Brunch at Beast + Bounty

My girlfriends and I celebrated my birthday by brunching at Beast + Bounty, a “new to me” restaurant located at 1701 R ST. in the Ice Blocks development in Midtown Sacramento, CA. The restaurant has been open since August 2018, I just haven’t had a chance to check it out until this past weekend.   

The decor was absolutely dreamy/modern. The level of detail throughout warmed my legit graphic and wannabe interior designer heart. From the high ceilings, brick wall, hanging plants and custom lighting, to the menu boards with hand-stitched leather strapping (that mirrored the leather bench seating) to the server’s aprons. Even the gold utensils were an unexpected elegant touch.

The color pallet was my favorite part – natural leather, terracotta, pink, brass/gold, green, marble, white oak floors, definitely a mix of masculine and feminine. I loved every bit of it. I swear, I really did notice all of the details like the big designer geek that I am.

From my vantage point at the table, I had the wood-fired pizza oven as my backdrop. It was cool to have a view right into the kitchen, which I failed as a blogger to get a photo of.

The brunch menu had a great selection of items that could fit into anyone’s preference/diet. The menu had a solid offering of Beast (meat options) and Bounty (veg options) with an emphasis on seasonal flare. I loved that there were main courses with veggies as the star, not an afterthought and vegan options as well.

We decided on our “must have” items and then thought we would share. I chose the Charred Avocado Toast with Peruvian shrimp ceviche, soft boiled egg, orange wedges and pop corn. It was delicious. We were expecting smaller shrimp/pieces, so it was a fun surprise.

I also realized that I need more good bread in my life.

Speaking of bread, our new oven has proofing capabilities. Now I really have to start upping my bread baking game.

Another girlfriend chose the Benedict Pizza. Beast bacon, ash onions, two eggs, hollandaise, mozzarella, coin potatoes and herbs. This was perfect for sharing. the center sections were the best, but the crust was pretty much perfection.

The third item selected by another friend was the Buttermilk Biscuits n’ Gravy. Eggs, bacon and potatoes O’brien. I’m not a gravy fan at all, so I was skeptical, however this was definitely not like traditional biscuits and gravy, so I did have a bite.

It was good, the biscuit was nice and airy/light… so I appreciated that. I stuck to my avocado toast and the pizza. I savored every bite and did take a few bites of the Potatoes O’brien.

I definitely would like to come back for dinner in the near future. I think this would be a great restaurant for out of town friends to showcase what the Ice Blocks in Midtown Sacramento has to offer. Mendocino Farms, Milk Money and Device Brewing Company for eats with a Shake Shack on its way and my favorite – West Elm for some home decor/shopping.

Thank you Kristen for organizing such a fun outing and for making my birthday one to remember, and thank you Marnie for treating us to a delicious meal.


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Holly’s Hill Vineyards – Summer’s New Wines and Grilled Pizza Pairing

My girlfriend Carolyn invited me and another friend to check out Holly’s Hill Summer wine and grilled pizza pairing a few weekends ago. Holly’s Hill is located just south of Placerville in the Pleasant Valley region of El Dorado County.

Tom and Holly Cooper fell in love with the varieties of Southern France’s Rhone Valley when they shared a bottle of Chateauneuf du Pape on their honeymoon. Years later, Holly decided she wanted to live on a hill and convinced Tom to move to his family’s cattle ranch in the foothills of the Sierras. She got her hill and he got to fulfill his life long dream of planting a vineyard. (Source:

Carolyn’s sister’s kids go to school with Holly’s daughter’s kids, so that’s how this whole thing came about. They are collaborating on a summer crafting event and Carolyn mentioned how beautiful and peaceful the vineyards were. Then she mentioned pizza and wine together in said environment and I was all in. She sent a text to other girlfriends and our friend Kelly was also able to join us.

Holly's Hill Vineyards

Click here to learn more about Holly’s Hill by visiting their website About Us overview.

We met at Carolyn’s place and set off on our adventure. Carolyn grew up in Placerville, so it was fun being a passenger as she cruise directed us through all of the sites and scenery. We parked the car and I immediately felt my blood pressure lower. She was right, the grounds were so peaceful, the views were stunning and the smells coming from the pizza grills had me excited to dig in. Pizza is my jam and it’s definitely my “stuck on a desert island” choice for sure. I could eat it every day.

