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Friday, June 3, 2011

A Hidden Gem

I was driving on the long and desolate stretch of 99 yesterday that was bringing me back to Fresno from Bakersfield (don't be jealous) and I was in need of a snack.  After a recommendation by a good friend, I decided to stop at Bravo Farms in Traver, CA.  (Don't feel bad...I had no idea either.)

In the middle of nowhere, across the road from a big rig car wash and gas station, was one of the greatest little treasures.  In an area smaller than a city block was a nostalgic tribute to the old west. 

I pulled into the gravel parking lot, got out (in four inch heels) and turned to see two old timers sitting on the wooden porch in front of the convenient store.  Next to them were two guys BBQ'ing chicken and tri tip on a Santa Maria style pit.  I was already in western heaven.  Then it got better.

After I bought my Classic Lay's and a Diet Coke, I went for a stroll through the Bravo Farms "town".  I will go back and spend the day in this parking lot size desert mirage one day.

So, obviously what really drew me to Bravo Farms were the signs on 99 advertising the wine tasting.  I may not have said it here before, but I have always said I could live on three things: bread, cheese and wine.

But there was so much more than cheese and wine...

A fruit stand (this was just part of it)

A coffee shop, ice cream shop and a diner...

A gift shop with nuts and dried fruits...
(The Classic Lay's and Diet Coke were still the best choice)

An incredible selection of cheese...

A store that is a collectors dream...

(And what would a kitschy store be without an Elvis display)

And last, but certainly not least, a bar.

If you ever find yourself on Highway 99 south of Fresno, stop at Bravo Farms.  There is a part of me that thinks I may have imagined the whole thing, but I am pretty sure it is there, and from what I saw, it is a must see!

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