It was a nice way to cap the year: a quick trip to Monterey and Big Sur complete with a sprinkling of sun to set off the scenery and provide a backdrop for last-minute resolutions. Mine definitely included getting away more often given the proximity to such beautiful natural eye-candy!
Speaking of eye-candy the Portola Inn, located on Monterey Bay, boasts a fair amount of well-appointed decor put together by someone with an eye for fabulous spaces. The reason I mention this is that all the details come together to create a sophisticated yet welcoming atmosphere where you instantly want to kick back and relax. "Why go out all night when we can hang out in such a room?" was the question I asked immediately.
Of course we did manage to get motivated to leave when our appetites beckoned. We ambled down the street to Montrio recommended by the hotel staff and found a small table in the very crowded restaurant. We sampled the luscious lobster mac n cheese, a bistro steak (with truffle fries - wow!) and a sweet creamy bread pudding served alongside passionfruit ice cream. A nice find indeed.
The next day we saw the line for breakfast at Rosine's snaked out the door requiring us to keep our patience in check and go with the crowd. The food was good, with large generous portions that could have fed 3-4 per plate (I am serious about this.) When reading about the history of Rosine's this seems to be part of their "claim to fame" (in Monterey at least!) and it seems like something that resonates with customers. For me personally I always feel guilty leaving so much food on the plate and eating it all was definitely out of the question.
Our last stop of the day was Nepenthe (Big Sur) where we sipped hot spiced cider against the backdrop of the Pacific. The chill in the air was tempered by the welcome winter sun and I couldn't help but make a mental note to visit again during summer (although the crowds would probably be more visible.)
Overall, rather than looking forward to the new year I took a moment to catch my breath and count my blessings which are beyond measure. And with that, we were on the road home again to get ready to ring in the new year.
|Holiday decor in Monterey Bay|
|Bixby Bridge, Big Sur|