Sunflower Drive-In Still Delights After 37 Years


Unseasonably and deliciously warm February weather inspired me recently to make the trip to visit Sunflower Drive-In in old town Fair Oaks. This iconic spot has been beloved by fans of nourishing, natural foods for close to 40 years, and lines were just as long on the day I stopped by as when I visited the drive-in my first time, almost 20 years ago. The balmy, springlike weather had encouraged bicyclers, families, young couples and groups of chatty friends to all congregate at this popular establishment, where you can tuck into the kitchen’s fabulous, healthy menu items at rustic tables alongside the parking lot or carry them next door to a lovely, grassy community park. We relished Sunflower’s hefty, toothsome super nutburger and falafel, both packed into whole wheat pita bread and generously embellished with alfalfa sprouts, lettuce, tomato and tangy yogurt; and the rib-sticking grilled cheese sandwich was a wholesome and delectable treat. Note: Don’t miss the drive-in’s refreshing smoothies—I recommend the pineapple, strawberry and banana smoothie.