Food+Home - Spring 2024

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SPRING 2024 Kitchen design by Santa Barbara Cabinet Company
Sandy Stahl & Associates

While away your Sunday morning to the sounds of samba and light jazz, herbaceous cocktails and artisanal desserts. The savory flavors of Latin America and captivating views complete this full sensory experience.

800 Alvarado Place, Santa Barbara, CA 93103 | 805 770 3175 | @elencantohotel  @belmondelencanto belmond/ A GASTRONOMIC JOURNEY BOSSA NOVA BRUNCH SUNDAYS
FROM 11:30AM TO 3:00PM
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Santa Barbara ’ s Premier Shopping & Dining Destination

It ’s not just a place, it ’s an experience.
SHOPPING Ace Rivington | Catherine Gee | Coast 2 Coast Collections | Field Trip | Lewis & Clark | Renaissance Fine Consignment DINING Andersen’s Bakery & Restaurant | Barbieri & Kempe Wines | Hook and Press | Mizza | Petit Valentien | State & Fig SPECIALTY La Tavola Fine Linens | Lucky Puppy | Salon U | The Barber Shop | The Crafter’s Library | Urban Optics GALLERIES Gallery 113 | The Yes Store | Waterhouse Gallery | 1114 State Street | Santa Barbara | Follow us
Step into the European allure of La Arcada Plaza. Venture beyond the ordinary, into a landscape of unique boutiques and culinary delights. SHOWROOM HOURS MON-FRI 10-5, SAT 10-2, OR BY APPOINTMENT License # 785983 INTERIOR DESIGN | CUSTOM CABINETRY REMODELING | WINDOW COVERINGS HOME DECOR | FURNITURE 10 FIGUEROA ST SANTA BARBARA CA 93101 805.679.5700

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.


French Country Cuisine

Come to our house...

Stella Mare’s focuses on French Country Bistro cuisine, emphasizing on classic and seasonal dishes paired with French and American wines. We also offer a wide selection of beers as well as handcrafted cocktails from our Full Bar. Stella Mare’s has been known and recognized for hosting Private Dining Events and offers an excellent selection of private dining rooms. From intimate events of 10 to fully customized events of 70 to 130, Stella mare’s is the ultimate destination for social events such as Wedding receptions, Showers, Rehearsal Dinners, after wedding brunch, baby showers and more as well as Corporate Events.

Lunch: Tuesday-Friday from 12-2pm


Dinner: Tuesday-Saturday from 5 to 9pm

Brunch: Sat-Sun from 10am to 2pm

Indoor and outdoor dining available

50 Los Patos Way • Santa Barbara • 805-969-6705 •
23 A nod to the journey Barbareño chef Julian Martinez. 28 Hooked on a dream The story of Get Hooked. 46 Designer profile Santa Barbara’s Marci Brand. 62 Adventure Witness to winter’s A free-flow ramble on the Sisquoc River by Chuck Graham. 68 Winemaker profile Q + A with Jaffurs’s Stephen Searle. 48
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WWW.FOOD–HOME.COM 14 FOOD + HOME Departments In Every Issue 26 Bubbles and caviar Offerings at Hotel Californian. 30 Home chef Healthy and scrumptious spring recipes 48 Spaces Kitchen ideas from the pros. 56 Garden notes Wine travels to Creating your garden sanctuary. 66 Grape staycation The agritourism experience at Roblar. 70 Top spring picks Five picnic wines to enjoy. 72 Wine + Dine Pairings and local fare. 82 Last Word Napa, you say? On the cover: A Montecito kitchen remodel by Santa Barbara Cabinet Company. Photo by Eamon McGeough 34
250 Conejo Ridge Ave | Thousand Oaks | (805) 496-4804 Open daily: Monday-Saturday 10am–4pm, Sunday 12–4pm |

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Design and Consulting
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PublIsher & PresIdent

Philip Kirkwood

dInIng & CoP y edItor

Jeff Miller

WIne edItor

Hana-Lee Sedgwick

travel edItor

Leslie A. Westbrook

desIgn & ProduCtIon

Buffalo Brothers Studios


Raymond Bloom

Angela Borda

Christine Cowles

Lisa Cullen

Danielle Fahrenkrug

Nick Franklin

Laurence Hauben

Geneva Ives

Lynette La Mere

Nancy Ransohoff

Megan Waldrep


Jim Bartsch

Michael Brown

Joshua Curry

Eliot Crowley

Mehosh Dziadzio

Braulio Godinez

Ashley Hardin

Aron Ives

Katherine Knowlton

Kim Reierson

Eamonn McGeough

Shelly Vinson

soCIal medIa Consultant

Kara Pearson

ContaCt InformatIon P.O. Box 20025, Santa Barbara, CA 93120 (805) 455-4756–

WWW.FOOD–HOME.COM 18 FOOD + HOME 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:
Come in and experience the art of winemaking. 414 Salsipuedes St. 805.965.7985 The Barrel Room Downtown Santa Barbara The Warehouse Old Town Santa Ynez 3563 Numancia St. 805.688.5757 Winery - Tasting Rooms v W C

Montecito Kitchens customizes a plan for your exact space, style, and budget.

Montecito Kitchens customizes a plan for your exact space, style, and budget.

Montecito Kitchens customizes a plan for your exact space, style, and budget.

Montecito Kitchens is an accomplished design and construction firm delivering skilled and proven craftsmanship from start to finish. Our workmanship is guaranteed. References are gladly furnished.

