Travel Guide to California

2017 Travel Guide to California

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50 2 0 1 7 T R A V E L G U I D E T O C A L I F O R N I A Dining Out A Golden State of haute cuisine BY LAURA NESS Like everything else in California from politics to entertainment, food is a celebrity-driven business. From the rock star antics of Guy Fieri to the farm-to-table phenom that took the country by storm, the culinary scene is a mix of where to be seen and those unseen farmers and field laborers who actually do all the dirty work necessary to put food on tables. Kudos to garden-to-table pioneer Alice Waters, who made growing your own green the new black before that was even an expression. There are now nearly one thou- sand farmers markets and CSA's thriving here: more than in any other state. Sustainability is the keyword in all things agriculture, and we can tip our hat to the Monterey Bay Aquarium for its impactful Seafood Watch program that helps diners make informed choices at places like Cindy's Waterfront and Passion- fish (Pacific Grove). Sonoma and Marin counties have become cheese tourism havens and apple lovers can pick their fill in Sebastopol and El Dorado's Apple Hill. Coastside, berry farms (Swanton) and pumpkin patches (Arata's, Half Moon Bay) beckon: visit Harley Farms for adorable goats and exquisite cheese (Pescadero). Many restaurants have on-site gardens, including The Restaurant at Wente (Liver- more), Chez TJ (Mountain View) and Zazu Kitchen (The Barlow, Sebastopol). California's olive oil production is booming, with Stella Cadente (Fort Bragg), Victorine Valley Farms (Livermore) and Olea (Paso Robles) all producing decadent DISCOVER LOS ANGELES. OPPOSITE: LA .FODIE/CREATIVE COMMONS/FLICKR ; CHIRS HARDY CUISINE ALFRESCO DINING All up and down the state dining in the open air is popular, as it is here in Los Angeles, above. LA is known for its wide variety of exquisite restaurants, and its cousin to the north, San Francisco, has more restaurants per capita than any other U.S. city. Old standards that have been around for decades still hold their own against innovative new arrivals. SF's Mission district has become a foodie haven and surrounding communities from Berkeley to Palo Alto to Napa and Sonoma all bring fine food to the table.

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