Picture Book: Solvang

Visited the town of Solvang for a few days, here's a glimpse of what I did:

 My winter vacation trip started with a gloomy drive up the 101 towards  Solvang , a small Danish village in Santa Barbara County.   

My winter vacation trip started with a gloomy drive up the 101 towards Solvang, a small Danish village in Santa Barbara County.   

 FUN FACT: Solvang means "sunny field" in Danish. NOT-SO-FUN FACT: See above photo.

FUN FACT: Solvang means "sunny field" in Danish. NOT-SO-FUN FACT: See above photo.

 Escaped the rain and arrived at  Hotel Corque ! No, the hotel is not made of gingerbread... that's just a giant gingerbread house that was   inside the hotel lobby.

Escaped the rain and arrived at Hotel Corque! No, the hotel is not made of gingerbread... that's just a giant gingerbread house that was inside the hotel lobby.

 OH ginger SNAP! Nearby was this jar of delights from  Olsen's Bakery , which vanished right before my mouth. 

OH ginger SNAP! Nearby was this jar of delights from Olsen's Bakery, which vanished right before my mouth. 

 A beautiful wreath hung up above the lobby fireplace, something  Martha Stewart  would make after downing a few bottles of wine.

A beautiful wreath hung up above the lobby fireplace, something Martha Stewart would make after downing a few bottles of wine.

 After dropping off my luggage, I went to  Succulent  for an early dinner. According to my date, we sat next to  an actress from   Grey's Anatomy  who we eventually ran into several more times throughout our trip (yeah, Solvang's tiny).

After dropping off my luggage, I went to Succulent for an early dinner. According to my date, we sat next to an actress from Grey's Anatomy who we eventually ran into several more times throughout our trip (yeah, Solvang's tiny).

 Complimentary homemade biscuits were hot from the oven and so delicious on their own, but they were simply divine when paired with their fresh blueberry + strawberry jam. I honestly don't know if I'll ever have better biscuits.

Complimentary homemade biscuits were hot from the oven and so delicious on their own, but they were simply divine when paired with their fresh blueberry + strawberry jam. I honestly don't know if I'll ever have better biscuits.

 A hearty, thick, and creamy broccoli + cheddar soup with unnecessary green stuff floating on top. I loves me some broccoli so twas a wonderful starter to have on a cold, rainy night.

A hearty, thick, and creamy broccoli + cheddar soup with unnecessary green stuff floating on top. I loves me some broccoli so twas a wonderful starter to have on a cold, rainy night.

 Buttermilk marinated fried chicken with 3-cheese mac n' cheese (parmesan, gouda, and oops I forgot the last one) and some very satisfying collared greens.

Buttermilk marinated fried chicken with 3-cheese mac n' cheese (parmesan, gouda, and oops I forgot the last one) and some very satisfying collared greens.

 Roasted beet salad with mixed greens, beet coulis, toasted hazelnuts, red wine vinaigrette, and  Humboldt Fog (that's a cheese, it's okay I didn't know either).

Roasted beet salad with mixed greens, beet coulis, toasted hazelnuts, red wine vinaigrette, and Humboldt Fog (that's a cheese, it's okay I didn't know either).

 After dinner, Stacy and I strolled along the quiet streets (almost everything closes early) and marveled at all the beautiful light decorations.

After dinner, Stacy and I strolled along the quiet streets (almost everything closes early) and marveled at all the beautiful light decorations.

 Returned to the hotel for some chillaxing wine time.

Returned to the hotel for some chillaxing wine time.

 Can't forget the chocolates. Aaaand good night.

Can't forget the chocolates. Aaaand good night.

 The next morning I went to  Ellen's Danish Pancake House  in the neighboring town of Buellton. You know it's a locals joint when you see people walk in, seat themselves, and are given their food + coffee without ever seeing them touch a menu.

The next morning I went to Ellen's Danish Pancake House in the neighboring town of Buellton. You know it's a locals joint when you see people walk in, seat themselves, and are given their food + coffee without ever seeing them touch a menu.

 Started with a super delicious cinnamon roll with whipped honey butter.

Started with a super delicious cinnamon roll with whipped honey butter.

 Danish pancakes with Danish sausages — so simple yet so tasty.

Danish pancakes with Danish sausages — so simple yet so tasty.

 Danish sausage breakfast plate with a fat deck of hash browns and eggs two ways.

Danish sausage breakfast plate with a fat deck of hash browns and eggs two ways.

 And the best bite of all: homemade blackberry jam on buttered toast. The jam was soooo MF'ing good. You can buy jars of their jams to take home and thats exactly what I did.

