I took a weekend trip before Christmas to Gold Country; we had plans to check out some of the natural caverns, cider breweries and quaint towns. It was a nice, little adventure not-so-far from home (as it was only a ~3 hour drive from the South Bay) and the little joys we found throughout the trip were more than what I had expected.
We stayed at Hotel Sutter in Sutter Creek and its located at the center of a small strip of shops and restaurants with a distinct, rustic charm. The air was cool when we arrived on a Friday evening (Bay Area traffic sucks) and although hotel parking was tight, we found good spots all throughout the trip on the street out front. This hotel boasts a trendy vibe while maintaining some old-school elements like the quilted sheets, simple metal bed-frames and wooden decor. In the evening, we spent some time downstairs at the Cellar listening to a live band and enjoying my cold glass of apple cider and a shot of fireball (mmm, cinnamon apple).
On Saturday, we grabbed a simple breakfast from a cafe across the street and headed to visit Mercer Caverns in Murphy, CA as recommended by our waitress at dinner the night before. It was my first time exploring through a natural, vertical cavern and I was just in awe of all the incredible formations underground created through millions of years! I can’t wait to go back and explore other places like the Black Chasm and Moaning caverns.
After that, we decided to drive further to Sonora, CA to check out Indigeny Reserve for some hard cider tasting. A good friend of mine, Ana, recommended this brewery for us and I’m glad we took the opportunity to check it out. I’ve already put together a full post on this brewery here but to keep things short and sweet, I ended up buying a few bottles and a 6-pack for friends and family only to regret not getting more. We also had the opportunity to tour the brewery which was incredibly clean and well-kept, the science behind this tasty concoction was also impressive.
Sunday was our last day in Sutter Creek and we headed out for brunch at Element and thoroughly enjoyed my hearty Bloody Mary and a fluffy omelette with crispy pancetta, caramelized onions and sauteed spinach. I really enjoyed this modern brunch located literally, just around the corner, from the main street flaunting its rustic charm.
Just for kicks, we stopped by my alma mater in Stockton to see how things have changed.