Swedish Pancakes at Rudy's Cafe.
We didn't have any real plans other than a sunset cruise - but the day was so gray and sad we decided to forego the cruise and do some shopping and maybe more wine tasting. Despite having had one breakfast already, we decided to have 2nd breakfast at Rudy's Cafe - and it was a pleasant surprise! A latino flavored cafe with impeccable, efficient service. I was enticed by the swedish pancakes and bacon, and my friend had a gorgeous looking granola with fresh fruit and blueberry yogurt. After polishing that off, we did some window shopping, and then forced ourselves to eat again at La SuperRica - for years I've heard it was the best taco place in Santa Barbara, so I was determined to try it even if I was already full.
The prettiest granola I've ever seen.
We got there around noon and there was already a long line (always a good sign). We ordered a small sampling of foods (tacos, quesadilla, tamale) and polished off everything - it was seriously good and cheap! With our full full bellies, we decided to check out Foxen Winery
. We headed back out to the Santa Ynez Valley and we literally felt like we were in the midst of a scary movie, where unsuspecting travellers enter into a foggy mountainous terrain, only to be eaten by crazy zombie-like villagers in some hidden valley ... ok, perhaps I'm being too dramatic, but the heavy fog was quite scary and Foxen was in such a remote area that I thought that we would never get there. When we finally did, I was surprised at the huge crowd there - it apparently is quite a famous and popular destination.
La Super Rica - the best taco stand in Santa Barbara!
My friend had raved about their Chenin Blanc (which was nice), but I was more blown away by their Cuvee Jeanne Marie (quite juicy and luscious). After a nice little break, we headed to Firestone
(which we heard had just been sold to another winery, but they are apparently not changing anything so it's business as usual). I had never really tried Firestone wines and I was pleasantly surprised by the lovely bouquets in many of their wines, and the soft mellow flavors that linger in your mouth. I normally don't like Chardonnays, but they offered such a lovely one that I couldn't resist!
The entire day my friend mentioned these "Aebleskivers" - some donut with powdered sugar and jam that she claimed she always got in Solvang when she was young.
A myriad of mouthwatering items!
I had never even heard of them before so we decided to go track them down. We were told the Solvang Restaurant had them, but alas, they were closed when we got there. Luckily we saw a random restaurant that also served them so I was able to experience these strangely named donuts.... can't say they were amazing, but when is fried dough with sugar and jam ever bad?
Solvang (like SB) really has no night life ... it was only about 6pm and everything was shutting down. We decided to have dinner at the Hitching Post (which was showcased in the movie Sideways) but our reservations were not until 8:30pm - believing we could "squeeze" in, we arrived at 6:30pm only to be shocked by the mass of people waiting to be seated. We tried getting bar seats .
Our little mexican feast (after 2 breakfasts!) - pork tacos, tamale, quesadillo, fresh pico de gallo ... yum....
.. it literally took an hour before we were able to score one seat ... another 30 minutes until we got a 2nd seat. But once we were able to sit and start drinking our martinis, things improved dramatically! :) We shared the grilled artichokes (pretty good) and each ordered steak with baked potatoes (yum!). We sat next to a fun couple and started talking about the war, politics, etc. It was a lively, enjoyable debate - it's always nice to meet well-informed, fun and intelligent people. They also thought we were in college - so flattering, but we had to correct them and admit we have been out of college for a long long time. :) We were probably there for 3 hours - good times! :)
After dinner I started drunk-dialing people - what a bad habit, but terribly amusing.
On the road to nowhere ... I mean Foxen ....
Then we tried to open up a bottle of wine in our room - this was literally the rubik's cube of bottles - we had tried the day before but couldn't budge the cork. In our drunken state we decided we should both try - one pulling the bottle, and the other pulling the cork. We were lucky we didn't hurt one another - I must be stronger than I realized, because I yanked that cork out and sprayed half the bottle of wine on my poor friend... but hey, we got it opened! Then we gossiped and drank until we fell asleep. zzzzzz after all, we needed lots of rest for the next day - we plan to go to the Camarillo Shopping Outlet for a heavy duty day of shopping. Not going to blog about it, but it's a must stop if you are traveling from SB to LA (if you like shopping, that is). :)