Food & Home Magazine - Spring 2021

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An active year for the 93108 A big thanks to my clients, colleagues and professional vendors who make it all possible.


















CRYSTA METZGER 805.453.8700 | CalRE#01340521 The property information herein is derived from various sources that may include, but not be limited to, county records and the Multiple Listing Service, and it may include approximations. Although the information is believed to be accurate, it is not warranted and you should not rely upon it without personal verification. Real estate agents affiliated with Coldwell Banker Realty are independent contractor sales associates, not employees. ©2020 Coldwell Banker. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker and the Coldwell Banker logos are trademarks of Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. The Coldwell Banker® System is comprised of company owned offices which are owned by a subsidiary of Realogy Brokerage Group LLC and franchised offices which are independently owned and operated. The Coldwell Banker System fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act.

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Contact me today to learn more! Contact me today to learn more! Contact me today to learn Jeff Bochsler Jeff BranchBochsler Manager & SVP of Mortgage Lending

Jeff Bochsler

O: (805) 335-8753 | C: (805) 450-9616 O: (805) 335-8753 | C: (805) 450-9616 | |

O: (805) 335-8753 | C: (

Branch Manager & SVP of Mortgage Lending

809 De La Vina St., Santa Barbara, CA 93101 809 De La Vina St., Santa Barbara, CA 93101

Branch Manager & SVP o

809 De La Vina St., Santa

Jeff Bochsler NMLS #770636; AZ - 1001880, CA - CA-DOC770636, CO - 100520706, OR - Licensed, WA - MLO-770636 Guaranteed Rate, Inc.; NMLS #2611; For licensing information AZ:CO 14811 N. KierlandORBlvd., Ste. 100, AZ, 85254, Mortgage Banker License #0907078 • CA: Licensed by the Jeff Bochsler NMLS #770636; AZvisit - 1001880, CA - CA-DOC770636, - 100520706, - Licensed, Jeff WAScottsdale, - MLO-770636 Bochsler NML S #770636; AZ Department of Financial Protection and under the California Residential Mortgage Lending ActN.NML • CO: Regulated by the#2611; Division of Real AZ, Estate, (866)-934-7283 • OR:License 3940 N.#0907078 Ravenswood Ave., Chicago, Guaranteed Rate, Inc.; NMLS #2611; Guaranteed ForInnovation licensing information visit Rate, Inc.; AZ: 14811 Kierland Blvd.,S Ste. 100, Scottsdale, 85254, For Mortgage licensing Banker • CA: information Licensed byILthe 60613 • WA:ofConsumer Company CL-2611. Department FinancialLoan Protection Depar andLicense Innovation tment under the California of Residential F inancial Mortgage Lending Act • CO:Protection Regulated by the Division of Real Estate, and (866)-934-7283 Innovation • OR: 3940 N. Ravenswood Ave., under Chicago, IL the C 60613 • WA: Consumer Loan Company 60613 License CL-2611. • WA : Consumer Loan Company License CL-2611.

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VILLA DEL MAR TOWNHOME Offered at $1,398,000 This bright and cheerful Villa Del Mar townhome is truly an oasis of serenity located in the happening Funk Zone. Guests enter from a private patio garden with bubbling fountain. Owners enter through the attached 2 car garage to the entry foyer. Up a gentle flight of stairs the great room level features the living room with fireplace, bbq terrace, dining room, and the updated kitchen with new surfaces and stainless appliances. The main level also has a guest bath, spacious laundry room and ensuite bedroom converted to an office or den with a built in Murphy bed. The primary bedroom encompasses the top floor complete with private rooftop deck, sitting area, walk in closet, and en suite bathroom. Easy to show with few hours notice.

CRYSTA METZGER 805.453.8700 | CalRE#01340521 The property information herein is derived from various sources that may include, but not be limited to, county records and the Multiple Listing Service, and it may include approximations. Although the information is believed to be accurate, it is not warranted and you should not rely upon it without personal verification. Real estate agents affiliated with Coldwell Banker Realty are independent contractor sales associates, not employees. ©2020 Coldwell Banker. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker and the Coldwell Banker logos are trademarks of Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. The Coldwell Banker® System is comprised of company owned offices which are owned by a subsidiary of Realogy Brokerage Group LLC and franchised offices which are independently owned and operated. The Coldwell Banker System fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act.

Montecito Montecito Montecito Sold Sold Sold Listed for $21,500,000. Listed Listedfor for $21,500,000. $21,500,000.

Listed for $9,495,000. Listed for $9,495,000. Listed for $9,495,000.

Listed for $7,995,000 Listed for $7,995,000.

Listed for $7,995,000.

Luxury Specialist for 2020 Years LuxuryReal Realestate estate Specialist for Years

Luxury Wendy Gragg Wendy Gragg Real estate Specialist 805.453.3371 805.453.3371 Wendy Gragg License 01304471 805.453.3371 License 01304471 License 01304471

for 20 Years



LUXURY UNPLUGGED An SB couple shares their journey to living off-grid . . . . . . . 44


Firsts: Q & A with chef Denisse Salinas . . . . . . . . . 17 Sun & Swell Foods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Made in SB: Pacific Pickle Works . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Wine Escape: The reimagined Cuyama Buckhorn . . 22 Winemaker Q&A: Lane Tanner & Lumen . . . . . . . . 24 Wine: Covet These Wines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26


Style & Design: Lounging 101 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 Spanish Splendor at TileCo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 Home & Design . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Spring Cleaning . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 Builder Notes: Storing the Charge . . . . . . . . . . . . 36 Real Estate: Selling in today’s (hot) market . . . . . 38 The Trades: Keefrider: A functional art . . . . . . . . 40 Spaces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 In the Garden: Let’s cover some ground . . . . . . . . 50 Garden Notes: Milkweed for Monarchs . . . . . . . . 52 Celebrating the Rose . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54 A Mother’s Day treat . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 The Last Page . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66

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CANNABIS COCKTAILS The adult version . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58

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8 0 5 .4 8 5 .113 7


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Jim Bartsch Michael Brown Joshua Curry Eliot Crowley Mehosh Dziadzio Braulio Godinez Ashley Hardin Chuck Place Kim Reierson Corina Schweller Alexander Siegel Shelly Vinson Social Media Consultant

Kara Pearson

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Contact Information

P.O. Box 20025, Santa Barbara, CA 93120 (805) 455-4756– Food and Home (ISSN# 1533-693X) is published quarterly by Metro Inc. and single copies are provided to selected homeowners free of charge. Unless otherwise noted, all photographs, artwork, and designs printed in Food & Home are the sole property of Metro Inc. and may not be duplicated or reprinted without Metro Inc.’s express written permission. Food & Home and Metro Inc. are not liable for typographical or production errors or the accuracy of information provided by advertisers. Readers should verify advertised information with the advertisers. Food & Home and Metro Inc. reserve the right to refuse any advertising. Food & Home® is a registered trademark of Metro, Inc. Copyright © 2019. All inquiries may be sent to: Metro Media Services, P.O. Box 20025, Santa Barbara, CA 93120, or call (805) 455-4756, or e-mail: Unless otherwise noted, all photographs, artwork, and designs printed in Food & Home are the sole property of Metro Inc. and may not be duplicated or reprinted without Metro Inc.’s express written permission. Food & Home and Metro Inc. are not liable for typographical or production errors or the accuracy of information provided by advertisers. Readers should verify advertised information with the advertisers. W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

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Culinary procedure Q & A with chef Denisse Salinas By Kara Pearson

Pancake photo: Denisse Salinas. Portrait shot: Lerina Winter


ocal chef Denisse Salinas, owner of Le Petit Chef Catering and co-owner of Hook & Press Donuts, serves up inventive plant-forward recipes to the table in her latest e-cookbook release in partnership with Bragg. I had the pleasure of visiting Salinas at her local donut shop on State Street to chat about her part in this new cooking venture and what it’s like to be a private chef within the Santa Barbara community. From inspiration to execution, let’s dive in with Salinas about how she curated and photographed 40 new recipes in just a little under a month for the Bragg Community E-Cookbook: Q: What lights you up most about cooking food? A: I’ve been cooking professionally for over a decade now, and a few years ago I might have answered differently, but lately it’s the simple act of creating — making something with my hands, keeping my senses stimulated and enjoying the meditative aspect of keeping my overactive mind focused on a single task. Q: What led you to pursue cooking as your career? A: After college I spent my early professional years working for local restaurants, catering companies, and wineries, getting a feel for different W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

facets of the industry and developing a natural interest through those experiences. I always knew I wanted to work for myself though, which is what led to me establishing my private chef and catering brand, Le Petit Chef, in 2008. Nowadays I’m heading further down the path of recipe development, food blogging, photography, and digital content creation for food brands, as well as co-founding Hook & Press Donuts in 2018 with my husband, John. Q: What is the creation process like for your recipes? A: My recipe inspirations often come from all over, whether it’s something I recently ate or saw on Instagram, Pinterest, a cookbook, or food publication. Sometimes they stem from a popular dish I’ve made for my chef clients that would resonate well with my blog audience, and food brand clients will often give me guidelines as to what kind of recipe they’d like me to create using their products. Either way, I’ll research lots of similar recipes before creating a first draft of my own. Then comes testing the recipe and making notes. Generally it works out the first time, but sometimes tweaks and revisions are needed for more complicated recipes before landing on the final version. (continued) FOOD + HOME


FIRSTS (continued)

