Archive for May, 2012
June 2, 2012 Raley’s Grape Escape – Sacramento, California
http://www.raleysgrapeescape.com 4:00pm-7:00pm; rain or shine. More than 200 award-winning California wines come to the cosmopolitan, urban setting of downtown Sacramento. Pair that with some of the region’s best local cuisine and you have an amazing culinary experience. Raley’s Grape Escape features wineries from 8 regional counties
June 2, 2012 Davis Beer Fest 2012 – Davis, California
Tasting over 100 handcrafted beers from over 40 breweries. Touring the Sudwerk Brewery. Learn the secrets from area brewmasters. Receive a commemorative tasting glass just for attending. Live music. Fantastic Food. Where: Sudwerk Brewery, 2001 Second Street, Davis, Admission: $35 in advance or $40 at the door. All proceeds support the programs of Citizens Who Care.Admission for designated drivers is $10 at the door. This includes food and a non-alcoholic soda. Must be 21 to enter the tasting area. Advanced tickets available – First Northern Bank & Sudwerk Restaurant – at the Citizens Who Care office (530-758-3704)
June 2-3, 2012 Sequoia Foodie Fest – Exeter, California
The Sequoia Foodie Fest promotes the diversity of California’s agricultural commodities. Local celebrity chef cooking demonstrations and contests, Iron Chef competitions. Life-sized citrus sculptures, Farmers Market, food samples, live music, kids entertainment. Proceeds benefit the Boys & Girls Club of the Sequoias
Murphys is a superb destination for exploring your palate; 9 excellent restaurants, 18 wine tasting rooms, artisan cheese, spice and chocolate shops and a gold old fashion bakery that will tantalize your taste buds. Join Local Roots Food Tour this Memorial Weekend and SAVE on adult food tour tickets for Saturday ONLY! Special promotion code: STARS will give you a discount of $15!
Stroll along 1800’s-era Italian brick and stone buildings where talented chefs and vintners now produce their mouth-watering dishes and award-winning vintages. You will be treated to a day following a trained culinary concierge who knows the town inside and out. A culinary and cultural treat waiting for you to come participate in. The Murphys Food & Wine Tour entails 3 hours of eating, walking and talking. The culinary journey takes you to 9 stops at the best restaurants and shops. You’ll eat unique dishes made from fresh, locally-sourced produce & taste fabulous, locally-made wines.
As part of our “foodie family”, you’ll get up close with chefs, owners, and winemakers of this quaint town. Hear about the unique terrior and climate that puts Murphys wines in a class all by themselves, and connect with the artisans as you taste their unique creations. A gourmet spice shop, a quaint cheese shop and a candy store that has been making homemade chocolates and hard candies for over 100 years! Advanced ticketing is required. Visit http://www.localrootsfoodtours.com and use promotion code: STARS to book your Memorial Weekend Walking Food Tour today!
Want to start savoring your culinary exploration? Here is a sample of the wonderful tastings you will experience on the Murphys Food & Wine Tour:
- House made pan seared crab cakes with sweet Thai chili sauce & fresh fruit salsa
- Fresh baked potato bun with rosemary and fresh melted Parmesan cheese
- Lavender and orange blossom short bread cookie
- Fried olives stuffed with calamari
- Red velvet beet bundt cake
- Handmade and locally produced English Toffee
- Gourmet sea salt tasting:Himalayan Pink Salt,Red Pepper Bacon Sea Salt, Espresso Bravo Sea Salt and Vintage Merlot Sea Salt
- Lamb meatball with pearl couscous
- 2009 Sangiovese paired with local cheeses
Farmers Markets are popping all over the country this time of year. Keeping it local and exploring your palate each and every week has its perks. Here are 10 reasons why its a positive experience by shopping at your local farmer’s markets:
1. You can Taste The Difference! Most of the produce has been picked within 24 hours (supermarkets could be as long as a couple of months!). It comes to your table ripe, fresh and full of flavor. The produce is at its “prime”!
2. You are giving back to your local community. “Keeping it local” is a common trend in urban and rural areas today. In areas with strong local markets, the family farm has been given new life.
3. Discover New Flavors! Ever wonder what the long white root vegetable is and what it is used for? Flabbergasted by how many varieties of pears you can find at the market? Shopping at local markets helps you think outside of the supermarket bins and explore your palate with so many varieties of flavors. Small farms are keeping alive nearly 300 other varieties of particular produce; offering heirloom varietals and the good old fashion beef steak tomatoes!
4. Helps to Boost Local Economy! A US study showed that almost twice the contribution of a dollar stayed in the local economy when spent at a local food business compared to a supermarket.
5. Save the World! A study in Iowa found that a regional diet consumed 17 times less oil and gas than a diet based on food shipped across the country! With gas prices on the rise, who wants to pay for transportation fees to a supermarket bringing in un-ripened fruit and vegetables when one could drive down the road and buy from Farmer Brown?
