Half Moon Bay is a dream for foodies. From May through December the Coastside farmer’s market showcases some of the best in local produce, but year round you’ll find outstanding farms, seafood and great restaurants that utilize the best local products. Here are some top picks for a long weekend getaway.
Ease into the weekend
Get into the swing of things before checking in to your hotel. Half Moon Bay Distillery is a craft distillery, located at Pillar Point Harbor. Ulli and Caesar Bisono make high quality premium spirits in small batches. Take a tour and taste their Purissima vodka and Harvard Avenue Gin. If you prefer wine, head inland to La Nebbia Winery based in Half Moon Bay with a lovely garden and tasting room where you can try wines made from grapes from a variety of regions in California.
Half Moon Bay Inn is located right on Main Street downtown, in a 1932 Spanish Revival style building. Each room is beautifully and uniquely furnished and has luxurious touches like marble bathrooms and artful decor. Park and then enjoy exploring downtown on foot.
A meal to remember
While the Ritz Carlton is famous for their weekend brunch, the elegant dining room Navio with jaw dropping views of the coast is the perfect spot for a memorable dinner. Chef Pringle buys local and even sources wild foraged ingredients to use in his modern cuisine.
Grab a bite and have some coffee
Walk over to Half Moon Bay Coffee Co. and soak up the vibes. This is a place where locals congregate and it’s in part due to their tremendous selection of whole bean coffees. Whether you’re stopping in a for a quick cup or a leisurely breakfast, it’s comfortable and friendly.
Off to the farm
Harley Farms is an award-winning goat farm located in Pescadero. The friendly goats are the main attraction, but the cheese is also outstanding. Be sure to plan ahead as their tours are very popular! Pick up a pretty round topped with fresh flowers or take home some of their goat milk enriched bath and body products.
A classic lunch spot
Duarte’s Tavern also located in Pescadero is a James Beard Award winning “American Classic.” Get there early to dig into their famous cream of artichoke soup (or try it with a swirl of cream of green chile soup) as well as local fish or oysters and a slice of their olallieberry pie.
It’s happening at the harbor
Head to Pillar Point Harbor for a walk along the docks. You can check out the boats, birds and maybe get a glimpse of the fishermen’s catch. You can often buy fresh fish or crab right off the boat at this real working harbor.
Drinks, dinner and music
One of the most scenic spots for dining on the coast is Sam’s Chowder House. Sam’s not only has great chowder, but expertly prepared fresh local seafood. Fridays and Saturdays there’s live music in the bar, everything from blues and jazz to flamenco guitar.
Treat yourself to breakfast
Cute little Moonside Bakery offers a variety of baked goods and breakfast options including breakfast pizzas and burritos, eggs, pancakes, waffles, and their decadent brioche French toast. It’s casual, affordable and portions are generous.
A hot spot for lunch
Look for the red caboose and you’ve found Dad’s Luncheonette. Chef Scott Clark has drawn raves for his short but sweet menu of burger, mushroom sandwich, mac and cheese, herb salad, homemade potato chips and a daily soup and dessert. You can’t go wrong no matter what you order.
Pick up a souvenir
If you’re looking for something sweet, look no further than Sweet 55, a little chocolate and pastry shop in a strip mall just next to Dad’s Luncheonette. The award winning Swiss style chocolate confections by Ursula Schnyder, who grew up, trained and worked in Switzerland. Don’t miss the Good Food award-winning Swiss alp “EMJ” bar with praline filling.
Farm to table Italian style
Pasta Moon is a long time favorite of locals and visitors alike. The restaurant’s mission is supporting local farms and has been committed to sustainable dining for over 30 years. They specialize in pasta including a signature dish their butternut squash ravioli, but also offer terrific pizzas and a wide variety of antipasti, soups and salads.
Ready to spend some time with us in Half Moon Bay? Book your stay today.