California Cuisine

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Chain Restaurants
Cheesecake Factory
Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ
Mimi's Cafe

Northern California
Bay 223 - Redwood City
Boudin Sourdough - SF

Cetrella Bistro - Half Moon Bay
French Laundry - Yountville
Lou La Bonte's - Auburn
Moss Beach Distillery
Napa Wine Train
Quattro - East Palo Alto
Samoa Cookhouse
Teatro Zinzanni - San Fran
Wine Country
- Napa

Central California
Indigo Moon
Tea Cozy
Carmel - Restaurant 211

Ventura - J's Tapas
Ventura Dining

Southern California
Anaheim- Naples Ristorante
Beverly Hills - Boé

Beach House - Cardiff
Huntington Beach
Gyu-Kaku Japanese
Chimayo at the Beach
Huntington Beach Food
Longboard Pub
Spark Woodfire Grill

Laguna Beach

Mosaic Grill
Long Beach
Cafe Sevilla

Hyatt Regency
Parker's Lighthouse
Queen Mary Ship
Los Angeles
Cafe Pinot
Universal City - BB King's Blues Club

Strawberry Festival - Garden Grove

California Food Links
California Food Facts
California Food Fests
Farmers Markets
California Wine


California Offers Dining Options

A & F Country Market Ventura

California Dining Cuisine Food & Entertainment



Gyu-Kaku Japanese
Huntington Beach - 6 California Locations
Queen Mary Ship
Long Beach
Boudin Sourdough
San Francisco
J's Tapas Ventura
Beverly Hills
The Beach House
Cardiff by the Sea
Quattro E, Palo Alto
Cafe Sevilla
Long Beach, San Diego, Riverside
Napa Wine Train
Napa Valley
Samoa Cookhouse
Samoa - Lumberjack
The Tea Cozy
Cheesecake Factory
25 California locations
BB King's
Blues Club
Universal City
Mimi's Cafe
< 40 Cal. locations
Bay 223
Redwood City
Cafe Pinot
Downtown Los Angeles
Indigo Moon Cambria
Moss Beach Distillery
Moss Beach
Mosaic Bar & Grill
Laguna Beach
Lou La Bonte's
Spark Woodfire Grill
3 SoCal locations
 Luggatti's Italian Grill
Huntington Beach
Hyatt Regency
Long Beach
Cetrella Bistro
Half Moon Bay
Chimayo at
the Beach
Huntington Beach
Rock'n Roll Diner
Teatro Zinzanni
San Francisco
Longboard Pub
Huntington Beach
Naples Ristorante
Restaurant 301
Harbor House Cafe
Sunset Beach  - Dana Point
Chart House
Redondo Beach &  California Locations
Shake Shack
Crystal Cove
Hot Diggity Hottdogger
Arroyo Grande Dining
Arroyo Grande



California Food Photos―Doesn't it just whet your whistle to see a frosty cocktail or a photo of a colorful appetizer or meal? California includes some of the kitchens of the world's great chefs. You have to get out to enjoy California Travel at its best by sampling foods and cuisine served in over 80,000 restaurants throughout the state. It just keeps getting better. California is one of the leading providers of food nationwide. Fruits, vegetables and specialty foods are abundant and lend to incredibly fresh salads that you'll notice in places like Carmel next to the Salinas "salad bowl" growing region. Californians love of food, the volume of food grown locally and the sheer numbers of diners in the state make it a leader in food innovation.  Ranch salad dressing (Hidden Valley Ranch, Santa Barbara, 1950s); hot fudge sundaes (C.C. Brown's, Los Angeles, 1906); "doggie bags" (Lawry's, Los Angeles, 1938); California cuisine (Chez Panisse, Berkeley, 1971); Cobb salad (The Brown Derby, Los Angeles 1930s); "designer" pizza (Spago, Los Angeles, circa 1982); drive-throughs (Oscar's - later Jack in the Box, San Diego, late 1940s); and French-dipped sandwiches (Philippe, the Original, Los Angeles, 1918); and the no-smoking restaurant policy are a few of the great dining inventions.

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With 67 headquarters, California has the most chain restaurants in the US. Spending more of their money at restaurants than at the supermarket, Californians enjoy more dining options (over 80,000 restaurants to choose from) and are also more inclined to patronize a coffee house than the average American, according to Scarborough Research. (You'll see that preference reflected in some of BEACHCALIFORNIA hotel and resort reviews in which we mention quality coffee as one of the property's most important assets).

"Foodies", those who visit a specific restaurant or destination known for its food, supposedly are dwindling in numbers since 2004 according to a survey performed by a travel marketing firm. We believe this flies in the face of other data. The more likely explanation is that foodies are growing in numbers but are less likely to admit it. With more restaurants and more people dining out than ever, recent media attention has focused on the growing number of overweight Americans. It's simply less popular to admit you love food now. One example supporting our hypothesis is the cruise industry expansion. As the cruise industry expands its belt and continues to grow, one of the top draws of the cruise experience is the food itself, available in quantity and offering a level of quality and consistency guests expect. With more travelers booking cruises in California and with over 6,000 new restaurants opening in California in a single year, we suspect travelers continue to travel for the love of food but have become less vocal about their love of  a good (great meal).