6. Meet Your Neighbors and Farmers! Local eating is social. Studies show that people shopping at farmer’s markets have 12 times more conversations than their counterparts at the supermarket. Sometimes shopping at your local farmers markets turns into a half day affair with all the friends and locals you run into. Bring your chairs and make a day of good old fashion community fun!
7. Be Healthy! Eating fresh local ingredients with no processing, no additives, no pesticides…..the only end result is healthy eating! Cooking from scratch makes you feel better; you are eating more fresh fruit and vegetables and fewer of the bad products that have turned our country into an obese problem. Once you go fresh and local, you won’t want to go back!
8. Get in Touch with the Seasons! Many farming communities are lucky enough to have year round supply of fresh, local ingredients at their markets. When you eat locally, you eat what’s in season. You’ll remember the cherries are the taste of summer. Even in winter, comfort foods like squash soup and sweet potato bisque just make sense.
9. Create Memories! Bringing back those fresh local ingredients each week, breaking out the cookbook and exploring your passion while creating some excellent dishes is all about eating locally grown. Making jam, eating fresh local food and pairing it with a local wine with family and friends makes memories of a lifetime!
10. Explore your local community! Get out and about and visit local farmers markets. Become a tourist in your own back yard! One way of exploring markets is by participating in a organized tour. Follow a chef thru a market and learn about unique vegetables and fruits you normally wouldn’t even think of buying. Visit your local event calendar and find a farmers market tour and join in on the fun and education. You will be surprised how much little you knew about your local farmers and artisans until you get one on one time with them on a tour!
Keep Your Family Safe - Food Safety at Farmers Markets:
Farmers’ markets are the prime destination for fresh and local food, but they’re not immune to germs and bacteria. Farmers work hard to comply with state and federal food safety standards but patrons also have to keep their eyes peeled (and their produce washed). Use our tips to help avoid food safety pitfalls.
Whether it’s organically grown or not, produce needs to washed well. It’s a good thing that farmers’ market produce isn’t waxed like much of what you’ll find in the grocery store, but these local goodies are often covered with dirt. Rinse delicate items like berries, herbs and lettuces well just before use; rinsing them before storing them can cause them to get moldy or mushy. Sturdy produce like carrots, apples and potatoes can handle a good scrub. Thick-skinned foods like melons should be washed before you slice into them.
Some vendors turn their produce into drinks like apple cider. Look for pasteurized beverages, especially if you’re pregnant, elderly or serving them to young children.
Eggs and Dairy Products
Eggs and dairy (yogurt, cheese and milk) at the grocery store is almost always pasteurized, this isn’t always the case at the farmers’ market. Read labels carefully and if in doubt, ASK! Raw milk products and unpasteurized eggs are appealing to some folks but also carry a higher risk of food-borne illness from salmonella and listeria. Also, be sure that all dairy products are stored at the proper temperature – in refrigeration or on ice, especially on hot days.
Meats & Seafood
Fresh and frozen meats, meat products (such as bacon and sausage) and even seafood are popular farmers’ market finds. Use a specially designated shopping bag to avoid cross contamination and bring along an ice pack to keep everything cold on the ride home.
It’s become very popular for venders to give away tastes of their goods, especially prepared foods and specialty items. Baked goods, pesto and tomato sauce, jams and jellies, cheese, granola, yogurt, pickles, hummus, soups and grain salads are just a few of things you might come across. Bring along your own napkins (vendors never seem to have enough). Make sure perishable foods are kept on ice and have proper serving utensils before you sample them. Most importantly, beware of double dippers!
Sacramento is always being highlighted for something, but did you know Restaurant News recently named Sacramento as the city whose “Restaurants Sizzle”? Sacramento has evolved into a vibrant dining Mecca. Time magazine has also named Sacramento the most diverse city in America, which is reflected in the many flavors found in restaurants throughout the region. Be adventurous and ready to be entertained as you join Local Roots Food Tours in one of their 3 culinary tours in downtown Sacramento.
Taking time to explore the back streets by foot, taking your palate on a culinary journey is what Local Roots Food Tours is all about. Savoring, Learning, Exploring and Connecting its locals and tourist to Sacramento’s cuisine, culture and history. Their tours are a great way to get acquainted with the local food scene, and a great activity for visitors, families, and co-workers alike. They harness the power of great food to unite people, no matter their race or creed. Spend three hours learning and tasting, and you’re sure to come away a bit more enlightened than you already were. Book some time for you or your group and take a well-rounded sample of some delicious foods, from iconic restaurants to the hidden gems — you’ll see what the buzz is about! Local Roots Food Tours offers four tours in Sacramento; each distinctly different. City of Trees Food Tasting and Cultural Walking Tour and our Origins of Sacramento Food and Cultural Walking Tour are offered 6 days a week, custom group tours can be arranged as well. Their newest food tour experience is offered Wednesday and Thursdays; Market to Plate Executive Chef Lunch Tour