I know I’ve mentioned this before but had to post a photo for those who haven’t been yet or just don’t believe me. My travels take me all over this state but the Madonna Inn is always a great stopping point for a delicious steak dinner. The location could not be easier right off the 101 and next to a gas station. And the prime rib consistently hits that spot with deep rich jus and creamy sauce with just enough kick to get your blood going and clear your sinuses.
While you’re there, try a Merlot from a producer named Vintage Cowboy out of Santa Margarita. It has the haunting cherry smoky flavor you crave if you have a sense of adventure. But the body and structure will make you think you need to discover Santa Margarita. If you’re tired of dealing with friends who want to know what’s so great about the Central Coast, this will make them say “oh, ya, that memorable Merlot.”