Author Archive | Amber Turpin

Santa Cruz planning new site for downtown farmers’ market

March 20, 2018 – One of the most predictable things about Wednesday afternoons in Santa Cruz is the downtown Farmers’ Market. But many of us don’t realize how tenuous that market location is, and how long the Santa Cruz Community Farmers’ Market (SCCFM) has felt insecure about that parking lot at the junction of Cedar and Cathcart streets.

Nesh Dhillon recalls that back in 2006 the parking lot was under development review and the city wanted SCCFM to find an alternate location, which they couldn’t find despite being smaller than the market is today. But fortunately, “when the financial markets came unglued, the city backed off of that project,” he says.

Now, the future seems uncertain again. A highly controversial proposal is being considered by the Santa Cruz City Council, … Read More

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Humble Sea to Debut Beer-Wine Hybrid

February 20, 2018 – What do you do when your friend is thirsty for a little local craft beer, but you’d rather have wine? Well Humble Sea Brewing may have the answer. It’s a brand new beer-wine hybrid drink made with grape pomace from  Beauregard Vineyards. A delicious rosé version debuted at Twisted Tasting last weekend, and the brewery plans to release a heftier Vin Syrah version on Friday. 

“It’s a neat little creature,” says Shane Winkler, of his latest project, a barrel-aged beer using Syrah wine grapes. Winkler is the barrel program director at Humble Sea Brewing Co. in Santa Cruz, and he is pretty happy with how this beer-meets-wine concept turned out. “I’m itching to do it again,” he says.

The use of wine grapes in beer … Read More

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Behind the Scenes at the Good Food Awards

January 23, 2018 – The annual Good Food Awards ceremony, celebrating producers of tasty, authentic and socially responsible products, took place Friday night at the monumental SF War Memorial building. Always an event with inspired, funny and heartfelt speakers, this year did not disappoint.

Out of 2,057 entries from more than 30 states, 199 winning artisans were honored and 58% of the finalists had never won before. As is the custom, Alice Waters opened up the show by introducing the 2018 keynote speaker, cookbook author Madhur Jaffrey. She took the prize for best quote of the night with her closing remarks, “A great hooray for good food, for good food all over the world…and I would also like to say hooray for millet!”

And then it was time for the … Read More

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Davenport Boasts Sustainable Seafood Secret

December 12, 2017 – “Nothing happens fast in the abalone biz,” says Tom Ebert, owner of the American Abalone Farms (AAF) in Davenport. He is mostly speaking of the slow growth rate of the California red abalone that he farms here, where even the smallest ones take 2-3 years to mature. But his statement is also a little sarcastic, referring to the pace of progress he has seen running his business here since 1994.

From an outsider’s point of view, Ebert’s perspective doesn’t seem true. A new venture for the farm began over Labor Day, launching a marketplace, oyster bar and seafood take-out spot on weekends, and has quickly drawn attention to this hidden gem ever since. Business is booming, a large new deck and open air market space has … Read More

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Beyond Pickles: Fermented Food Gets Festival of Its Own

July 11, 2017 – There’s nothing trendier right here, right now than fermented foods and expert preservationists, home brewers and fermenters are headed for Scotts Valley this weekend to take part in the first Fermentation Festival, happening at Skypark on Sunday, July 16. It is sure to be a great opportunity to sample a wide variety of fermented foods and beverages in one place, and to learn more about the benefits of consuming edibles that are alive.

Even if you don’t count yourself as one of the many folks jumping into our current fermented food renaissance, you would be surprised at how much of the stuff appears in your everyday diet: Cheese, beer, bread, yogurt, even chocolate. And while it may seem like this is a new trend (all of the sudden the Perfect Pickler is Read More

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