The Positive Reviews:
- "We went in for the grand opening after the Restaurant Impossible crew were done remodeling and updating the dinner menu and we could not have been happier with the changes! The dining room is lovely and now matches the gorgeous river view and the gardens....Quite frankly we are all anticipating our next meal there!"
- "Went to the wind seeker yesterday as we heard it had a make over. The restaurant side is beautiful. Warm, cozy, elegant, right on the river. The new menu is upscale and good....Quality of food good, fresh, different."
- "Their dinners are 200% better than they were a couple of years ago when I ate their and their decor now matches their view. The new menu prices seemed really reasonable to us and we will be back in a week or so to try something else. I think this is the best place in town for dinner now and I hope it stays that way!
- Overall, it was the BEST restaurant I've eaten at in The Dalles!"
- "The wait staff were very helpful. We would go again in a heartbeat. We are considering eating their all you can eat sunday brunch this morning."
- "We attended their grand opening and tried 3 different entrees and each one was delicious and very reasonably priced I thought. If you are traveling through the gorge it is worth it to make it a destination on your way."
The Negative Reviews:
- "Kind of in a strange neighborhood (next to huge grain bins), but this is a small historic out west town and you gotta dig that :-)"
- "Food was plentiful although not remarkable in any way. But we had a beautiful evening on the river bank."
The reviews after the makeover were overwhelmingly positive, and it was hard to find anything negative said about the Windseeker. Even before the Restaurant: Impossible visit, many of the reviews for the Windseeker were 5-star, so it definitely didn't look as bad as past restaurants have before the makeover. People did complain about the interior before the makeover, and the Windseeker even repainted in 2010, but I guess the diners didn't like that paint job either. Everyone seems to love the view over the river and the gardens, but maybe the main reason they were struggling was the hard-to-find location.
One thing I did notice in the Google reviews from the past was that people were referring to meth activity there. Saying thing such as "this is basically a place for meth dealing. bad crowd. i would avoid it." and "dirty and full of tweakers!!!" and "Colloquially known as the Methseeker." Maybe that was some of the negative publicity and bad word-of-mouth the owner was referring to? Perhaps a local can shed more light on this.
Also, there is an adjoining bar next to the Windseeker that the Restaurant: Impossible crew did not renovate while they were there. Maybe this was the source of the above Google reviews.
Reviews from Urbanspoon, Yelp, Tripadvisor, and Google
UPDATE - Patty says that “Business is up by $30,000″ when comparing the year-over-year numbers, but the cost of food and wages has increased as well. Also, since their Restaurant: Impossible experience, the staff has not borrowed any money from the restaurant.
UPDATE 11/2013 - The Windseeker is listed for sale with the current asking price of $940,000 or $995,000 if you want the equipment with the restaurant.