Staying in Guerneville for a float weekend means getting to see a lot of such a wonderful little town! I just adore this quaint little retreat in the redwoods. There are several great coffee shops, restaurants, shops and nearby sights to see.
Downtown Guerneville at dawn. Photo credit: Lisette
While breakfast at the hotel was wonderful, I still prefer to go out to local coffee shops in the morning. Both mornings I went to Big Bottom Market (famous for delicious biscuits), and enjoyed a mocha while watching the crowds. I definitely saw people getting wine with breakfast and taking in the full wine country experience while downing biscuits and gravy (I have never been more jealous of people who can eat gluten). I had purchased my own pastries on the drive up from Flour Chylde in Novato (just 5 min off 101) – a place so amazing it will have it’s own blog post shortly! There’s also another little coffee shop downtown off the main drag worth visiting, Higher Ground Organic Espresso.
Market mornings. Photo credit: Lisette
One of our favorite spots is the ice cream shop in the old bank, Nimble & Finn’s. This place is super fun, you can actually sit in the vault in the back, and the ice cream is made with local, seasonal ingredients. It’s some of the freshest, most unique ice cream you’ll ever taste. The staff there were super friendly and unique flavors included Nectarine Sweet Cream and Honeycomb Lavender.
Nimble & Finn’s. Photo credit: Lisette
For our dinner out, we went to Boon Eat + Drink, which was highly rated and very small/cute. They do not take reservations, and it’s hard to eat there with a big group. I really enjoyed the pork shoulder over polenta, but my friends weren’t very happy with some of their meals. In general it felt like they were trying a bit too hard with the food – the simplest dishes we ordered were the best. Since they don’t take reservations, you may want to pop down a few doors to El Barrio for some drinks. This is a great spot for people watching and enjoying a cocktail.
My dinner at Boon. Photo credit: Lisette
A few other spots I should mention, if you want a beer and to mingle, Stumptown Brewery is a great low-key spot with a riverfront porch. The Russian River Pub is also a great spot, once featured on “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives” on the Food Network. This spot is also right by a campground, so it’s generally packed on weekends with weekend campers/visitors. There are also a ton of wineries nearby as well, and many have free tastings. If you like sparkling wines, Korbel is the closest and has a free tasting of up to four pours. For truly amazing sparkling options, head to Iron Horse, it has a fee of $25 per person, but has gorgeous views from their outdoor tasting bars and often serve oysters on weekends. Reservations are recommended, I highly recommend the Wedding Cuvee if you stop by!
Wine tasting at Iron Horse. Photo credit: kindly pourer.
For floating and biking in the region, check out my Russian River Float post.