Thank you to all who gave me ideas and info, my daughter and I had the best time, and the cousins from Canada- well the weather was enough to please them, the food rocked them!
Our Hotel was close to La Giostra, and upon driving by- it had a sign about change of ownership- red flag to me. I was excited to give this place a try...and it never worked out.
First night, after a trip to Whole Foods (more later), we hit up PhoKing. Looks and location, much to be desired..Food? YUM! The Pho bowls were so good, and fresh- loved the crab puffs and pot stickers! They treated my 3 yr old like a family member- and on this night that was a tough deal. I could eat here ALOT if this was in my town.
Breakfast at the Hotel was SPARCE, so we hit up Whole Foods- berry bowl, excellent muffins, bagels, coffee.
We hit 17 mile drive after breakfast and then on to Pt Lobos, AWESOME. Weather to die for, and being from SB, that is hard to top- but it was perfect. HUNGRY after- and can't make it to Monterey- so we hit up the CrossRoads Shopping Center in Carmel- and SusaninSF is right- I called it Sea Haven- but it is Sea Harvest (and after the Aquarium we found one in Monterey)...I walked in, smelled the fish and it was on- the market part was clean and fresh and the display beautiful. Our server was great- took our order and delivered our food. Oysters-perfect. Calamari appetizer- perfect. My daughter loved it- largedd thin pieces breaded and cooked to perfection- no tarter needed-but it did taste good slathered in tarter! Fish and Chips, Seafood Platter and Crab Sandwich arrived to eager eatters- all fresh, and cooked to perfection. The scallops were hockey puck sized and steaming- and delicious. My daughter was treated like a little lady- which helped her act like one! YUM.
How I ended up at Bubba Gumps- had to meet our family outside of the Aquarium- probably won't eat there ever again- but I will give them props for nice help, every type of fried food possible, and some great smoothies. My Shrimp Po'Boy was pretty good, the fries were awesome and the cole slaw- well I ate it all.
My favorite place- besides Dennis the Menace park was WHOLE FOODS. We are supposed to get one here, in Santa Barbara. There are disputes, due to the location and traffic, etc. I will do anything to get one in this area- I don't care if I have to drive 35 minutes to SB. We have Lazy Acres alright....but Whole Foods ROCKS. I had sushi, wines, breads, food from their hot counter, pre-packed food from them- all AWESOME.
I can hardly wait for the chance to visit again- a 3 1/2 hour drive to Paradise. I think never having to drive over 45 for 3 days put a spell on me!