In 1911, the small town of Solvang, CA, in Santa Barbara County was founded by a small community of Danish Americans. These settlers brought many of their Scandinavian traditions with them, including their tasty Danish food and pastries.
From the Danish delights to Italian favorites, Solvang’s top restaurants in the Santa Ynez Valley showcase a wide variety of flavors and fares from all over the world. Whatever you’re hungry for, the local restaurants offer something to satisfy your cravings.
Solvang is also well-known for its bakeries and assortment of award-winning pastries and Danish desserts, meaning every meal can end on a sweet note. Whether this is your first time to the area or a returning customer, here are some of the best restaurants in Solvang to try during your visit.
Don’t forget the popular bakeries to grab a decadent dessert!
Why Solvang is a Culinary Destination
Solvang is known for its Danish-style architecture and cuisine, so you are sure to find some amazing Danish or European restaurants in the area. Let’s dig into our top recommendations for places to eat, reviews of restaurants, menus, operating hours, and contact information so you can book a reservation.
Frequently Asked Questions about Solvang Restaurants and Eateries
- Best restaurants in Solvang: The Red Viking Restaurant, Mad & Vin, peasants FEAST, First & Oak, and Hans Christian Andersen Family Restaurant are all highly-rated restaurants in Solvang.
- Family-friendly restaurants in Solvang: The Red Viking Restaurant, Hans Christian Andersen Family Restaurant, and Birkholm’s Bakery & Cafe are all good options for families with children.
- Romantic restaurants in Solvang: First & Oak, Birkholm’s Bakery & Cafe, and The Ballard Inn are all good options for couples looking for a romantic dining experience.
- Restaurants with outdoor seating in Solvang: Mad & Vin, peasants FEAST, Birkholm’s Bakery & Cafe, and The Ballard Inn all have outdoor seating areas.
- Restaurants that offer takeout or delivery in Solvang: Many restaurants in Solvang offer takeout and delivery, including The Red Viking Restaurant, Mad & Vin, peasants FEAST, and First & Oak.
- Restaurants that serve traditional Danish food in Solvang: The Red Viking Restaurant, Birkholm’s Bakery & Cafe, and Mortensen’s Danish Bakery all serve traditional Danish food.
- Best bakeries in Solvang: Olsen’s Danish Village Bakery, Birkholm’s Bakery & Cafe, Mortensen’s Danish Bakery, and Danish Mill Bakery are all highly-rated bakeries in Solvang.
- Bakeries that sell Danish pastries: All of the bakeries listed above sell Danish pastries.
- Bakeries that sell cakes and pies: Olsen’s Danish Village Bakery, Birkholm’s Bakery & Cafe, and Mortensen’s Danish Bakery all sell cakes and pies.
- Bakeries that offer breakfast and lunch: Olsen’s Danish Village Bakery, Birkholm’s Bakery & Cafe, and Mortensen’s Danish Bakery all offer breakfast and lunch options.
- Bakeries that have outdoor seating: Birkholm’s Bakery & Cafe and Mortensen’s Danish Bakery both have outdoor seating areas.
- Bakeries that offer takeout or delivery: Most of the bakeries in Solvang offer takeout, but only a few offer delivery.
Dig into Our Favorite Restaurants in Solvang CA
More than 30 restaurants and cafes make up Solvang’s dining scene, from the table eatery and coffee house, a tasting room and fine-dining spots. Whether it’s great food you’re seeking, a fun happy hour or wine tastings, there’s something for everyone. Check out these top picks for the foodie in you.
- Address: 475 1st St. #9, Solvang, CA
You can dine in our take out this eatery’s locally-sourced delicious thin-crust pizzas. Their wood-fired pizza styles include traditional versions like Pomodoro, plus less-conventional ones featuring egg or boar sausage.
Or enjoy plates include prime steaks like New York Strip, chicken parmesan, lasagne and more.
Chomp Burgers, Fries & Shakes
- Address: 1693 Mission Dr., Solvang, CA
Delicious hamburgers and fries are just the beginning of what you’ll find at this family-owned diner.
A throwback to the old days of malts, shakes and burgers, Chomp Burgers, Fries & Shakes offers a diverse menu with amazing Rubin sandwiches, fresh salads, fish and chips and vegan-friendly options.
When it’s time for dessert, this is a great spot for a handmade milkshake to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Copenhagen Sausage Garden
- Address: 1660 Copenhagen Dr., Solvang, CA
The Copenhagen Sausage Garden is an excellent sport for a great time and delicious comfort food. Find outside seating in the outdoor beer garden, grab an ice-cold beer (you’ll want to try the popular Danish Rød Pølse) and choose from 11 family-made sausages. There’s even a vegan variety!
They also offer tasty charcuterie plates with homemade salami that pairs perfectly with a beer or glass of wine.
First & Oak
- Address: 409 1st St., Solvang, CA
Found inside the luxury boutique hotel Mirabelle Inn, First & Oak fine dining restaurant is one of the Solvang Michelin Restaurants.
What makes this restaurant unique is that you won’t be restricted to the typical appetizer and entree format; it’s also a popular spot for small bites or pizza if that’s what you crave for your dining experience. The cozy space includes a dining room and fireside dining, plus friendly staff.
Dishes feature sustainable, local produce and proteins from area farms, ranches and fishermen.
The amazing restaurant also offers an extensive local wine list of organic, natural wines hand-selected by the sommelier to pair with good food.
- Address: 490 1st St., Solvang, CA
Fitzpatrick’s Tavern is a nice place for a taste of Ireland in downtown Solvang.
The old-fashioned Celtic pub will bring the Emerald Isle to you with upscale Irish classics including Shepherd’s Pie, Corned Beef and Cabbage, and, of course, plenty of Guinness to go around.