Montecito Kitchens is an accomplished design and construction firm delivering skilled and proven craftsmanship from start to finish. Our workmanship is guaranteed. References are gladly furnished.

Montecito Kitchens is an accomplished design and construction firm delivering skilled and proven craftsmanship from start to finish. Our workmanship is guaranteed. References are gladly furnished.

Custom Designed Cabinetry Quality & Craftsmanship
DON GRAGG 805.453.0518 LICENSE 951784 MONTECITO KITCHENS Custom Designed Cabinetry
Quality & Craftsmanship
DON GRAGG 805.453.0518 LICENSE 951784 MONTECITO KITCHENS Custom Designed Cabinetry
Quality & Craftsmanship
DON GRAGG 805.453.0518 LICENSE 951784

Laurence Hauben

Born and raised in France, Laurence began her culinary training at age three. A cooking teacher and chef, she is available for small group and private events, specializing in seasonal menus centered around Santa Barbara’s organic produce and local seafood. To learn more, visit

Jeff Miller

Jeff Miller is a longtime newspaper writer/editor who now writes books and plays. His novels can be found at author/jdmillerauthor or at under J.D. Miller.

Hana-Lee Sedgwick

Hana-Lee Sedgwick is a writer, editor, and marketing consultant born and raised in Santa Barbara. A certified specialist of wine and sommelier, she loves sharing the world of wine with people, and happily spends her downtime eating, drinking, and wandering throughout California wine country and beyond. Follow her on Instagram @ wanderandwine.


Nancy Ransohoff

Nancy Ransohoff is a writer and editor who’s worked at Bon Appetit, Architectural Digest, and Frommer’s guidebooks. She currently writes for 805 Living magazine and covers Santa Barbara area restaurants for Westways magazine. She was a writer and editor for the guidebook “Hometown Santa Barbara,” and loves to help show off this beautiful place we’re lucky enough to call home.

Leslie A. Westbrook

Leslie A. Westbrook is an award-winning journalist who covers travel, food, design, and people.  She also assists clients around the globe desiring to sell fine art, antiques, and collectibles via international auction houses. Leslie can be reached for a complimentary consultation at LeslieAWestbrook

WWW.FOOD–HOME.COM 20 FOOD + HOME EDITORS + CONTRIBUTORS 5731 calle real goleta, ca shop.macher | 805 324 4716 a modern general store

Third Night Complimentary

With unparalleled views of the Pacific, give yourself more time to explore all that Terranea has to offer. Book three consecutive nights and receive your third night complimentary!


*Some restrictions and blackout dates may apply. Complimentary third night valid on consecutive overnight stays only. Four-night minimum is required over holidays and select dates. Promotion cannot be combined with other others. Not valid for groups. Offer exclusive for stays booked with valid promotion code OCEAN24, for stays between Now - September 30th, 2024. This promotion is not available for arrival Thursdays and Fridays from June 27th through August 16th, as well as the Thursdays and Fridays before Memorial Day and Labor Day.

9 west victoria street | 805.730.1160 | bouchon wine country cuisine in the heart of the Historic Arts District BOT TEGA Photo courtesy of Olio e Limone Ristorante and Kevin Steele / Photo courtesy of Max Abrams / Santa Barbara Independent Photo courtesy of Olio e Limone Ristorante and Kevin Steele / 11 W. Victoria St., Ste.’s 17, 18 & 21 | Santa Barbara, CA 93101 | 805.899.2699 OLIOCUCINA.COM
Fresh, local ingredients, prepared with care. Excellent wines that reflect the quality and character of our region and work in concert with the cuisine. Warm, inviting ambience with engaging service at a relaxed, leisurely pace. is
bouchon. dinner nightly Sunday- ursday 5-9pm Friday-Saturday 5-10pm

A nod to the journey

Everyone knows the restaurant business is about as steady as a bucking bronco. So why open a string of restaurants and one meal-prep service in and around Santa Barbara in a short amount of time?

That’s the question posed to Julian Martinez, chef/co-owner of Barbareño at 205 West Canon Perdido St. in Santa Barbara. He and partner Jesse Gaddy opened it in 2014, but then, starting in 2017, went on a tear, opening three others, all of which ran aground on the pandemic.

“I don’t know,” Martinez said. “It’s like a bug you get, opening restaurants. Maybe not a good bug but I love it. It’s a crazy adrenaline rush that’s hard to get other places.”

Summerland, where he was a dishwasher and a prep cook. “That got me into the industry,” he said.

In college (Claremont McKenna, east of LA), Martinez worked in a restaurant on campus, doing well enough to eventually be given the task of redesigning the menu. The hook was set.

“I was the lowest of the low. I made coffees and buffed glasses. So I was a well-dressed busboy.”
—Barbareño chef Julian Martinez

In the end, after the rushes, attention has returned to the flagship success story, Barbareño. And a success it’s been. Fans credit the restaurant holy trinity: gracious service, charming atmosphere, and creative food well presented.

For Martinez, it all began with a summer job at The Nugget in

After college he moved to the Bay Area, working in a series of restaurants including (ahem) The French Laundry. Don’t get excited, he cautioned. “I was the lowest of the low. I made coffees and buffed glasses. So I was a well-dressed busboy.”

All along, Martinez was reading and studying restaurant management and food. Then he got a chance to move to Santa Barbara, where in 2014 he and a college friend, Jesse Gaddy, took over the former D’Vine Café on West Canon Perdido.

