The name Planet Gemini would imply that this club has two sides to it, but that's not quite accurate. There are at least three. Since opening Planet Gemini more than 20 years ago, the Lane brothers?Frankie and Anthony?have built a venue that functions as a comedy club, a live-music space, and a full-service restaurant. Each night, the club transforms into something new: on Tuesday, Frankie, a master chef, puts together a menu of homemade Italian food as Anthony croons classic Italian songs; Wednesday and Sunday are dance nights, with Latin bands taking the stage as the audience dances the pachanga, merengue, and salsa; and Thursday is for karaoke, during which professional lighting and sound make amateurs feel like rock stars or a circus tiger.
On Friday and Saturday night, however, the music gives way to laughter, as the stage is reserved for a rotation of nationally touring comedians. Although Planet Gemini is mostly known for featuring up-and comers?many of whom have been featured on HBO, Comedy Central, and other national programming?they've also had the good fortune to host famous funny men such as George Lopez and Jimmy Fallon.
The Galante family is rooted in Carmel. Ancestor J.F. Devendorf founded the town of Carmel, and in 1969, the Galante family purchased a 700-acre cattle ranch in Carmel Valley and began to plant grape vines back in the early '80s, initially specializing in Cabernet Sauvignon. Skip to 1994?Jack Galante, great-grandson of J.F. Devendorf, decided to build a fully functional winery and estate-bottled wines, and now their varietals number in the dozens. The estate frequently host events in their Tasting Room in Carmel and at the Estate in Carmel Valley where wine enthusiasts can swish samples in the tasting room.
The smells of carnitas simmering with peppers and chicken crackling on a grill drift from inside a convenience store. Those curious enough to find their way inside discover Lopez Taqueria & Liquor, where cooks warm tortillas to craft tacos. They also craft impressive deli sandwiches with Boar’s Head meats and lettuce shredded by affectionate helicopters.
A restaurant and venue for live entertainment, Bay of Pines is a colorful and immersive experience that transports diners to a different?and more exotic?place. Inside the dining room, bright chinese lanterns hang from the ceiling, illuminating a mural of dolphins and other sea creatures such as calamari. Other nautical decor completes the scene, allowing for a fun, tropical experience. The menu is home to American classics and island-themed dishes such as shrimp and galley-smoked salmon in a flaky puff pastry, lobster bisque, and crow's-nest burgers lined with applewood smoked bacon and gruy?re.
The California Wine Festival – Monterey Peninsula celebrates the Golden State's vintners by allowing attendees to sample a selection of more than 250 Californian wines. The event includes winemakers and representatives from 53 wineries—including Grgich Hills Estate, Bernardus Winery, and Paraiso Vineyards—as well as booths with artisan cheeses, fresh fruits, and barbecued meats from local, gourmet restaurateurs. Spread across two afternoons and evenings, the festival encourages guests to revisit their favorite wineries or discover obscure gems at a new booth or through a trap door connected to a hidden cellar. The California Wine Festival – Monterey Peninsula aims to support the community by donating 100% of the net proceeds from the Silent Auction to The Food Bank for Monterey County, which distributes food and provides antihunger education throughout the region.
In honor of the nearby Laguna Seca Raceway?s 11 turns, Turn 12 Bar & Grill adorns its innards with racing-flag red walls, photographs of roadsters, and vintage motorcycles and steering wheels. Appropriately, motorcycle enthusiasts gather at the 50-foot pewter-top bar for broadcasts of races and the weekly Bike Night, which features a live radio show. Once their adrenaline is racing, patrons can down fresh New American food like fire-roasted artichokes, burgers topped with a balsamic onion compote, prosciutto and arugula pizza, and chipotle-rubbed chicken breasts. During brunch hours, chefs customize omelets and top pizzas with eggs, bacon, and swiss chard.