Wine and Dine with our Fall Ambassadors

Monthly Archives: October 2014

Wine and Dine with our Fall Ambassadors

We are excited to introduce – not one, not two, but three new Cambria ambassadors, who will serve as your guides to the best of our pretty city in the fall and winter months. Meet local bloggers Karen Grubb, Matt Browne, and Rachel Duchak who have agreed to help us uncover all that Cambria has to offer with the help of their combined photography, outdoor, and food and beverage expertise.

Karen Grubb


Karen Grubb

Karen Grubb is a Central Coast native, living and working in San Luis Obispo. She has worked as a freelance photographer for numerous brands including Toyota, Ford Motor Company, Microsoft, and CLIF Bar, to name a few. Travel and photography have always been a passion of hers and it shows through her Instagram photos. Karen’s feed offers a taste of all the natural beauty found around the Central Coast and throughout California. She uses Instagram to document and share her adventures and by doing so hopes to inspire others to get out and enjoy the natural beauty around them.



Matt Browne



Matt Browne

Matt is a beer loving, wine drinking, food eating dad to Sammy and husband to Annie. He likes to explore the Central Coast and when time and schedules permit, the world. Social media and blogging are how Matt tells his story and he’s been doing so since the beginning of 2009 with the help of his wife on their blog, HootnAnnie.







Rachel Duchak (Photo by Jeremy Ball, Bottle Branding)

Rachel Duchak

In 2004, Rachel Duchak moved to California, the state where her maternal grandfather was born and raised. After growing up in the Midwest and living in seven different states from Arizona to Massachusetts to Washington, she finally felt at home. She chose the Central Coast in part because this region hosted a relatively young wine country and the surrounding landscape was superb: Big Sur to the north, Yosemite to the east, Santa Ynez to the south and the Pacific Ocean to the west. Within a few months of arriving in the Central Coast, she had a job at the Wild Horse Winery tasting room. Eventually, she began to work on their wine club newsletter and learned a great deal about the language of winemaking by reviewing old newsletters written by Ken Volk, the founder and original owner. The friendly, supportive people in the Central Coast slice of the wine industry impressed her and, in 2007, she decided to explore the foodie field as her primary career.

The Chefs Series — Part One


Q & A with Chef William Ouderkirk, Robin’s

Why did you become a chef?

Ever since I was a young kid I knew this is what I wanted to do. I remember spending a lot of time in the kitchen at home and was fascinated with cooking and the flavor combinations you could come up with. My parents cooked more European style meals so having a wide range of foods prepared at home is what inspired me to keep on cooking and pursue this as my career.

How would you describe your cooking style?

I am not sure if I really have a particular style, but I have a preference on my flavor profiles. I have a very large French cooking background. I like a lot of refinement these days without the heavy plating and keeping the flavors of the dishes simpler than past years and letting the product speak more naturally than an emphasis on longer cooking techniques.

Who were your earliest cooking influences and how did they influence you?

I went to culinary school in the United Kingdom, and at the time Gordon Ramsay, was just becoming a very famous chef for his 3 star Michelin restaurant. I bought his book on pastry and since then I am a very large fan. I loved his approach on food and his way of not overcrowding a plate and creating a harmony on the plate with his food. His technique is always striving for perfection and he set the bar high for me in my young chef life of what to strive for as a chef. Continue reading

Highway Closures

Highway 1 Closure

If you're heading to the Central Coast, be sure to be mindful of the stretch of Highway 1, 21 miles north of Cambria. Caltrans is busy with a major construction project to make traveling along the stunning Pacific Coast Highway a safer journey.

Highway 1 Storm Repair Along the Big Sur Coast Due to multiple active slides, State Route 1 is now closed between Ragged Pt. (SLO 72.87) and just south of Nepenthe (Mon 44).

Worried about Highway 1 Road Closures? Cambria and Hearst Castle are easily accessible from Highway 46 West from 101 South of Paso Robles or from northbound Highway 1 from the city of San Luis Obispo. Travelers from the north can easily take Highway 101 as an alternate route to Highway 1, which reduces travel time to Cambria by about 25 minutes.

For the latest road closure information visit the Caltrans website.