Amid views of coastal dunes, the Morro Bay Estuary, and Morro Rock, golfers drive, pitch, and putt their way through the nine-hole executive course at Sea Pines Golf Resort. As native wildlife such as waterfowl dwell among the fairways, guests tee off for the afternoon or warm up on the driving range, two putting greens, or dedicated chipping area. Those who prefer to ride a well-trained horse rather than break a bucking golf cart can board their own equine friend at Sea Pines' stables and roam the 8,000-acre Montaña de Oro State Park. In addition, Sea Pines Golf Resort offers overnight stays for humans at The Lodge, whose spacious rooms overlook Morro Bay and the golf course's manicured landscape.
Chef Giancarlo Cucumo grew up amid the "lean cuisine" of Bari, Italy, where he learned to cook fresh seafood, chop veggies, and drizzle olive oil at a young age. When Giancarlo arrived in Morro Bay after a long, globe-trotting culinary career, it was like returning to the climate of his homeland, right down to the ample fishing and fresh produce. It proved the perfect locale for Giancarlo's Ristorante Italiano Mediterraneo.
That Mediterranean background can be tasted throughout Giancarlo's menu: ravioli stuffed with sea bass and smothered in a brandy-tomato cream sauce; racks of lamb encrusted with herb-honey and roasted over an oak-wood fire, pizzas crispy from a stint inside a wood-burning oven. The dessert lineup, meanwhile, is dominated by cheesecakes, pastries, and gelato. The restaurant's open-kitchen layout also adds a touch of culinary theatre to the meal.