Retail Therapy Opportunities!

Solvang, CA. © 2007Admit it, you do like to get out and shop, stroll and explore unique places. I think that Solvang offers some of the  best opportunities for “retail therapy.” With no chain stores, you’ll be astonished at the variety!

The Copenhagen House entrance in SolvangThe Copenhagen House is where modern Denmark wares, jewels and watches await your discovery. Rasmussen’s is one-stop shopping for all things Scandinavian from Royal Copenhagen porcelain as well as incredible varieties of kitchen items, house wares and decorations. Nathalie’s Doll House offers specialty dolls, houses, furniture and unique selections of toys for girls and boys. The Book Loft specializes in Scandinavian, antiquarian and children’s books, as well as local interests and California history.

Solvang_JuleHouseAt Jule Hus, year-round, every day is Christmas with a wide-selection of Old-European and blown-glass ornaments and decor.  At the impressive Z Folio Gallery be dazzled with Czech art glass, handmade designer jewelry, innovative decor and giclée nature photography along with designer trunk shows and exhibitions. Solvang Antiques is a premier collective featuring restored clocks, music boxes, estate jewelry, American and European furniture, silver, lighting and glass. Judith Hale Gallery (within Solvang Antiques) offers paintings, prints, sculpture and other mediums for discerning collectors. Gerda’s Iron Art Gift Shop is filled to the rafters with Scandinavian arts, crafts, jewelry and more. A readers’ favorite for over forty years,  Make plans to shop & stroll in Solvang soon! www.solvangusa.com/explore-solvang/what-to-do/shopping/

Velkommen Greyhounds!

2016-logo GreyhoundsWoof! If you’re a dog lover or just like canines, you don’t want to miss seeing more than 200 hounds and their humans this weekend (February 19-21) at the 12th Annual Solvang Greyhound Fest. Members of the public (like you and your family) are welcome to watch many of the free, fun activities.

For example, one of my favorite happenings is on Friday at 1:30 p.m. at Old Mission Santa Ines (1760 Mission Drive) when Father Matt Elshoff will bless the hounds. Or check out The Solvang Streak, held on Saturday at 10:15 a.m.-Noon at Sunny Fields Park on Alamo Pintado Road where you can watch the hounds run just for fun.

On Sunday morning starting at 9:00 a.m., it’s a greyhound spectacular when the canines and their human families take a morning stroll throughout the village and then gather for a final “roo” at Solvang Park at 10:00 a.m..  You have to hear them to believe it! Proceeds from the weekend festival benefit GREYT Legs—a charity that helps improve the quality of life for broken leg Greyhounds coming off the track. For all the details, see http://www.solvanggreyhoundfest.org/

Sweet Treats for Your Valentine!

2013 Taste of Solvang Pro Winner Dessert-Ingeborgs Dark-Light TrufflesYou’re probably well aware that next Sunday is February 14—Valentine’s Day! So, have you shopped for something special for your sweetheart yet? Sharing a treat is a delicious way to show you care—and it’s so easy to do here in Solvang since this is the place to satisfy sweet cravings year-round. If you’re like me, you’re probably craving chocolate! Discover family-owned/operated Ingeborg’s Danish Chocolates that has been using authentic recipes for handmade confections since 1961 (how can you possibly choose between truffles made with raspberry or rum or mocha or amaretto or chocolate mousse?)

Also founded in 1961 (what was going on that year?) is the Old Danish Fudge Kitchen that makes the real deal using an impressive copper pot heated over a gas-burning stove mixing 25-pound batches with all-natural ingredients; then poured onto marble tables for cooling (you can watch and sample, try the chocolate peanut butter or yummy dark chocolate and other specialty blends.) And if you can’t make it to Solvang in person right now, both of these shops will ship direct to your sweetheart!

Solvang, CaliforniaAnd of course, Solvang’s five authentic Danish bakeries have plenty of options too! For more delicious details, visit http://www.solvangusa.com/dining

The Tantalizing Taste of Solvang is March 16-20, 2016

taste-of-solvang-ca bannerYou don’t want to miss any of savory flavors and tantalizing events from Wednesday, March 16 through Sunday, March 20, 2016 during the 24th annual Taste of Solvang! Remember, there’s the popular Farmers Market Chef Walks on Wednesday, 3/16; Sip + Savor reception on Friday evening 3/18; Tasting Trail with dozens of taste stops around the village on Saturday afternoon 3/19; the Beer & Wine Walk on Saturday & Sunday with extended hours and the festive Bubbles, Brews & Brunch on Sunday morning 3/20. Plus, more new events have been added this year . . . a Blind Tasting Challenge at Wandering Dog Wine Bar on Thursday, 3/17; The Art of Smørrebrød and Aebleskiver cooking class on Saturday morning, 3/19; and on Saturday evening, the Buttonwood Farm Winemaker Dinner, a locally-sourced, 5-course gourmet meal by Chef Conrad Gonzales of Valle Fresh Catering paired with award-winning winemaker Karen Steinwachs’ vintages. Purchase your Taste of Solvang ticket packages OR individual event “ala carte” tickets well in advance since these palate pleasing events are always sell-outs. (And if you’re looking for a great Valentine’s gift for your special someone–think Taste of Solvang!) Get more delicious details and buy your tix here: http://www.solvangusa.com/taste-of-solvang-2016/