Where: 3631 Sagunto St., Santa Ynez; 688-2886; thevineyardhouse.com.
What: An inviting Sunday brunch and daily lunch and dinner venue in Santa Ynez.
How Much: Lunch sandwiches and burgers: $8.50-$10; dinner entrees: $11-$28, add $4.50 for a starter salad.
The Dish: Located adjacent to the luxurious Santa Ynez Inn and inside a vintage-embellished Victorian house in downtown Santa Ynez, the Vineyard House Restaurant features charming antique grace, elegantly set tables, white draped curtains, and an outdoor dining veranda that overlooks the oak-shaded valley. Guests can enjoy dramatic Santa Ynez sunsets on warm summer evenings from that patio, while sipping on local wines from winery favorites after a day of tasting. Lunch and dinner standouts feature rustic game and Southern flavors, sticking to regional and seasonal ingredients. Slowly simmered venison chile verde soup and a beer-battered fried chicken and gorgonzola salad are midday comfort foods that may not leave room for the highly praised Southern stylin’ pulled-pork sandwich. Evening entrees maintain the Southern flair with a Cajun flatiron steak, Dijon-encrusted prime rib of pork, and the crispy buttermilk chicken. The molten chocolate cake’s explosive liquid chocolate center and cherry brandy sauce commands a place at every table.