“… In an age of acceleration, nothing can be more exhilarating than going slow. And in an age of distraction, nothing is so luxurious as paying attention. And in an age of constant movement, nothing is so urgent as sitting still.”
—Pico Iyer, author of The Art of Stillness: Adventures in Going Nowhere (Simon & Schuster, 2014), from his TED Talk, Where is Home?
We think you’ll find a lot in this issue to keep you cozy and still in a chair at home—and a lot to move you to venture out and get to know some fascinating new local people and places. We hope that by following Iyer’s example of going slow, paying attention and allowing yourself the stillness to reflect on them, these experiences will deeply enrich your life.
In this issue, Elizabeth Limbach discovers that the kitchen, being the center of the home, is also the best place to start if your hopes for the new year include adopting a more sustainable lifestyle. In her story, Limbach reveals the rewards of running—and even designing—your kitchen in greener ways, and she introduces some of the local nonprofits and businesses that are there to help.
If you’ve heard about the debate over beef and its impact on health and the environment, it may surprise you to learn that our local cattle ranchers tend to be healthconscious environmentalists. Julie Morris hopes her piece will clear up some of the confusion and make eating beef something to celebrate—so long as it is grassfed.
Deborah Luhrman shares the story of a former mathematician who nurtures a serious citrus obsession in Watsonville, and she also interviews a globe-trotting chef whose arrival in Carmel Valley has proven that farm-to-table can be as good for a restaurant’s bottom line as it is for the farmers.
As usual, this edition contains a number of pieces about the connectors who help make our food community a community, including Elaine Hesser’s piece about Salinas’ Cherry Bean Coffeehouse & Roastery, Amber Turpin’s article on the Santa Cruz Community Farmers’ Markets and Lisa Crawford Watson’s profiles of the passionate woman behind Annieglass and an adventurous young chef couple in Carmel.
Finally, for inspiration in achieving the stillness that Iyer talks about, there is perhaps no better model than Santa Cruz’s Hidden Peak Teahouse, which Limbach describes in her profile of proprietor David Wright and the calming experience he has created.
This winter, challenging as we know it will be, we’d like to be more intentional ourselves about slowing down, paying attention and just being still. As Iyer says, it’s hard to imagine a greater luxury.
All the best for a very happy—and slow—New Year, Sarah Wood and Rob Fisher
SARAH WOOD—founding editor and publisher of Edible Monterey Bay—has had a life-long passion for food, cooking, people and our planet.
She planted her first organic garden and cared for her first chicken when she was in elementary school in a farming region of Upstate New York.
Wood spent the early part of her career based in Ottawa, Canada, working in international development and international education. After considering culinary school, she opted to pursue her loves for writing, learning about the world and helping make it a better place by obtaining a fellowship and an MA in Journalism from New York University.
While working for a daily newspaper in New Jersey, she wrote stories that helped farmers fend off development and won a state-wide public service award from the New Jersey Press Association for an investigative series of articles about a slumlord who had hoodwinked ratings agencies and investment banks into propping him up with some early commercial mortgage securitizations. The series led Wood to spend several years in financial journalism, most recently, as editor-in-chief of the leading magazine covering the U.S. hedge-fund industry.
Wood could not be happier to now be writing and editing articles about the Monterey Bay foodshed and the amazing people who help make it so vibrant and diverse. And, after spending much of her adult life gardening on fire escapes, she’s very glad to be planting in the ground again.
Wood lives with her husband, Rob Fisher, a fourth-generation Californian, and young daughter in Carmel Valley. Their favorite meal is a picnic dinner at Pt. Lobos State Reserve.