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Posted by Michael Stern on Thursday, May 15, 2014 4:45 AM

Fruitful sea and soil make Oregon a culinary hot spot for audacious chefs. Supreme sorcerer among them is Justin Wills of Restaurant Beck, a fairytale location perched high above Whale Cove in Depoe Bay. Using impeccable provisions from nearby farms, forage, and fishing boats, Wills, who hails from the heart of Iowa, doesn't just make plates of food; he creates whimsical tableaux. One we enjoyed a while ago was a tour de force titled "textures of carrot." A square slate is staged with arrangements of several varieties of carrot – shaved, roasted, sliced, halved, and whole, little ones looking like they were just pulled from the earth, the platter strewn with little mounds of "dirt" composed of pistachio nuts ground up with a few coffee beans. (2345 S. Hwy 101, Depoe Bay, OR. 541-765-3220)

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