“Our original idea was a tri-tip sandwich shop,” Martinez said. But part of his studying included a bit of travel through Europe, during which the

Photos by Carter Hiyama

idea of upscaling Barbareño took hold. “It morphed into a nicer place.”

The opening in 2014 went smoothly, probably because the partners had spent a year planning. “It was my full-time job for that year,” Martinez said. “We were in the trenches from the start. Eighty- to 90hour weeks, doing lots of the construction ourselves.” Then, after opening, “it was our whole life for a couple of years. But it went well.”

Well enough, in 2019, to glean a Michelin Plate, which is not a star but step in that direction.

His favorite menu item, the ricotta dumplings, feature more exotic combinations: house-made ricotta formed into dumplings, served with strawberry masala “that’s been cooked about four hours and seasoned like Indian curry almost. It sounds funny on paper but the flavors work great together. It just tastes like a California dish.”

In 2022 Martinez cooked all of it up in a different medium: a cookbook, with another twist. “It started as mostly stories for the staff, about the dishes and the stories behind them,” Martinez said. “By the time I got 50 or 60 of them, I realized if we weave them together there’s an interesting book there.”

The book, “Barbareño: Cuisine of California’s Central Coast,” is available through the restaurant’s website or at local bookstores. “It’s probably the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done professionally,” Martinez said.

Looking back over Barbareño’s first decade in business, Martinez likes what he sees. “It’s survived and is stronger than ever,” he said. His next goal: To make Cuban black beans as well as his mother does. @barbareno

A pairing of bubbles and salt

There’s a lot to love about the vast portfolio of some 70 Foley Family Wines offered for tasting at Hotel Californian’s tasting room. The indoor/outdoor space at The Society: State & Mason is stylish (think black and white with Moroccan flourishes) and our server, Justin (former movie producer!), and the rest of team are delightful. Recent additions to the offerings include the 2018 Foley Sonoma Winemaker Series Brut Sparkling “bubbles” and Sterling private label caviar pairing, and a weekend four-course brunch and wine pairing (lobster quiche anyone?).

Before embarking on the prior, I took a caviar survey from a few friends. One admitted not being a huge fan but “loves the ceremony,” while a few others had surprisingly never tried caviar. Then there’s me. Give me a mother of pearl spoon and I’m in heaven, scooping these salty pearls straight from a tin or glass container.

The chilled sturgeon roe presentation here is lovely, accompanied by crème fraîche, thin slivers of egg white, and crumbled hard-boiled egg yolk. Homemade potato chips for “salt and crunch” layering or dipping offer a nod to the traditional Russian pairing of caviar with potatoes, combined with the French version of topping toast points.

It’s hard to think of a more delightful way to kick off a fun evening than this.

Photo credit
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The perfect bite…

If you’re looking for a new and fun lunch option for your weekend afternoon, you

enjoy the special Ethiopian menu at Petit Valentein in La Arcada, downtown

Barbara. The combination platter (above) features six items from the a la carte menu plus injera, an Ethiopian bread.

Chef Serkaddis Alemu is partner to chef Robert Dixon, who creates the French side of the menu at Petit Valentein. Serkaddis says that family style, using the injera as a utensil, is the traditional way to eat the dish. Made correctly, injera is a pancake-like flatbread with a slightly spongy texture and is a focal point to most Ethiopian cuisine.

A native of Ethiopia, she says the recipes are direct from her family, handed down from one generation to the next, making the experience one of a kind and delicious. This platter consisted of ye’doro wat (spicy chicken), gomen (collard greens), firfir (injera smothered in spicy sauce), ye’assa (fish), ye’misir alicha (whole green lentil), and ye’atakelt alicha (cabbage).

For those who would like to make their own injera, Serkaddis offers a take-home kit complete with mother injera dough, teff flour, and cooking instructions. Or, you can just drop by and enjoy the house-made variety on weekends. —RB

Ethiopian menus are served Saturday and Sunday from 11:30 to 2:30. 1114 State Street. 805-966-0222.

Jazz Night at the Belmond

You can let your hair down a bit when comes to Thursday nights. The smooth sounds of live jazz can be heard along with a special homage to all things gin can be found the Belmond El Encanto’s Riviera Bar. The special night gives new interpretations to classic gin cocktails (other cocktails, too) and bar nibbles in a relaxed evening setting from 6 to 9pm. As part of the fun, patrons are encouraged to sign up at the bar to receive a clue to each month’s secret password. If the clue takes you to the correct answer, just tell your server and receive a complementary Negroni.

Specials from the bar menu include:

Devilled Eggs-- crispy brussels sprouts, espelette pepper, caviar. Dish can be made vegetarian.

Baked Brillet Savarin—black mission fig compote, saba, vol-au-vent. Vegetarian options available

Specialty cocktails include:

Speakeasy Clover Club Gin, fresh lemon, raspberry gomme syrup, egg white.

Sun-Thurs. 11:30am-10pm Fri-Sat. 11:30am-11pm

Photo by Carly Otness might Santa

Aspen Dining Table

Shown in solid American black walnut, 72" L x 38" D x 29" H. Available in custom sizes and a variety of hardwoods.

Custom, handcrafted dining tables and more, priced at about what you’d pay for typical, above average factory-made furniture that ships halfway around the world.

