Ask Chuck

Location: Whitby, Ontario, Canada

Born in Malta but in Canada since age 5. Has written three books and presently does several columns about wine and food for various magazines.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Solvang California and Hadsten House Prepare For Possible Royal Visit

In 1911 a group of very industrious and talented Danes bought some land in the Santa Ynez Vally, not far from Santa Barbara and named it after a Danish Community in Denmark. Solvang has grown to be an absolutely lovely spot in a true "Heaven on Earth' area. The city proper is almost a fantasy with Danish style buildings and specialty foods. The names like Hanson, Olsen to name a couple have the Danish flavour and of course the cuisine is right out of the "homeland". Solvang is also famous for being in what is now the almost Iconic movie "Sideways". The fact that it is in the midst of Santa Barbara County wine country is not only a plus but it adds to the already superb cuisine available there. Bill Phelps, General Manager of my favourite lodging place in the "Valley"----The Hadsten House, mentioned that to celebrate the One Hundredth Anniversary of Solvang, the Danish Royal Couple may be visiting. Wow! Two Royal events in 2011----the wedding of Andrew and Kate and now this. One hundred years does not seem too much to some people, but imagine what these brave and enterprising people did. They left their home country and travelled to what must have been very difficult terrain to start a new life. What they did and what transpired was a vibrant, bustling community full of absolutely great people and scenic spots. I love this place for many a reason and wish Solvang a very. very Happy Anniversary. I would suggest a visit to this locale any time but especially this year. At almost anytime one can have a great time but this year there will be double the icing on the cake and double the scoops on the ice cream-----then of course there's the wine!!!!!!