From SF to LA [split from SF Bay]
[Note: The original post, from user vasiliki asked these questions on this thread: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8661...
In addition to our SF trip, we leave SF on the 14th (renting a car on the 14th) to drive to Santa Cruz via the scenic 1 for one night which will include dinner there, back in the car the next morning to visit the Monterey Aquarium in the morning, play around in tide pools, then 2 nights in San Luis Obispo before cruising into LA to have dinner at a friend's house before taking the red eye home. I'd also love any suggestions for Santa Cruz/San Luis Obispo, and any not-to-be-missed stops along the way. At that point of the trip, we will be wanting low key, great vibe, casual spots on the water if possible, that involve incredible raw oysters. I also don't want to miss other cuisines not found in Nashville, TN., like Sri Lankan in Santa Cruz. If you have any ideas for me, please let me know. I should have jumped on this a while ago! We are very excited for this trip even though it came together last minute!
-- The Chowhound Team]
While in SLO, I recommend Pete's Pierside Cafe on the Avila Beach pier (just north of Pismo Beach). Great, inexpensive seafood right on the water. Good beer too! Kind of a funky place but fun and really worth the drive from SLO.
If driving through Big Sur, Nepenthe is always worth a stop. The view & ambiance are gloriously California and, while the food is pedestrian and expensive, the wine list is glorious. Sit outside and enjoy a cheese plate with good accoutrements with a glass of heaven. For breakfast or dinner (no lunch is served) Deetjen's Big Sur Inn is really good: candlelit ambiance (as at Nepenthe) with fireplaces and ecclectic antiques. Very warm, professional service. Delicious food!
Thank you, Plainfood. Our trip is coming up and I have had no time to research this portion of our trip.Nepenthe sounds fabulous, and my husband and I really want that glorious California experience! Thank you for mentioning Deetjen's, too. I'm going to try to make a stop there happen. I tried to book a room there for the one night that we would be in that area, but understandably, they were full. We are now staying at the Dream Inn in Santa Cruz,. IWe have a room overlooking the bay, so we are excited about that, I really appreciate your help! Suzanne