Each of our stunning tables is handcrafted by the designer right here on our own South Coast. We use only hand-selected solid hardwoods throughout... No plywood, no particle board and no paper-thin veneers. These are heirloom quality, numbered and signed by the designer.

All our creations are custom made to order in about four to six weeks, depending on the design.

Give Us A Call or Visit Our Website

View the entire collection on our website, and give us a call or send an e-mail for exact pricing and scheduling.

Trade accounts welcome.


Hooked on a dream come true

In the beginning, Kim Selkoe didn’t like to eat fish. That’s when she was growing up in Boston. Now, she and her business partner, Victoria Voss, run Get Hooked Seafood based in Carpinteria. Something obviously changed, in addition to a move to the other side of the country.

“I never thought I’d be selling fish one day,” Selkoe said. But then she discovered the reason for her distaste. Her mother was partial to swordfish, and sometimes it wasn’t all that fresh. “She’d try to tell me it was chicken,” she recalled. Her response: “I don’t think so.”

That was then. “Now I like it,” Selkoe said. Very fresh seafood, that is, which is fortunate because that’s her business.

Her path west began when she was 13 during a family trip that roamed from San Francisco to LA. “I was sold,” Selkoe said. “I wanted to live in California, learn to surf, and be a marine biologist.” It all happened, including a Ph.D. from UCSB.

In time the life of a scientist paled in comparison with her evolving dream: to start a communitybased fish market. By that point she was (and is) executive director of Commercial Fishermen of Santa Barbara, whose president was and is Chris Voss, whose daughter, Victoria, was just returning from Australia with a newborn. Their maritime visions merged, and with the help of a USDA grant, Get Hooked Seafood launched in 2018.

It started small, with about 250 deliveries per week. But then came the pandemic and numbers “skyrocketed,” peaking at 750 deliveries per week, ranging all the way from Manhattan Beach to Los Olivos. Here’s how it works:

Members sign up for between 12 ounces of fillet a week ($22.75) to 30 ounces ($54). The weekly catch varies according to the seasons and customer preferences. Staples include halibut, rock crab, black cod, ahi tuna, oysters, mussels, salmon, and lobster. The fish is delivered to the door or to pickup sites. Extras like house-made poke and ceviche are also available. Members receive a weekly newsletter with recipes, bios about the fishermen, and “fun facts about the fish and the ocean,” say the partners.

“It’s a unique and delicious way to support and connect with the local fishing community.”

Get Hooked buys from around 40 boats they judge to be the best in terms of progressive fishing standards. “We’re very selective,” Selkoe said. “Our fish is impeccable.” Along the way she learned how to fillet, but now the art is left to Edgar Olivo. “I’m not as good or as fast as Edgar, so we’re very grateful for his skills.”

And that’s only the beginning of their story. A few others:

• Get Hooked is collaborating with Lotusland as the testing ground for their fish scrap fertilizer, which they hope will contribute to the regenerative agriculture movement.

• They’ve launched a local seafood project at the Rio School District in Oxnard, with “grand plans to expand to a lot of other schools,” said Selkoe, pending a grant from NOAA.

• And they’ve created a program through which members who are traveling can donate their weekly order to food-insecure families.

And they do it all with a staff of nine. What’s the state of our regional fishery? “The big picture is, the State of California transitioned to extremely tight restrictions” to boost conservation, Selkoe said. “It was very difficult for fishing businesses.” But now, “the folks who came through it can feel proud that we have the cleanest fishery in the world.”

Is she glad she veered away from a life in the lab to the living lab of a community-based fish market? “Definitely,” Selkoe said. “It’s much more exciting and rewarding than just science. We’re applying the values of science and trying to make change and connecting with the local community.”

Get Hooked co-founders, Kim Selkoe (right) and Victoria Voss. Local snapper is part of the daily catch.



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1028 State Street

Santa Barbara, CA 93101 (805) 966-3116


1485 East Valley Road #9

Montecito, CA 93108

(805) 969-7746


Spring returns

Asatisfying fava bean salad recipe made with crunchy red cabbage, sweet corn, and fresh onions tossed in a honey and rice vinegar dressing. Use canned fava beans (also known as broad beans) for convenience or fresh seasonal fava in this salad.



Prep time: 25 minutes

Cook time: 3 minutes

Total time: 28 minutes

Servings: 6


Salad Dressing

3 tablespoons rice vinegar

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon honey

1 tablespoon parsley fresh, finely chopped

Salt and pepper to taste


1 tablespoon of olive oil

3½ cups fava beans

(or 1 pound shucked fresh fava beans)

1½ cups frozen or drained canned corn.

I used fire roasted corn from Trader Joe’s.

½ cup red onion thinly sliced

½ cup red cabbage finely chopped


Make the salad dressing:

In a medium-size bowl whisk together the olive oil, rice vinegar, honey, parsley, salt, and pepper. Add thinly sliced red onion and red cabbage.


Prepare an ice-water bath. Rinse the beans in their pods in water then remove the fava beans from the pods and cook them in a large pot of boiling water for about 2 to 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon transfer beans to the ice-water bath. Let them cool before handling. Remove the thin shells off the beans.


Measure 3½ cups of canned fava beans, drained and skin removed. Then add to the medium size bowl in the next step.

Make the salad:

Add the prepared fava beans and corn to the bowl with the onion, cabbage, and dressing. Toss to coat and serve chilled.


Removing the skins aids in better digestion (if you have trouble digesting beans and legumes).


