter tops and product displays create a warm, inviting atmosphere. And the riverfront view is picture-perfect.
Farm & Sea is located at 250 1st St. SW, in Bandon. The shop is open daily starting at 10 a.m. Credit and EBT cards are welcome, and there’s an ATM on site. For more information, call 541-347-3474 or visit facebook.com/freshseafoodinbandonoregon.
Article and photos by Geneva Miller.