Edible Monterey Bay

Clean, Healthy Eating with a Punch of Flavor Powers the New Pacific Bowls & Rolls

Pacific Bowls & Rolls began life as The Poke Lab, but entrepreneur Greg Ahn (Folktale, 7th & Dolores, ABV and soon-to-open Rise & Roam) thought it was just the kind of business he wanted to have in downtown Monterey, so he bought the place in February of 2019. It reopened in June of this year as Pacific Bowls & Rolls with much of the staff remaining, including GM Katie Martinez, whose smile is almost as big as her heart. 

Martinez describes the place as a fast, casual concept that emphasizes values like ethically and sustainably raised protein sources, pointing out that all poultry is sourced from Mary’s Chicken and all meat from Niman Ranch. “Poke Lab established great sources for sustainable seafood, partnering with Monterey Seafood Watch right from … Read More

New Leaf Community Markets Put Community First

From its early days in 1985 as a small co-op on the Westside of Santa Cruz, to five neighborhood grocery stores along the Central Coast today, New Leaf Community Markets has remained true to its mission: to nourish and sustain the community. 

New Leaf has achieved this by offering customers quality, natural and organic foods that benefit their health and the health of the environment; educating the community about healthful lifestyle choices; providing financial and in-kind support to local nonprofits; valuing and rewarding staff; and supporting local farmers, ranchers, fishermen and producers.

“Serving the community is at the heart of everything we do,” says Forrest Gonsiewski, vice president of  New Leaf Community Markets. “It starts with supporting our staff who live and work in our neighborhoods, and partnering with local producers to … Read More

The Soul Behind Cantinetta Luca’s Handcrafted Italian Food

The Bolognese at Cantinetta Luca in Carmel arrives with a faint train of steam behind it, an airborne parade of flavor. On the plate, thick ribbons of tagliatelle pasta—made in house each morning—intermingle with a from-scratch sauce of veal, beef and sausage that’s slow cooked and deepens for more than 24 hours. Bits of green parsley add color and flavor. Translucent shavings of Parmesan crown the masterpiece.

By itself, it’s a vision, impressive in its presentation and better in the belly. But it’s more than a delicious dish. It’s a window into what makes Luca one of the most memorable and authentic restaurants in the most competitive category in the most restaurant-dense city in the country.

In fact, Cantinetta Luca founder David Fink describes the Bolognese as “the DNA” of … Read More

Raise a glass to history in San Juan Bautista

In many ways, San Juan Bautista continues to be a unique snapshot of California history, with its adobe buildings, mission, and plaza that remain much the same as they were in centuries past. The mission, founded in 1797, put the town on the map, before it became a bustling commercial center and stagecoach hub in the mid-1800s. 

Mission San Juan Bautista faces what is now a State Historic Park, a lovely plaza surrounded by buildings from a bygone era. The old adobes that once housed Mexican generals are today at the center of a vibrant, lively village. 

San Juan Bautista of the 21st century is reinventing itself as a tourist destination and a focal point for foodies—with the opening of new, adventurous restaurants and taprooms in the past few years. Festivals … Read More

New Leaf Community Market Grows a New Store in Aptos

Historic inspiration combines with the best in food and wellness at the recently opened New Leaf Community Market in Aptos, the heart of the long-anticipated Aptos Village development. The supermarket is nestled in the center of the pedestrian-friendly development, offering all the necessities and much more.

In keeping with the small-town feel of the development, the market was placed in a very special historic building—the remodeled and repositioned Hihn Apple Barn, built by Frederick Augustus Hihn in the early 1890s. The barn was the focus of the local apple industry for decades. 

The remodel has retained the historic walls and rafters, but everything inside the store is brand-new, energy-efficient and ready for the 21st century.

“The intent is for us to be a hub for the community,” says Forrest … Read More