Monday, January 27, 2020     Volume: 20, Issue: 47
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Santa Maria Sun / Eats

New Orcutt boutique inn offers guest chef opportunities and serves up a wide beverage selection, house-made light bites

MALEA MARTIN

It’s all in the name at the Wine Stone Inn: The brand-new boutique hotel features a Vintage Room with a wine option for everybody. But Wine Stone isn’t just serving up local and international wines to their guests—as General Manager Lauren Wise told the Sun, a stay at this Orcutt inn is “an experience from start to finish.”


Cheers
The Wine Stone Inn, which celebrated its ribbon cutting on Nov. 1, offers 12 hotel rooms as well as light bites to pair with its wine and beer selection in its Vintage Room, open daily. The Vintage Room also serves as a venue for live music. For more information, stop by 255 West Clark Ave. in Orcutt, call (805) 332-3532, or visit winestoneinn.com. Check them out on Facebook for music and other events.

‘COUNTRY-MEETS-INDUSTRY’
The brand-new kitchen and bar at Wine Stone Inn is at once cozy and modern.
PHOTO COURTESY OF JIM BARTSCH

“When you come and check in, we welcome you with a glass of bubbly because we know travel is not fun and traffic can be a pain,” Wise said. “Then we do a manager’s reception every day from 5 to 7 for our guests: They can come down to the Vintage Room and enjoy featured wineries and featured beers, and that’s all complimentary, as well as some of our appetizers.”

For wine options, Wine Stone carries an international selection, but with a local focus. 

“You’ve got your Napa, you’ve got some stuff from France, you’ve got some stuff from Spain, but we definitely wanted to highlight the Central Coast because it does have such amazing wines,” Wise said.

Right in the heart of the Foxen Wine Trail, Wise said that hotel guests and wine trail travelers alike can stop in and enjoy a glass at the inn.

“We’re so close to Highway 1, so you’re in the middle of so much,” Wise said. “You could walk and go and enjoy different tasting rooms, different breweries, and it’s all just right there.”

As for the beer selection, the 12-room inn continues to keep it locally focused.

“We rotate the taps often. We like to do something seasonal, so right now we have the Firestone Oatmeal Stout and that one’s doing really well,” Wise said. “But then there’s the SLO Brew Cali-Squeeze. Even though it’s not summertime, people just love it—men, women, everyone loves that.”

The Wine Stone Inn’s fully outfitted kitchen and bar space allows the hotel to give its guests that full, start-to-finish experience.

For small parties, the restaurant serves as a beginning point before going out to explore the nearby food scene.


WINE WITH A VIEW
Guests can enjoy their drinks, breakfast, or appetizers on private balconies that overlook the scenic surrounding hills, and the wine bar features patio seating.
PHOTO COURTESY OF JIM BARTSCH

“It’s very light-bite,” Wise said. “We do a really nice charcuterie platter, a cheese platter, and then a salsa trio. It’s meant to accompany your wines.”

The charcuterie platter features a selection of five different meats with cheeses and apricots. For the cheese platter, the inn tries to “pick something unique and something different to put on the cheese platter, as well as your normal Gouda,” Wise said. “Everyone loves Gouda.” 

For the salsa trio, the restaurant serves up a guacamole, a mild pico de gallo, and a corn salsa. The trio is house-made, always with fresh ingredients, Wise said.

In the case of larger groups, the kitchen at Wine Stone is built to deliver. The inn plans to bring in guest chefs for special events arranged in advance. 

“We have a pretty full kitchen where it’s got a lot of great amenities,” Wise said of the new space. “We are very open to allowing chefs to come in and have access to cook for private parties.”

Each room of the hotel features its own private balcony, the perfect spot to enjoy a fresh, daily made, assorted breakfast. 

“That we get from Cups and Crumbs,” a local coffee shop and homestyle bakery, Wise said. “They walk it over or drive it over in the morning, whatever the weather allows … . They make us fresh pastries every morning … . And then we just do some yogurt, fresh juices, and coffee.

“Enjoying that breakfast in the morning in their own private space on that balcony—it’s just amazing,” Wise continued.

The owners of the hotel also own Pacific Produce farm, which allows them to bring in fresh strawberries and blueberries for most breakfasts. 

The owners plan to expand the food options at the Wine Stone in the coming months. Wise said they’re hopeful to soon partner with other local food businesses to provide guests with high-quality, deli-style meals. Overall, Wise said the goal is to be more than just a place to sleep.

“You never know who’s coming to stay with you, and you don’t know how much money they’ve saved up for that vacation, or how many times a year they get to take that trip,” Wise said. “This could be their one trip, so we really try to make it as special as possible … . We are kind of your travel agents, and we get to share Orcutt with you.” 

Arts Writer Malea Martin is enjoying an appetizer. Send delicious and drinkable story tips to the editor at clanham@santamariasun.com.

Nibbles & Bites


Bob’s Well Bread Bakery
PHOTO COURTESY OF BOB OSWAKS

• Already daunted by the idea of holiday baking? Then let Bob’s Well Bread Bakery in Los Alamos do the work for you (whether you take the credit is on your conscience). It’s not too early to place your pre-orders—the deadline is Dec. 15 at 3 p.m. to be picked up between Dec. 19 and 23. The bakery is offering its signature pain au levain (sourdough bread), specialty cranberry-walnut rolls, pain de mie dinner rolls, baguettes, epi (wheat-stalk bread), chocolate-cherry brioche, and seasonal panettone. The panettone (pictured above), an Italian fruit-studded bread, is not only delicious for the holiday feast, but the bakery says it makes a great house gift. An additional selection of artisanal pastries and desserts is also available for take-out. Visit bobswellbread.com for more information. 

• If doughnuts are your go-to sugary treat, you’re in luck. Santa Maria’s very own Krispy Kreme planned its grand opening for Dec. 10. Now you can walk in or hit the drive-thru window to get your fix of more than a dozen different types of doughnuts. And, through Sunday, Dec. 15, the shop will randomly surprise 120 guests with a “celebration dozen ticket,” which provides a free dozen original glazed doughnuts every month for a year. Krispy Kreme’s new digs are located at 2224 S. Bradley Road, in the Crossroads Shopping Center. For more info, visit krispykreme.com. 

Associate Editor Andrea Rooks enjoys all the doughnuts. Send foodie story tips to arooks@newtimesslo.com.




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