Entries Tagged as 'USA- CA, Merced'

Merced- Pinocchio's Restaurant, Coffee Bandits

If you're in Merced and you like hearty meals, check out Pinocchio's on 460 West Main Street.  There you can grab a delicious Italian hoagie, a fresh salad, and a coke.  And don't forget to enjoy the delightful goings on the adjacent Bob Hart Square through the restaurant's large picture window!

Then make a bee line for Coffee Bandits on 309 West Main Street, which has a cool bohemian vibe and a good selection of drinks.  I myself ordered a decadent dark chocolate mocha, which hit the spot!  Pair that up with a game of chess, and you have a combination that can't be beat! 

01sanfran-northbeach 168.JPG02sanfran-northbeach 165.JPG03sanfran-northbeach 157.JPG04sanfran-northbeach 162.JPG05sanfran-northbeach 163.JPG06sanfran-northbeach 183.JPG07sanfran-northbeach 180.JPG08sanfran-northbeach 179.JPG09sanfran-northbeach 177.JPG10sanfran-northbeach 173.JPG

Merced- Branding Iron Restaurant, Merced County Courthouse Museum

The Branding Iron(640 West 16th Street) is one of my favorite restaurants anywhere.  I love its dark wood interior and the friendly people who work there.  And the food!  Now that's something to write home about!  I especially like their mouth-watering chicken enchiladas topped off with tomatoes, black olives, and parmesan cheese!

And for eye candy, visit the Merced County Courthouse Museum(on 21st and N Streets), which is located in a beautiful white 19th century structure with ornate Corinthian columns and fine statuary.  Upon entry through the black and white checkered threshold, you will immediately be ushered into my favorite place in the building, the actual courtroom, which has wonderful antique lighting fixtures and a delightful skylight.  Now let the court come to order!

01merced2 001.JPG02merced2 008.JPG03merced2 006.JPG04merced2 011.JPG05merced2 017.JPG06merced2 020.JPG07merced2 035.JPG08merced2 029.JPG09merced2 038.JPG10merced2 047.JPG

Merced- Merced Theatre

The Merced Theatre(301 West Main Street) first opened its doors on October 31, 1931.  It was for the showing of the movie "Local Boy Makes Good" starring Joe E. Brown, the famous actor and comedian who was known for his big smile.  The opening was a major event for the town, and anyone who could go, did go.

The theatre itself today is a beautiful white Spanish colonial structure.  It has a tower and marquee decorated with neon that beckon people for miles around.  Its entryway and lobby are decorated with Spanish tilework, wrought iron chandeliers, and a cool old mural of a Spanish explorer on board a boat, headed for land.

The real highlight of the place, though, is inside of the actual movie theatre, where you are suddenly enveloped by an old walled Spanish colonial town.  Hmm...now if only we had a Spanish guitar player, some flamenco dancers, and some sangria, we'd be set!

01merced1 005.JPG02merced1 010.JPG03merced1 065.JPG04merced1 024.JPG05merced1 022.JPG06merced1 030.JPG07merced1 060.JPG08merced1 034.JPG09merced1 070.JPG10merced1 068.JPG

Merced- La Hacienda 2 Restaurant

La Hacienda 2(3355 G Street), located in my old hometown of Merced, California is my favorite Mexican restaurant anywhere.  Actually, it's more than just a restaurant.  It's an experience.

First of all, they have wonderful people working there.  They are friendly, kind, and attentive.

Then there's the great atmosphere.  The walls are painted to make it look as if you are in the courtyard of a Mexican hacienda.  At the center of this "courtyard" is a large fountain.  And above you, small lights are strung along the ceiling, giving the place a festive feel.  The area also has decorative suns, ornate ironwork, fine Mexican pottery, and a fantastic Aztec sun stone.

Then there's the delicious food.  I like their burrito special, which contains shredded beef, refried beans, rice, and cheese, all wrapped up in a flour tortilla, and covered with enchilada sauce.  And don't forget to ask for dollops of sour cream and guacamole on the side!

01merced1 079.JPG02merced1 098.JPG03merced1 084.JPG04merced1 087.JPG05merced1 085.JPG06merced1 086.JPG07merced1 082.JPG08merced1 081.JPG09merced1 092.JPG10merced1 094.JPG