Q: What was the process like for creating the cookbook in such a limited amount of time for the deadline? Luckily, the Bragg Community Cookbook is mostly made up of recipes that members of the Bragg community contributed, so all I had to do was style and photograph about 40 existing recipes over a few weeks’ time. Still a big job! So I hired a food styling assistant to help me with batch preparing the recipes (and keeping up with the mountain of dishes) so that I could focus on the photography, props, and styling. We were able to knock out six to seven shoots a day, and then it was just a matter of editing the hundreds of photos I’d taken. Q: What is a typical day in the life of a private chef and owner of Hook & Press Donuts? A: Every day is truly so different, and if I’m being honest I feel like I’m always flying by the seat of my pants. Typically the first thing I work on in the morning is Instagram. Social media plays such a huge role in both businesses, so consistency is important. Then the bulk of the day is either spent testing recipes, shooting photo and video content for my brand clients and my blog, Le Petit Eats, or working on creative projects for Hook & Press. I still cook for a select few private chef clients, too, and sometimes you’ll catch me working behind the counter at the donut shop, especially if it’s a busy holiday or if we have something special happening. Q: If you could choose one recipe from your new Cookbook with Bragg that represents the Santa Barbara region most, what would it be? While I didn’t create any of those recipes with Santa Barbara specifically in mind, the Fluffy Vegan Pancakes that appear in the Breakfast chapter really summarize the cooking style that I’ve become known for among my local clients: modern comfort foods made healthier with a plant-forward focus. I used plant milk mixed with Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar to make a dairy-free buttermilk and ingredients like flaxseed and coconut oil to create a betterfor-you breakfast classic. You can follow Denisse Salinas for more recipes on her @lepetitchefsb account on Instagram and by heading to her website 18


Green and delicious!


un & Swell Foods, an online organic foods company based in Santa Barbara, is the first US food company to offer a wide array of healthy foods in 100 percent compostable packaging. The environmentally green-based company also offers an optional send-back program for those who don’t have access to composting to ensure their empty bags are properly composted. Their shipping boxes avoid ink heavy printing and plastic inserts. The company also donates one percent of revenues to non-profits that help support areas that have been impacted by plastic pollution. Co-founders Bryan and Kate Flynn have a company mission to offer the highest quality pantry items and ingredients that are sourced close to home featuring organic, vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, peanut-free, soy free and free of any added sugar or preservatives. —Raymond Bloom For more info, go to: Photo courtesy Sideyard Shrubs.

Kate shares one of her favorite recipes for a beautiful spring Sunday, paired with a cocktail (or mocktail!)

Sun & Swell Foods Cacao Bliss Balls

1.5 cup medjool dates (pitted) 1 cup cashews 1.5 tablespoon cacao nibs 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon Directions: Soak dates in hot water for a few hours, drain, and chop in a food processor. Remove and separately chop cashews in a food processor. Combine chopped dates and cashews with cacao nibs and cinnamon in a blender, and pulse until doughy in consistency. Roll into the desired size.

Sunshine Spritz (Cocktail)

2 ounces dry vermouth (T.W. Hollister) .5 ounce apricot shrub (Sideyard Shrubs) 6 ounces sparkling water Directions: Fill glass with ice cubes. Add shrub, followed by remaining ingredients. Stir to combine.

Sideyard Shrub Soda (Mocktail)

1 ounce Sideyard Shrub (Flavor of choice) 7 ounces sparkling water Directions: Fill glass with ice cubes. Add shrub, followed by sparkling water. Stir to combine and garnish with fresh herbs of choice. W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M


Silas Fallstich

Carriots Of Fire! Perfect addition to a spicey Bloody Mary or Banh-Mi sandwich.

Pickled to perfection A spicy local original By Nancy Ransohoff


hen Bradley Bennett began making his pickles as holiday gifts for friends and family in his Santa Barbara kitchen in 2001, he didn’t envision that one day his crispy-crunchy deliciousness would be sold in about 2,500 stores nationwide. What began as a hobby slowly evolved into a successful business after Bennett made the decision to brand and sell his popular puckery products. His signature recipe blends punchy California chili peppers and umami-rich aromatics. Pacific Pickle Works was born in 2010, with products placed in stores the following year. C’est Cheese (now Cheese Shop Santa Barbara) became Bennett’s first customer, followed eventually by stores including Whole Foods, Bristol Farms, and Gelson’s on the West Coast. “This year we went nationwide in Cost Plus and a few notable chains on the East 20


Coast,” says Bennett. As self-proclaimed Owner and Principal Pickle, the Santa Barbaraborn-and-raised Bennett oversees a small staff that pickles, packages, labels, and ships to locations around the world. “We do everything at our little factory on Union Street on the lower east side,” he says. Bennett is of course acutely aware that this has been a devastating year for small businesses of all kinds. That’s why he is especially grateful that Pacific Pickle Works has been busier than ever. “It’s been a banner year for us,” he says. “We’re thankful that we’ve been able to keep our key workers, and even add to our team.” In an effort to help the business thrive beyond the grocery industry, where it’s difficult for small companies to make a profit, Bennett has exW W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

panded into recipe development and manufacturing for other brands in addition to his own. He also sells foodservice packs to restaurants, bars, breweries, and resorts, where high-quality handmade Pacific Pickle Works products take drinks and plates to the next zingy level. The most popular retail products are the cheekily named Mother’s Puckers, a crunchy-tart classic deli-style garlic sour pickle; Asparagusto!, pickled asparagus spears with a kick of jalapeño; and award-winning Bloody Mary Elixir, made with all-natural house-made Worcestershire sauce. It’s not hard to eat your veggies with such offerings as the flavor-packed Carriots of Fire, Unbeetables, Brussizzle Sprouts and Pickles Under the Ginfluence. Serving suggestions and creative recipes for using Pacific Pickle Works products in everything from grilled cheese sandwiches and tacos to charcuterie boards and cocktails are offered on the website and jar labels. In a year where people are spending more time at home, Bennett notes, “It’s fun to see people posting the cocktails and other things they’re making at home with our products.” Pacific Pickle Works products are available for order through the website and at local stores including Tri-County Produce, Gelson’s, Whole Foods, Bristol Farms, Lazy Acres, Sprouts, Montecito Village Grocery, and Viva Oliva. In the Santa Ynez Valley at Summerset Farm, Los Olivos Grocery, Los Olivos General Store, and Olive Hill Farm. In Summerland at Sweet Wheel Farms. In Ventura at Spicetopia.



PPW founder, Bradley Bennett

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High desert hideaway

The reimagined Cuyama Buckhorn beckons with Old West roadside charm


ituated in the midst of Santa Barbara County’s high desert, just north of Los Padres National Forest, lies Cuyama Buckhorn, an iconic roadside motel and restaurant turned retro-chic retreat in the historic town of Cuyama. Originally founded in 1952, this one-time stop for travelers passing through has since transformed into a destination-worthy desert hideaway, where Old West charm meets mid-century cool for a getaway unlike anything in the area. Located at the intersection of four counties, in what feels like the middle of nowhere, Cuyama Buckhorn is an unexpected oasis in an area known as “The Hidden Valley of Enchantment.” Aside from its wide open spaces and scenic vistas, the valley is home to a rich history and an authentic timelessness that beckons to slow down and spend time under the stars — things that come naturally when staying at Cuyama Buckhorn. Upon first glance, one can’t help but notice that Cuyama Buckhorn’s exterior, while updated, retains the no-frills appearance of the original motel, and even features the original motel signage for an added dose of nostalgia. However, one step onto the nearly two-acre property soon reveals this is no longer the sleepy roadside inn of yesteryear; rather, it’s a place where history and modern living converge — where little luxuries make it feel like you’re on vacation and rustic details pay homage to the past. It’s easy to get the feeling that many stories have been written here.



Highlighting mid-century style throughout, the property features 21 guest rooms, each outfitted with plush bathrobes, Brooklinen towels, mini bars stocked with locally-made snacks and drinks for purchase, and complimentary s’mores kits. Adding to the experience of a stay are the numerous amenities available, including a full-service restaurant and bar featuring seasonal comfort food along with oak-grilled barbecue favorites, a coffee shop, and a mini marketplace highlighting local artisan products inspired by the bounty of the region. In addition, the property just recently unveiled a variety of new outdoor spaces, including a chic new pool and spacious hot tub, a barrel sauna looking out at the mountains, a Bocce ball court, fire pits, and several lounge areas. In fact, 80 percent of Cuyama Buckhorn’s communal spaces are outside (and naturally conducive to social distancing) — all the more reason to sneak away for a weekend getaway as the weather warms up. For a one-of-a-kind visit, be on the lookout for Cuyama Buckhorn’s culinary events and happenings throughout the year, with weekend programming designed to celebrate local purveyors and provide a fully immersive regional experience, from bread making classes to farm-to-table dinners to picnics at local wineries. 4923 Primero St., New Cuyama, CA. W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

Photos courtesy of Cuyama Buckhorn

By Hana-Lee Sedgwick


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Michelle Eskandari 805.637.8061 CalRE#01861525 The property information herein is derived from various sources that may include, but not be limited to, county records and the Multiple Listing Service, and it may include approximations. Although the information is believed to be accurate, it is not warranted and you should not rely upon it without personal verification. Affiliated real estateagents are independent contractor sales associates, not employees. ©2021 Coldwell Banker. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker and the Coldwell Banker logos are trademarks of Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. The Coldwell Banker® System is comprised of company owned offices which are owned by a subsidiary of Realogy BrokerageGroup LLC and franchised offices which are independently owned and operated.The Coldwell Banker System fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act.


