Lake County’s home to amazing scenery, kind people, and a host of small businesses. Without them, we wouldn’t be who we are. So take a weekend afternoon to get out and discover something new. We listed eight great businesses here, but don’t worry. Surrounding these wonderful places are dozens more, all waiting for you to discover them.
The Middletown Art Center isn’t your ordinary small-town art gallery. Nestled at the foot of Mount St. Helena and surrounded by the rugged Mayacamas mountains, The MAC showcases some of the best artists in the region. Between the sculpture garden outside and the continually updated gallery inside, you’re sure to please your inner artist.
If you’re looking for something cool, Koontz Mercantile in Middletown is the place. Owners Reuben and Cassie Koontz bring an eclectic, witty feel to their wares. While Reuben creates the art, Cassie works with local artisans to find sustainably sourced, ethically made goods.
Campos Casuals has been a Lake County staple for years. If you’re looking for cool and contemporary, Campos Casual has you covered. It’s got all the big name brands from Volcom to Ray Ban to Vans. Plus, they’ve got a large selection of work boots, motorcycle gear, and skateboards as well.
We all love games, and where better to pick up a few than Kingdom Games? You’ll find everything from old-school Xbox games to the newest PS5 release. But there’s much more to the place than just video games; they’ve also got a selection of some of the top card and table games.
La Chilanguita in Clearlake serves spectacular Mexican cuisine. For a filling meal, order a huarache (or ‘sandal’ in Spanish). Corn flour is stuffed with beans, shaped into a large oval, fried, and then topped with fresh veggies and handmade salsa. It’s crunchy, chewy, and completely wonderful. If you haven’t had it before, you have to try it. And be sure to order a cold Pacifico to wash it down.
Upper Lake’s an up-and-coming place that’s perfect for an afternoon adventure. We just wrote an article on it, which you can read here.
Style and Soul Boutique brings stylish fashion in a family-friendly shopping experience. From scarves to blouses to accessories, you’ll be sure to find something to make you feel good about yourself.
At The Helm carries high-quality men’s clothing that will last longer than the season. They carry a collection of flannels, T-shirts, hats, and so much more for your special someone, as well as shaving needs, mugs, flasks and other small items sure to put a smile on his face. And while you’re there, you might as well look at the women’s clothing too!
Located at Lampson Field, Red’s at The Skyroom features fresh produce, sustainable meats, and hand-mixed cocktails, all hidden in the heart of wine county. It’s a great place to relax on the patio, grab one of their off-the-hook burgers, and sip on a drink while you watch the planes taxi down the runway.
Oak Boutique, located in downtown Kelseyville, feature hand-picked, trendy items and accessories for most tastes. “We’re size-inclusive,” owner Caitlin Andrus says. “People want fashion that’s functional and comfortable, on-trend but not trendy.”
Hidden in a courtyard just off Main Street, you’ll The Painted Bird, a hidden gem. It’s worth the short wander off the beaten path, past the fountain, and into the gallery. It features the sculptures, paintings, and paintings of several local artists, and it’s easy to get lost for an hour discovering each piece. Plus, the odds are you’ll run into one of the artists while you’re there, and they’re always happy to share more about their work and suggest a unique, one-of-a-kind gift.
Immaculately clean and with a cozy, warm atmosphere, Arti Natural Indian Café’s bright orange colors make it feel like stepping into happiness. Everything is perfectly spiced, balanced, and designed to bring out each individual flavor. All the meat is organic, and many of the vegetables come from farmer’s markets.