Leonardo’s Cucina Italiana
- Address: 632 Alamo Pintado Rd., Solvang, CA
When Italian food is what your appetite calls for, Leonardo’s Cucina Italiana is an excellent spot to satisfy it. The food, atmosphere, good wine and service are inspired by the small Italian town of Cariati, creating a family-style experience that stands out from the crowd.
The friendly restaurant offers a wide variety of Italian staples, but their pizza and pasta dishes are the menu’s shining stars.
Mad & Vin
- Address: 1576 Mission Dr., Solvang, CA
Specializing in wine-country-inspired cuisine, this farm-to-table restaurant inside The Landsby Hotel deserves every bit of praise it’s garnered.
Landsby’s signature restaurant only uses seasonal ingredients from California’s Central coast, making each dish fresh and unique. The craft cocktails and great wine list are perfect for an afternoon pick-me-up or to share with friends during a night out on the town.
Paula’s Pancake House
- Address: 1531 Mission Dr., Solvang, CA
Looking for Solvang’s best breakfast first thing in the morning? This is a personal favorite.
Paula’s Pancake House is a special place to start your day, especially if you want to test its famous Danish pancakes. There are also savory American breakfast options and lovely staff in a setting that makes you feel like you’re a member of the pancake-house family.
- Address: 487 Atterdag Rd., Solvang, CA
One of the newest eateries in town (2020), peasants FEAST has already become one of the best restaurants for lunch in Solvang. Another one of the Solvang Michelin Restaurants, the stylish outdoor seating area will catch your eye from the village streets and invite you in for a bite.
The menu is the perfect marriage of Californian and Greek cuisine, featuring menu items like sandwiches, tacos and salads.
- Address: 1672 Copenhagen Dr. #2759, Solvang, CA
Open for breakfast and lunch, Solvang Restaurant is known for its authentic Danish and American menu. What keeps diners coming back is their famous Aebleskiver, a Danish dessert traditionally served during Easter and Christmas.
The bakers at Solvang Restaurant add their own special touch to the Aebleskiver with sweet raspberry jam and a light dusting of powdered sugar.
- Address: 1557 Mission Dr., Solvang, CA
This tasteful American restaurant in Solvang consistently impresses with delicious food, cocktails, local wines, craft beers and hospitality.
Succulent Cafe is popular for its brunch menu, but you’ll also find breakfast and lunch options worth sampling. The best part? Everything is made from scratch using only the freshest ingredients.
More Restaurants in Solvang CA
- Bit O’Denmark Restaurant, 473 Alisal Rd, Solvang, CA 93463
- Los Olivos Wine Merchant & Cafe, 2879 Grand Ave, Los Olivos, CA 93441
- River Grill At the Alisal, 150 Alisal Rd, Solvang, CA 93463
Solvang Bakeries We Always Need to Visit
Several Scandinavian traditions are upheld in Solvang. Luckily for you, incredible pastries are one of them. Find something sweet to eat at one or all of these local bakeries and coffee shops.
Birkholm’s Bakery & Cafe
- Address: 460 Alisal Rd., Solvang, CA
If you’re a fan of Bear Claws, Birkholm’s Bakery & Cafe is a great place to start.
This family-owned business has served the people and visitors of Solvang for over 60 years. Their secret? Adding a personal touch and good service to each and every customer experience.
Mortensen’s Danish Bakery
- Address: 1588 Mission Dr, Solvang, CA
Danish waffles, cream puffs, and chocolate eclairs are just some of the mouth-watering desserts you’ll find in Mortensen’s Danish Bakery. The old world recipes were brought to Solvang by a Scandinavian baker 40 years ago, offering a great experience for tourists and locals alike.
Olsen’s Danish Village Bakery
- Address: 1529 Mission Dr., Solvang, CA
A third-generation master baker prepares all of the sweet treats you’ll find in Olsen’s Danish Village Bakery. His family’s original recipes for desserts like the Danish Custard Kringle and Almond Tarts have earned the bakery several awards.
- Address: 438 Alisal Rd., Solvang, CA 93463
For over 22 years, Solvang Bakery has been the town’s premiere Danish bakery. You’ll be invited with great service inside their cozy coffee shop to indulge in popular pastries like hand-iced short dough cookies and almond butter rings. Be sure to try a delicious Danish waffle.
Start Planning Your trip to Solvang California
FLYING INTO SOLVANG?
The closest spot to fly into is the Santa Barbara Airport (SBA), a short drive from Solvang (roughly a 45-minute trip). You could also fly into Los Angles International Airport (LAX) and drive a rental car just under three hours north along the coast to Solvang.
We love to track flights via Expedia.com. Not only do we find great rates, but we earn points to use on future travel too.
You can also keep an eye on GOING deals, which is how we got to Ireland roundtrip from LAX for under $500 each. The free version is good, but the paid subscription will save you way more than the cost of the actual subscription.
HOTELS IN SOLVANG
- Hotel Ynez: Free breakfast, a pool and parking incuded
- King Frederik Inn: Breakfast included and a pool
- The Landsby: Pet-friendly and within walking distance of town
- Royal Copenhagen Inn: Free Wifi, breakfast included and a pool
- The Winston Solvang: Pet friendly with free parking
Find more Solvang Hotels HERE.
NEED A RENTAL CAR?
DON’T FORGET ABOUT YOUR VACATION PHOTOS!
Don’t forget to book your Flytographer session to capture awesome memories from your trip. We do it as often as we can. Sometimes, this mom just wants to be in a few photos with her kiddos, or gorgeous shots at sunset.
Additional reporting by Lauren Hatcher