Stumptown Brewery: Holy cow! The food! The beer! The service!
Another recommendation from my friend in Rio Nido who says this the only place they ever eat at, we were so happy with it that we almost went back the next day!
Walking in, you definitely know this place is devoted to brewing. The worn couch in front of the fireplace, the bras and bills hanging from the ceiling, and the walk-up window to the bar from the patio outside told what the night would bring, even while we ate early dinner. We were quickly directed to order from the menus at the food counter where a helpful, bustling guy in a tiki-torch Hawaiian shirt gave us the LD on the food with a side of friendly conversation. His advice: you can't go wrong. After answering our questions about Chris Chee, the chef's take on Kim Chee, we ordered and were sent over to the bar to get our beers where the lone female customer was already getting her bra pictured on the ceiling in the minds of several early birds with Yahtzee barrels, drinks, and other weapons of wooing.
With no tables inside except the counter, the general and knowing implication was to sit on the back patio by the private beach where we had our pick of rocking iron patio furniture or wooden picnic tables. The food was fast, the beer was faster, and it was all brought out by humble, proud men who appreciated our compliments and encouraged us to eat more than we could and made fun of the backwater folk starting up the evening's racket. The diminishingly Aussie-accented brewmaster returned our compliments on the T-rat with a conversation about the origin of its yeast and his hopes for its future, which satisfied our inner tourist and made it taste all the better.
On the way out we spied a flier for the Russian River Beer Revival on August 19th, which has been filling our imaginations with a day of T-rat on that private beach full of friendly locals.... I think my calendar is booked for that weekend, now!
Favorite Dish: Bangers & mash in real mushroom sauce with sauerkraut for $6 was a steal, more than I could eat, delicious, and with the Kuechenmesser knife and the hefe, really took me back to Germany. This is hard not to order.
The cheddar-stuffed jalapeno poppers were also a steal at 6 for $5.
The hamburgers were unbelieveably delicious and made you think: how'd they DO that!? About $8-$10
Even the grilled portobello cap burger tempted the carnivores, while the paninis at the next table told that even the simple parts of the menu weren't overlooked.
The Tyrannosaurus Rat was an unbelieveable blend of hefe and Belgian Ale. One of the most delicious beers in the world.
The Rat Bastard Pale Ale was also delicious, but paled (ha ha) in comparison.
- Food and Dining
- Beer Tasting
- Adventure Travel
Guerneville Coffee Bazaar: Come Out for Coffee, Ice Cream, and Books
Located just off of Main Street on Armstrong Woods Road, my friend recommended we try this coffee as opposed to the Main Street locale, and were glad we did. This is your typical cozy, trendy coffeehouse with young baristas, chalkboard menus, tasty local treats to eat, local artists' photos on the wall, chess boards for use, people reading papers, free wi-fi, big, open, breezy windows, a couple tables outside, and worn, slightly wobbly ones inside.
What makes this place special is tasty coffee, an ice cream counter, a used bookstore connected through the inside, a laundromat through the back by the restrooms, a community feel, and a gay-friendly disposition.
The service was friendly, helpful, and busied themselves while we were there, and they were well-staffed and clean, I think, a sign of a caring owner/manager.
Favorite Dish: Curt's coffee test is whether he likes the first sip enough not to sweeten and lighten it, and it stood the test.
I liked the iced tea since it passed my test of being freshly brewed and not bitter, and it had a nice tropical/peachy hint.
The light snacks like wraps and pies looked delicious, though we didn't try them.
The ice cream was tempting but too pricey: $2-something for the first scoop.
If you want a frappe their flavor combos were inviting: orangeat/praline, white chocolate raspberry, etc.
Also had thai iced tea!
- Road Trip
- Gay and Lesbian
- Budget Travel
Korbel Delicatessen and Market: A surprisingly scrumptuous little lunch respite
While winding along River Road north of Santa Rosa & our bed and breakfast our stomachs started to growl/rumble... And when that happens, I get CRANKY. We are not the biggest fans of Korbel sparkling wine, but their winery looked beautiful and had a sign out front alluding to a delicatessen. "STOP!" I begged. And we were pleasantly surprised!
We devoured tasty sandwiches and such on the outdoor patio surrounded by redwoods. And then, we couldn't help but do a tasting of their various sparkling wines, and believe it or not, some weren't half bad! *Husband disagrees ;-) *
I really wish I had a picture of this place... guess you'll just have to trust me, it's beautiful.
Favorite Dish: Some of their other menu items:
Sonoma Greens salad
Orange Ginger Game Hen
- Wine Tasting
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