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Suggestions for a foodie honeymoon in California?


Swankalicious
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My fiance and I are trying to plan a food-driven trip to California. We plan to drive the Pacific Coast Highway and need to know where to stay (for good food - BBs, inns), where to eat (besides French Laundry!), and what to do! Any suggestions? Thanks!

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If you're in the Napa, La Toque is a great alternative to French Laundry. If you are coming to San Francisco, you will have lots to choose from. However, it's hard to recommend places unless you can give us more details such as the type of cuisine and price range.

The wine country has a lot of B&Bs and Inns; not so much in San Francisco. I don't know how long you plan to stay at one place, be aware that many B&Bs and Inns in the wine country require multiple nights stay.

Please give us more details so we can be more helpful. :smile:

:wub: congrats! :wub:

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Depending how far north you are going there are nice places to stay on the coast level with and north of Sonoma up to Mendocino.

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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I would advise you to take Highway 1 and stop off in Cambria, which has several really great B&Bs. The one place I love to go for dinner is The Sow's Ear.

On your way, if you are travelling south to north on 101, get off the freeway at the Buellton, the western entrance to the Santa Ynez Valley. You can stop for lunch a Pea Soup Andersons, or continue eastward to Solvang, the little Danish community where you can find some awesome breakfast offerings at just about any place with a sign in front that mentions what they serve. Solvang.

You can continue down that road which joins Calif. 154 at Santa Ynez and continuing south takes you through the beautiful valley, past Lake Cachuma and San Marcos Pass, then rejoins the 101 just south of Goleta at the north end of Santa Barbara. It is a lovely drive and the only bit of the 101 you miss is the very windy pass down to the coast and along the coast from Gaviota to just south of Goleta, which, unless you like to look at a lot of kelp-filled ocean, there really isn't a lot to see.

Unless I am in a big rush, I always take San Marcos Pass to Buellton on my way north. It isn't as speedy, as the 101, but it refreshes the soul.

If you have ever seen any of Evind Earle's paintings or illustrations, you will recognized the places he painted during his years in the Santa Ynez Valley. It is a magical place. Evind Earle paintings.

It is also part of the area in which the film Sideway was shot. Sideways map.

I think it is a little over 100 miles from Buellton to Cambria, just the right distance/time between breakfast and lunch or lunch/dinner.

Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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My fiance and I are trying to plan a food-driven trip to California. We plan to drive the Pacific Coast Highway and need to know where to stay (for good food - BBs, inns), where to eat (besides French Laundry!), and what to do! Any suggestions? Thanks!

If you are looking for something more than restaurants, you could do some very nice food tours in San Francisco and area:

factory tour of Scharffenberger Chocolate (in Oakland, east of SF)

Hog Island oyster farm (Tomales Bay, north of SF)

Marshall's Farm honey (American Canyon, north of SF near Napa)

I'm assuming you know about the Ferry Building Marketplace, where you can taste lots of local goodies in one place (huge Farmer's Market on Sat., with smaller ones on Tues. and Sun. morning, and Thur. afternoon).

There are also some food-based walking tours of San Francisco -- Mangia North Beach (of our Italian district, led by GraceAnn Walden) and the Wok Wiz (of Chinatown, sometimes led by Shirley Fong-Torres). There is also Taste of San Francisco, a bus tour which covers several neighborhoods (although I've not done this one myself).

Susan

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My fiance and I are trying to plan a food-driven trip to California. We plan to drive the Pacific Coast Highway and need to know where to stay (for good food - BBs, inns), where to eat (besides French Laundry!), and what to do! Any suggestions? Thanks!

If you are looking for something more than restaurants, you could do some very nice food tours in San Francisco and area:

factory tour of Scharffenberger Chocolate (in Oakland, east of SF)

Hog Island oyster farm (Tomales Bay, north of SF)

...

Nice suggestions, waldrons. Another great tour in San Francisco is the Anchor Steam Brewery. The working factory is in a beautiful old building and you get to taste the whole range of interesting beers they have at the end.

And while you're up in the Tomales Bay area, stop in and visit Tomales Bay Foods/Cow Girl Creamery in the quaint town of Point Reyes Station. I've stayed at a nice B&B in Pt. Reyes station if you're interested in staying in that area which I think is one of the most beautiful coastal areas in CA--well, it's hard to choose... If you stay in Pt. Reyes Station area you are right next to Pt. Reyes National Park and will also be close to wineries in Sonoma.

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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