As a teacher, I spend Sunday preparing for the week ahead. I grab coffee, hunker down at home and get to work. However, now that I am on summer break, I am taking a different approach to Sunday. Rather than work, I have decided to play more and explore my own backyard of Ventura. For this reason, my friend Bree and I headed downtown and decided to take some photos at the San Buenaventura Mission before heading to Sunday brunch at Paradise Pantry.
San Buenaventura Mission
This is one of the many missions along the coast of California founded by Father Junipero Serra.The mission is quaint with beautiful decor. Surrounding the mission is a garden featuring flora and fauna that are representative of our coastal environment. This garden is breathtakingly beautiful. As a result, you feel an overwhelming sense of peace and calm as you meander amongst the trees and flowers.
Fun facts about the mission:
- Founded March 31, 1782, with special designation as the Mission by the Sea
- The 9th mission to be established
- San Buenaventura was located in the land of the Chumash people.
- The mission was evacuated in 1818 due to the threat of a pirate attack!
- Secularized in 1836; returned to the Catholic Church in a proclamation signed by Abraham Lincoln in 1862.
Across the street from the mission is...
Paradise Pantry is an eatery and artisan cheese/wine shop. For this reason, it is one of my top five places to eat in Ventura. What I love most about this eatery (other than the food and wine) is the decor and the amazingly attentive and friendly staff. In addition, the restaurant has a lot of charm and great ambience, which makes the dining experience all that more enjoyable. Furthermore, the food itself is phenomenal and is made with the freshest of local ingredients. As a result, you really can’t go wrong with anything on the menu and they always have special seasonal selections.Some of my favorites are:
- The Pantry Cheese Plate
- Roasted Turkey and Pesto Sandwich
- The Italiano
- Purple Haze salad
One Sunday a month, Paradise Pantry offers brunch, which lucky for us, happened to be the same day we visited the mission. We entered to friendly smiles and fortunately, an open table. Without delay, we started reading over the menu, and very quickly became apparent we were going to have difficulty deciding. However, we came around to making our final choices:
- French Press Coffee- the coffee is REALLY good
- Fresh Squeezed Mimosa- It took major self control to have just one!
- Brioche French Toast with fresh strawberries
- Garden Veggie Egg Scramble
We enjoyed brunch so much, that we immediately started planning our next visit!
So, next time you are visiting Southern California, stop by our small gem of a beach town and let me know what places you discover. Will you eat at Paradise Pantry and take a tour of the Mission? Let me now if you do, I look forward to hearing your thoughts!