During the California Beer & Wine Festival, Yuba City's Plumas street explodes with a swirling supernova of fermented hops and grapes. Your taste-bud tickling tour begins when you check in starting at noon. Your drinking expedition begins at 1 p.m. and continues through 5 p.m. with an innumerable number of gulps, sips, and slurps along the way. Ales and stouts from Full Sail and Lagunitas will do-si-do across your palate with one another before blushing wines by Barefoot and Chateau Diana promenade under your nose with genuine country flair. Live music by Chris Gardner Band and Whiskey Savage adds aural ambiance to your drinking decathlon and will keep your head clear enough to discern wheats from white zinfandels from your car's plastic jug of engine-coolant.
Auburn Alehouse's menu features hearty burgers, and crowd-pleasing appetizers alongside award-winning brews handcrafted in small, fresh batches using a traditional 10-barrel system. After savoring a pitcher of American Pale Ale ($15.25), hops-seekers can toast beloved bards with bawdy haikus and pints of Old Town Brown, a complex potion descended from English mild ale and crystal malts ($4.25). Guests may then top off their guzzle tanks with pints of Gold Country pilsner, which took a bronze medal at the 2010 Great American Beer Festival before sweeping the Olympic lager-luge finals ($4.25).
At Dingus McGee's, you can play nine holes of golf, and then refuel with a half-pound burger and fries or Cajun-style crawfish etouffee. Their Creole-inspired menu offers up much more than your average club house grill. Diners can dig into alligator nuggets, house-smoked prime rib, and cedar-plank salmon imported from Vancouver Island. The vegetarian-friendly Cajun nut burger is made in-house with seasoned grains and nuts, and much of the restaurant's produce is grown in the on-site garden.
The restaurant is set in Auburn's peaceful green hills, but inside the atmosphere is always lively. Sports games play out on big screen TVs, and on select nights, live music fills the room. Diners can sip the house brewed beer or Dingus McGee's daunting Cajun Bloody Mary—which comes garnished with andouille sausage, jumbo shrimp, and a whole crawdad.
At Valencia Club, the menu—which includes everything from specialty wings to tacos and chili-mac ‘n’ cheese––serves as an added bonus to the convivial atmosphere. A sprawling patio, two bars, horseshoe pits, pool tables, and a dance floor make for memorable evenings and Odyssian trips to and from the bathroom. Local bands on Fridays, country tunes on Saturdays, and DJ-spun beats on the patio on Fridays and Saturdays underscore the lively atmosphere. Valencia Club even holds line-dancing lessons every Saturday night, hosted by a local radio DJ.
Pause Lounge & Kitchen urges diners to take a break from sprinting after fast food by slipping inside its elegant eatery and enjoying a luxuriously chewable selection of contemporary chow and beverages. Start off by noshing on a pile of beer-battered asparagus flanked by a dedicated entourage of lemon aioli ($4), then proceed to chat with pals about baseball scores and solutions to the Entscheidungsproblem over a helping of crispy monterey calamari ($10) washed down with Terra Alpina pinot grigio ($8/glass) or a mug of Pause’s house-brewed ale ($3). While using one hand to grip a glass of basil-mint or thyme-lime lemonade ($4), guests can order the other to fork-feed them dainty bites of hanger steak ($20). The dangerous twists and turns of a busy day slowly fade into a liquefied rollycoaster as the palate draws a bath of zesty Bridgetown daiquiri spiked with rum, apricot liqueur, lime, and bitters ($9). For dessert, tickle the tongue’s sweet spot with a plate of chocolate-chip cookies and a chaser of milk ($6).
La Huaca Restaurant's chefs prepare elegant presentations of Peruvian cuisine in a sleek space outfitted with imaginative decor. Waiters hustle dishes of citrus-infused ceviche made with fresh fish, shrimp, or octopus past shelves of glass jugs filled with rainbow-hued liquid, and carry glasses of Peruvian wine to tables set along a wall of knotted ropes. The pachamanca tres carnes pairs a medley of slow-cooked chicken, beef, and pork with Andean tubers and a Peruvian corn cake, and the lomo saltado seasons pieces of filet mignon with a sauce made from pisco, a South American brandy made with grapes too bold to become mere jelly. The smooth-tasting liqueur also makes its way into the dessert menu and steeps into the rich layers of the tres leches sponge cake.