Make it a weekend: A short walk from the institute, Piazza de Campovida hotel overlooks the lush Coast Range. Mediterranean-style rooms come with fluffy robes and hot tubs, but your time might be better spent downstairs at soon-to-open Pizza e Birra ($$), a brewpub with thin-crust pies and pints made in collaboration with Oakland’s famed Linden Street Brewery. From $185; 707/744-1977.
Eat, drink, play: 3 more things to do
The Mendocino Ale House just moved its popular Hopland taproom 15 minutes up the road to Ukiah. Thankfully, the change of address did nothing to their signature Red Tail Ale, an amber that goes well with a hot Polish sausage. $; 1252 Airport Park Blvd., Ukiah; mendobrew.com
If the weather’s nice, swing by Brutocao Cellars—a 1920 schoolhouse turned tasting room—for a sip of Quadriga, a blend of four Italian varietals, and a match or two on one of their six regulation-size bocce courts. No tasting fee; 13500 South U.S. 101, Hopland; 707/744-2000.
Bluebird Café is revered for its homemade apple cinnamon bread, the foundation for the must-have French toast. Pies are great too: flaky, hot, and made on-site. There’s none better than the blackberry crumble. $; 13340 South U.S. 101, Hopland; 707/744-1633.