With their creative costumes hanging in the closet and organic jack-o'-lanterns decorating the doorways, San Franciscans are almost ready for Halloween. All that’s missing is the witch’s cauldron of locally sourced candy bars.
“I want people to think about all the choices that are involved to get your food on your plate,” said Steve Boilard, executive director of the Center for California Studies at California State University Sacramento (CSUS). Last Friday, the center hosted the 24th annual Envisioning California Conference in Sacramento.
When the macaron wave crested from New York to San Francisco a few years ago, we wondered if cupcakes had finally ended their reign as the nation’s trendiest treat. Ongoing interest in gluten-free foods continues to buoy the appeal of these dainty sandwich pastries (the French do not call them “cookies”), with their shells made of almond flour and typically ganache-filled centers. Autumn brings new reasons to fall for a plate of these colorful confections.
It’s easy to get in an olive oil rut once you find a blend you like. No one wants to commit to a $45 bottle only to discover it’s too grassy or too buttery or just doesn’t taste right drizzled on your daily loaf. “Taste Before You Buy” is the invaluable mantra of the self-serve olive oil shops that have emerged over the last few years. Some provide empty bottles. Others require you to bring your own and will reward your eco-friendliness with a rebate.
Though it was created as a health food more than a century ago, granola has devolved into a sugary excuse for a balanced breakfast. Several Bay Area companies are bringing the healthy back with an emphasis on local sourcing and high quality taste.
It’s lunchtime at Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary in 1946. Two hundred and fifty of the most dangerous criminals in America wait in single-file line for their meal.
Consumers unwittingly collect olive oil as they would wine, decorating their counters with lean, dark bottles emblazoned in elegant labels to be used sparingly over the next year or more. However, reports of an influx of counterfeit extra virgin olive oil from overseas have buoyed local producers' efforts to show shoppers their California product is not only pure, but fresher and tastier.
Hot weather has never been a prerequisite for devouring ice cream in San Francisco. If it were, we’d hardly eat any. July marks National Ice Cream Month, making it the perfect time to indulge in a scoop or three.
Stand on Solano Avenue, the main drag that runs through the East Bay city of Albany, and you could be in any quaint Northern California town. There’s the art deco Landmark Albany Twin theater and rows of stucco salons, cafes, and gift stores. Then you pop into bite-size Le Bedaine, and you’re in Paris.
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