Spent the long weekend in Carmel and tried some Chowhound suggestions.
First stop was for lunch on Friday. Just got to Carmel and wandered into the Carmel bakery. Had a chicken Caesar wrap. Very yum. It was a spinach tortilla with chicken breast strips, romaine lettuce and onions for $6.35 and the wrap could easily feed 2.
Dinner was at Roys. It was our anniversary and they gave us each paper lei. We did notice that 3 other couples were leis were seated in the same area. I was disappointed that we did not get a good view when I booked 2 months in advance. We started with a special salad of mixed greens, pumpkin seeds and dried cranberries. Very tasty. Hubby had Roys surf and turf - prawns and beef short ribs. The short ribs were very tender, in fact, a little too soft for me, but Hubby thought they were both terrific. I had the filet and was not really happy. It was very over cooked and didnt really taste like anything. It came with a very tasty mushroom and asparagus stir-fry. Dessert was the dark chocolate soufflé like cake. Would highly recommend this. One note. I asked if they had any vegetarian choices when I booked and was told always, yet there werent any veggies options on the menu except for salad. Also, if you want to do the 17 mile trip, go before dinner and save $8 bucks.
Breakfast the next day was at the Old Monterey Café. Realized we ate there during our last trip. We were seated fairly quickly. I had a waffle, hubby had an omelet. Both were good, nothing really to brag about.
Lunch was snacks from the Monterey pier. Hubby had clam chowder and claimed it was the best ever - probably because it was so fresh.
For dinner, we stopped at Peppers in PG. The menu didnt really thrill us, so we went to Zocala. Excellent choice. The place is nothing special to look at, but the food was fantastic. Fresh and flavorful. Dinner started with chips and a roasted salsa and a green salsa. Both were very good. I had flautas and the waiter suggested trying each type of meat so I had beef, chicken and carne asada. The carne asada was excellent. It came with beans; rice with no tomatoes; a salad of greens, salsa, cucs, radishes and lime juice; sour cream; and guacamole. Everything was very flavorful and so fresh.
The next morning, we had breakfast at Toasties in PG. This seems to be a local hang-out and was very nicely decorated. Easy parking. Service was great. I had French Toast and Hubby had a seafood omelet. The omelet had shrimp, scallops, tomatoes and cheese. He thought it was very good.
Lunch found us back in Carmel so we tried the Naples bakery. It appears to be related to the Carmel bakery as the menu and prices were the same. This time we tried the chicken salad sandwich. Once again, made with good ingredients and very tasty. Topped it off with a chocolate chip brownie. How could that be bad!
Dinner was a picnic while watching fireworks, compliments of friends who live in PG. The Trader Joes guilt-free brownies were very good and chewy and rich.
The weekend ended with breakfast the following day at First Awakenings. This place is located in the outlet area. It was originally a First Watch purchased by local guys who basically kept the same menu, just changed the name. Food was piping hot, but again, nothing out of the ordinary. I had pancakes; hubby had bacon, cheese, avocado omelet, which was quite tasty. (See the trend? I eat carbs, he eats eggs! ) The syrup for the pancakes was very thin. (Didnt know you could water down maple syrup. Hmmm.) The oj was not fresh squeezed and maybe not even oj. Tasted more like Tang. With Toasties so close, I would not recommend this place.
Made one more stop at the Cheese Factory in Carmel. If the weather had cooperated, we had planned to grab some cheese selections, bread and wine and head to the beach. Oh well. Still picked up some pesto to bring home. If you enjoy cheese, I would recommend this place. Lots to sample and buy and knowledgeable folks behind the counter.
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