Sneak peek: EcoFarm 2016 is coming in January! -

55ebd528-a3d0-4f1a-8560-f43c6132749aNovember 24, 2015 – It’s almost that time of year again, when organic food buffs young and old take a winter sojourn to the scenic Asilomar Conference Grounds in Pacific Grove for the annual EcoFarm Conference.

This year, the four-day series of informative workshops and bus tours, inspiring talks as well as dances and other social gatherings will take place January 20-23. The theme, “Regenerating Our Lands and Water,” will be explored with the latest research, policy and methodology available.

In addition to farmers, the event attracts teachers, activists, scientists, students, chefs and consumers—basically anyone thirsty for knowledge about ecology and helping our planet will find value in attending.

Still, executive Director Ken Dickerson emphasizes that the driving force behind EcoFarm’s power remains “the deep rooted history of being … Read More

Vote now for your Local Heroes -

10ebc0c5-bea4-4189-80af-fce28b63f643November 24, 2015 – Who are YOUR local heroes? We of course mean food and drink heroes here—your favorite chefs, farmers, vintners, brewers, food artisans, market operators and food-related nonprofits—and we want to know! To cast your vote, please give it some thought and CLICK HERE TO VOTE.

Voting will only take a couple of minutes, and the winners will be featured in the Spring 2015 issue of Edible Monterey Bay. To win, nominees must be based in Monterey, Santa Cruz or San Benito Counties. Voting closes at midnight on December 23, so don’t delay!

EMB’s Local Heroes have included all the top foodies and farmers in the Monterey Bay Area. Check out the list of past winners below and share the love by nominating other deserving locals.… Read More

East End Gastropub Opening in 2016 -

71ed8022-2a4c-442d-b597-92bdad49173dNovember 24, 2015 – Construction is more than halfway completed and crews are getting ready to install a new Woodstone pizza oven at the soon-to-open East End Gastropub we reported on last week. Located on 41st Avenue in Santa Cruz adjacent to the Cinelux theaters, the 3,600 sq ft split-level location is the second restaurant for chef/co-owner Geoff Hargrave and Quinn Cormier, who also own the popular West End Tap & Kitchen.

“We’re gutting the whole place and building a new store front,” says Hargrave, adding that the interior decor will be Bistro-like with tile and bright colors. Santa Cruz native Brian Friel of Young America Creative is in charge of the design work.

Menus of both eateries will be similar and Hargrave will oversee both kitchens as executive … Read More

You’re Invited: EMB Holiday Parties! -

c41a8db7-a7a9-4239-8e53-bd1bcdf271a4November 17, 2015 – Please join us for Edible Monterey Bay’s delicious Holiday New Issue Release Parties! The first will take place on Tuesday, December 8 from 5:30 to 7:30 at the Hyatt Carmel Highlands, which offers spectacular Big Sur coastal views just 10 minutes from the Crossroads shopping center in Carmel. The next night, you can experience Santa Cruz’s exciting and innovative new Food Lounge in person when it hosts our Santa Cruz holiday release party from 5 to 8pm. Learn more and RSVP for the party at the Highlands, click here. To find out more and RSVP for the Food Lounge event, click here. Both parties will feature delicious complimentary appetizers and a cash bar. Space is limited, so we recommend you RSVP soon!… Read More

Chef Alessio jumps to Gusto -

33bae1aa-cd64-41d5-967d-9149263a46c8November 17, 2015 – Fourteen months  after opening Giorgio’s at the 201 Main complex in Salinas, chef Alessio Giannuzzi is heading back to the peninsula to run the kitchen at Gusto Handcrafted Pasta & Pizza in Seaside. “I’m really happy chef Alessio will be joining us,” says owner Denis Boaro. “We want to take Gusto to the next level and I look forward to working alongside another Italian.” The popular chef—well known from his years as executive chef at Il Fornaio in Carmel—starts next week.

