Culinary Road Trip

 
cover small.png
 

Having recently moved to the West Coast, we were so excited to partner with the Visit California team to get a start on exploring our new state! And to celebrate the 8th Annual California Restaurant Month, we had the opportunity to travel to 3 uniquely different destinations by car, while discovering the diverse range of culinary experiences each city had to offer. We truly enjoy road tripping too- you can really explore somewhere new by having the ability to change up your plans & take advantage of spontaneous moments!

Below is a photo recap from our trip & guide to all the places we stopped along the way. We kicked things off in San Jose, then traveled to Gilroy & ended in Yosemite Madera County.

For more information on California, visit www.visitcalifornia.com

 

ROAD TRIP ROUTE

1st Stop:

San Jose

FOUNTAIN.JPG

2nd Stop:

Gilroy

GARLIC EDIT.jpg

3rd Stop:

Yosemite Madera County

IMG_9494.JPG
CAR GRAPHIC (1).JPG

SAN JOSE

Even though it was raining the entire time we were here, we absolutely loved San Jose & wish we had more time to explore! It's really a gorgeous city with so much to do. They have the most charming downtown area with a lot of great shopping, cute cafes & restaurants & art museums. And because it's the heart of Silicon Valley, there's a huge innovation & tech presence infused in everything which we absolutely loved. We actually spent most of our time eating though (no complaints hehe) from French cuisine at Left Bank Brasserie to late night pizzas & share plates at District. And of course we had to check out some of their cute dessert shops too (which I hunt for in every city!), with Recess Ice delivering up the best treats to satisfy our sweet tooth. We also popped by the Winchester Mystery House which was a great way to spend a rainy afternoon, learning about all the paranormal activity that still haunts the house today (eek!). San Jose is definitely at the top of our list of places we'd like to return to sometime soon since a little over 24 hours in this place just wasn't enough. If you haven't been, hopefully the below photos will convince you to check it out! 

MURAL.JPG
SANTANA ROW 2.JPG

LEFT BANK BRASSERIE

IMG_9500.jpg
IMG_9498.JPG
IMG_9497.JPG

FOUNTAIN RESTAURANT AT FAIRMONT SAN JOSE

FOUNTAIN.JPG
 
IMG_8982.JPG
 
line.png
IMG_9051.JPG
WHISKEY EDIT.jpg
IMG_9512.TRIM.gif
MYSTERY EDIT.jpg
HOTEL EDIT.jpg

WHERE WE ATE:

  • Left Bank Brasserie - Considered French to table cuisine, it's a classy spot for a delicious lunch
  • Fountain Restaurant - We literally had everything on the menu & can't choose a favorite (so good!)
  • District - A great spot for late night bites & drinks, specifically whiskey flights which was a new concept for me, haha
  • Recess Ice - We went for bear ice cream, but left with s'mores hot chocolate. The ultimate dessert haven!

WHAT WE DID:

  • Winchester Mystery House - If you want to get your paranormal spook on, this needs to be at the top of your list
  • Santana Row - This place reminded me so much of LA's Rodeo Drive mixed with NYC's Soho, a shopping mecca

WHERE WE STAYED:

  • Fairmont San Jose - Would stay here again in a heartbeat! Gorgeous rooms & impeccable hospitality. With it's prime location, there's so much to do in walking distance which made us feel like we were in New York again :)

GILROY

 

After San Jose, we traveled a short distance of about 45 minutes to Gilroy, which is considered the Garlic Capital of the World. And I'm not sure if it was because we were really hungry at the time, but I swear we could smell fresh garlic on our drive into town! And if a place is known for garlic, you know the food is going to be good. Our first stop was to The Stomping Ground, which is a cool & very unique winemaking studio that houses a number of premium wineries for wine tasting in a booth-like setup. We had dinner in Gilroy's historical downtown area at The Milias Restaurant, which originally opened in 1922! The chefs were extremely accommodating to both of our food allergies & sat with us while we ate to tell us about how they've preserved the history within the restaurant throughout the years. Before leaving Gilroy, we had a fun opportunity to be interviewed by their local newspaper, Gilroy Dispatch, while eating lunch at Cafe 152 Bread Co.

IMG_9535.jpg
 

THE STOMPING GROUND

IMG_9544.jpg
IMG_9545.jpg

GARLIC WORLD

IMG_9538.jpg
GARLIC EDIT.jpg
IMG_9539.jpg
line.png
sffsf.jpg
IMG_9540.jpg
IMG_9541.jpg
CORRECT SIZE.JPG
STAIRS.jpg

WHERE WE ATE:

  • The Milias Restaurant - One of the oldest restaurants in Gilroy, it's a great spot for fine dining & live music
  • Cafe 152 Bread Co. - A local spot with a seasonal menu that has plenty of healthy options

WHAT WE DID:

  • The Stomping Ground - The coolest wine tasting experience to be able to try several wineries all in one location
  • Garlic World - For all things garlic! Do not leave without trying the garlic ice cream, it's a must!

WHERE WE STAYED:

  • Hilton Garden Gilroy - The perfect stay that was a short distance to all of our activities in Gilroy

YOSEMITE MADERA COUNTY

IMG_9494.JPG
 

After Gilroy, we made our way to Madera, specifically to continue our crawl of wine tasting along the Madera Wine Trail! It has a ton of small, family owned wineries & feels much more low-key than the bigger spots (like Napa) in California. Nearby we had dinner at The Vineyard Bar & Grill which Christian claims was the best meal of his life, haha. We tried the chef's favorites on the menu like the duck with hibiscus flower glaze & the mom's meatballs which were a family recipe clearly (so delicious)! Afterwards, we drove to Bass Lake, where we checked into our chalet at the Pines Resort. This is the cutest cabin option if you're looking for a rustic getaway but still want all your amenities. They even have a little grocery store attached to the resort so you can buy the necessities to cook breakfast in your room or make s'mores by the fireplace - both of which we did! We decided to spend our entire last day at Yosemite National Park on a Discover Yosemite tour & words cannot describe how beautiful it really is there. So I'll leave you with a ton of pictures to try & convince you to go! :)

MADERA WINE TRAIL

WINERY.jpg
IMG_9564.JPG
IMG_9565.JPG

THE PINES RESORT BASS LAKE

IMG_9562.JPG
IMG_9567.JPG
BALCONY.jpg

DISCOVER YOSEMITE TOUR

TREEEEES.jpg
IMG_9571.JPG
IMG_8134.jpg
IMG_9573.TRIM.gif
IMG_9575.JPG
SCENIC1.jpg
CHRISTIAN.jpg
SELFIE.jpg
SCENIC 2.jpg
line.png
IMG_9579.JPG
IMG_8916.JPG
IMG_9580.JPG
OVERHEAD.jpg
IMG_9582.TRIM.gif
IMG_9522.JPG
IMG_9589.jpg
DARK2.jpg
FRONT.jpg
IMG_9588.JPG

WHERE WE ATE:

WHAT WE DID:

WHERE WE STAYED:

CAR GRAPHIC (1).JPG
 

Whether you're heading to California or already live here & are looking for weekend getaway options, I hope this post has inspired you to travel to San Jose, Gilroy or Yosemite Madera County (or maybe all 3)! Huge thank you to Visit California for this incredible opportunity & all of the individual tourism boards that helped make our experience a culinary dream come true!

 
 
heart bre.png