We love to plan wine country getaways—particularly long weekends…or even longer, when time and budget allow.
But sometimes we’re simply driving through wine country, on the way from one place to another—and that can be painful as we pass one inviting tasting room after another.
Stopping for lunch can help relieve the anxiety at least a little bit—something that came to mind after considering the question featured in today’s “Wine FAQ.”
If you don’t have time to stop and smell (and taste) the rosés, at least take a few minutes for a satisfying wine country meal.
QUESTION: We’re going to be driving through Santa Barbara County next month. Unfortunately, we won’t have time to stop at any of the wineries, but we’re hoping to find a restaurant for a good “wine country” lunch. Do you have any suggestions?
ANSWER: Yes! Right across from the Santa Ynez Post Office is the Rancho & Reata Roadhouse, which serves up what its owners describe as “contemporary cowboy cuisine.”
At lunchtime, this can range from an open-faced steak (a 6-oz. top sirloin with stilton blue cheese, lettuce, tomato and onion on a ciabatta roll) to the “Cowgirl” mac-and-cheese (made with eight cheeses).
If you desire something a little lighter, you can’t beat the “Valley Vegetable Platter,” consisting of garden-to-table local vegetables (the mix varies by season), tossed in olive oil and then grilled.
By the way, it’s too bad you’re just passing through. The Roadhouse also has a wonderful performance venue, and hosts intimate concerts four or five nights per week. Check out the current schedule.