Salmon delight

Agreat item to include on the menu if you’re planning to entertain larger gatherings like weddings or office parties is with a smoked salmon board, complete with spreads, veggies and toasts. One side of smoked salmon will usually serve 20 guests and is a great pairing to sparkling wines.


1 side smoked salmon, about 3 pounds

Source: Cambridge House smoked salmon from Santa Barbara Smokehouse, available

at Santa Barbara Fish Market in Goleta and Whole Foods.

Everything bagels*

Variety of crackers*

Fresh produce – shaved cucumber, shaved red onion, snap peas, radish cornichons


Herbed labneh (recipe included)

Green garlic cream cheese (recipe included)

Chermoula (recipe included)


To Serve/Assemble: Place the smoked salmon on a wooden serving board. Arrange produce and spreads around for guests to pick and choose their toppings.


1 cup labneh (Lebanese strained yogurt)

½ cup fresh mint leaves

½ cup fresh dill

2 tablespoons coarsely chopped preserved lemon


1 garlic clove, finely minced or grated Sumac for garnish


Add labneh to a small bowl.

Fold in mint, dill, preserved lemon, and garlic. Stir to combine.

Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with sumac and fresh herbs.


1 cup plain cream cheese

¼ cup green garlic or scallions

1 tablespoon Meyer lemon zest

Salt and pepper to taste


Place all ingredients in a small bowl. Mix together until fully combined.

Season to taste with salt and pepper.


4 garlic cloves, peeled

2 teaspoons coriander seeds, toasted

2 teaspoons cumin seeds, toasted

½ teaspoon ground turmeric

1 teaspoon sweet paprika

2 teaspoons Aleppo pepper

1 preserved lemon

1 cup fresh parsley

2 tablespoons tomato paste

¾ cup extra virgin olive oil


Add all ingredients to a food processor or blender and pulse / blend until smooth.

*Everything Bagels –

I love the bagels from Pinyon in Ojai. They are sold at The Eddy in downtown Santa Barbara.

*Crackers –

I love the Cheese Louise sourdough crackers from Oat Bakery.

Recipe, photos and styling by Katherine Knowlton, private chef, caterer and founder of Happy Chance Edibles.


FOOD + HOME 33 WWW.FOOD–HOME.COM L ic # 261772 RCHITECTURAL ILLWORK OF SANTA BARBARA, INC. Showroom located at 8 North Nopal Street Santa Barbara, CA (805) 965-7011 Cabinetry • Doors • Windows • Mouldings S erving S anta B ar B ara S ince 1969
Orange Fig Sweet Potato Pie Kiwi Kale Tropical Protein

Smooooth it!

Offered by Danielle Fahrenkrug (Delightful Mom Food)


2 teaspoons fresh orange zest ¾ cup of orange juice or fresh juice from oranges

1 scoop of plain protein powder (your favorite kind such as vegan, whey, hemp)

3-4 figs

1 teaspoon chia seeds

4-5 ice cubes

Stevia sweetener, to taste (optional)

Blend together all the ingredients until smooth. Taste and sweeten as needed.


Creamiest kale banana smoothie that tastes just like a milkshake! Packed with antioxidants – a healthy way to curb a sweet tooth.

2 cups of frozen chopped banana slices

1 cup of goat milk or coconut milk

⅓ cup of frozen blueberries

1 cup of fresh kale

2 peeled kiwis sliced Whipped cream (optional)

In a blender blend milk and frozen banana slices. Pour half the mixture into two glasses. Add to the blender (with the remaining banana and milk mixture) frozen blueberries, kale and kiwi fruit. Pour equally into both glasses. Top with whipped cream and more frozen blueberries.


Creamy mashed sweet potatoes simply melt in your mouth, especially when sprinkled with cinnamon and maple syrup.

1 sweet potato (about 8-10 ounces)

1½ cups of original cashew milk or almond milk

½ cup of nonfat plain Greek yogurt (or 1 scoop of vegan vanilla protein powder for vegan)

2 Tablespoons of maple syrup

½ teaspoon of grated nutmeg

⅛ teaspoon of cinnamon

1½ cups of ice cubes coconut flakes (optional)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Wash of your sweet potato really well. Poke a few holes into it using a fork. Wrap each one individually in aluminum foil and bake for about 50-60 minutes until tender. Let cool. Once cooled, push out the center of the potato and discard the skin. Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.


A deliciously creamy non-fat Tropical Protein Fruit Smoothie to get your body recharged with nutrients after a workout.

1 scoop vanilla protein powder

½ cup vanilla nonfat Greek yogurt (or ½ cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt, ⅛ tsp. fresh vanilla bean, 6-8 drops of Stevia)

¼ cup mango chunks

¼ cup banana chunks

¼ cup pineapple chunks

½ cup ice

½ water

hemp seeds (optional)

In a blender add yogurt, fruit, protein powder, water and ice. Pour into a cup and sprinkle with hemp seeds for added protein.

V I S I T U S A T 1 2 2 3 S T A T E S T E X P L O R E O U R C O L L E C T I O N O N L I N E A T W W W D O M E C I L C O M F O L L O W U S O N I N S T A G R A M @ D O M E C I L w h e r e d e s i g n m e e t s i n s p i r a t i o n a n d e v e r y p i e c e t e l l s a s t o r y

Sunday fun!