“Alessio is going to bring a lot to the table and make Gusto even more Italian,” says Boaro, who hopes to begin adding some new menu items next month. Gusto, which opened in February following the closure of Bill Lee’s short-lived Lucky’s Roadside, serves fresh … Read More

You’re invited: Food and Wine Benefit with Bluegrass -

LliveEarth_farm_2012-254November 10, 2015 – Come join your friends at Edible Monterey Bay for a fantastic food and wine benefit with bluegrass music at Hidden Valley Music Seminars in Carmel Valley on Sunday from 2pm–4pm.

To enter a drawing for two free tickets to this event, just like our Facebook page and send an email to The winner will be drawn at noon on Thursday! Or to to be sure to reserve your tickets, which are $50 in advance and $60 at the door, including all food and drink, go to

The 12 restaurants and food artisans participating in Community Flavor & Harmony are cooking up some exciting dishes, including a big paella from Mundaka proprietor Gabe Georis. Other dishes on the tentative menu include Tuna Tartar … Read More

Uncommon Brewers teams with El Salchichero -

Screen Shot 2015-11-10 at 3.12.23 PMNovember 10, 2015 – Two top-quality local companies are teaming up to open Santa Cruz’ largest tasting room and kitchen in 2016. Uncommon Brewers is partnering with El Salchichero butcher shop to open a 2,700 sq. ft. bar/restaurant on River Street in the Old Sash Mill. “Beer and food are meant to go together,” said Alec Stefansky, the owner and head brewer of Uncommon Brewers. “Since we haven’t had a public tasting room, this is going to be great. It will give us more visibility in Santa Cruz and really showcase what we do.”

The new venue will feature a 34-foot redwood bar surrounding an open kitchen and it marks the first time El Salchichero owner Chris LaVeque is getting into the restaurant business. “He’s a very gifted chef,” says … Read More

Community Concert benefiting homeless women offers chance to dance, drink, and dine -

jonahNovember 10, 2015 – At first, Gin Weathers was just looking for the chance to dance. Partly because she loves to move to music, but primarily because she had run into Alex Shirley, the soulful Jamaican Bassist and singer who founded “Jonah and the Whalewatchers.” This legendary local band is known for performing “heartbeat music that fuses Caribbean and African beats with American jazz, blues and soul to create a very unique sound that is most often identified as reggae.

Since 1990, Jonah and the Whalewatchers has been bringing “positive musical consciousness and culture” to performance venues in an effort to foster a message of peace and love for humanity. This got Weathers thinking. If she was going to bring in a band with this kind of social awareness, she … Read More

Coffeetopia buys Kitchen Santa Cruz -

10426178_1027651583918378_1424178327158304380_nNovember 3, 2015 – Dave Larkin knows a thing or two about business. After starting the first of what would become four Coffeetopia locations throughout Santa Cruz county twenty-one years ago, being the owner and operator of a mini coffee chain has given him an understanding of how to adapt over time. He’s also had a lot of practice identifying when the time has come to make a change.

Observing how inefficient and stressful the breakfast burrito production was becoming at each Coffeetopia location, Larkin spent over a year looking for a solution to streamline the process. That problem is now solved, since he and his wife Kristin purchased Kitchen Santa Cruz, a 2,400 sq. ft. commercial kitchen near Costco, last summer.

The kitchen was built by Chicha Russo in … Read More

Wharf Marketplace gets tasty update -

12038009_556716537814756_7912189044818471631_nNovember 3, 2015 – A new build-it-yourself salad bar, a new juice bar, new hand-made outdoor seating and a bigger beer and wine bar with sports TV are just some of the changes underway at the Wharf Marketplace in Monterey. While shoppers will still be able to stop by for farm fresh Tanimura & Antle produce, top quality fish and unusual gift items, the new focus is on custom-made meals to go or to eat right there. 

The just-opened salad bar is staffed by two full time chefs, who make sure vegetables are freshly cut and attractively displayed. Customers point to the ingredients they want in their salad and the chef assembles it on the spot. A salad with five toppings is $7.99 and customers can select from a wide … Read More