For California travelers, the meal experience can be satisfying or frustrating. Parents traveling with demanding children not impressed with fancy food have parents on a hunt, searching for chicken nuggets, french fries and hamburgers, the comfort foods. So the dichotomy in travel is that the young audience isn't interested in fine dining while the mature audience seeks quality meals.  Nearly every city in California and nearly every destination offers the fast food chain dining experience. Popularity has grown for restaurants that manage to combine a casual dining atmosphere where kids are welcome with a tasty, varied menu that includes some great offerings for many palettes. Applebee's, Mimi's and Claim Jumper are but a few of the successes.  More and more California destinations are importing chefs from other cities, from hotels, from New York, from Europe and elsewhere to create the award-winning cuisine.

As we travel and wish to enjoy the ambience of great resorts in California, we often enjoy a luncheon salad or meal at a resort.  Such lunch-time dining is relatively affordable at around $50 - 100 for two people and offers a salad, soft drink and soup of light sandwich with multi-million dollar environments. Restaurants at luxury resorts have included Bacara in Santa Barbara, Pebble Beach near Carmel and  Montage Resort in Laguna Beach.

A fantastic place in the Napa wine tasting region that's open to the public is COPIA. This cultural center and museum whose mission is to investigate and celebrate the culture of the collective table through wine, food and the arts is located in California's Wine Country on the banks of the Napa River.  COPIA, a not-for-profit organization named for the Goddess of Abundance, is a fun, interactive center where you can investigate the fascinating cultural intersections of wine, food and the arts. Enjoy tastings, classes, festivals, exhibitions and performances, stroll through the gardens, examine the exhibitions, enjoy the wine and food tastings, eat at the restaurant or the café, shop in Cornucopia and more! COPIA: The American Center for Wine, Food & the Arts, 500 First Street, Napa, CA 94559. Call 707-259-1600 or toll-free 888-51-COPIA.

CIA or Culinary Institute of America began in 1946 and is the only residential college in the world devoted entirely to culinary education. Since 1995 the CIA's Napa Valley Campus has occupied the former Christian Brothers Winery — Greystone Cellars “the largest stone winery in the world.” Greystone is on Highway 29, just north of the town of St. Helena.

Listed in photos above:

Buz's Crab Seafood Market, 2159 East St., Redding, CA | 530-243-2120
Carter House Inns Restaurant 301
, 301 L Street, Eureka, CA | 800-404-1390
Hilton Sonoma Wine Country Nectar Restaurant, 3555 Round Barn Boulevard, Santa Rosa, CA | 707-523-7555
Luggatti's Italian Grill, 210 5th Street, Huntington Beach, CA 92648 | 714-536-8846

Coming soon!  More food experiences in California. We've dined on the Napa Wine Train, brunched on Hornblower Cruises in bays such as Marina del Rey, Newport Beach and South Lake Tahoe, eaten a meal with the theatrical antics of Teatro ZinZanni in San Francisco ( and enjoyed a hoedown in the barn at Sea Ranch Lodge. Dining shouldn't be boring. It should offer fantastic food and an environment to match the flavors of the meal. At Teatro ZinZanni, the food servers may run to your table with your food plate and take it away from you just as your prepare to dig in. On the Napa Wine Train you roll along the valley at sunset in a train, sampling local wines and enjoying good vibes. The Beach House in Cardiff near San Diego is perched on the edge of the Pacific Ocean. You dine outside, blocked from waves by huge rocks and watch seagulls, surfers and even migrating whales swim by on those incredible San Diego sun-filled days. For a down-home Southern Meal with Sweet Potato Fries, crispy, hot Hush Puppies, Mason jars filled with Southern sweetened tea and hickory-smoked meats, Johnny Rebs in Long Beach is a local favorite. It's finger-licking delicious. Moss Beach Distiller in San Mateo County near Devil's Slide features the resident ghost, The Blue Lady, who many guests experience. Nepenthe is located on the Big Sur Coast as a road stop off of Highway 1. It's Cafe Kevah overlooks the Pacific Ocean high atop a mountain. Wood decks with comfortable seats allow guests to chill out and just be.

While advertisers focus on the skinny person to promote food products, 65% of adults and 28% of children are overweight in California. Take away my fork! All that extra weight adds up. In the case of airlines, it adds up to $275 million each year in extra fuel costs, not to mention the environmental impact of burning all that extra jet fuel. Airlines in recent years have replaced metal spoons and forks with plastics and have ditched bulky magazines to save on fuel.