I like staying at bed and breakfast inns. If you’ve never stayed at a B&B or did many moons ago, you may be thinking of the old fashioned ones where guests had to wait in line to use the shower, make painful eye contact and small talk over breakfast, or were ambushed by old furniture decorated with dolls, bears and teacups. Take heart. The new-style inn or bed and breakfast will save you from all that. Today’s inns are as unique as their owners, so there truly is something for everyone.
My latest stop at a B&B was in Sonora, Ca at the Gunn House Hotel. Innkeepers Mike and Shirley Sarno purchased the Gunn House in 2002 and undertook an impressive restoration of the historic structure. Using local labor, the couple meticulously restored and upgraded the Inn without detracting from the historical charm of the three-story structure. All rooms now have modern private baths, wall heating and air conditioning, quality mattresses, Internet access and local cable T.V. There are several common outdoor areas and a nice swimming pool to relax by. The rooms are decorated with period furniture, but the overall effect is large rooms with not too stuffy décors. Combine this with a location that is literally a few steps from the bustling downtown area and you have a great to stay. However, for me it was the morning breakfast offerings that I found to be the most endearing part of my stay.
Owner Shirley Sarno gets up every morning and cooks each and every one of the plentiful bakery items and hot main dishes on display. The offerings are fresh, creative and yummy. In some ways this is more of a small cafe experience than just another breakfast- time meal. A staff member greets guests each morning and watches to make sure all items are well stocked. You can even order a special waffle from a delicious proprietary recipe. Juices, teas, coffee, and fruit round out the menu. Come as you are and be assured you don’t have to sit next to or make conversation with anyone else. This Inn’s priority is guest comfort any way you like it.
Until you can experience this Inn for yourself, here’s a recipe compliments of the owners. I had this, it was amazing. Enough said. Make you vacation reservations today.
Pineapple – Apricot Breakfast Cake
Compliments of Gunn House Hotel , Sonora, CA
2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup melted butter or vegetable oil
1 can crushed pineapple
1 can of Apricots or 3 fresh (ripe) Apricots plus 1/3 cup of Apricot jam
¾ cup Brown Sugar
¼ cup melted butter
Mix first 7 ingredients until well blended and smooth.
Add ¾ of the crushed pineapple and ¼ can of apricots or 1 fresh apricot (chopped)
Spray well bottom and sides of pie plate or spring form with Non-stick cooking spray.
Drizzle melted butter on bottom of pie plate.
Crumble brown sugar on bottom of pie plate
Drop in dollops, the remaining pineapple and apricot
Pour cake batter over fruit mixture
Bake at 350 until done, approximately 45 minutes
Using a knife, loosen cake from sides of pie plate, invert onto parchment paper to release cake from pan. Let cool at least five minutes before cutting.
Gunn House Hotel
A moderately priced inn with a superior breakfast component
Plenty of free parking
286 So. Washington St.
Sonora Ca 95370
$79 to $125 per night. Featuring rooms with King, Queen or two Queen size beds, innkeepers “WOW” breakfast included.