The Californian’s Road Trip – Paso Robles to Cayucos

As my previous post mentioned, my goal for this trip was to enjoy the journey as much as the destination and it was remarkably easy to do on the PCH. Despite the hours upon hours of driving, it seemed like there was constant beautiful scenery and an eye-opening stop each hour, which made the long trip welcomed.

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Los Pinos Mexican Food Stop

Our first stop was at a hole in the wall Mexican restaurant in Lebec. Directly off the 5, I wasn’t expecting much but trusted the Yelp reviews. I’ve had a LOT of Mexican food so believe me when I say this place is ridiculously good. You’ll be craving seconds the rest of your trip.

Adelaide Inn

After a few more hours we finally arrived in the charming city of Paso Robles. I wished we had more time to try out the many creative dinner menus seen online previously but as we had a lot of ground to cover, we stayed at the Adelaide Inn for just one night. I was incredibly excited to make good use of their “miniature golf course,” but unfortunately the course was a little too miniature to be considered seriously. It was still a nice little inn, but I felt like it was slightly over-priced. Then again, most hotels in the area seemed to be anyway.

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What I loved most about wine country was that wine seemed to be a prerequisite for everything, even breakfast. If I saw wine tastings offered at Paso Robles pre-schools, hospitals, ballet class, and gas stations, I wouldn’t be all that surprised. It made perfect sense that these worthy labors of love were poured and respected by all. If I spent months to a year creating a product with all my heart and soul, I’d want to show it off too. So, come to Paso Robles and drink as much wine as you can because you’re just insulting someone if you don’t, and that’s rude. Don’t be rude.

Springside Restaurant

We passed the lovely garden entrance to Springside Restaurant and was welcomed by a fireplace and an impressive wine bar, as 80s backwards skate ballads played in the background. Here you we found apricot french toast, danish ableskivers, and linguisa omelets, all of course accompanied by your favorite glass of wine. And why not? Mimosas are a thing. Who really needs that extra sugared-orange juice?

Paso Robles Wine Country

My amazing wino friend made me a map of all the wineries she liked here. Out of all the wine countries I had visited in California, which I think was all of them now, this area seemed to be most eclectic. There were wineries that were western themed, one wear you could wear wigs for bachelorette parties, intimate tasting rooms, and of course wineries with stunning scenery and even a lake. She asked, “What do you value more? The quality of wine or the aesthetics of the vineyard?” It felt like she was asking me to chose my fate, not a light decision to make. I opted for both and found myself at Bianchi Winery and Robert Hall Winery.

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Bianchi Winery

Someone said that the zinfandel here tasted like “root water” and that it was “wet.” I personally didn’t foresee the winery winning any awards but since they gave me free tastings on my birthday I’ll just go ahead and say the wine was fantastic! The “lake” wasn’t as dramatic as I had hoped for. It was nice and relaxing but just didn’t live up to its description for me. Regardless, I enjoyed my visit. The cheerful bartenders and colorful fall foliage were nice enhancements.

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Robert Hall Winery

In comparison to the bubbly Sommelier at Bianchi, the ones found at this gorgeous tasting room were kind of snobby, giving off an I-hate-my-life vibe. Wine doesn’t solve all problems but phenomenal tastings complimented by sounds from brick water fountains just might. It’s definitely worth visiting for the wine alone, but didn’t invite me to stay awhile. Next time I’d like to check out Tobin James western themed cellars and the west side of town.

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The Brown Butter Cookie Company

What happens when you follow a rainbow to the end? Do you find a pot of gold or maybe something better? Maybe, just maybe, you follow your heart and land at the Brown Butter Cookie Company in Cayucos. This oceanside town was small but packed spunk. I imagined its saloon card room held many gun duels back in the day. In all honesty, if this city today had gun duels, hungry zombies, or boring simple quiet streets, I’d still take my chances to get some of these delicious cookies. It was well worth the detour.

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Proof that rainbows lead to cookies.
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Enough said.
Hearst Castle

I didn’t realize seeing the Hearst Castle meant taking a bus ride from the visitor center and paying $25 for a two hour tour of PART of the castle. I’m the kind of person that likes to explore on my own. I hadn’t prepared for the lecture, so I’m sorry to tell you I just wasn’t up for it and walked away castle-less. The courtyard was pretty though. We decided to keep following the rainbow all the way to Big Sur which was free, gorgeous, and didn’t come with a lecture of any kind – a solid win in my book.

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This was $0. Yay for the Hearst Castle’s entrance!

© Faith’s True Tales 2016. All original words and images by Faith Brady.

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12 thoughts on “The Californian’s Road Trip – Paso Robles to Cayucos

      1. Wow, this sounds like a long, but amazing time! I’ve been to LA and drove up to Carmel by the Sea. From there on we went on to San Francisco! Definitely an amazing trip 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Faith,

    First of all, you have such a beautiful Blog! My name is Jennifer. I am the Tasting Room Manager for Robert Hall Winery. Thank you so very much for making our Tasting Room a stop on your recent travels.

    Needless to say, I am devastated to hear about your experience.

    We strive to always provide a warm and welcoming environment and an experience that exceeds all of our guest’s expectations. I am so saddened to learn that we fell very short.

    I would love for the opportunity to speak with you to gather additional details pertaining to your visit so that I might address this with my team. This will enable me to determine how our customer service expression was less than adequate, and to prevent this from occurring in the future.

    Thank you, again, for including us in your itinerary and for taking the time to showcase our property. I hope to hear back from you so that I may have the opportunity to remedy this unfortunate situation.

    Respectfully,
    Jennifer Jansen
    (805) 239-1616 x 25

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Jennifer,

      Thank you for stopping by and offering your kind words. Maybe we caught the tasting room at a bad time, as they had a bus full of thirty visitors. I’d be happy to discuss the details with you and will be calling you soon. We’ll have to give your beautiful room another try.

      Like

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