Edible Monterey Bay

GRIST FOR THE MILL SPRING 2020

We have a friend who is originally from Iran, where they observe New Years on the first day of spring—this year on March 19. We’ve celebrated with her many times at parties that usually include leaping over bonfires. But the Persian custom I love most involves growing a small dish of wheatgrass or other seeds in anticipation of the New Year.

By the equinox it becomes a 2-inch tall patch of bright green, which is called sabzeh and used to decorate the table or give to friends. It symbolizes the greening and rebirth of the earth after the bleakness of winter.

Nothing makes more sense to me than taking our cues from Mother Nature and celebrating the new year as spring begins. Even though we’ve had a mild, sunny winter … Read More

Carmel Launches New Culinary Week

January 7, 2020 – An exciting new culinary event debuts in Carmel this month. Carmel-by-the-Sea Culinary Week from January 19 to 26 includes special meals at 24 participating restaurants and 20 intimate chef-led events where you can hone your cooking skills and learn something new.

“We have a very high concentration of restaurants in one square mile and almost all of them are locally owned,” says organizer Amy Herzog of Visit Carmel. “The small events allow people to have a hands-on experience and a chance to be involved with the chefs and the owners.” 

The purpose of Culinary Week is to elevate the destination of Carmel as a culinary brand both with locals and visitors, according to Herzog. It is one of the first initiatives of the Restaurant Improvement District … Read More

GRIST FOR THE MILL WINTER 2019

Powerless. That’s how we were and that’s how I felt when our electricity was turned off for three days due to high fire danger in the Santa Cruz Mountains just as we were finishing up this winter issue.

So instead of being glued to my computer screen, editing stories and selecting photos, I found myself lighting candles, building a fire in the fireplace and trying to make the best of a bad situation by cooking up a comforting dinner.

Under normal circumstances I probably would have gone online and downloaded Suzanne Goin’s sublime short ribs recipe— which has become a winter favorite at our house—or tried Andrea Nguyen’s recipe for Viet Beef Stew with Star Anise that I’ve been saving on my computer for months.

But instead I pulled out … Read More

Chef David Kinch Previews Mentone

November 12, 2019 – The tables were set, the candles lit and the room crackled with anticipation as chef David Kinch offered a first taste of the Riviera-style cuisine he will serve at his highly-anticipated Mentone restaurant in Aptos.

The sneak peek—held at Manresa Bread’s all day café in Campbell last week—attracted friends and fans of the 3-Michelin starred chef, along with a smattering of folks from the local food world who, like me, were lucky enough to snag an invitation.

Mentone, currently nearing completion in the new Aptos Village complex, was expected to open this year, but it now appears an early 2020 debut is more likely, according to general manager Chris Sullivan, who is supervising the build out.

The name comes from the Italian spelling of the French … Read More

Far West Fungi Opens Santa Cruz Shop

October 15, 2019 – Just in time for the mushroom season, Far West Fungi has opened a brick and mortar shop on Laurel St. in downtown Santa Cruz. The culinary mushroom specialists have a family farm in Moss Landing and a small retail location in the Ferry Building in San Francisco.

At 1,000 square feet, the Santa Cruz location is four times larger than the SF outlet and includes foraged and cultivated mushrooms, fresh and dried, along with growing kits, truffled foods and a tiny mushroom-centric café. 

“The shop has been in the works for the past two years,” says CEO Ian Garrone. “We have been asked to open shops in Pike’s Place Market in Seattle and in Santa Monica and many other places around the country, but we chose Santa Cruz … Read More

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