Just gorgeous! Nothing prettier than a shimmering slice of blood orange on a Sunday afternoon. Decorative, chewy and bursting with sweet orange flavor. And, the entire thing is edible! The slow process of simmering in sugar and water leaves the rind palatable and actually good for you. As a byproduct you’ll get a fantastic candied orange syrup that is a great addition to ice cream, mocktails, cocktails, and just about anything you want to drizzle it on. The recipe does take a bit of time, so sit back and enjoy your Sunday afternoon knowing that dessert is going to be absolutely wonderful.


Great for garnish on desserts, cocktails/ mocktails, or dipped in chocolate


2 cups sugar

Citrus, like blood oranges, oranges, tangerines, grapefruit, lemons, limes, washed and scrubbed


Slice the citrus into rounds that are just under 1⁄4-inch thick. Save the “butt” ends of the citrus to squeeze out the little bit of juice they have into the simple syrup for extra flavor.

Bring a large, heavy-bottomed pot half full of water to a gentle boil. Add the citrus slices and boil for 5 minutes. Turn off heat, drain the water from the pot, add fresh water to the citrus in the pot, and bring to a gentle boil again. Boil for 5 minutes. Repeat one more time. This blanching process removes some of the bitterness from the peel and pith, but you can skip this step entirely and jump ahead if you don’t mind the bitterness.

Remove the blanched citrus slices from the pot and discard the water.


Make simple syrup: To the same large, heavy bottomed pot, combine 2 cups sugar with 2 cups water. Squeeze in any juice from the butt ends of the citrus. Bring to a low boil, stir until sugar dissolves, then reduce heat to low.

Add back the blanched citrus slices, making sure that all the citrus is covered by the simmering syrup. Simmer for 40 minutes, turning the slices over at least once.

Pro-tip: Save the now-citrus-flavored syrup in an airtight container in the refrigerator. You can use it for cocktails, tea, anywhere you’d use a syrup or sweetener.



Dry the citrus slices: Heat oven to 170 degrees F, or the lowest your oven will go. If you have wire racks for baking sheets, remove the citrus rounds from the syrup and place on the racks in a single layer. If you don’t have racks, line the baking sheets with parchment paper. Place the citrus rounds on the baking sheets in a single layer. The citrus can touch, but do not let them overlap.

Place as many baking sheets as will fit on your racks in the oven. Dry the citrus rounds in the oven until they are dry (they will still

be a little sticky from the sugar) and firm enough to hold their shape when you pick them up with tongs, about 3 hours, flipping every hour.

Remove the baking sheets from the oven and remove the candied dried citrus to a wire rack to cool and dry further. Once cool, store in an airtight container.

Recipe, photos and styling by Katherine Knowlton, private chef, caterer and founder of Happy Chance Edibles.


Rhubarb shines for more than just pie

When I was a child in Northern France, a large clump of rhubarb grew in the garden, and one of my favorite food thrills was the contrast between its sharp sour sting and the sweetness of a lump of sugar.

I would pick a stalk, take a bite of rhubarb, shiver from head to toe as it set my teeth on edge, then nibble on a bit of sugar.

The shock was delicious, and the fact that this was one of my preferred pastimes should tell you I was destined to become a cook. Most commonly used in desserts — strawberry rhubarb pie is a springtime favorite — rhubarb also shines with seafood and in cocktails. Only the stalks of rhubarb are used. The leaves are extremely high in oxalic acid and not edible.


A very simple sauce that pairs beautifully with local halibut and other mild white-fleshed fish


4 stalks rhubarb, peeled and cut into half-inch pieces

1 tablespoon shallot, minced

2 tablespoons butter

1 teaspoon sugar

1/3 cup crème fraîche

2 tablespoons minced chives

Salt and pepper to taste


In a medium saucepan, melt the butter.

Add the shallot and rhubarb, and simmer until tender, about 10 minutes.

Add the sugar, stir in the crème fraiche and chives, and add salt and pepper to taste.


Keep this syrup in your refrigerator or freeze it in ice cube trays for use in cocktails and non-alcoholic drinks. The pretty pink color and sweet-tart tang will add a delicious twist to palomas, mojitos, and frozen margaritas.

INGREDIENTS – Makes about 1 quart 2 pounds rhubarb stalks, washed and chopped (no need to peel)

4 cups water

4 cups sugar


Place the rhubarb, sugar, and water in a heavy bottomed saucepan.

Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook, covered, until the rhubarb is soft, about 20 minutes. Line a fine mesh sieve with cheesecloth and strain.

Keep the syrup refrigerated for up to a week, or frozen for longer term storage. You can eat the strained rhubarb as a simple dessert.


Santa Barbara’s small, familyowned backyard shed business since 2010.

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Lounging 101

The Balance collection products from fabric manufacturer Sunbrella are designed to give outdoor spaces maximum comfort and can feel like an extension to your living room. The cushions feature a blend of modern and classic elements that harmonize any size space while giving consumers a chance to experiment with different colors, thickness, 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. —RB

For more info on Sunbrella fabrics and products visit Van Nuys Awning at 818-396-6385.


Clean finish

S imple, but elegant, the Decanso Bridge kitchen faucet will add beauty and function to any kitchen design. Comes complete with cross handles, quad spout and side spray, all in a graphite finish.

Available at Economy Supply Santa Barbara.

Set the table

S ilver-plated flatware set contains six table knives, six table forks, six table spoons, and six teaspoons. A decorative silver egg-shaped case with a walnut wood interior disk stores the cutlery. MOOD by Christofle presented by the ultimate silversmith, offers the concept of casual dining without compromising elegance.

