We left Hacienda Heights at 530 am, thinking that'd we'd avoid all traffic, even on a weekday....at least that's how things used to be when we lived here. I had an account in Hollywood and made a deal to come in early; leaving at about 515 so I could leave early, heck, even hit up the Zankou location in Hollywood and make it home in time! Times sure have changed....there's was a good deal of traffic at 530am on the 60 West, then on the 101. Once we got past Hollywood things got a bit better, then really cleared out until we hit Santa Barbara. Of course, it was prime time traffic by then. We'd decided on heading up this way, stopping along the drive, at places like Solvang. Right outside Solvang was our first stop.....we love markets, so dropping by El Rancho was a must.....
We loved El Rancho; good variety, the Missus got to add to Her apple collection. Prices that were reasonable, you could leave without feeling mugged. You could get local product, or if not, just to do your everyday shopping. We Also got some some organic treats for Da' Boyz....the Missus was tempted to grind Her own flour from wheat at the kiosk......
Loved the sign to the right....which was actually in the restroom!
The prepared foods section looked nice as well.
We enjoyed this as a nice little stop along the way. I thinknthey'd be great if you wanted to pick up prepared foods for a little picnic as well.
El Rancho Market
2886 Mission Dr
Solvang, CA 93463
After getting nice and "caffiened up" we headed into Solvang. We'd been to Solvang a couple of times and had never really enjoyed ourselves....too crowded, too kitschy, it just gave off that tourist trap vibe..... This time though, on a weekday morning in winter; the place seemed so charming.
It was just the perfect time for us, the half timbered structures, the quiet streets....the temperatures in the low thirties....even the locals we met were telling us how cold it was!
We enjoyed walking the streets and into the various businesses.....the folks were welcoming and relaxed.
I needed something to take back to the office, so I figured this would be the spot, right? We went to a couple of bakeries, but this one won out......
The folks at work seemed to enjoy the stuff......
460 Alisal Rd
Solvang, CA 93463
If we're ever back here, this is the way I'd want to do it....early morning on a weekday.
Soon enough, we'd hit our allotted time.......we needed to hit the road.