Polly’s Paladar: Art of the Gather

ONE OF THE MOST EXCEPTIONAL CULINARY EXPERIENCES in the foothills isn’t listed in a Zagat dining guide, bookable on OpenTable.com, or even marked by a sign on the door. It is found inside a cozy, 126-year-old miner’s cabin tucked off Broad Street in Nevada City. Each month, a reservation-only supper club called Polly’s Paladar serves […]

“Cooked”: Exploring culinary experiences in the Sierra Foothills

AWARD-WINNING FOOD AUTHOR Michael Pollan and Oscar-winning filmmaker Alex Gibney are receiving widespread praise for their Netflix documentary Cooked. In Cooked, Pollan explores how cooking transforms food and shapes our world. Each episode examines one of the physical elements used throughout the ages for cooking: fire (barbecue), water (pot cooking), air (bread making), and earth […]

“Kitchen Cabinets”: Friends & family who advise each other in a real kitchen

“Kitchen cabinet” politics is a group of unofficial advisers to a political leader—often more influential than the official cabinet. President Reagan’s “kitchen cabinet” included trusted old friends, as did the group assembled by Andrew Jackson in 1829. Next year, our new President will form his or her own “kitchen cabinet.” The same is true when […]

Stewards of the Yuba River

“It takes a village” to protect the Yuba watershed. Here are some of the locals who have been part of the effort—from all walks of life: JOHN OLMSTED Naturalist and Conservationist Inspired by John Muir, Olmsted worked tirelessly to create wild areas, open space, trails and parks in our region. He preserved parcels that became […]

Imaginative restaurant designs in Placer County and Nevada County CA

“Dining out is rarely just about food. A simple meal seems that much more appetizing when paired with appealing furniture, finishes, and alluring lighting.” —Architectural Digest WE COULD NOT AGREE MORE, and our region’s restaurants — from fine dining to casual — have some imaginative and unique designs, thanks to our local professional and artistic talent. […]

Artisan cheese in the foothills: Dedrick’s, Wheyward Girl, Shaft’s

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA HAS A storied cheese making history. Marin’s historic Rouge & Noire cheese company, now Marin French Cheese, has roots that go back 150 years. In the 1930s Gaetano Vella started Vella Cheese Company in Sonoma at the urging of local dairymen. And in the ‘90s, longtime friends Sue Conley and Peggy Smith founded […]

Crowdfunding for food startups grows in the Sierra Foothills and Truckee

CROWDFUNDING, RAISING MONEY FROM a large number of people on the internet, is democratizing entrepreneurship. In recent years, the crowdfunding economy has more than tripled to more than $5 billion. Nowhere is the practice better suited than to our region, where entrepreneurs can launch their businesses with community donations. This includes becoming a “new bank” […]

Artisan pizza abounds in Grass Valley, Nevada City and Truckee

THE ITALIANS WHO CAME TO THE FOOTHILLS in the Gold Rush-era brought winemaking to the region, but they also introduced the tradition of baking in stone ovens. Area restaurants and wineries have revived the tradition, from North Auburn to Grass Valley to Nevada City to Truckee. Sierra Knolls’ Bear River Wine Tasting room, just off […]

A Baker’s Dozen

CELEBRATED FRENCH CHEF Alain Ducasse helped put San Francisco’s Tartine Bakery on the map when he wrote about it in Harvesting Excellence. It helped set off a decade-long artisan baking craze in Northern California, with bakeries such as Della Fattoria Café in Petaluma or Thomas Keller’s Buchon Bakery in Yountville. Now the bakery boom is […]

Three Forks Bakery & Brewing Co. shows farm-to-fork boom

SOME OF OUR FAVORITE FOOD PARADISES are in the Bay Area, such as the Ferry Building Marketplace or the Rockridge Market Hall. Now a vibrant community of farmers, artisan food sellers and artists is emerging in downtown Nevada City. Located in the heart of the historic district on Commercial Street, it is anchored by Three […]

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