If Ole’s Whale Watch Bar at Little River Inn feels like home, that’s because it is. It used to be the living room in the original farmhouse built by the Coombs family in 1853 – until one day, Ole asked his mother-in-law if she’d mind if he turned it into a bar. Fortunately for us – and everyone who has enjoyed the bar’s hospitality over the years – she somewhat surprisingly agreed to this somewhat surprising request.
Sip world-class drinks with a one-of-a-kind view of the Pacific Ocean
The rest is history, and the stuff of legend. Movie stars of the Golden Age frequented the Inn and the bar, including Myrna Loy, Joan Fontaine, and James Dean, who is said to have been summarily ejected from the bar by Ole himself for putting his booted feet on one of the tables. He didn’t have to go far – his room was right around the corner, and today, you can stay in the very same room.
As you might guess from the name, the bar boasts one of the best views on the Coast of the annual whale migration. Just belly up to the bar with your favorite libation in hand and watch the spectacle in warmth and comfort. All year round, it is the perfect place to watch the sun set over the ocean. The view is outstanding, the company convivial, and the friendly bartenders make some of the best drinks around.
The bar snacks are as good as the drinks. Executive Chef Marc Dym creates innovative and delectable bites for those looking for a nibble to accompany their cocktail, and the dinner menu from the neighboring restaurant is available if you can’t bring yourself to leave the convivial crowd in the bar. Don’t miss Chef Dym’s award-winning crab cakes!
While other things may have changed in the 80 years since the bar was born at Little River Inn, Ole’s vision of a comfortable and comforting place for neighbors and visitors to pull up a stool, dive into the view, and relax together remains intact. Five generations later, the Coombs family is still at the helm, their gracious hospitality running as deep in their blood as their roots in this beautiful place at the edge of the earth. Tales are still spun, gossip swapped, and toasts drunk while watching the sun set into the ocean the way it always has been and always will be.
Ole’s Whale Watch Bar is in the main building of Little River Inn, 7751 Highway 1 in Little River. Phone is (707) 937-5942.