Lane & Lumen shine bright A Q&A with winemaker Lane Tanner

By Hana-Lee Sedgwick


t’s safe to say Lane Tanner is an icon. One of the first female winemakers in Santa Barbara County, for 16 years Tanner was also the only area winemaker to focus exclusively on pinot noir. Having built a reputation as one of the top winemakers in California, she’s most known for her eponymous label she founded in 1984. Today she proudly continues her winemaking legacy as partner and winemaker of Lumen Wines. Along with co-owner Will Henry, the duo produce limited quantities of cool-climate pinot noir, chardonnay, grenache, grenache blanc, and pinot gris, driven by their commitment to making honest, handcrafted wines from sustainably certified and biodynamic vineyards throughout Santa Barbara County. You’ve had a long career as a winemaker in Santa Barbara County, having made wine here since 1981. In 2009 you completed your last vintage under your Lane Tanner label and set your eyes on retirement. At what point did you decide to embark on this new venture with Will?



I got out of the business in 2010 after selling my entire last vintage to Trader Joe’s. Two very big beautiful checks! I really wanted to get away from the wine industry because it had changed so much since I started. I started a new company in a totally different field … and I flopped big time. I still had money so I just floated for about a year before I got bored with life. I eased back into winemaking by helping Sierra Madre Vineyard. They decided to drop their label and I was wondering what my future held when Will turned up and purchased the wine I had made for his new project, Lumen. He asked me to join him on this new venture but I wasn’t too sure. He finally wooed me into being his partner a few months later, right before harvest 2013. It was one of the best decisions I have ever made. Lumen is known for bright, low-alcohol wines from select cool-climate vineyards. Is this how you’d describe your typical winemaking style? I’m very lucky that Will wanted not only my expertise but my wineW W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

making style, so I have never had to change. I’m known to be very early to pick — I look for fruit that tastes bright and exciting, just past the green flavors. I never use stems or much new oak. Both of these things are fine but do nothing but mask the fruit and I am all about the fruit. I view it as: You don’t let a pear sit on the tree till it’s old and shriveled then eat it along with the stem and seeds, so why would you do that with grapes? Our single vineyard wines are almost all free run, which means they don’t even see the press. You source fruit from four different vineyards in the region. How important to you is vineyard location, soil types, and clonal selection in making quality wine? Vineyard location and clonal type are super important to me. Each grape needs a special place. Grenache likes a bit of heat, but not too much. Pinot noir wants cool days and warm nights, like the magical Santa Maria Valley. Once I find that perfect vineyard site, then clones come into play (kind of like thinking you need ice cream, then trying to decide exactly what flavor). Each clone type gives me a certain taste, mouthfeel, color, and nose. I understand the winemaking for Lumen is now a joint effort between you, Will, and assistant winemaker Justin Trabue. What would you say each of you brings to the table, in and out of the cellar? I’m like the orchestra leader but we’re all in the band. Justin is great. She’s still new to winemaking but she has skills people don’t think about. She’s a clean freak so she handles sanitation, which is way more important than most people think. She also does most of my sampling. I’m super strict about this job because deciding when to pick is “just” the most important part of the process. Will is my muscle. He does most of the punch downs, which may sound easy but it’s not. There are myriad different types of punch downs depending on what stage the fermentation is, and he knows them all. He’s also the go-to guy to take over for me when some disaster keeps me from the winery. Out of the cellar, they’re both just really nice, fun people to be around. Who needs more than that? Not only are you considered one of the pioneering winemakers of this region, but you were the first independent female winemaker in Santa Barbara County. That’s quite a title. How much did that shape you as a winemaker or has it not been that significant? I’m not sure it made any difference at all. When you’re living your life, you really don’t think how your life will look to others years down the line. As a winemaker, I’ve always done my best to honor the grapes. I would still have that mindset, no matter what gender/color/age I am. Last question: Do you have a favorite pairing with any Lumen wines? I like Lumen wines with food. Lumen also pairs well with family outings, sports, and sex. W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

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Covet these cult wines By Hana-Lee Sedgwick

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xclusive, high quality, and hard to come by — these are just a few of the reasons why a wine earns cult status. When you’re ready to fill your wine cellar with something extra special, these sought-after California wines are sure to tantalize your taste buds while impressing your wine-loving friends. Screaming Eagle Cabernet Sauvignon This famed Napa Valley producer is known for high-quality, low-production wines that come with very high price tags. Their Cabernet Sauvignon will run you about $3,000-plus per bottle, and even the Sauvignon Blanc will cost you several thousands. A bottle from their 1992 vintage (their first) ranks among the most expensive wines ever sold, fetching an astonishing $500,000 at the 2000 Auction Napa Valley. Not surprisingly, Screaming Eagle wines are incredibly hard to come by (the wait list can take over a decade to join), but if you can get your hands on a bottle of Cabernet, expect a polished, silky wine that hangs gracefully on the palate. Scarecrow Cabernet Sauvignon The Scarecrow estate in Napa Valley’s Rutherford appellation was first planted to cabernet sauvignon in 1945, and is thought to be among the oldest cabernet vines in California. Today, under the Scarecrow label, this celebrated site produces perfectly dense cabernet sauvignons that continually wow top critics, regularly garnering top scores of 97 to 100 points. Naturally, Scarecrow has become a much-desired producer, whose wines typically go for $800 to $1,000 per bottle, depending on the vintage. Sine Qua Non Blends What started as a small syrah project with just four barrels in 1994 has since transformed into a cult-status California Rhône wine producer. Using fruit from the Central Coast and an ar-

tistic approach to viticulture, Sine Qua Non produces a variety of blends, each showcasing a unique name, label, and assortment of grapes, like syrah, grenache, roussanne, graciano, and touriga nacional, to name a few. Released to their mailing list only (expect to wait several years to clear the list), most bottles cost anywhere between $200 and $500-plus, depending on the specific blend. While no two wines are the same, Sine Qua Non wines tend to deliver a kaleidoscope of flavors with elegance, and are quite food-friendly. Harlan Estate Bordeaux Blends Harlan Estate was founded in 1984 by William Harlan, whose vision was to produce a California “First Growth” from Napa Valley’s Oakville AVA. Known for their opulent, structured, and incredibly age-worthy Bordeaux-style wines, Harlan continually ranks among the top choices for collectors, with new releases of its flagship wine running $500 to $750 per bottle. Marcassin Pinot Noir and Chardonnay Focused on producing complex representations of Sonoma Coast pinot noir and chardonnay, Marcassin was founded in 1991 by acclaimed winemaker Helen Turley and her husband, John Wetlaufer. Together they produce fewer than 3,000 cases for their boutique label, with the majority sold to mailing list members at $125 to $200-plus per bottle. (FYI, the wait list is said to take years.) Though not the most expensive cult bottles on the market, these highly rated, Old World-style wines have earned a loyal following for their expressive flavors and finessed textures. W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

Comfort, strength and style for the places you live and play.

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Lounging 101


he great outdoors has become ever more important to our daily lives this past year. We need sanctuaries of coziness, warmth, and functionality year-round and the back yard has become a bigger part of our new lifestyle, or, you might say, loungestyle. Outdoor cushions are a great way to give your space a unique look with lots of colors and fabrics to choose from. Fabric companies like Sunbrella are leaders in this area, with a variety of textured options that provide maximum comfort and can feel like an extension of the living room. Sunbrella’s Balance collection features a blend of modern and classic elements to harmonize any size space while giving consumers (continued)

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a chance to experiment with pops of color, layered patterns, and textures to create outdoor spaces that are truly unique to them. “The fabrics are UV and fade-proof and can stand up to the outdoor elements over time,” says San Francisco designer Sara Hawthorn. “The cushions are easy to clean, too, requiring just a soft brush with mild soap and water. It’s my go-to product for the outdoor space.” Hawthorn suggests adding an awning or pergola for shade as a way to instantly improve functionality of your patio or porch without investing in a secondary physical structure. —Raymond Bloom For more info on Sunbrella fabrics and products visit Van Nuys Awning at www. 818396-6385.

Spanish splendor


omeowners and designers have come to love the quality and uniqueness they find in products from European Porcelain & Ceramics. The family-owned factory, originally from Spain, features a wide array of tile designs, colors, and applications for both residential and commercial use. Available at TileCo. Showrooms in Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Santa Maria and Ventura.



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The Davoli


queeze-handle precision from California Faucets features all-brass construction that takes the best of traditional Italian design and fuses it with features that are essential to modern American cooking styles. The faucet, standing almost 19 inches tall, makes washing large pans a breeze all the while giving your sink a classic elegance. Available at Economy Supply, 632 Haley Street. 805-965-4319.

Gardens of plenty




hese sunny yellow Tuscan sunflowers bloomed just in time to grace your home. Find these and other unique, handmade, and painted Italian ceramics at great prices online at or at their gift store in downtown Santa Barbara. Italian Pottery Outlet, 929 State Street. 805-564-7655. 32


ow to Grow Your Own Food” is a beautifully illustrated guide to container gardening for absolute beginners. Aimed at readers who may have already dabbled at houseplant gardening, this easy-to-follow guidebook shows foodgardeners-to-be how to take their experience to the next level and grow 50 common vegetables, fruits, and herbs. No matter how much or how little space you may have, you can enjoy everything from basil to onions to strawberries with this practical guide to container gardening. Available in May at Chaucer’s book store, 3321 State Street in Loreto Plaza. 805-682-6787. W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

Are you considering orthopedic surgery? Harvard trained orthopedic surgeon, Richard Scheinberg, has extensive experience in the néw and developing field of Orthobiologics which utilizes your own bodies healing abilities in the form of Stem Cells and PRP(concentrated platelets) to treat joint and musculoskeletal problems which previously required arthroscopic or joint replacement surgeries. “Having performed thousands of surgical procedures I know how challenging recovery from those procedures can be. Prior to considering surgery you should consider the less invasive option of injection of your own stem cells in combination with concentrated platelets. The procedure is safe with excellent outcomes in the majority of patients who regain significant pain relief and function in a short period of time. To determine whether you are a candidate please call my office for a consultation.





