6:30pm – Dinnertime. Now, I know earlier I said that lunchtime at The Ranch was my favorite, but that’s because at the time of the post I had temporarily blocked the memories of the fantastic dinners from my mind (probably to better be able to focus on lunch). However, dinners at The Ranch are truly a unique experience, and the only meal there that isn’t served buffet style, and instead is brought to your table based on your selection from that day’s options. A typical dinner consists of both a soup and salad starter followed by a main course, and wrapped up with a delectable little dessert. But in typical Ranch fashion the food is anything but ordinary. While all the food is organic and picked daily fresh from their own gardens the chefs are able to create such distinct flavors that your taste buds literally think they have died and gone to food heaven. Honestly, now amount of explanations can even do it justice, so I hope that one day all of you can go there and experience it for yourself; but since a picture is worth a thousand words I will try to relay the art of their cooking that way.
Now, since I do the 11:00am yoga class which is 1 hour and 15 minutes long, as opposed to all other classes which generally run from 45-50 minutes in time, I generally get to lunch later than most people there. But have no fear there is still plenty of time to sample all of the delicious goodies that are available for that day.
12:15pm – LUNCH TIME! My personal favorite time of the day – lunch is also served buffet style and has endless options each one more delicious than the one the day before!! Also, by this time of the day the sun is out and fully shining, so lunch can be enjoyed anywhere outside of the Dining Hall. A typical lunch at the Ranch generally will include a specialty soup and salad combination followed by a featured hot item of the day – my two favorites from this past week were fish taco day and pizza day. But trust me this is nothing like the pizza you are used to having delivered to your door from any of the nearby pizza joints in your town. In fact, it is anything but that!
For me, a typical day at Rancho La Puerta starts with the following routine:
6:00am – Morning hike. Generally I do not do these, because I am just not a morning person at all myself, but they are a great way to start your day if you can just get out of your ever so warm and comfy bed early enough in the mornings. They have a variety of morning hikes at different experience levels, so there is something available for everyone, and usually the beginning level hikes, and the shorter hikes (which are around 2 miles versus the intermediate to experienced ones which are anywhere from 5-7miles) leave a little later, so at 7:00am. I do make one exception to my NO Morning Hikes Rule though, and that is for the Organic Garden Breakfast Hike. This is truly an experience that I would recommend, and wish for everyone to have at least once in their life, as the beauty of The Ranch and all of its surroundings is beyond peaceful and serene as you are hiking (at a beginning level, so don’t worry) with the sun rising, to the gardens and off site kitchen of The Ranch (this is also where they offer cooking classes, but more about those later).