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Comfort food

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Cheat day: You may be looking to cut a few calories for the New Year. If not, may I suggest Metro Brewing Co.'s Metro Cluk Cluk and Waffles, a Belgian waffle hand dipped in crème brulee batter and topped with three plump fried chicken wings? (metrobrewco.com) ... The Apple Farm in SLO is continuing its holiday festivities from now till Christmas day! Get your paws on custom gift baskets, home-baked holiday treats, and more (applefarm.com). ... Breakfast lovers in the house, this one's for you! Larder Meat Co. has come together with Paso's Spearhead Coffee and SLO's Grrrnola to create a one-of-a-kind breakfast box shipped straight to your door. Of course, this package also includes farm fresh eggs as well as bacon and ground pork from Winfield Farm (to order go to lardermeatco.cratejoy.com/shop). Wake up and smell the possibilities!

Sweet Ideas

All the sweets: Try these Paso Robles confections: Italian-style desserts and you'll be well on your way to sugar plum paradise. This year, grab and give confections from GinaMarie (including chocolate salami! Go to www.jdusiwines.com), caramels from Sugar + Spoon (sugarandspooncaramels.com) and baked goods from Clementine Cupcake Company & Cookie Café (clementinecupcakes.com) ... There's always room for flan! Try the Mexican flan with naval orange sauce and caramel "fruit basket" at the Inn at Morro Bay and see what all the fuss is about (follow the restaurant on Instagram and you'll see what I mean).

Cheers to this

Mixing it up, all year long: La Cosecha in Paso Robles has churned out a slew of seasonal drinks that meld farm-fresh flavors with the chill of brisk winter vibes. Try their seasonal caipirinha, bursting with pomegranate, lime, and top shelf booze ... Blendfest on the Coast returns to the Central Coast this Jan. 13 to 15 featuring 90 blended wines from 30 wineries at the Cambria Pines Lodge (tickets at pasowine.com) ... Unleash the butterflies! Thousands of beautiful orange and black monarch butterflies can be seen clustering in the eucalyptus and cypress trees at the Pismo State Beach Monarch Butterfly Grove every winter. Celebrate this awesome time with a trip to Pismo's iconic Cracked Crab or perhaps new wine bar Puffer's of Pismo (visit visitsanluisobispocounty.com). 

Hayley Thomas Cain hopes your holiday munchies are merry! She can be reached at hthomas@newtimesslo.com.

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