(805) 682-1394




Spring cleaning:

To organize, declutter or minimize? All of the above

By Leslie A. Westbrook


y father “the collector” became a hoarder as he aged. He told me he came by it “naturally” blaming his mother who, while neat and tidy and organized, did have a lot of china tea cups and saucers, salt and pepper shakers, family photos and more in her home. Yet her collectibles did not rival his 10,000 records, 4,000 CDs and 33 speakers, among miscellaneous other items. (Pop, did you really need five new pairs of tennis shoes and a ton of cleaning products that I didn’t really find evidence of use?). Hence my penchant for collecting (art, antiques, books, journals and yes, even quite a few of those inherited CDs) has created a sense of wrath, terror and fear that I too might leave a plethora of “stuff ” behind for some poor sods to have to riffle through. It wasn’t until the lockdown – and my feet being firmly planted in place for a year – that I faced this daunting challenge head on. I have hired professional organizers who have helped with that task, but not enough “stuff ’ ever left my house. My Covid lockdown solo decluttering, organizing and minimizing journey began with viewing a few Netflix episodes of Marie Kondo’s “Does it give you joy?” tidying up series. While folding t-shirts and panties ‘just so” my dresser drawers became magically transformed. Joy! Oh joy, for tiny victories. But that didn’t address the surfaces: boxes of papers, more art than wall space to hang it on, my dining table that morphed from uncluttered to cluttered (more than often). It wasn’t until I signed up for Joshua Becker’s 8-week online decluttering course “Becoming Minimalist” (the best $89 you will ever spend if you are serious 34


about this) that I began to make real progress. There’s organizing – which basically means you are NOT getting rid of stuff, but just putting it in order. This was a helpful step for me to sort “like with like” in order to toss, donate or in a few cases sell (as in art). When you

house all sparkly! But it’s all the in-between stuff that needs cheerleading. And the magic ingredient in Joshua’s course – in addition to his sage advice and weekly directives — is the Facebook group page where the decluttering group post before and after pictures, shares

complishments can include cleaning out your car, clearing your living room and transforming your bedroom into a clutter free restful space, before moving on to more difficult tasks like your wardrobe or paper piles and photographs. Take it slow and easy and give yourself permission to feel tired,

discover you have 20 lip balms in various places or 200 pens scattered about….well, you get the idea. (or.. it makes it easier to toss). Although I hired an organizer to help me with my closet before lockdown and donated a ton of clothing, somehow more wardrobe items seemed to magically appear and rise up like quicksand! Sure, I could suggest the wellknown advice that you make three boxes, one each for trash, donations, stuff to sell. Or that you take the 30-day declutter challenge that begins with #1. Empty out one junk drawer; lands in the middle with #16. Clean out your linen closet and ends with #30. Clean! Get your newly organized

their setbacks, accomplishments, confess their “sins” and generally commiserative with one another. I found this very helpful – plus it’s fun to see other people’s clutter and newly cleared spaces, as well as their cars piled up with donation boxes. A few things I learned from “becoming minimalist” and other sources. Find your motivation – and post it on your bathroom mirror. Take tiny steps to begin with. Grab a huge garbage bag and walk through your house and clear out what you can and put it in the trash. Use another bag or boxes and fill them with items to donate. Begin your journey with tasks that aren’t too hard. “Easy” ac-

overwhelmed, even scared. You didn’t get here in a day – so you probably won’t get rid of your consumerism ways in a day. Change takes time. During the course, when I felt like I was falling behind, my mantra was “some progress is better than no progress.” While I may not have reached the pinnacle of minimalism or the promised land of decluttered to my complete satisfaction yet, at least I’m more than halfway up the mountain. Soon, I hope everything will be mise in place (everything in its place). Then, perhaps, I can reward myself and start planning to travel again— maybe even to France! Au revoir le confinement! W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

Gardens Are for Living

Food Home Summer 2017.indd 1

6/8/17 1:08 PM

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Storing the charge

Home batteries and the wave of the future

By Dennis Allen


he Santa Barbara County Office of Emergency Services advises being prepared for five to seven days of power outage. Because of ever-more-frequent and intense natural disasters, people are wanting backup for blackouts. Battery storage is the perfect partner for solar electrical generation. It keeps power flowing to the home during outages (the main reason people want batteries) and helps save on utility bills (for solar systems that provide less than 100 percent of electricity). California has timeof-use billing, where customers pay more for electricity during high demand times (evenings and summer afternoons). With a solar plus battery system, software automatically switches to stored energy during high demand/high-rate periods and draws from the grid during low demand times, thereby reducing utility bills. Understand that a grid-linked solar array provides no power during a blackout. A photovoltaic (PV) system is required to shut down automatically during an outage to ensure that it does not “backfeed” the grid and risk injuring workers repairing lines. California and its public utilities appreciate home batteries, for when aggregated, they flatten out demand curves. This means fewer power plants just for peak periods, ones that are expensive for limited use and pollute more than non-intermittent power plants. Battery options and hardware The most common situation is an existing or planned PV array tied to the utility grid (called “net-metering”). For an existing solar array, the battery choice is usually an alternating current coupled system. The panels produce direct current electricity, which is converted via an inverter to AC that can be used in the home or fed back to the grid. When a battery is added (most typically a lithium-ion battery), it also needs an inverter to covert the DC stored power into AC. Some batteries such as Tesla Powerwall 2.0 incorporate this second inverter into the battery. The second grid-tied option — a DC coupled system — is chosen when the battery and so-



lar array are installed together (both use DC). Cost is reduced somewhat by needing only one inverter. Sonnen and Enphase batteries, other popular options, offer one or both coupling choices. Both have numerous sizing possibilities by being able to create battery banks. Sizing and Cost The average US home uses about 30 kilowatt-hours (kWh) per day. The Tesla Powerwall 2.0 provides 13.5 kWh of storage and, together with supporting hardware and installation, costs around $11,000. When fully charged, this would provide 45 percent of the average family’s usage. Figuring out critical circuits, often called “survival circuits,” is important to determine the minimum you want to power during an outage. Lights (especially LEDs), computers, radios/TVs, and refrigerators do not draw a lot of current. Electric cookers, whole-house air conditioning systems, and any appliance with resistive heating elements draw a lot of power. Motors and well pumps draw a big surge of

power during startup, sometimes more than a battery can supply. More storage can be added, but because of expense, few people purchase the amount required to fully power their normal patterns. Enphase and Sonnen are more expensive per kwh of storage capacity than Powerwall but are longer lived. Rebates and Tax Incentives The federal tax credit for residential solar arrays, currently 22 percent, also covers home batteries. It terminates December 2022. California has enacted the Self-Generation Incentive Program (SGIP) to continue incentivizing home battery installations. The average cost covered is 25 percent but can go a lot higher in high fire areas. California’s mandate to achieve a clean energy grid by 2045 will have to rely heavily on solar-generated electricity and battery storage. Home systems will need to be a big component. Dennis Allen is a freelance writer and founder of Allen Construction. W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

yes to a new year and yes to a clean slate!

Sarita Relis


Selling in today’s (hot) market

By Christine Cowles


f someone had told me in early 2020 that COVD-19 would impact our local real estate market so dramatically, I don’t think I would have believed them. How could a global pandemic with varying levels of stay-athome and/or social distancing orders in effect for over one year (not to mention millions of people unemployed and 500,000-plus deaths in the U.S.) translate into a housing boom for our area? As how and where we work has shifted and with more employees working remotely, we’ve seen a significant increase in out-of-area buyers, many of whom are coming from the Bay Area, Los Angeles, New York, and other metropolitan areas. This increase in buyers, coupled with fewer homes coming on the market in recent months, translates into … well, a great time to sell and a rise in prices. In fact, the median price in Santa Barbara jumped 20 percent from 2019 to 2020. In today’s market, buyers need to move quickly and are more likely driven by emo38


tions. But I also believe buyers come with expectations, and getting the best offers means tapping into their emotions while meeting their expectations. Here’s how home staging can play a critical role in both meeting expectations and striking an emotional connection with buyer: 1. Many buyers expect to see a home staged. So here’s a little more about our outof-area buyer: If they’re coming from many parts of the Bay Area, LA or NYC, home staging is now the norm. Buyers may think if the seller didn’t bother to stage it, what else have they neglected to do? 2. Gets them thinking about family dinners. When prices are high, buyers are less likely to have funds for renovation. When a room is staged, buyers tend to think about the family dinners around the dining table instead of just focusing on the outdated kitchen that they can’t afford to renovate right away. 3. Helps buyers feel confident. In an empty room buyers may find it difficult to know

where to place furniture. The more questions a buyer has, the more uncertain they become about purchasing your home. 4. Rooms feel larger with furniture in it. Many people think a room looks larger with no furniture in it but it’s just the opposite. Rooms actually appear smaller when empty. Staging helps buyers know that their sectional or king bed will fit in a room. 5. Don’t leave money on the table. According to a 2020 report*, 85 percent of staged homes sold between 5-23 percent over list price and 75 percent of sellers saw an ROI of 5-15 percent. Sellers who forego staging can end up leaving a lot of money on the table. *Real Estate Staging Association® The Consumer’s Guide to Real Estate Staging 2020. Christine Cowles is the Owner of Styled & Staged Santa Barbara. A Staging Design Professional 805-7292410. W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M