Wine Tasting this way. We checked in and grabbed our glasses and stood in the first line for part one of the pairing. The first thing I noticed was dogs, I loved that it was a dog friendly place. I even saw a cute miniature schnauzer which made me miss my two boys.

Holly's Hill Roussanne

First up was a slice of Shrimp & Lemon pizza paired with Holly’s Hill 2018 Roussanne. Before reading the description, we were able to pick out hints of peach and pineapple. I recently attended a wine tasting party and actually learned a lot. We swirled, we tasted without the pizza and then with and really noticed a distinct difference. Description from their website: This vintage has creamy oak aromatics with fruity peach, nectarine, pineapple and banana. It has a floral component too and a liveliness in the mouth with lots of fruit and a creamy long finish.

I really liked the pairing and the pizza crust was perfect! Crisp on the bottom, just the way I like it. We chatted, we ate, we enjoyed our wine, and then went back for round two.

Hollys Hill

The second pairing was Holly’s Hill 2017 Fenaughty Syrah and Mediterranean Sausage Pizza. I was not able to pick out any of the flavors of this one until after reading the description.This beautiful wine has aromatics of raspberry syrup, cassis, roses, pink peppercorns, bubble gum and earthy peat. In the mouth you’ll get medium tannins and lots of fruit that finally finishes with a touch of brie. Carolyn and Kelly did much better. I did taste the hint of raspberry on my second taste.

I was glad this piece was smaller because I was saving room for the last pairing, which ended up being my favorite of the day. Tartufata Pizza with Petit Partiarche.

My best guess on the pizza ingredients were mushrooms, Parmesan, Italian parsley and truffle oil. After a few glasses of wine, I didn’t even think to ask, ha-ha.

I was enjoying time with my friends with good food and wine without questioning things.

Thank you Carolyn for organizing and introducing me to such a special place. I’m looking forward to future events.


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Sierra Nevada Brewery Taproom & Restaurant – Chico, CA

Sierra Nevada Brewery

A quick day trip to Chico, CA provided the perfect opportunity to have lunch with my parents at Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.’s Taproom. They went through a recent remodel at the beginning of this year. I had nothing to compare it to since it was my first time, but after showing pictures to a friend who goes on the regular, she seemed very impressed with the recent updates. The view below is to the right of the front door entry with a glass walled step down.

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Taproom Interior

The woodwork throughout was amazing. We got a table close to the kitchen and were able to look out onto the patio area. The menu went through some changes as well. Chef Daniel Grice was hired just days before the horrific Camp Fire – the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California history.

Shortly after the Camp Fire started back in early November 2018, I read all about Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.’s Resilience campaign through local craft brewery social media links. The campaign gave the recipe/tools to brew Resilience IPA beer to any brewery interested. The purpose of the campaign was to raise money for those impacted by the Camp Fire. I really wanted to support the campaign, so I purchased a Resilience Butte County Proud IPA t-shirt from the brewery’s website and I bought two 6-packs at my local grocery store back in December to share with my fam at Christmas. Supplies were limited and I just happened to be at the right place, at the right time. Over 1400 breweries across the U.S. and even in other countries hosted Resilience events/fundraisers. Locally I could feel the sense of pride friends, co-workers and the community felt to help those in need.
The overwhelming support helped inspire the Butte Strong Fund, a partnership devoted to the long recovery ahead.

Sierra Nevada Resilience

So back to lunch… The menu had many options and it took me a bit to decide.

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Taproom menu
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Menu

I ended up ordering the lentil burger with white cheddar and fries. The burger had an aioli sauce and was served with red onion and green leaf lettuce. It was awesome, packed full of flavor and the texture was on point. Crisp on the edges and team moist on the inside. I just got through posting about eating healthier… then I post a photo of fries… LOL. It’s all about moderation. I did eat over half of my fries and I finished the burger. I feel like I now must recreate the lentil patty for a future meal prep Sunday.

Sierra Nevada Brewery Lentil Burger

We stopped into the gift shop after lunch to pick up some mustard and a 6 pack of Summerfest. I will definitely be back for a tour and tasting when I have more time. A fun afternoon with the rents and a perfect beginning to the rest of our adventure.


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