It's that time of the year where crisp air, the sound of crunching leaves below the feet and awesome food venues will keep you hopping along with your exploring calendars. It's time to bundle up and go enjoy what Northern California is very well known for - beautiful fall foliage, an abundance of fresh fruit and produce at local farms and events that will go down in your photo albums as PRICELESS! Here are a few of our recommendations for some fun and food-filled activities to go, see and do!
Sierra Oro Farm Trail Passport Weekend - October 12th & 13th, Butte County
Perfect for foodies, wine and beer enthusiast and travelers looking for a weekend getaway or a chance to explore off-the-beaten trail....this agri-tourism adventure provides trail goers with the once a year chance to savor the farm-fresh bounty of Butte County all weekend long. To purchase your passport and pick up your trail map visit www.sierraoro.org/passport-weekend
Sactoberfest - Saturday, October 19th
This one day celebration will involve beer, bratwurst, great oompah music and bretzels! Join proud German ancestors in Sacramento and embrace the traditions of Oktoberfest. Participate in traditional German games including keg rolling, stein holding, yodeling, and everyone’s favorite Chicken Dance dance-off. Traditional German dance performances will also take place throughout the day by The Schuhplatter Dancers.
You don’t have to travel to Munich to experience Oktoberfest, it’s right here in your own backyard! Sactoberfest is a 21 and over event. 12pm-10pm - West Sacramento www.sactoberfest.com
California Beer & Wine Festival - Saturday, October 19th
Beer, Wine, Food, Cigars, Live Music and fun Vendors....sounds like a great afternoon!! Advance ticketing $25 per person
Plus Street, Yuba City Town Center (Between Franklin and B Streets) 1:00pm-5:00pm www.californiabeerandwinefestival.com
Pomegranate Festival - Madera, CA - Saturday, November 2nd
A unique and fun festival where the celebration of the Spanish Conquistadores bringing the pomegranate to America by 1772 is done by fun activities, history lessons, recipe contests, amazing food, libations and live music!! You’ve seen the “punkin chunkin’’ contests - well how about witnessing the pomegranate fling contest?
Madera Municipal Airport - 4020 Aviation Drive, Madera, CA 93637 10:00am - 5:00pm Details: www.maderachamber.com
Big Reds Release Party & Redneck BBQ Bash - Saturday, November 2nd
Git yerselves on over to Andis Wines in Amador County for their 2nd Annual Redneck BBQ Bash! New BIG red wine releases. Make sure to wash your hands before dinner because no utensils will be allowed! A memorable evening by all who attend. Advance reservations required by Wed. Oct. 30th. Call 209-245-6177 or visit www.andiswines.com/events Click Here to Continue!
Sierra Foothills Farm and Wine Tour Experience by Bethany Woy
Yes, we know that California is known for amazing fresh fruits and vegetables. We are known to produce some of the best wine grapes in the world. We are blessed with rolling hills of orchards, farms and vineyards. On a beautiful Saturday this May, a few food lovers decided they would venture out of Midtown Sacramento and join Local Roots Food Tours on the exploration of the nearby Sierra Foothills. A bartender, secretary, regional manager and executive chef joined the Local Roots staff and spent an afternoon discovering the wonders of nature right outside our back door. Here’s what they found.
“ We met up in Newcastle at a quaint little country store that you would see out of an old time movie. All fresh produce and local items were sold there. No big box stores. Just products from local dairies, farms, orchards and vineyards. Right away I knew this would be right up my alley. Living in Sacramento, it’s great to be able to shop at the Co-op or Farmer’s Markets, but seeing a little store with so many wonderful local products was refreshing.
We loaded up into the comfortable bus and headed out to Colwell Thundering Herd Farms where we met Rich and Nancy Colwell that own a mandarin farm. This couple have lived in Penryn since 1984, but the family farm dates back to 1959. The Colwells continue to live in an old ranch home owned by the Butler family dating back to the late 1800’s. (the land has supported peach, pears and plum orchards at that time!) Meeting Rich and Nancy was amazing and they were the nicest people ever. You could definitely see the passion they have for farming. I had no idea there were so many varietals of mandarin oranges but Rich gave us a full mandarin grove tour where we got to actually touch the trees and learn about pruning, harvesting and processing this amazing fruit. It was so wonderful to have them open up their property to us visitors. The Colwells produce mandarin and lemon olive oil as well as balsamic vinegar and mandarin chocolate sauce. After touring the farm and getting up close and personal with the fruit we were asked to sit in a wonderful shady area of the property and asked to sample the Colwells products. We got to sample the olive oils, chocolate sauces, vinegars and even the fresh fruit itself. Continue Reading More!
Exploring Northern California’s hills and valleys by bus is only the beginning. We take participants right to the source of our local… Read More
We tour all around different cities looking for what might be a winner and hot topic to talk about with our food tour participants. Trying to stay ahead of the kitchen mallet as to what is trending compared to what is here to stay in the culinary arena has its perks and challenges. Local Roots Food Tours has compiled their top finds on what you might experience in 2013 while on your "foodie adventures."
