Sunday, March 29, 2015

Out and About: The Portside

Los Olivos and Solvang
Santa Barbara County
March 16, 2015

We've been fortunate to have The Man's Mom stop in for visits while earning and preserving her Premier Platinum status with United Airlines. During her visits we mostly hang out and enjoy the animals. Which is to say, we don't really do much of anything. We . . .  relax.

On a whim, we decided to drive south to Solvang for the day. Although The Man and I have been going to the Christmas Tree Burn at the Old Santa Inés Mission in Solvang, it's been many (many) moons since the three of us spent time visiting the Danish-styled town.

Tourists (with Tina)      circa mid-1980's

On the trip south we detoured to the pretty town of Los Olivos to say howdy to our friend Lauren at the Daniel Gehrs Wines Tasting Room.

We had not intended to do any wine tasting during our visit, we just wanted to catch up with Lauren. Such a cute tasting room and beautiful outdoor courtyard; Lauren gave us a tour and then invited us to sample a glass of Port wine . . . with chocolate chip wafers.

How to describe Port, the delicious fortified wine?
One word: Yum. 
Two words: Yum Yum.

After our fun visit with Lauren, we hit the streets of Los Olivos.

 The Grange Hall - it doubles as the Public Library on Saturdays from 10 am-1 pm.

The magical J. Woeste in Los Olivos: the former home of my red begonia potted plant. That is, I'm talking about my still-alive-and-still-pretty-but-not-as-beautiful-as-when-I-first-received-it-from-Al-and-Anda (Lauren's family) 'Barkos' Begonia.

There was so much to see in this incredible place. And since we decided to sit in a giant red chair, I thought it fitting to "transform y(our) world into a live cartoon" (ToonCamera app).

Eventually we did make our way down to Solvang. We briefly browsed a few of the same shops we visited thirty years ago. (Sadly, no photo op cutouts.) We ate a Danish Smorgasbord lunch at the Red Viking Restaurant; I even tried the pickled herring and pickled herring cauliflower with curry mayo (now I can cross Smørgåsbord off my bucket list).

Next time we'll skip Solvang.

Instead we'll spend the day in Los Olivos: revisit J. Woeste's Home and Garden Treasures, savor Port wine, eat chocolate, and spend slow time with family and friends.

Lauren, fortified with Brandy  1/30/15