Keefrider: A functional art


urniture making is an art, and nowhere is this demonstrated more beautifully than at Keefrider Custom Furniture in Santa Barbara. At their buzzing collaborative workshop, owners/operators and husband-wife team Jay and Sirie Keefrider meticulously handcraft innovatively designed furniture, custom cabinetry, and specialty projects that are tailor-made to be loved and used for generations to come. The long-lasting nature of the work is part of what drew Jay Keefrider to it. “Most important is the quality and long-term enjoyment of the piece and the people they leave it to,” he says. “My least favorite words are ‘planned obsolescence,’ ” he adds with a smile. Jay came to woodcraft early, developing a passion for it as a teenager and studying furniture design at Savannah College of Art and Design in Georgia. After receiving his BFA, he headed to California and founded his own workshop, Cotterpin Design in Los Angeles. Jay and Sirie married in 2014 and moved to Santa Barbara for Sirie to pursue a post-doctoral research position at UCSB. Meanwhile, the couple founded Keefrider Custom Furniture as a partnership. Always an active artist, Sirie began to work in the shop with Jay during her off 40


hours, learning design and technique. She was soon hooked and decided to switch gears from her career as a research scientist. “There are, surprisingly, a lot of parallels to research,” says Sirie of custom furniture making. “It’s very intellectually challenging, with a lot of creative problem solving.” The Keefriders enjoy the process of meeting with clients, getting to know them and their lifestyles, and homing in on their exact furniture desires. Each piece is uniquely crafted, and the couple takes pride in not having a particular design style. “We’re open to building anything our client wants,” says Sirie. “The

unifying thread is the way we make things.” Traditional handcraft methods such as mortise and tenon joinery are a hallmark of their work, along with the use of sustainably forested hardwoods and non-toxic finishes. They also savor the collaborative relationships they’ve developed over the years with other local artists, such as metal and glass artisans, whose work they incorporate into some of their pieces. The duo is in the process of moving their shop from Haley Street, where they were active participants in the Second Saturdays in the Haley Corridor (Sirie was a founding board member) events and First Thursday Art Walk open houses, to a larger space at 725 Reddick Street. The additional space will allow them to hire shop assistants, host open houses, and possibly teach classes and sell milled and unmilled hardwood. Mostly, they will continue to create beautiful, well-made furniture that stands the test of time. Says Jay, “Our greatest desire is to, at the end of the project, have the client say, ‘That is exactly what I had pictured!’ ” W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

Photo by Sirie Keefrider

By Nancy Ransohoff

The flowers are in bloom, so toast to spring with our selection of cannabis-infused beverages, fruit gummies and more at The Farmacy Santa Barbara. Use code FOODHOME15 at to save 15% off your next delivery or express pickup order.

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Modern Look Stainless steel 33-inch sink with accessory ledge from Blanco, which comes with its own custom cutting board. You can also add a steel colander.

Economy Plumbing Supply | 632 E. Haley | 805-965-4319 | W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M



SPACES Design available at Reed Interiors,

Design available at The Kitchen Company,



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SPACES Design available at Montecito Kitchens Design & Build,

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UNPLUGGED A Santa Barbara couple shares their journey to the mobile life and living off-grid Photos by Matt Wier


n 2008, Matthew Hofmann set out on his own as a budding licensed architect, designing multimillion-dollar homes in his oneman firm, Hofmann Architecture, based in Santa Barbara. In a couple of years, he and his father, Wally, teamed up and transitioned to renovating and designing Airstream trailers for dozens of customers in their first two years. Eventually, they partnered with a local developer to create the original Santa Barbara AutoCamp, a boutique Airstream hotel. By 2015, they had renovated hundreds of vintage trailers, and Matthew’s wife, Joanna, joined the mobile renovation business. They were quickly recognized nationwide as the experts in high-end, custom trailer renovations, eventually designing more than 400 trailers for clients around the world, all the while living the mobile lifestyle themselves. Each of the family members and business partners lived in refurbished Airstreams, vans, buses, motorhomes, and even boats — basically, any small portable space that existed. Matthew and Joanna, while embracing the mobile lifestyle and freedoms that came with it, came to feel limited — both with the business and their personal lives. After a cross-country road trip in a 29-foot pop-out trailer, they discovered a startling truth — the RVs they called home weren’t suited at all for fulltime living. Space was always an issue, and there were serious seasonal weather challenges. What started out as their own mobile living challenges ended up helping them see a clear gap in the mobile lifestyle market, so they decided to transition away from renovating existing vehicles to building their own luxury trailer from the ground up. Instead of an RV (recreational vehicle), they designed an LV (living vehicle), intentionally designed for full-time or extended use with true four-season performance and maximum off-grid capabilities. Matthew’s mobile small space design and architecture background influenced their desire for a clean, modern, and portable smart home rooted in a sustainable lifestyle. Together they kept a list of what they didn’t like about the RVs they lived in. This set them on a mission to improve the spaces they experienced for themselves and for others. High on Joanna’s list was a better shower experience, plus a proper chef ’s kitchen, complete with an oven, dishwasher, full-sized fridge, and ample storage that allowed the mobile couple to live on the road full time without having to part with the things that were important to them.





Since releasing their first LV model in 2017, they’ve been carefully improving and perfecting the design, each year’s model possessing more innovation, with new technologies and materials, to create the most capable and luxurious mobile living experience possible. During a short break in their hectic schedule, Food + Home Magazine sat down with Joanna and Matthew to get a few details on the Living Vehicle experience. What inspired the name, Living Vehicle? JH: The name Living Vehicle has implications far beyond a trailer designed to surpass the limitations of a vehicle designed for casual recreating or an RV. Beyond our goal for a truly self-sustaining home from a resource perspective (power, water, waste, etc.), Living Vehicle represents a conduit for transforming the way you connect with our world and those around us. It’s a vehicle designed to support your best life and find not only your freedom but, more importantly, your strength. It’s a vehicle for discovery and new beginnings. It’s a vehicle for fun, adventure, and play that can take you to the most beautiful places or create lifelong memories right in your backyard. What are some of the things you learned from more than 400 Airstream camping trailer remodels? JH: Limitations exist with designing inside an existing structure/ vehicle/ shell. There are inherently more opportunities to design something intentionally from the ground up for a specific purpose than to try and make it into something it’s not. The limitations were in creating four-season capabilities, ample storage, proper window placement, and adequate off-grid power generation. Units with highly round profiles, such as Airstream, Bowlus, and other teardrop trailers, are highly inefficient when it comes to interior live-ability and storage. While looking interesting on the exterior, on the inside the rounded corners reduce what would typically be overhead storage and limit circulation to the center aisle. This rounded shape also causes issues for taller individuals — and Matthew is 6’ 5”! How many LVs are you building this year? What’s your scaling-up philosophy? JH: We’re limiting annual production to 25 LVs. This allows us to put quality at the forefront of everything we do and innovate quickly. Our goal is to deliver the best luxury trailer ever conceived and the best customer experience possible. Our goal with LV is capabilities and mission-based, not in hitting production quotas. Innovation, R&D, and quality, this is our focus, and ultimately hitting our net-zero goal. Low production allows us to test and pivot quickly yet thoughtfully. It allows us to provide better service across the board. That doesn’t come from mass production. We take pride in our brand and family name. It’s special when we find other people who share the same values as we do; it keeps our passion growing and drives us to be better every day. 46


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How close are you to designing a trailer that is totally self-sustaining, producing more energy than it uses? JH: I’m proud to say that for 2021 we’ve achieved this goal. The PRO LV has more than 3,000 watts of solar power. Coupled with nearly a 50kWh energy pack, the unit is able to regenerate more power than it uses on a daily basis. This effectively creates a self-sustaining, limitless power living space. MH: In addition to powering an electric tow vehicle, this power supply enables resource generation and waste management opportunities. The ability to create water from air is an emerging technology that will provide outstanding value to people who call an LV home. At the moment, water is the limiting factor. While customers are currently able to use the onboard water holding tanks and resupply on a regular basis, it’s our vision to disconnect from all utility supplies. The simple version of traveling without limitation is our ultimate goal. This is how we view freedom. It’s the single vision that guides us. Can you see traditional (non-mobile) homes being built this way? JH: They already are! The question is not if homes will be built this way but to what degree it will become mainstream. There are countless examples of off-grid sustainable dwellings that don’t require connection to outside utilities. A water well, septic system, and a simple solar array are all that’s really all that is needed to create a traditional self-sustaining off-grid home. The key issue, however, is site dependence. In order to build this way, it is a requirement to generate resources from the site the home is built on. MH: For example, the dependence on a water well Previous page—Luxury Unplugged is more than a slogan for Living Vehicle, featuring an energy pack with just shy of 50kWh, the unit is able to regenerate more power than it uses on a daily basis. Top—The master bedroom offers a full-size queen memory foam mattress, combination washer/ dryer and a skylight for late night star gazing as you drift off to sleep. Bottom—The mobile office option offers 80” of desk space that effortlessly converts to a queensize bed. The vertical surface just above the desk is specifically designed to mount high-end monitors and A/V equipment. Opposite top—The Living Vehicle is built for extended/ full time living, off-grid, offering more freedom and opportunities for people to take advantage of a relaxed mobile lifestyle. Opposite bottom—The chef’s kitchen option has an oven, dishwasher, and ample storage, plus a full-sized fridge. Next page bottom—In addition to powering an electric vehicle, the LV’s power supply enables resource generation and waste management opportunities that far exceed any other trailer on the market today. Next page top—Ever dreamed of working with a view of the Tetons or Big Sur outside your office window just after a video call? Yeah, so did the Hoffmans. W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M