Available at Coast 2 Coast w

Pool deck living

W arm textures, unique colors, and large paving stones are the hallmark of the Pavilion Paving Stone by Angelus Paving Stones. The rich surface of the Pavilion has the appearance of a large natural flagstone with all the benefits of high-strength manufactured concrete. Available in colors ranging from rich earth tones to a tone reminiscent of natural bluestone, the Pavilion is designed to enhance your outdoor living space. Ideal for use as a pool deck (shown here) entryways, walkways, backyard patios, and outdoor entertainment areas.

For more info:

Seagrass Pitcher

S eagrass pitcher and tumblers for dining al fresco.

Available at MACHER


Tile it forward

This modern kitchen design, by Michelle Hurley, features tile by Stones Impressions Tile, a well-known purveyor of the finest natural stone tiles for your interior spaces. The backsplash tile is the Sanza in Snowflake Blue on Carrara Blanco. The Bar tile is the Insight in Denim on Carrara blanco. The perfect pairing to both style and function. Stone Impressions is committed to its local community and proud to offer American-made tiles that prioritize artistry and craftsmanship.

Available at TileCo.

The Stove Whisperer:

Restorer, recycler, artist

Raconteur Skip Lau has been selling, repairing, and restoring antique gas ranges in Santa Barbara for more than three decades. The 78-year-old longtime Santa Barbara resident knows his way around a 1953 O’Keefe and Merritt like nobody’s business. He even wrote a book on the history of antique cooking stoves, “Old Stoves are Hot!” More recently, “The Stove Whisperer” has been having more fun making art ranging from colorful layered photos on aluminum of the galaxies to whimsical assemblages cobbled together from leftover antique stove parts, some even animated by a switch.

“I’m calling some of my new pieces photo-organic,” notes the always evolving Lau. “I’m attaching organic elements, including dried twigs, bark, and leaves to the surface of some of my abstract nature shots.”

Citing Grandma Moses, the artist who began her painting career at 78 and lived to 101, as an inspiration and beacon of light for her late start and longevity, Lau loves following his passion. But he also still has some 200 plus vintage stoves he’s still selling from his Pacific Stoves downtown Santa Barbara storage space. If you’re lucky he might even show up and repairs yours (circa 1920-1960) or if buying a restored vintage piece, he carefully provides explicit operating instructions, paired with always interesting conversation. For vintage stoves sales/ repairs, contact Skip at Pacstove@hotmail. com or call 805-698-6869.

Photo by Alex Lukey


Creating Garden Sanctuaries for over 50 years

“I love my new landscape, beyond my expectations. Spending more time outside has improved my mood and attitutde toward life.

Just wish I had done it sooner!” S. C.

Call today for your Free Home Garden Consultation

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Designer profile: Marci Brand

APhilly native, interior designer Marci Brand and her husband, Rich, divide their time between homes in San Francisco and Santa Barbara’s West Beach. Inspired by her clients’ own intuitive sensibilities, Marci blends a mix of classic style with contemporary twists in her colorful design projects.

How and why did you become an interior designer?

I have always loved art, culture, style, and design and studied languages at Georgetown University in Washington, DC. I represented my father’s wholesale drapery fabric company, designing elaborate window treatments. Clients soon began asking me to select paint colors, carpets, furniture, lighting, accessories, and art. Soon I began working on kitchen and bathrooms finishes, which evolved into decorating entire homes.

What do you like about your work?

I love collaborating with my clients so that their spaces reflect their personalities. I even enjoy the business part of being a designer. It’s not just about picking pretty things. You must place orders, keep track of deliveries, and see that items are installed correctly.

Any special inspiration?

Hotels and travel inspire me. There’s

something wonderful about walking into a space and making it yours for a short time. I often take ideas and incorporate them into my own designs. After a trip to Italy, inspired by Fortuny fabrics, I began using rich, colorful patterned fabrics.

Design tips?

Trust yourself.  Most people really do know what they like. Before starting a project, I advise clients to clean out what they no longer like or no longer use. Clutter gets in the way of freshening up and preparing for a new look. Begin simply: Use one color tone as a backdrop, add chairs and sofa in another shade, and get creative with pillows, accessories, and art.

Adding pizzazz!

I love mixing new design pieces with existing pieces. Recovering a worn sofa or outdated chair can create something new and wonderful that still provides the comfort you were accustomed to. Painting an antique china cabinet in a fun, high-gloss color and changing the hardware allows you to hang on to a family piece, while adding pizzazz to your space. I love orange, raspberry, and any shade of water blues. I’m thrilled when a client is willing to let me paint an entire room one color – ceilings, walls and trim –which is so luxurious and rich.

What do you love about Santa Barbara as a hard-working interior designer?

Santa Barbara has been a very welcoming design community to me. I use fabrics from Raoul Textiles in many of my jobs and work with Habitat Home and Garden and Coast Supply Co. for custom furniture. I also enjoy shopping for accessories in Montecito, Summerland, and Carpinteria.

Your husband is a well-known sports attorney. Any framed football jerseys on your walls?

Most of the sports paraphernalia is in my husband’s home office in Santa Barbara or his office in San Francisco, which is filled with signed jerseys, photos, and team accessories, including a basketball signed by Michael Jordan!


Matte Black brings warmth and elegance to your kitchen design and offers a dramatic departure from stainless steel and chrome. Browse our showroom for a wide array of matte black kitchen sink ensembles, accessories and premium faucets.

