I’ve driven past here dozens of times but today was the first time I ever turned off the main road and wound my way down to the Cold Spring Tavern. What an amazing place! It’s an old stagecoach stop, and retains all of the charm (and rickety wood construction) of its historic past.
Outside, a stream cascades down the rocks at the bottom of the canyon, and the building is surrounded by lush growth.
The restaurant is divided up into intimate rooms, with great mood lighting, and views of the woods.
Lunch offerings include salads and sandwiches and burgers. Both the chiliburger and venison steak sandwich were excellent, as were the accompanying fries and salad. Apparently the quiche is amazing, with a wonderful pastry crust, but the person before me got the last order!
Service is friendly, and the staff are definitely having a good time working there.
This is a good stop in downtown Los Olivos. The emphasis is on Rhone varietals, especially Syrah. The style tends toward the fruity end of the spectrum rather than the charred game end. They also make an interesting white Rhone blend.
This is a lovely hilltop tasting room. The winery specializes in sparkling wines, and the ones we tried were crisp and well made. Their wine club is a particularly good deal. Our server was friendly and very enthusiast.
This was the best producer we visited during our day in the Arroyo Grande area. Their Chardonnays and Sirah were particular standouts. The tasting room has a marvelous view of the vineyards, and there is a nice outside area for relaxing with a bottle. We voted by joining their club!
This terrific restaurant in The Ballard Inn is very popular, so be sure to make reservations. The atmosphere is a cross between modern and colonial, and the food is 100% creative.
We loved every course. The standouts were the best tomato soup I’ve ever tasted, and some incredibly tender octopus. The hamachi was also melt in your mouth tender. Service was an efficient team effort.
The wine list offers a nice selection of local bottles and some French wines, but very little variety by the glass.
This small, one-room restaurant offers fine dining in a home-spun atmosphere. Many of the dishes are definitely noteworthy. We particularly enjoyed both of our appetizers, the oysters, and the rabbit tacos. Flavors and textures were perfect in both dishes.
The entrees were fine, but not as impressive.
Desserts were nicely done, with a homemade honeycomb being the standout.
The weakness is the wine list, particularly the wines by the glass, which are heavily reliant upon a single so-so producer. This is odd, since the restaurant is in the middle of wine country.
Service was friendly, but the single server struggled to keep up with the three occupied tables, which were unfortunately simultaneously seated.
The menu allows you to select the number of courses you like, and we felt the price for three courses was extremely reasonable.