and septic system is a major limitation. What happens when the well runs dry? We believe the traditional housing industry will embrace new technologies of utility generation and waste management. Our belief is by reducing the reliance on any one site condition, freedom is gained. Today’s communities are inherently reliant on massive corporations and utilities that provide resources to us. Take California Edison, for example, the major electricity provider in California. In the last decade, rolling blackouts have become the norm. Coupled with fires and increasing natural disasters, the reliability of utilities like this are being brought into question. It’s not unusual to go days or weeks without power. When we are completely dependent on such a vital resource, it’s an extremely high risk for not only the individual but the greater community. We believe that our world will become more independent on an individual level. When homes and families are not dependent on large companies to provide the resources they need, we will be able to function on a very high level regardless of the stability of the utility company. In the end, this is what’s taking back the power and putting it in the hands of the people. I believe the next few decades will see a major shift in power from just a few very large corporations to a distribution across the hands of many. Energy independence and self-reliance equals freedom. What unique materials in the design and construction of an LV make it stand out from others in its class? MH: Living Vehicle is also founded on the concept of honesty through materiality. A well-conceived design is assembled by materials that naturally do an excellent job and what they are being put to do. Materials should perform naturally and become better over time because they were put together correctly in the first place. The LV was designed to last many generations. This is self-evident by the way things are actually put together and the type of materials used. Most of what we find in the RV market today is built from materials that are optimizing for price and perceived value. Things that look good in pictures or are perceived as high-end on a brief tour of an RV. Longevity and performance are by far not the most important factor in the market today. We see things differently. It’s not unusual to find wood-based construction that’s held together with glue and staples. Yes, “mechanical fasteners” (aka staples) are what hold together most of the RV market cabinetry, walls, and interiors. An LV takes inspiration from the aircraft industry well beyond just the outer shell but through the entire kit of parts that make up the LV. Ultralight aircraft grade countertops, all aluminum cabinetry, and rigid closed foam insulation are just some of the countless design and engineering techniques that are common in aircraft construction. In addition, we see the marine market as a wonderful inspiration to what we are creating. A high degree of quality is required for vessels exposed to regular seawater, corrosion, and the open seas. 48


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How is an LV different from an Airstream, and why would I consider buying an LV over Airstream? JH: The difference is quite simple. An Airstream is fundamentally a recreational product, a camper designed for short vacations and weekend trips. They’re not designed to be lived in, but for many years they were the best option out there. Living Vehicle is designed to be lived in for extended and full-time off-grid use. The capabilities and structural design of something purposefully built for short-term camping vs. living is the big difference. Living Vehicle does everything an Airstream can do plus so much more. Off-grid capability and four-season performance are where LV really shines. Our PRO model can power both ACs off-grid with full sun and supports extended off-grid use from 0 to 110 degrees and 10 to 120 degrees while connected to shore power. The 2021 Airstream Classic includes 270 watts of solar. The 2021 entry-level CORE Living Vehicle comes standard with 1,320 watts and the high-end PRO has 3,080 watts. Not exactly a fair comparison. MH: If you’re just looking for a lightweight, grab-n-go travel trailer to take short-term vacations at an RV park or off-grid for just a few days, then any standard RV will probably satisfy your needs. But if you’re looking to take longer, off-grid vacations or you want to live in something full-time where you’re able to thrive in extreme conditions, that’s what an LV was made for. It’s quite simply the best of both worlds. Beyond the performance capabilities, the LV offers unsurpassed functionality and luxury amenities such as a fold-down patio, W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

spa shower, residential-size fridge, washer/ dryer and dishwasher, home theater, Hi-Fi audio, and the list goes on and on. It’s not really a fair comparison. What are some of the features in the 2021 designs that you are most proud of? JH: The Mobile Office stands out, for certain. As a previous beta option for 2020, the mobile office has been officially released as part of the production model for 2021 and is a functional piece of art. Eighty inches of desk space effortlessly converts to a queen-size bed. The vertical surface just above the desk is specifically designed to mount high-end monitors and A/V equipment. This becomes the ultimate creative tech studio. The sky’s the limit for modern-day digital nomads. Ever dreamed of working with a view of the Tetons or Big Sur outside your office window just after a video call? Yeah, so did we. We’re seeing many of our owners are optimizing for energy independence. The cord has been cut. 2021 represents the achievement of a tremendous milestone in the design goal of creating a net-zero product. We’re proud to announce complete energy independence for 2021. Under adequate sun conditions on a daily basis, even the CORE LV model will be able to sustain power indefinitely. For those who want to extend that even further and allow greater power usage while off-grid, look no further than the MAX and PRO models. Luxury Unplugged® is the vision that guides us. How has COVID shaped or impacted business? JH: LV has always been built for extended/

full time living, off-grid, with as much freedom as possible. This vision has always guided us. COVID has created more opportunities for people to take advantage of the mobile lifestyle. Working on the road/ traveling full time with families is becoming more and more mainstream as a viable option. Where do you see the designs going in five years? JH: At the rate we’re going, in five years we’ll probably be able to make it fly! The goal is all-electric, completely self-sufficient. Water generation, waste incineration, and fierce independence. We continue to listen to our customers to guide our vision. In general, those who call LV home want more. More capability, independence, freedom. This is what we call Luxury Unplugged®. Will current customers be able to update their LVs with the latest technology when it comes available? MH: Yes! We also want our customers to have the latest and greatest. We have certain options that may be upgraded/added a with few limitations. Energy systems and major upgrades may not be added. For this reason, we offer a soup-to-nuts trade-in/upgrade program where we will resell a customer’s LV and apply the sale price to a new unit. This is the best way to take advantage of all the new tech, design features, and innovation that we are constantly pursuing. Learn more at: 805-514-0189, FOOD + HOME



Let’s cover some ground By Lisa Cullen


t’s spring! Yippee! Time of renewal: Trees are sprouting fresh new green leaves, camellias and orchids are blooming, and the weather is fine. This is the perfect time of year to plant groundcover, and there are so many to choose from I thought I’d cover just a few to get you started.

Why and when groundcover

First, what is groundcover? According to the dictionary groundcovers are “low-growing, spreading plants that can help stop weeds from growing.” That sounds right, so let’s go with that. Groundcovers are great for softening the edges of paths or patios or tumbling over a wall or anyplace you have a bit of ground to cover (pun intended). There are so many groundcovers to choose from, it’s hard to know where to start. That’s where I come in. As with everything in life and in gardening, location is everything. I’m going to give you a little help on what groundcover to choose, depending on your location. As always, work with nature, not against her. Your exposure will determine what will work and what won’t.

Hot and dry

If you have a hot and or dry location, stick with Mediterranean-type plants or succulents. These plants can take the heat and are fairly low maintenance. Rosemary, Santa Barbara daisy, dymondia, osteospermum (aka freeway daisy), santolina, gazania, blue/green fescue, ice plant, all the sedums, senecio and lantana can take the abuse of low water and lots of heat.

Part sun/part shade

In areas where there is shade or some cooler air, closer to the ocean, you can still plant the above list, but now you can add in others, like ivy geranium, star jasmine, SnowN-Summer, thyme, nepeta, campanula, and teucrium. For a more exotic or tropical vibe, try ajuga or one of the mondo grasses.

Full shade

Full shade is challenging but there are a few groundcovers that will work even in areas of very little sun. Baby tears will take off in shade when there is water, and it’s so fun for those shady, damp places. Another groundcover-type plant I love is heuchera, aka coral bells. There are native varieties and others with gorgeous purple leaves that all send out lovely tall flowers in spring. Great for shade.

Stonework: groundcover with a difference

Angelus patio pavers and fireplace hardscape 50


Urban stormwater runoff is the single largest source of water pollution in Santa Barbara. Amazing, right? I just found this out while researching this column. Rainwater picks up pollutants when it flows over hard surfaces such as roofs, patios, driveways, etc. Gas and oil from cars and other toxins are then sent to our oceans via the storm drains. The W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

solution is to install permeable paving stones. Nature is amazing. It cleans the water with its own magical filtration system, and permeable pavers ensure that water goes into the ground and not into the ocean. Other permeable surfaces like gravel are available but are not always the best option. Pavers have come a long way in the last 30 years. In fact, pavers are many times the more elegant choice and if your soil is expansive clay, as in the case of much of Santa Barbara, they’re the only choice. Paving stones make fantastic driveways, walkways, and even pool decks and patios. Check out the Angeles Paving Stone website www. or go visit a local stone yard, such as Santa Barbara Stone. The options are many.

Visit our website and on-line store at ALL ON-LINE ORDERS are Pick up or Local Delivery Only Like us on FaceBook for up-to-date information

Next steps

Now that you know where you want to plant groundcover and the exposure schedule, visit a local nursery and look at the various options. Terra Sol Garden Center at 5320 Overpass Rd. in Santa Barbara has a very good selection of groundcovers to choose from and they offer curbside pick-up. Seaside Gardens at 3700 Via Real in Carpinteria offer some great California natives and grassland selections, plus display gardens to give you some ideas. For color accents you might consider planting some roses. Huge selection and some great advice on how to plant them available at La Sumida Nursery at 165 South Patterson Ave.