And the best bite of all: homemade blackberry jam on buttered toast. The jam was soooo MF'ing good. You can buy jars of their jams to take home and thats exactly what I did.

 I hadn't had wine for a whole 8 hours, so I headed up the road over to  Mosby   Winery & Vineyard , a place recommended by my friend Michael. The winery got its big break when winemaker Bill Mosby brought home vine cuttings from Italy, which is why they specialize in fine Italian varietals.

I hadn't had wine for a whole 8 hours, so I headed up the road over to Mosby Winery & Vineyard, a place recommended by my friend Michael. The winery got its big break when winemaker Bill Mosby brought home vine cuttings from Italy, which is why they specialize in fine Italian varietals.

  Since no other customers were present, Stacy and I received the VIP treatment from sommelier & manager, Louise Smith.   Louise was super sweet and knowledgeable, we had a splendid time with her.

Since no other customers were present, Stacy and I received the VIP treatment from sommelier & manager, Louise Smith. Louise was super sweet and knowledgeable, we had a splendid time with her.

  Their tasting is $10 and you get to try six kinds. It was pretty cool to find out that  Blake and Gwen visited Mosby  just a few days after us.

Their tasting is $10 and you get to try six kinds. It was pretty cool to find out that Blake and Gwen visited Mosby just a few days after us.

 Next stop was a winery recommended by my friend Lindsay —  Saarloos + Sons , a winery in the nearby town of Los Olivos.

Next stop was a winery recommended by my friend Lindsay — Saarloos + Sons, a winery in the nearby town of Los Olivos.

 Saarloos + Sons features a wine tasting unlike any other — they pair their wines with (...get ready to scream ladies...) CUPCAKES.

Saarloos + Sons features a wine tasting unlike any other — they pair their wines with (...get ready to scream ladies...) CUPCAKES.

 The weekly menu of cupcakes, which are baked by  Enjoy Cupcakes  in Santa Barbara.

The weekly menu of cupcakes, which are baked by Enjoy Cupcakes in Santa Barbara.

 And here is the full flight of mini cupcakes (OW MY EARS!! not so loud, ladies... geez).

And here is the full flight of mini cupcakes (OW MY EARS!! not so loud, ladies... geez).

 Their wine names connote familial ties, and their menu is beautifully made as well. The owner,  Keith Saarloos , made an appearance and asked me if I considered car tires to be an appropriate Christmas gift. I said yes, he agreed, and then he left to eat his lunch in the back office. That is all.

Their wine names connote familial ties, and their menu is beautifully made as well. The owner, Keith Saarloos, made an appearance and asked me if I considered car tires to be an appropriate Christmas gift. I said yes, he agreed, and then he left to eat his lunch in the back office. That is all.

 On my last morning in Solvang, I wanted to try some Danish baked goods so I went over to  Birkholm's Bakery & Cafe  which is a few steps away from the hotel.

On my last morning in Solvang, I wanted to try some Danish baked goods so I went over to Birkholm's Bakery & Cafe which is a few steps away from the hotel.

 Salivating commence.

Salivating commence.

 Birkholm's offers a wide variety of baked goods from breads & muffins to cookies & cream puffs.

Birkholm's offers a wide variety of baked goods from breads & muffins to cookies & cream puffs.

 A whole slew of delicious to-go spreads.

A whole slew of delicious to-go spreads.

 If you ever wanted to know what heaven tastes like... sorry, I don't know. But this strawberry Danish tasted amazing!!

If you ever wanted to know what heaven tastes like... sorry, I don't know. But this strawberry Danish tasted amazing!!

 My tummy said "REAL FOOD, PLEASE" so I ate a Black Forest Ham and Swiss sandwich with Tex-Mex Chicken soup. The sandwich was bomb, yo (here's a  better photo  of it).

My tummy said "REAL FOOD, PLEASE" so I ate a Black Forest Ham and Swiss sandwich with Tex-Mex Chicken soup. The sandwich was bomb, yo (here's a better photo of it).

 Before leaving, I bought a 3-pack of these famous Danish butter cookies ($16 each or three for $43). I was told that each tub has 9 different flavored cookies, but the only flavor I tasted was OMG — so yeah, I highly recommend these.

Before leaving, I bought a 3-pack of these famous Danish butter cookies ($16 each or three for $43). I was told that each tub has 9 different flavored cookies, but the only flavor I tasted was OMG — so yeah, I highly recommend these.

 See ya next time, Solvang!! When? Uhh, not sure yet... I'll call you. BYE.

See ya next time, Solvang!! When? Uhh, not sure yet... I'll call you. BYE.

*I did not go on this trip alone. I could not have had such an enjoyable trip without Stacy, who is an amazing travel buddy (and hip-hop dancer).