By Patrick Alexander

Oregon Coast TODAY

Take a seat in the lounge at MIST in Lincoln City and you are guaranteed a warm welcome, great service and an astounding ocean view. And if you’re lucky, you might also find yourself acting as a culinary guinea pig for Chef Jason Jobé.

Since returning to MIST last July, Jobé has been continually re-thinking the menus for breakfast, lunch and dinner — and has taken to using the bar regulars as a sounding board for his latest gourmet creations.

“We are really listening to our clientele,” Jobé said, “and trying to give them what they want in product and price.”

Jobé said his initial revamp of the dinner menu was well received, emboldening him to keep on experimenting.

“I learned that our clientele is open to something new, so that was a big relief,” he said. “We have received compliment after compliment on the food, the consistency, the service, just overall.”

This latest run at the menu will introduce more seafood while still offering a chicken and a pork option as well as two steaks. Jobé is also saving spots in the new lineup for customer favorites, including the Dungeness crab cakes, fish tacos and the lobster macaroni and cheese, which sees chunks of Maine lobster and langostinos sautéed with red onions, mushrooms, tomatoes, roasted garlic and herbs in a rich Tillamook cheddar sauce.

A smaller regular menu will free up space for more nightly specials, with Jobé especially keen to bring in sustainable seafood such as red snapper and scallops.

Diners can look forward to a chicken dish served with a porcini truffle creamy polenta; and a beef option of center-cut sirloin with bacon and blue cheese mashed potatoes served with a rosemary demi-glace.

And, having just become vegetarian himself, Jobé is keen to offer some more options for people who prefer to avoid red meat; working to incorporate dishes based around healthy starches such as creamy polenta, quinoa and lentils.

A cod and white bean dish will see Jobé boil the beans in fish fumet and sautéing them in a mirepoix before finishing with white wine, lemon juice and butter. The fish and beans will be served on a bed of glazed carrots and kale and topped with a lemon-thyme bread crust.

Jobé said his talent for pairing flavors and ingredients is something he has developed over years as a chef, working first in the hotels and casinos of Reno and also serving a two-year stint on the American Orient Express.

“When I was in my 20s I couldn’t put combinations together and have them complement each other,” he said. “I just kept on working at it and it just came to me.”

“I work hard on letting each component have its voice in the dish and not be muddled,” he added. “Simplicity is the key. Keeping it simple and straightforward and let the ingredients speak for themselves.”

MIST regulars have been glad to see the return of Mark Huber to front of house. General Manager Jordan Grant said Huber, who was a fixture at the restaurant in 2013 and 2014, brings a depth of experience to the role and offers a warm welcome to everyone who comes through the door.

Upcoming promotions at MIST include a steak special every Tuesday, offering a bacon-wrapped 5-ounce fillet with a skewer of broiled shrimp and potatoes and vegetables on the side. And on Thursdays, diners will be able to treat themselves to shrimp three ways.

MIST offers live music from 7 to 10 pm every Friday and Saturday night and the team are also looking ahead to winter, when they will roll out a few new events to enliven the long, dark nights.

On Monday and Thursday nights, football dominates the big screen in the lounge, where patrons can watch the action on two new big-screen TVs while picking from options including ceviche, fish tacos, calamari and artichoke dip, as well as three varieties of baked potato: meat-lovers, nacho and fully loaded.

Monday and Thursdays in the lounge is also the only time to get your hands on pulled pork or pulled beef tacos at $1.75 apiece or even cheaper if paired with certain beers.

And if your visit coincides with one of Jobé’s creative bursts, you never know what might emerge from the kitchen, searching for a willing sampler or two.

Mist Restaurant and Lounge is located at the Surftides Resort, 2945 NW Jetty Avenue in Lincoln City, and is open for breakfast lunch and dinner daily from 8 am. For details or to make a reservation, call 541-994-3877.

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