One final note

Who could have predicted last March that a year later we’d still be in some sort of lockdown? I sure didn’t. Is there an upside? Only time will tell, but one thing is certain: We’re all spending a lot more time at home and hopefully appreciating the beauty that surrounds us. We are the fortunate ones, living in one of the most beautiful places on Earth with a tight-knit community of folks who support one another. Let’s be grateful for that and for our gardens. This too shall pass. Lisa Cullen, landscape designer and organic gardener, owns Montecito Landscape with her husband, Chris. She can be reached at 805.969.3984 or

WE LOVE PLANTS The heart of our garden center is our plant nursery. We offer plants from all around the globe that are unique and rare. Come to Terra Sol Garden Center to find inspiration in the meticulously designed outdoor “showrooms” and create a garden unlike your neighbors. Here you will find landscape plants, house plants, pottery, fountains, birdbaths, statuary, arbors and outdoor furniture that will complete your garden vision.

Open to the Public Tuesday-Sunday 9am-4pm/Closed Mondays 5320 Overpass Road, Santa Barbara CA 93111 (805) 964-7811 W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M



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Milkweed for monarchs, stat!


ith Fewer than 2,000 Butterflies Counted So Far, Western Monarch Takes an Astonishing Step Closer to Extinction.” So said a December 2020 headline in Bay Nature magazine. The Xerces Society’s 20th annual 2020 Western Monarch Thanksgiving Count doubled down, reporting a 99.9 percent plummet since the 1980s with “only 1,914 monarch butterflies … overwintering on the California coast this year.” The report concludes, “the western monarch butterfly migration is nearing collapse.” “It’s an unbelievable crash,” said Rebecca Coulter, recalling the years when the eucalyptus trees at the Ellwood Monarch Preserve in Goleta were covered in countless hordes of overwintering monarchs. “Goleta’s city logo is the monarch,” she said. Now the branches are empty. In May 2019 the state Coastal Conservancy approved $3.9 million for the creation of an Ellwood Mesa Monarch Butterfly Habitat Management Plan. The goal is to restore and enhance the Ellwood habitat, and to improve trails and support research. Last September the state approved extending the grant until June 30, 2023. Why is the monarch population crashing? Coulter, a volunteer manager for the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History and head compiler for the annual Audubon Christmas Bird Count in Santa Barbara, said some of the massive butterfly and bird decline causes are the same: loss of habitat and food plants, and the continued widespread use of chemicals, especially glyphosphates like Roundup and neonicotinoids used commercially. A recent Associated Press story cited a 2017 study by Washington State University researchers that predicted the following: If the monarch population drops below 30,000, “the species would likely go extinct in the next few decades if nothing is done to save them.” How can concerned citizens help? By keeping home gardens chemical-free and planting native milkweed and nectar-producing plants, according to Coulter. “Providing nectar and choosing native milkweeds are key,” she said. The commercially popular non-native tropical milkweeds can host a protozoan parasite that negatively impacts everything from the monarchs’ flight ability to mating. Here’s a handy guide: DO PLANT: Native varieties including Asclepias californica, Asclepias eriocarpa, Asclepias fascicularis, Asclepias vestita, and/or Asclepias sublata. DO NOT PLANT: Asclepias curassavica or other non-native tropical milkweeds.

“Numbers of monarchs have decreased significantly over the last 20 years,” reports the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. “No matter where you live, you can get involved today. Start by planting milkweed and nectar plants that are native to your area.” — Jeff Miller 52


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Photo by Connie Gillies

Only Rain



Find watering resources and videos at


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Celebrating the rose


very April, La Sumida Nursery in Santa Barbara becomes the destination spot for rose enthusiasts. The 63-year old family business has specialized in roses for over 30 years and every year from April to October their huge acre-plus rose field is stocked with beautiful roses which are grown under the direction of their head rose expert and growing grounds manager, Armando Reyes. The rose field features over 200 varieties including hybrid tea, floribunda, grandiflora, David Austin and many more. Rose enthusiasts from Los Angeles to San Francisco travel to this destination spot to visit and enjoy the field. The La Sumida staff is knowledgeable in the proper planting and care of the roses if you should want to purchase any for your garden. La Sumida Nursery was founded in 1958 by Harold and Ethel Sumida on State Street with the addition of the Milpas Street branch in 1972 and the Patterson Avenue location in 1978. The three locations were consolidated to one store on Patterson in 2007. The business was passed to their son, Hilton Sumida who ran it for many years with his nephew Travis Sumida Weber. The nursery is now owned and run by Travis and Amy Sumida Weber. The nursery also offers a large selection of pottery, bedding, fruit trees, houseplants, fertilizers, vegetable plants, succulents and features a garden gift shop. 165 S. Patterson Ave, 805-964-9944 W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

French Toast with Pinot Syrup



W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

A Mother’s Day treat

By Judit Schweller & Corina Schweller

Photo by Corina Schweller


he recipes we share are a variety of California fusion with European traditions and reflect our dedication to eating healthy by omitting refined white sugar and limiting processed white flour. We try to find alternatives for those ingredients that are just not good for you, but in no way will you feel deprived. And even though we try to eat healthy most of the time, there’s room for some indulgences as well. Sometimes you just have to enjoy your favorites, albeit in moderation. Enjoy! French Toast with Pinot Syrup Ingredients for French toast: 8 slices whole wheat cinnamon raisin toast bread about 1 inch thick each 4 large eggs, room temperature 1/2 cup organic whole milk 1 tablespoon raw honey 3 tablespoons unsalted butter or more if needed Pinch of Himalayan salt For pinot noir syrup: 1 cup pinot noir wine 2 tablespoons local raw honey 1 sprig of fresh basil For topping: 1 tablespoon Stevia or confectioners’ sugar 1/3 cup pinot syrup 8 ounces of fresh raspberries (wash and pat dry) Zest of 1 organic lemon 4 sprigs of fresh basil Preheat oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. In large shallow bowl or baking dish, whisk together eggs, milk, honey, and salt until well blended. Arrange the toast slices in baking dish in a single layer and let the bread absorb some of the egg and milk mixture. After two minutes gently turn each slice over and let them rest for two more minutes. Soak the toast in two batches if you have a smaller baking dish. In the meantime, in a large skillet or griddle melt one tablespoon butter, until foamy hot. Using a spatula, arrange the toast slices without crowding the griddle and cook for about three minutes on each side or until light golden in color. Transfer the golden slices to a fireproof serving dish and keep it warm. For pinot syrup: Combine wine and honey in a small saucepan. Simmer over medium high heat for about 20 minutes or until reduced to about 1/3 cup. Add the basil sprig, set aside to cool down. Drizzle over the toast. To serve, arrange two slices on a large plate and dust with Stevia and drizzle with the pinot syrup. Decorate with fresh raspberries and a few basil leaves. Bon appetite! Visit Judit and Corina at their e-cookbook website: www

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Southampton by Wood-Mode.


Showroom locations: Building beautiful kitchens and baths since 1987. 3630 S 1717 State Street Santa Y Santa Barbara, CA 93101 1717 State Street 805.682.4003 805.686 Santa Barbara, CA 93101 805.682.4003



Cannabis cocktails The adult version


he legal cannabis industry has been trying for years to create an adult-tasting THC cocktail that doesn’t resemble something you might find pouring out of a college fraternity blender. Enter Artet, one of the first non-alcoholic, THC-infused beverages that was actually created as an aperitif and is intended to stimulate and open your palate before dinner. “We’ve carried the flagship Artet bottle for about a year now,” says Leialoha Cail, general manager at The Farmacy in Santa Barbara. “It’s fantastic and there is really nothing else like it on the market. A shelf-stable, low-dose infused beverage that tastes great and can live on the bar cart. It ticks all the boxes!” Definitely on the sophisticated side of the infused beverage market, and with its harmonic blend of cannabis and eight botanicals, Artet is



ready to enjoy on the rocks right out of the bottle and even comes with its own stainless steel shot glass that measures exactly 2.5 mg of THC. But perhaps Artet’s most shining feature is that it is so mixable — with just about everything — enabling even the most amateur bartenders to create world-class cocktails in their own kitchen. “The taste is really complex, more bitter than sweet, with citrus notes and a little ginger spice,” says Cail. “I prefer to drink it on the rocks, with a splash of Fever-Tree Tonic and a squeeze of lemon, but I’ve also enjoyed it mixed with ginger beer.” Here are a few cocktail recipes, courtesy of Cail. Sip and enjoy. —Raymond Bloom Available at The Farmacy, 128 West Mission St. Santa Barbara. 805-880(continued) 1207. W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

Photo by Chase Sater

Photos by Chase Sater

Voted BEST Steakhouse year after year!

