By Regina Lynch Hudson
Sacramento’s reputation as America’s Farm-to-Fork Capital is fast gaining ground. The area’s mild Mediterranean climate provides fresh produce year-round which is reflected on many restaurant menus (www.farmtoforkcapital.com) Sacramento’s Blue Diamond almond products are known around the world and local Sterling Caviar (www.sterlingcaviar.com) produces 80 percent of domestic caviar and supplies many upscale restaurants around the nation.
THE POWER PALATE: Consistently rated as one of the city’s best restaurants is Mulvaney’s B & L (www.mulvaneysbl.com) located in an 1893 firehouse. Try the house smoked salmon with Irish brown bread as an appetizer and relive your childhood by indulging in a Ding Dong for dessert. Ella (www.elladiningroomandbar.com) is popular with those on an expense account. The award-winning interior design and signature cocktails draw a refined clientele. The pappardelle with egg is one of the most requested menu items and definitely worth it.
CATCHING ZZZs: The Delta King Hotel (www.deltaking.com) is a riverboat, now permanently docked on the Old Sacramento waterfront. She’s the sister ship to the Delta Queen and the two sailed on overnight journeys between Sacramento and San Francisco in the late ‘20s and ‘30s before the Bay Bridge and Golden Gate Bridge were built. The Delta King served as a hospital ship during World War II and was sunk in San Francisco Bay for 18 months. Beautifully restored with 44 staterooms and a luxurious Captain’s Quarter is an exceptional alternative to the many corporate hotel chains.
FOOTLOOSE & FANCY FREE: The Crocker Art Museum (www.crockerartmuseum.org) is the oldest public art museum west of the Mississippi and recently opened a $100 million expansion to its original Victorian home. Check out the ornate ballroom, the serene early California landscape paintings by Thomas Hill or the expansive pottery collection. Jazz concerts and film series complement the museum’s collection. The California State Railroad Museum (www.californiastaterailroadmuseum.org) is the most visited interpretive railroad museum in North America. The engaging docents, mostly former railroad workers in blue-white overalls, will enthusiastically explain the intricate workings of the 21 exquisitely restored locomotives and cars on display. Don’t miss the $1 million toy train collection on the second floor. AT