You're a Good Man, Charles Schultz
Peanuts creator Charles Schultz was a longtime resident of Santa Rosa. So today, everywhere downtown, are fiberglass sculptures of Charlie Brown. The local information booth is made to look like Snoopy's doghouse. It's cute, and an acknowledgement of the debt that the town owes to the memory of Schultz.
I never made it to the Charles M. Schultz Museum in Santa Rosa, but provided the website below.
The ruins of the Carrillo Adobe, essentially an empty shell of a building under a shed roof to protect it from the elements, stand in a field in eastern Santa Rosa. The adobe is on Montgomery Drive in the Montgomery Village area of town. The land is still apparently private proeprty, though, so I don't think anyone is actually free to go on it. The Catholic church, with St. Eugene's Cathedral next door, has long owned the property and recently a developer has put forth plans to buy it and develop it, but people are clamouring to preserve the adobe and have it open to the public to see. Hopefully, something like that will happen. Although there is not much there, it's an important site as it is one of the last and northernmost settlements of California's Spanish/Mexican era. The building dates from about 1836 and was the focal point of the Rancho Cabeza de Santa Rosa, home of Dona Maria Carrillo, mother-in-law to Mariano Guadelupe Vallejo, the famous local Mexican commandant-turned-Sonoma leading citizen and California politician. Her son, Julio Carrillo, helped found the town of Santa Rosa and lay out its original streets.
This is a neat microbrewery/restaurant place with semi-industrial decor. It's centrally located in downtown Santa Rosa near parking garages and two cinemas. While not all the beer and dishes are of the same quality, it has quite a lot of very good, filling food that goes well with beer and most of the food is very good. Many beers have won quite a few awards, too.
It has a very wide number and variety of beers home-brewed beers on tap, ranging from very light-flavored and to heavy stouts and porters. Some of the beers I don't like much at all, but it has a lot of beers that are very good and some which are simply outstanding.
Another great thing about it is that it is one of the few places that serves food and drink late: the kitchen stays open until 11:30pm/23:30 Wed-Sat and until 10pm/22:00 the rest of the time while the pub/bar is open untill 1 am Friday and Saturday and until 12 am/midnight the rest of the time.
It used to be the Good Earth when I was a kid. Several outstanding beers: Blarney Sister's Dry Irish Stout, Stepchild Red Ale, Blackcat Porter, and Barleywine. The Best Bitter is really good, too.
They have some good lighter ales, too, and I think one of these is the American Wheat, but I can't really remember since I almost never drink anything less dark than red or brown ale.
I do not care for the flagship Annadel Pale Ale, which I find ok, but quite bland.
Notably, it has a barleywine, too, which I highly recommend, not least of all since barleywine is uncommon even at microbreweries. It is slightly sweet, which contrasts nicely with its very strong and rich hoppy beer flavor and it has a wonderful, dense, frothy texture. It is, of course, also high in alcohol.
They also have a home-brewed root beer called Ol'Pappy's that is very, very good. It's a little heavy on the anise, so it takes some people a while to get used to, but it's great!
Best food includes the pulled pork sandwich, brewhouse salad, and the southwest chili, which is excellent. Their fries and burgers are also really good normally, but the burgers can be inconsistent, since sometimes they are overcooked and dry. They have great garlic fries with lots of diced garlic. The tostaditos are also great. Overall, the salads are good and I love the mustard-ale vinaigrette made with their own beer, but for those with crumbled blue cheese, I recommend getting the blue cheese on the side unless you REALLY love blue cheese, because they sure pile it on.
We're ambivalent about the fish & chips: the fish itself is bland and nothing special, but it has good texture and the tartar sauce is wonderful. Even though the fish is bland, we still get it because the tartar sauce is so good it tends to make up for it. However, this is certainly not the best place to go if you want REALLY good fish and chips.
Finally, a few dishes like the fish tacos are a little on the bland side and only mediocre.
Beautiful Italian Restaurant
Ca'Bianca is a good Italian restaurant in a beautiful old building. It is in the Marshall House, a large landmark Italianate Victorian house built in 1876 and located in the eastern part of downtown Santa Rosa.
Great Ethiopian and Eritrean Food!
This is a wonderful, new Ethiopian/Eritrean restaurant that serves delicious food.
We'd been waiting for a place like this to open up here since there is a large Eritrean community in Santa Rosa and until now we've had to drive down to places like Berkeley to get Ethiopian/Eritrean food. I earlier had mentioned one that first opened, Santa TRata, but that recently closed. Fortunately, this place just opened and it is in a much better location, being downtown rather than out in a shopping center.
It also has Ethiopian and Eritrean beer, otherwise hard to find, and they serve Ethipian breakfast on the weekends.
Below I've noted that the price is less than $10 per person, but this depends on what you order. For a full mixed meal, it is about $19 for two people. Everything we've had is delicious and we have had most of the items on the menu.