Celebrating 18 years in Santa Barbara ——— Open daily for lunch and dinner. Brunch on weekends from 10am-2pm

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State Street promenade seating with heaters and umbrellas ——— Wine Spectator award-winning wine list

Santa Barbara

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Photo by Chase Sater

Serves 2 (3.5 mg THC per serving) Directions: Fill two highball glasses with cubed ice. In a shaker, add: Juice of 4 organic sweet variety oranges, with pulp 4 oz. Artet Cannabis Aperitif Stir to combine. Pour into glasses and top each with Cann’s Social Tonic in Blood Orange Cardamom. Garnish with thick orange peel. Optional: Squeeze peel gently in one hand, and ignite expressed oil with lighter or match in the other hand. Rub rim for a smoky essence. It may take you a couple tries. Fennel Persimmon Sour Serves 4 (3.5 mg THC per serving) Fennel Persimmon Juice: 2 ripe persimmons 1 chopped bulb of fennel (save fronds for garnish) 60


Juice or blend. If blending, strain through mesh sieve. It will be thick. Directions: Fill 4 highball glasses with ice. In a shaker, combine:

3 oz Fennel Persimmon Juice 4 oz Artet Cannabis Aperitif 1 oz lime juice 1 tablespoon egg white Shake without ice for 30 seconds; you want it to be very frothy. Strain into two glasses, add dash of orange bitters, and garnish with fennel frond. Repeat. Canna-Mule Serves 2 (5 mg THC per serving) Directions: Muddle a few mint leaves in the bottom of two copper mugs. If you don’t have a muddler, tearing them works just fine. Fill with crushed ice and add to each: 2 oz Artet Cannabis Aperitif 1/2 bottle Tinley’s Beverage High Horse Ginger Tonic Squeeze of lime Stir. Garnish with a lime wheel. W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

Photo by Chase Sater

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American Bistro Fare with European Influences Served in Beautiful Surroundings. Inside & Patio Dining • Take Out & Delivery

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The Cuban

A sweet treat for Mom


ith Mother’s Day around the corner, it’s not too soon to start brainstorming the perfect gift for all the deserving mothers (and motherly figures) in your life. Though flowers are always a nice gesture, it’s hard to beat the gift of wine and chocolate — especially if they come in the form of bubbly and pie! Family-run Savoy Café & Deli in Santa Barbara has remained a locals’ favorite for years, thanks to their wide variety of scratch-made offerings. For a gift that is sure to win you bonus points with mom, pick up one of Savoy’s delicious pies, such as their vegan and gluten-free Chocolate Mousse Pie. Made in-house, this chocolatey creation showcases a creamy mousse of organic dark cocoa, coconut cream, and vanilla, layered atop a chocolatey gluten-free crust and topped with a delightful assortment of blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries. Pair it with the Adami Bosco di Gica Prosecco Superiore, a creamy yet vibrant sparkling wine from Italy’s famed Valdobbiadene appellation, for the ultimate Mother’s Day gift. The best part? Both are available to-go from Savoy. —Hana-Lee Sedgwick

INGREDIENTS FOR CILANTRO SAUCE 5 sprigs fresh mint 4 cloves garlic 2 jalapeño peppers, seeds and white pith removed 2 limes, juiced and zested 1 large bunch cilantro, both leaves and tender stems 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves 1/4 cup olive oil 1/4 cup mayonnaise 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt INGREDIENTS FOR SANDWICH 12 slices thick-cut sourdough bread ¾ cup yellow mustard 3 pounds thick-sliced smoked ham 6 dill pickles, sliced lengthwise 12 slices Swiss cheese DIRECTIONS For the cilantro sauce: Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and purée until you achieve an even consistency. To assemble the sandwiches: Heat a panini press. Spread six slices of bread with mustard and top with ample portions of ham, two slices Swiss, some pickle slices, and a generous amount of cilantro sauce. Top with another slice of bread. (Extra cilantro sauce will keep, covered, in the refrigerator for two days.) Working in batches, press the sandwiches until the bread is toasty and golden brown and the cheese melted, about eight minutes. Halve the sandwiches and serve hot. 62


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Quinoa oatmeal


he best breakfasts are the ones you invent yourself. Use the recipes here as a starting point. Then, add your own favorite ingredients and toppings to create something that appeals to your own particular tastes. Not a fan of the pumpkin seeds and berries shown topping the oatmeal above? Swap in omega 3-rich walnuts, crisp apple slices, and warm, creamy peanut butter instead. Add potassium-packed bananas to pancakes in place of blueberries. Whip up a smoothie with your own personal blend of energy- and health-boosting superfoods like bee pollen, chia seeds, or the delightful crunch added with a large spoonful of cacao nibs. Be creative and every day will start off well. Once you’ve settled on your signature formula, you’ll be hooked on the delicate dance of the right flavor with all the benefits. Guaranteed. INGREDIENTS Serves 4 4 cups water 1/2 cup scarlet or other quinoa 1 teaspoon olive or coconut oil 1 cup steel-cut oats 1/2 cup almond or other milk DIRECTIONS Bring the water to a near-boil in a kettle or in a microwave. Place the quinoa in a heat-proof bowl and pour the water over it and set aside. In a medium saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat and add the oats. Stir and cook for one to two minutes until lightly toasted. Add the quinoa-water mixture and bring it back to a boil. Turn down the heat and let the mixture simmer for about 20 minutes until chewy but not hard. Add the milk and turn off the heat. Serve with additional milk, fresh fruit, maple syrup, brown sugar, raisins, or nuts. For fast, easy breakfasts, double the recipe and heat up the leftovers. This recipe adapted from Thug Kitchen.



W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

Sweet libations


nown nationally for its infused, barrel-aged, and smoked maple syrups, Vermont-based producer Runamok Maple has stepped into the cocktail world with a new collection of maple-based cocktail syrups and bitters. With flavors like Smoked Old Fashioned, Maple Ginger Mule, and Maple Tonic, all these infused cocktail syrups need is your favorite spirit and a few dashes of the bitters, which come in three varieties: Orange, Floral, and Aromatic. Made with 100 percent pure Vermont maple syrup, these new mixers are available on for $11.95 (100 mL of bitters) and $16.95 (250 mL of syrup).—RB Also available at Gelson’s Market, 3305 State St, Santa Barbara. Here’s an easy cocktail Runamok recipe for Mom’s Day. The Northern Sawyer 2 oz gin ½ oz fresh lime juice ¼ oz Sugarmaker’s Cut pure maple syrup 14 dashes Runamok Aromatic Bitters 7 dashes Runamok Orange Bitters 7 dashes Runamok Floral Bitters Ice Lime garnish Combine all ingredients except the lime garnish in a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously. Strain into a coupe glass and garnish with lime.

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Visitor from the pre-pandemic past by Jeff


magine if Spring 2019 came rolling through town one day in Spring 2021. “What the hell?” might be his/her reaction. Yes, 2019. There’s a pandemic going on. “A what now?” We veterans of 2020-21 would patiently explain all about the virus and its impact on our city. That’s why State Street is a sort of a food bazaar now, ’19. No more indoor dining. As noted in the Fall 2020 issue of Santa Barbara Food + Home, the city approved the creation of a pedestrian promenade from Sola to Haley to help bistros and others do their business outdoors. Do you read Food + Home, 2019? “Of course. What a great magazine.” 2019 might then wonder how the State Street conversion is working out. The answer: well enough to warrant a one-year extension, as approved by the City Council in February. Also in the Spring 2019 issue of Food + Home was a story about Uncorked, “Michael and Lisa Amador’s lively wine tasting room and kitchen, which serves up great food and unique wines in a former Haley Street dive bar.” ’19 might wonder about that place, since it’s not on State and so isn’t benefiting from the pedestrian promenade phenomenon. “We’re doing well,” Amador said recently. “We’ve pivoted nicely.” In fact, business is “up nicely.” How can that be, with people staying in their homes so much more, due to the virus?




“We changed our focus and found a nice little formula, sending out emails with specials,” Amador said. “People really like the simplicity of not having to think about dinner or lines at the grocery story. They pick up their food and they’re gone.” Gone back home for a threecourse dinner ranging around the $20 level. Osso buco, cioppino, and lasagna bolognaise were three recent offerings. “We’ve gained a whole new customer base,” he said. Okay, but the place is called Uncorked. What about the wine aspect? “We’ve converted from tastings to selling bottles,” Amador said. “Not quite the profit, but we’re selling a lot of wine.” And get this, ’19. During the worst of the shutdown, when grocery stores were closed or bogged down with long lines, Uncorked loaded up on such things as toilet paper, sanitizer, etc., through their distributors, and provided it all to customers at wholesale prices. “We’re not the only ones doing that,” Amador said. “We do it as a community gesture, rather than trying to make money. Hopefully people will come back and show their appreciation.” At this point, it’s hard to imagine 2019 not being a little impressed with the resilience of 2021 Santa Barbara. “But, okay, what about this?” says ’19, pointing to a story in the Spring 2019 Food + Home that began, “There’s something ineffably happy and exuberant about a bowling alley when it’s done right, and Zodo’s certainly is.”

Good point. How does a bowling alley roll on when indoor activities are shut down? “You have to be creative in a pandemic,” said Charity Rice, general manager of everything but the bar/restaurant at the venerable Goleta establishment. Well, bowling is out, but they moved arcade games outside where the crane games are “doing especially well,” Rice said. “We filled them with stuffed animals and T shirts.” The outdoor restaurant tables are also doing well, thanks in part to promotions like the “Blazing Crazy” Wing Challenge. Eat 10 wings in five minutes. Reward: First of all, the wings are free. Second, for every minute under 10 you get $5 off your dinner bill. The challenging part: “They’re hot,” Rice said. “Only 60 percent can finish all 10.” Also helping are the 12 large-screen TVs set up outside, ensuring good crowds for the Super Bowl and other sports events. There have been some interesting quirks along the way, like the caller who wanted to arrange a bowling party for 150 company employees. Rice responded, “Are you aware we’re in a pandemic? We didn’t hear back from them.” Is Zodo’s thriving despite it all? “We’re definitely not thriving,” Rice said. They went from 70 employees down to 10. “I felt so horrible for them,” the ones who were laid off. “But we’re like a family here.” So when Zodo’s comes back, they’ll come back. W W W. F O O D – H O M E . C O M

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