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“Not Worth It!”

Charlie's Chowder House
Ranked #63 of 98 Restaurants in Astoria
Cuisines: American, Seafood, Soups, Bar, Pub
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Not Worth It!”
Reviewed December 2, 2013

My friend recently purchased a home near Astoria and we love trying new restaurants in town. After doing a Google search for best chowder in Astoria we discovered Charlie's. Clearly there must be another Charlie's Chowder House, because this has to be one of the worst restaurants I have ever eaten at.

To be fair, the chowder was decent although nothing to rave about - I would give it 3 stars. The rest of the food though was terrible. I ordered a cup of chowder and the crab melt. The crab melt was a misnomer: the cheese was quite rubbery and only halfway melted. There was also hardly any crab. Instead it was mostly green and red peppers and onions (ingredients which I personally find strange on a crab melt). This crabless crab melt cost 12 dollars. My friend ordered the pan fried oysters, which is a favorite dish for both of us. Unfortunately they were so incredibly salty they were inedible. We left almost all of them on the plate. I only finished half of my "crab" melt before giving up. We both felt terrible because the waitress was really nice and it wasn't her fault. However, I am not a picky eater and it was a strange experience to walk out of the restaurant with most of the food left on the table.

One other comment - the decor is Hawaiian and most of the seafood on the menu is not from the Oregon coast. While some people might appreciate that, I visit the Oregon coast to eat fresh locally caught fish. If I eat seafood, I want it to come from somewhere near Astoria, not from Hawaii or the east coast or wherever. That, however, is my personal preference. Because of this reason a restaurant like Charlie's is clearly not for me.

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank TC L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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46 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    14
    18
    6
    3
    5
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Penticton
2 reviews
“Save your money and don't eat here!”
Reviewed November 21, 2013 via mobile

After spending the day in Astoria and riding the cable car which was very informative and enjoyable we got off across from Charlie's Chowder House and thought we'd have an early supper. Ordered fish chowder and crab cakes. Got the chowder first and although the broth was somewhat tasty the fish and seafood was very low quality and in the bottom of the bowl there were peas. Who puts peas in chowder? Then the server brought the crab cakes. They were quite large but scorched. When we cut into them there was absolutely no crab to be found. These were not crab cakes they were "bread crumb cakes" that fell apart as soon as we cut them, were extremely dry, had nothing else in them but a few crunchy bits that were ?maybe celery or onion or carrot. Who knows? Then the server bounces over and says "How are the crabby cakes?" Not crabby at all but the worst crab cakes possible but we still had to pay $11.00 for them. Save yourself the money and don't even open the door to enter this place.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank nomorep
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Puyallup, Washington
Level Contributor
25 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Fish and chips were terrible - Made us sick”
Reviewed November 5, 2013

During a recent trip to the coast, we stopped by Charlie's. Our server was in fact friendly, and not responsible for the terrible food. My family ordered fish and chips which the server assured was fresh fish brought in daily. The portion size of the fish was incredibly small. The fish tasted very bland and made us wonder if it had been frozen. The fries were the best part of the meal. Within a half hour of leaving Charlie's we became ill and had the same reaction which occurs from drinking the water in Mexico. For two of us to have exactly the same reaction to the food, something was clearly done wrong. Needless to say next time we are in Astoria we will avoid Charlie's. According to other reviews it sounds like his chowder is well liked but if you eat there I would definitely avoid the fish and chips!

  • Visited November 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank coastsearcher
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland Oregon
Level Contributor
86 reviews
71 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“A very artful iceberg lettuce salad”
Reviewed September 8, 2013

I do like this place. We really think Charlie's chowder is up there among the best (and we consume enough chowder to speak with authority). I had never, however, had an "iceberg lettuce" salad there before a couple of weeks ago. Maybe it was a special, or maybe I just haven't noticed it on the menu before. I can't really describe this creation, except to say that it was different -- and oh so pleasing. Artful, pretty, all really fresh ingredients, BIG -- and with nice additions you don't usually find in the normal lettuce/bacon/blue cheese combo.
If you haven't been here before, give yourself time to slow down, look around & enjoy the kitschy Hawaii/surfer/Key West images and riffs. This is not a place to dash in & dash out of. (Although you could, I guess -- the service is pretty fast.)

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Leslie M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Astoria oregon
Level Contributor
1,671 reviews
1,069 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 708 helpful votes
“Another unremarkable seafood eatery in Astoria in midst of several failed restaurants bars and lounges.”
Reviewed August 28, 2013 via mobile

Dishes somewhat disappointing.
This had been a fresh fish market that also served pleasing delicious affordable fare. That could not make it either. It was quite good. Perfect location.
This place has a nice bar better than the chowder house itself. But nothing special novel Hawaiian motif. Same owner as Godfathers Book Store.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Journeyman644
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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