Exploring the Danish Village of Solvang

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Whenever we road trip to Santa Barbara for a long weekend, it’s customary for us to stop at Solvang along the way – “A little slice of Denmark in Southern California”. This historic Danish village tucked into the Santa Ynez Valley hills 45 minutes north of our destination provides more than just a much-needed pit…

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Dazzling Flavors in the “American Rivera”

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Pit stop! The first leg of our road trip to sunny Santa Barbara began with saucy ribs and blue cheese tri tip salad from Salinas City Barbeque. Hands down, the most gorgeous combination of meat and seasonal veggies that we’ve ever seen. Pro tip: Never start a long journey on an empty stomach. Ok, back…

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Hawaiian Vibes at Hula’s Island Grill

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I was hangry; you know the feeling. After mysteriously waiting half an hour to receive our appetizer from a popular ocean-view restaurant, though we were one of only three tables expecting service during the quiet between-meals hour of 3pm, Brandon and I decided to cut our losses and find another place to eat. Clearly this…

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Peacocks and Pit Stops at Casa De Fruta

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Anyone roadtripping from the south valley along Pacheco Pass toward I-5 has stopped at Casa de Fruta, the farm stand-turned oasis hidden among the rolling California hills. Home to waving palm trees and colorful blue peacocks, Casa de Fruta was founded back in the early 1900s by a family of orchard farmers who evolved the…

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Barbareño – Flavor Stories of Santa Barbara

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When the mild California winter finally breaks around Easter, and the sun warms our faces on afternoon walks, we emerge from our cooped up tiny house existence for a celebratory stay-cation in Santa Barbara. It’s not summer yet; not time for long holidays in exotic places far away from home. No, we venture just a few hours…

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Pineapple Carnitas at Cult Taco in Monterey

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“California cuisine through a Oaxacan lens.” – Chef Michelle Estigoy Welcome to Cult Taco in historic downtown Monterey, California! Please step up to the touchscreen to place your order. What are you in the mood for – tacos? An Ensalada? A Torta? We’ve got your homemade chips and salsa right here. You look like you…

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Homeroom Mac + Cheese in Oakland

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Some of the best restaurants begin with the simplest of dreams and menus, wouldn’t you agree? Such is the case for Homeroom Mac + Cheese in Oakland, CA. Founded by a former lawyer-turned-restaurateur, Homeroom is the women-owned, schoolhouse-themed macaroni and cheese restaurant you never knew you needed in your life. Every meal begins with the…

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Fine Dining in Yosemite National Park

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Venturing to Yosemite National Park in the Sierra Nevada mountains of east-central California is an all-day event, well-worth the drive from the Central Coast. We visited on a whim one Wednesday in the early fall, marveling at the sheer size of everything – the giant sequoia trees, towering granite cliffs, and delicate misty waterfalls. After…

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In-N-Out Burger – A California Icon

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Yes, this is a blog post about a fast food restaurant. No, this isn’t just any fast food place. It’s In-N-Out Burger! I love all the palm trees here in California. They represent the breezy, sunny lifestyle we live everyday, which is probably why they are In-N-Out Burger’s symbol of choice for its iconic yellow,…

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Tasty Tapas at Prova California Table

“Prova” – Italian word meaning “to try” or “to taste” (provamorganhill.com) From the same Michelin star chef who brought you elevated Mediterranean soul food cuisine at Odeum comes Prova California Table in the heart of downtown Morgan Hill, California. Brandon and I visited this airy spot on our wedding anniversary this year, on a quiet Tuesday…

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Vertigo Coffee Roasters – Local Delight

As residents of San Juan Bautista, we’re often asked “Do you like living in a small town? Isn’t it quiet and uneventful? What do you do to have fun there?” Yes, no, and Vertigo. Named for Albert Hitchcock’s famous movie of the same name, Vertigo Coffee Roasters is just down the street from the bell…

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Tricycle Pizza’s Food Truck Journey

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Wood-fired oven inside the original food truck that started it all. Of all the food truck meals I’ve eaten in my life (countless, I assure you), I’ve never witnessed a wood-fired pizza oven in a vehicle. It just sounds dangerous! But Tricycle Pizza in Monterey, California has it figured out. Their oven can safely get…

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