This season, go out to get cozy
Feature image by Luke George
In Benicia, we have many cozy spots to visit when the weather starts to turn chilly. You can seek some comfort food at Dianna’s Bakery or snuggle up in a blanket in the back of One House, settle in with a great cup of coffee at States or Rrags, find a warm welcome and cheery spirits at Cullen’s Pub, or cozy up next to the fireplace at the library for a good read.
But what about venturing a little further from home? Here are some places just outside of Benicia you may not visit every day, whose inviting atmosphere will get you into the sweater weather mood.
Something about cold weather makes small and unusual places all the more romantic, so now is the perfect time to visit our across-the-straight neighbors, Crockett and Port Costa.
Wanda’s Restaurant and Bakery
Wanda’s Restaurant and Bakery is the perfect place to start any cozy day. Located in the same building where a beloved Crockett bakery sat over 100 years ago, Wanda’s serves delicious coffee and fresh pastries that will warm your soul and wake your body. Brunch is also available on weekends with plenty of indoor seating. Wandascafe.com.
Dip into the quiet valley of Port Costa to find The Warehouse Cafe. Known for its eccentric decor and quirky bartenders, The Warehouse is a bar with a unique personality and historic feel. Take a picture with the polar bear, order your favorite cocktail, and find a comfy corner to laugh with your friends and family this holiday season. Warehousecafeportcosta.com.
Bull Valley Roadhouse
When your stomach starts to rumble and you’ve exhausted the antique shops in town, make your way over to Bull Valley Roadhouse. A magical getaway with a gorgeous patio and eclectic dining room, BVR serves craft cocktails and high quality food. The Bull Valley experience will inspire wonder in anyone who enters its doors. Bullvalleyroadhouse.com.
Traveling east, there are some lovely, fall-festive places to visit in the agricultural center of Suisun Valley.
Larry’s Produce brings classic fall activities for the whole family. Try your skills in the corn maze, jump in the corn “bath,” take pictures on the straw pyramid, and grab some fresh seasonal produce to take home. Finish with picking up the perfect porch décor by browsing through the pumpkin patch, which is filled with homegrown pumpkins of all shapes and sizes. Larrysproduce.com.
Ironwood American Bistro
Located right next to a charming train depot, Ironwood American Bistro is the spot for comforting fall eats — think five-cheese mac and cheese, braised short ribs with notes of orange and ancho chili pepper, fried green tomatoes, and rustic fruit galette tart for dessert. Its outdoor patio with overhead string lights makes for the perfect spot on a mild evening. Ironwoodamericanbistro.com.
Vezer Family Vineyards
Vezer Family Vineyards has several locations in Fairfield to get your wine fix without having to journey into Napa. Mankas Gardens has a lovely outdoor vibe, but there’s nothing quite like tasting in a historical Blue Victorian house during the fall season. Snag a plush leather armchair by the decorative fireplace and sip on a variety of reds to keep you feeling cozy and warm. Vezer.com.
And even closer to home, look to Vallejo for some charming locations with quality offerings.
Michael Warring is located in an unassuming shopping center just inside the entrance to Hiddenbrooke. There is one seating each evening at 6pm for a maximum of 18 guests. With its tiny footprint, dinners here are innately intimate. Guests are presented with a pre-fixe fine dining experience consisting of 7 or 12 courses with an optional wine pairing. Reservations can be made by calling 707.655.4808. Open Thursday-Sunday. Michaelwarring.com.
Take a quick trip to France by way of Moschetti Café, located on Marin Street in downtown Vallejo. With delicious fair trade, locally roasted, organic coffee and French-inspired treats and décor, this cafe welcomes you in and invites you to stay a while. Come in from the cold to admire the wall dedicated to local artists while you enjoy your espresso and pastries. Cafe.moschetti.com.