Top 10 Culinary Trends For 2013:
1. Chef’s behind closed curtains is a thing of the past. 2013 will continue to bring celebrity (as well as local chefs) front and center hosting special themed culinary events, symposiums and contribute to hands-on cooking classes. No more hiding behind the frying pan - their talents and passion will continue to be exposed with many culinary events. We are looking forward to seeing more of our local executive chefs come out and support Sacramento’s Farm to Fork Capital of America efforts by offering some pretty awesome cooking events in and out of their kitchens in 2013.
2. Restaurant gardens - Whether it be in back alley gutters or a transformed back lot, gardens are popping up all over the nation. Chefs cite many logical reasons why restaurant gardens are a good idea: cost, convenience, control, sustainability. The concept of in-house farming is hardly new and the trend has hit far and wide—there are countless restaurants tilling their own soil and planting the seeds for vegetables that will eventually appear on a customer’s plate. A small farm adjacent to an eating establishment keeps that path from farm to table about as short as it can get. One example we love is share is Mineral Restaurant in Murphys, CA. Executive Chef Steve Rinauro and partner/co-owner Maya Rinauro have been busy planting, weeding, watering and harvesting their restaurant garden in 2012. Their farm to table philosophy is lived vivaciously every day in their vegetarian menu. For those restaurants who don’t have the option of a garden out their back door, buying plots of land in local farms creates a great option. One local farm in Sacramento, Feeding Crane Farms offers such plots to local Sacramento chefs.....the next best thing to offer local farm ingredients.
3. Nordic food is out - Peruvian and Korean food is in for 2013. Click to continue!
Many might wonder what actually defines; "Agritourism" Is it a trend or just a catch phrase that is becoming more and more prevalent in agricultural communities? Agritourism is widespread in America. Agritourists can choose from a wide range of activities that include picking fruits and vegetables, riding horses, tasting honey, learning about wine and cheesemaking, or shopping in farm gift shops and farm stands for local and regional produce or hand-crafted gifts. People have become more interested in how their food is produced. They want to meet farmers and processors and talk with them about what goes into food production. For many people who visit farms, especially children, the visit marks the first time they see the source of their food, be it a dairy cow, an ear of corn growing in a field, or an apple they can pick right off a tree.
Northern California is growing their Agritourism and several tour companies offer great options in the form of tours and events in which participants are taken directly to the farms, the cheesemakers, the winemakers and bakers. So many options to choose from......are you ready to go?
1. Local Roots Farm & Wine Tours in Sacramento Valley
Sierra Foothills Farm & Wine Bus Tours take participants on a 4 hour bus journey through the beautiful hills and valleys of Placer County visiting local olive groves, mandarin orchards, organic farms, beautiful vineyards and an indoor produce market and bakery. The opportunity to meet passionate farmers and vintners on each tour stop. Tours include a gourmet lunch which includes farm to fork ingredients from placer county farms and wine tasting at local vineyard. Tours are offered Saturdays and Sundays year round. Custom group tours for private parties are offered 7 days a week.
2. Ag Venture Tours in Salinas Valley
Van tours planned around the Monterey Bay Region stopping at several chosen organic farms in the prosperous Salinas Valley. Different tour options. Advanced ticketing required. Click to continue!
The weather outside might look frightful, but the opportunity to explore is more than delightful with events being offered all around our communities.
December is filled with many chances to go out and explore our hills, valleys and peaks. Northern California is blessed with farms, vineyards, and the chance to shop locally. Get out your calendars and plan for a few weekend road trips this December....it's time to get up and get active!
5 Ways to Explore your Own Backyard:
1. Twin Peaks Orchards Fruit Tasting Open House - Placer County http://www.twinpeaksent.com/events.htm
Sunday, December 2nd - 11am - 3pm Free admission. Fruit tastings, u-pick mandarins & persimmons, brick-oven pizza, shopping, farmers market, hay rides, and so much more! Fun for the entire family!
2. Holidays in the Hills Toy Drive - Placer County Wine Trail http://www.placerwine.com/events.htm
December 8th & 9th: 11am - 5pm; 17 Participating Wineries - Free Tastings with Unwrapped Toy Donation. Live music, food, Christmas shopping, carolers, chocolate tastings, vineyard tours.....lots of fun in beautiful settings.
Download - Holidays in the Hills Wine Trail Map
Download - Holidays in the Hills Activities List Click to continue!
When you hear the term; "Culinary Tourism", do you automatically think about cooking classes or busloads of hungry individuals being taken from one winemaker to the next all in a days' time? Luckily, today we are talking about a much broader scope. You don't have to be wealthy or retired to enjoy culinary delights and highlights while traveling, or better yet, even in your own town. Click here to read more about culinary tourism in Sacramento
The heat has dissipated, the crops are being harvested and the crisp air leads foodies out and about exploring festivals and great food events in the Sacramento Region. We have found several festivals and food entertainment to go check out. Go Explore your bountiful Northern California food friendly region! Click Here for Events
Second Saturday Farm Tour; Saturday August 13, 2011 Come see where your food… Read More
Come out and visit your local farms and you will be… Read More