Sunset SAVOR the Central Coast 2011 to Feature Local Artisan Producers
Central Coast farmers showcased at second annual destination food and wine celebration
Unique in its wide range of edibles and wines, San Luis Obispo County hosts the perfect combination of growing conditions to cultivate fresh, concentrated flavors. Sunset SAVOR the Central Coast 2011 will capture these in a variety of seminars, demonstrations, tours, and tastings during its four-day celebration of all things Central Coast, September 29 through October 2, 2011.
"We're honored to be at this year's SAVOR," said Kara Wood of Bloom Microgreens (www.BloomMicrogreens.com) in Los Osos, whose collection of tender, nutrient-rich greens will be highlighted during the Main Event at the Santa Margarita Ranch, October 1 and 2. Kara calls her products "big flavors in tiny packages" because microgreens supply more concentrated vitamins, minerals, protein, fiber, and taste than do fully-grown greens. At Bloom, Kara nurtures an ever-changing mélange of seasonal greens that supplies gourmet chefs and natural food shops across the Central Coast. At SAVOR's Main Event, Bloom Microgreens will be featured in the hands of Chef Pandee Pearson at the Gardens of Avila Restaurant station, under the Sunset Backyard Farm tent, and in a seminar on how to grow your own microgreens.
Up the coast in the charming seaside village of Cayucos, SAVOR attendees will be invited to tour The Ocean Rose Abalone Farm (www.AbaloneFarm.com) and enjoy a fresh and bountiful abalone lunch with Manager Brad Buckley and Sunset Editor-In-Chief, Katie Tamony. The largest farm of its kind on the West Coast, The Ocean Rose Abalone Farm produces 60% of U.S. farm-raised abalone in a slow and painstaking process that takes four years to grow just one ounce of meat. Visitors to the farm will experience the tide pool setting that is fostered to keep abalone in an environment as near to the wild as possible, and see the twenty-five year old "spawner" abalone, which weigh approximately three pounds. The Ocean Rose Abalone Farm will also be featured by a local chef during the festivities of Sunset SAVOR's Main Event at the Santa Margarita Ranch on October 1 and 2.
Boasting 80 vendors and 26-years in operation, the North County Farmers' Markets Association (www.NorthCountyFarmersMarkets.com) brings fresh row crops, vegetables, jams, jellies, dried fruits, and baked goods to four locations across Northern San Luis Obispo County each week, year-round. This year, the NCFMA will be participating in SAVOR in a unique way. According to NCFMA Marketing Manager Sandra Dimond, a full-fledged educational garden will be on display at SAVOR's Main Event in Santa Margarita. It will then be transported to San Miguel's Lillian Larsen Elementary School as part of the National Farm to School Program, courtesy of Sunset magazine, the San Luis Obispo County Visitors and Conference Bureau, NCFMA and several local farmers. The garden-which includes 100 to 200 raised bed containers, a shed, seeds, compost and more-will connect this school's students to their land, the food that they eat, and to the simple joy of watching a garden grow.
"It's a great event," said Richards Gonzales of Limerock Orchards (www.LimerockOrchards.com). "The event was knocked out of the park last year. It provides a lot of opportunities to experience what this area is all about." Located on Paso Robles' famed West Side, Richard and his wife Olivia produce Limerock Orchards walnut oil, a favorite secret ingredient of chefs and gourmands that will be available to taste at Sunset SAVOR the Central Coast 2011. The process of turning walnuts into walnut oil is an extensive one wherein the nuts are farmed without irrigation (to maximize flavor concentration), harvested, hulled, dried, shelled, pressed and finally, canned. Visitors to the event will be able to experience for themselves the light, buttery flavor of Limerock Orchards walnut oil, delectable for salads and dipping, as well as for fry cooking.
From 134 acres on Morro Bay's ocean floor, the Morro Bay Oyster Company (www.MorroBayOysters.com) farms some of the most sought-after oysters in the country. Grown in mesh bags for circulation, harvested by hand, and then sold whole, live in the shell, MBOC oysters are known for their incredible freshness whether off the dock in Morro Bay or by mail order around the U.S. Founder and Owner, Neal Maloney, will join Sunset Features Editor, Christine Ciarmello, for a boat tour of the farm in Morro Bay, followed by an abundant oyster lunch paired with San Luis Obispo County wines overlooking the bay at Tognazzini's Dockside Restaurant on the Embarcadero.
"Once you start eating farm-fresh food, there's no going back," said Debbie Thomas, referring to the organic farm and hugely popular bistro, Thomas Hill Organics (www.ThomasHillOrganics.com), that she owns with her husband, Joe, in downtown Paso Robles. On ten acres, the Thomas family raises 900 varieties of fruit and nut trees, herbs and vegetables to stock their restaurant and to sell in Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) shares. Dishes created in the restaurant by Chef Julie Simon naturally showcase whatever is in season at the farm, whether that's a summer shrimp salad with quinoa and watermelon, Julie's famous Vietnamese Pork Belly Sandwich, or a stone fruit cobbler packed with plums, pluots and peaches. For Sunset SAVOR the Central Coast 2011, Thomas Hill Organics will be the featured farm at the Paso Glow event in Paso Robles' City Park, and will also participate in the chef and farm areas at the Main Event.
Finally, dessert! In just three years, sisters Christa Hozie and Tracie Nickson have developed a cult following as the bakers of the Brown Butter Sea Salt Cookie, the signature creation of the Brown Butter Cookie Company (www.BrownButterCookies.com). From their factory in Cayucos, Christa and Tracie helm a small team that browns butter, rolls dough, sprinkles sea salt, and bakes one thousand irresistible cookies each day. While the factory welcomes visitors and sells the lion's share of Brown Butter Sea Salt Cookies, the company ships cookies all over the country and has gained notable attention from the media, including The New York Times, Every Day with Rachel Ray and Gourmet magazine. "We had such a great time last year [at SAVOR the Central Coast] that we bought extra space to sample our cookies this year," said Christa. The Brown Butter Cookie Factory will be sharing their delicious treats at the Main Event at the Santa Margarita Ranch, October 1 and 2.
For tickets or more information on Sunset SAVOR the Central Coast 2011, please visit www.SavorCentralCoast.com. Tickets are also available at Farm Supply locations.
Sunset magazine has partnered with the San Luis Obispo County Visitors & Conference Bureau to launch Sunset SAVOR the Central Coast 2011. For more event information and tickets, visit www.savorcentralcoast.com, or call 800.768.6653. Become a fan on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/SavorCC, or follow us on Twitter (@SavorCC). Ticket proceeds and sponsorships are considered donations to the San Luis Obispo County Visitors & Convention Bureau, a 501 c 6 non?profit tourism organization promoting San Luis Obispo County.
About Sunset magazine
Sunset magazine is the premier guide to life in the West, covering the newest and best ideas in Western home design and landscaping, food and entertaining, and regional travel in 13 Western states. Sunset and www.Sunset.com are part of the lifestyle group of magazines and websites published by the Time Inc. Lifestyle Group.
About the San Luis Obispo Visitors & Conference Bureau
The San Luis Obispo County Visitors & Conference Bureau promotes San Luis Obispo County through advertising, marketing, public relations and group sales. Its membership base is comprised of over 500 tourism industry-related businesses including lodging properties, restaurants, wineries, golf courses and retail stores. For more information on the VCB, please visit www.SanLuisObispoCounty.com or contact Molly Morrison Cano at 805.781.2531 or MollyM@SanLuisObispoCounty.com.