Wanna have it all? Well, you can. Nestled in the heart of Lake County’s wine country rests a picturesque vineyard, orchard, and working farm, complete with a pot-bellied pig, tortoise, and chef Tammy Lipps. It’s a unique place where it’s possible to check in and never leave. Here’s how you do it.
For us, that meant sharing a catered meal with friends in the barn. You can read more about that here. But before that dinner, we checked into Ripe Choice’s loft.
It’s a short drive from our house to the farm. We pass vineyards burdened with fruit on Soda Bay Road, then turn into the farm’s driveway, overarched by pear and apple trees ready for harvest. Tammy, already busy in the kitchen, steps out to greet us.
“Hi! Your room is ready and waiting.” Tammy warmly smiles as she shows us the door to the loft. “Feel free to make yourself at home and let me know if you need anything,”
We walk up the stairs, noticing the attention to detail. Tall windows line one wall, ensuring that even on dark days, the space will be warm and bright. The spacious room, designed for entertaining, celebrating, dining, sleeping, and everything in between, calls. A king-size bed neatly made awaits a restful sleep. A rustic wooden table promises to hold exquisite meals, and a spacious seating area invites quiet conversation or reading.
A few steps from the spacious living area is a grand size bathroom. You can almost hear the chatter and shuffling of feet full of anticipation of a nearing celebration. One can also hear the silence of the farm inviting all for a rest or a romantic getaway. For us, it’s somewhere between the two. Sure, guests will soon arrive, but for this moment, it’s just us enjoyingthe coolness of the air conditioning and reading a book to pass the time.
Fast forward five hours. The party’s over, and the guests have all gone home. Tammy pours my husband and me a glass of wine to take upstairs to our room. The magic hasn’t ended, only quieted as we sip on some Cabernet and enjoy the tranquil space of each other’s company.
All too soon, the embers of the sun’s new day glow brightly against the far windows, promising another beautiful day of adventuring, rest, or a bit of both. And there are few better ways to start the perfect day than with Tammy’s breakfast.
A door at the bottom of the stairs briefly opens, and Tammy sets a basket of breakfast choices on a stool, ready to bring up to the loft when the time feels right. But to be fair, this isn’t a breakfast. It’s a feast.
Tammy says it best: “Our breakfasts are purposely hearty and always seasonal, made with ingredients we have on hand. Guests who order breakfast for more than one morning never get the same thing twice.” And let me tell you, I guarantee you’ll have leftovers.
Start the day on the light side with a muesli and Greek yogurt parfait and a few sips of fresh orange juice. It’s light yet hearty.
Then it’s time to move on. Take a large bite of housemade biscuits with butter and housemade jam. Next, dig into a generous portion of garden spinach and feta souffle. Not to be outdone, enjoy her perfectly seasoned garden veggies with polenta and applewood bacon just because, you know, bacon.
We did our very best, and we put in a valiant effort to eat everything. I guarantee we tried, but if it’s too much, it’s okay to ask Tammy for storage containers. Hands down, it was one of the finest breakfasts I’ve had. And that’s saying a lot!
There’s no doubt that Tammy takes hospitality to the next level. And don’t forget, stay the extra night and enjoy another chef-prepared dinner and sensational breakfast. See, why leave? Stay for a while, and you can have it all!
Thanks, Tammy, for the most incredible dinner celebration and finest and most hospitable nights away ever. I can’t wait to be back.
e2550 Soda Bay Rd, Lakeport, CA 95453