Mar 17, 2012

3400kms into it

Well that was a busy couple of days. Day two at LegoLand started off with an early lunch at a nearby food truck, great fish tacos!

The start of Lego day 2

Good fish tacos.

Into the park and back on the rides.

What goes up...

Must come down.

More wandering around the Lego structures and characters.

Hanging with Chewie

And playing with new Bionicle pieces.

They love their Bionicles.

We went right till closing time again, the boys love their Lego.

When polled about dinner the unanimous reply was Pizza Port! I'm ok with that as I had wanted to taste the Firestone Walker Union Jack IPA and the Russian River Blind Pig IPA the first night we were there but being a responsible driver it wasn't possible. Who am I to argue with pizza (and great beer) two nights in a row. ;-) Both of these beers on tap are extremely good IPA's but for my taste I would have to give the nod to the Union Jack.

Back at Pizza Port.

Keegan getting the second pizza.

Because the weather forecast was calling for 100% chance of thunderstorms in Carlsbad, I decided it would be best to skip day 3 at LegoLand and instead start driving north towards San Francisco. As I was gassing up and daydreaming about how good that Union Jack was, I formed a quick plan and with a bit of Google-Fu at the gas pump I knew I was onto something. It turns out Firestone Walker is located in Paso Robles which is pretty much along the coastal route towards San Francisco. So I set my sights on making Santa Barbara that night, finally arriving (through a thunderstorm) at 2300hrs. Breakfast in Santa Barbara was at a great little granola head shop called Backyard Bowl.

Backyard Bowls in Santa Barbara.

With our bellies full it was back on the road, taking a scenic detour to head up into the mountains for part of the drive. Eventually we got to the brewery.

Firestone Walker Brewery

I tried a four flight and was blown away by how good the beer was. Seriously good. I would have liked to spend a couple of hours there, tasting everything they had on tap as a sampler but unfortunately neither of the boys are tall enough to drive the car yet so being the only designated driver I kept it to only four samples.

A four sample flight of Firestone Walker awesomeness

The boys wanted to see which one held the biggest tropical fruit nose, they are both quite good at sensory evaluations, Evan was easily nailing the differences and calling out particular notes.

Working on their sensory skills

Before leaving the brewery I decided these were going to be the beers I take back across the border.

Good enough to take home.

A bunch more driving and we hit San Jose, I hopped on Yelp and found a decent rating for a tortas shop called the Mexico Bakery, huge portions for just under $6.00.

Great torta at Mexico Bakery in San Jose

While sitting in the shop I did some research via Yelp, Tripadvisor, Google and Hotwire in order to find the sweet spot for a cheap hotel located centrally to downtown-ish San Francisco, walking distance to cool things for the boys and good retail coffee shops nearby as a bonus. Mission accomplished, I booked a three night stay which should be just about right in this city, there's lots to do and see and I'm ready for a break from driving. Doreen lands at SF International tomorrow evening and is going to join us for the adventures as we drive back up to Rossland. We've all missed her but more importantly it will mean another adult in the car who can act as a designated driver... just in case we bump into another microbrewery quite by chance. ;-)


Anonymous said...

Sounds like a wonderful trip. How are you going to top it for future birthdays? Glad Doreen will soon join you. RD

Shaun Taylor said...

Maybe I'll do the same route backwards? ;-)