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Photos by Kurt Jordan

Kitchen design by C. J. Paone and Archipelago Workshop

A kitchen can be much more than a place to prepare meals. This hillside house with ocean views has a kitchen, outward facing bar with flip-up awning window, and dining area all in a linear arrangement. Perfect for dining and sitting while staying in speaking range for the cooks, as well as sitting at the window bar, enjoying the view, and catching up with passing neighbors walking on the street below.

Photos by Cameraman Joe

Santa Barbara Kitchen Company

This welcoming transitional kitchen remodel achieves greater flow with an open connection to the family room and an enlarged island. Signature Custom Cabinetry with Benjamin Moore Sail White paint on perimeter and Fair Isle Blue on Island, give the kitchen a fresh and lively appearance. Quarter Sawn White Oak on the island overhang, china cabinet and floating shelves radiate natural beauty. The custom plaster hood, Blanco tile backsplash (NS Ceramic) and Vadara Quartz Naturelle countertops (Stonecraft Surfaces) unite the design. Sub Zero/Wolf appliances add to the luxury of this beautifully designed space.



Montecito Kitchen

Santa Barbara Cabinet Company

Photo by Eamon McGeough Photo by Erin Fineblatt (above) Design and construction by Santa Barbara Design & Build. (at left) This kitchen remodel in Montecito features a walnut butcher block island, black soapstone countertops, eight burner, dual oven Wolf range, custom cabinets and Shaws farm sink.

The Meredith Project

This kitchen and design by The Meredith Project has been meticulously crafted and curated to blend comfort and sophistication in every detail. The team chose hardware from Rejuvenation for its elegance and practicality. Each element is thoughtfully designed to elevate the space, including the serene look and feel of the Calacatta Apuano Marble countertop and fixtures by Rohl.These selections give the space warmth and refinement.


The Beauty of Natural Stone

519 N. Quarantina St. Santa Barbara 805.617.3310 • • Follow us on Instagram @solidrocksb or drop by our showroom.
Whether completely renovating or subtly updating, natural stone transforms homes.


Garden sanctuary: Five essentials to create your own

Every garden should be a sanctuary. This is one time size doesn’t matter. A sanctuary can be a balcony or acres of woods. What makes a garden a sanctuary is how it makes you feel. There is a littleknown law about garden design; if you have something beautiful to look at, you won’t notice any less than desirable aspects.

Beauty and the Beholder: You have a distinct point of view; it is unique to you. What makes you feel calm and safe might make someone else anxious and upset. The first step in creating your Garden Sanctuary is to list out what makes you feel comfortable, safe, and relaxed. If making lists isn’t your thing then, collect photographs of what you like, what makes you feel good, what makes

you feel comfortable and peaceful. Whichever way you do your research, distill it down to what you love and what makes you feel relaxed and safe. Regardless of what you choose, here are the five essential elements to creating your special garden sanctuary.

1. A Feeling of Protection: Sanctuaries should give a feeling of protection and enclosure, visually from the outside world and physically from the elements. There should be a feeling of safety and perhaps a coziness. This could be created by using hedges, fences, a pergola, a gazebo or even a stand of trees. Anything that allows one to be undisturbed and undetected and gives one a feeling of protection from the elements and the exterior world.

2. Paths: A meandering path is a great way to create the element of privacy and hidden treasures. A path that leads you with the eye but does not reveal the destination is a good way to add mystery and interest to a space. Paths are an essential part of a garden sanctuary, especially when the paths are “low-key” like mulch or gravel. The path itself can be part of the feeling of privacy, by not being obvious. Mulch or gravel paths will do the trick.

3. A Place to Rest: A place to rest or relax is an essential part of any garden sanctuary. A chaise lounge, garden bench, a large boulder or even a patch of grass where you can spread a blanket, will suit. Use anything that will suffice as a place where you can just “take a


break” from life. If you are lucky enough to have a view of some kind, all the better. The layout of your property may provide a variety of private vista sanctuary gardens.

4. A Sense of Peace and Calm: A garden sanctuary should give one a sense of peace and calm. The way to create this is to keep the design simple and limit the plant pallet. Try using the same types of plants, tropical, Mediterranean, etc. If you want flowers, stick to one or two colors. Think “quiet” colors, like white, blue, lavender, purple.

5. Quiet the Sounds: No matter where you live, consider a water feature and/or wind chimes to distract the ear from any undesirable noises, such a traffic. The sound of water is healing and peaceful. The same aesthetic law mentioned above applies to sound, if you give the ear something aesthetic to listen to, it will distract the ear from noises that are less desirable.

Everyone deserves a special spot that’s all their own. That’s why we create beautiful gardens. Gardens give us a sense of peace, calm and protection, and that is my wish for you, your own garden sanctuary. Need help creating your garden sanctuary? Call us (805) 969-3984 or email

“Beneath these fruit-tree boughs that shed their snow-white blossoms on my head, with brightest sunshine round me spread of spring’s unclouded weather, in this sequestered nook how sweet to sit upon my orchard-seat! And birds and flowers once more to greet, my last year’s friends together.”

Lisa Cullen, landscape designer and organic gardener, owns Montecito Landscape with her husband, Chris. She can be reached at 805.969.3984 or

FOOD + HOME 57 WWW.FOOD–HOME.COM | 805-963-6064 | 930 State Street, Santa Barbara Designed and built in Santa Barbara by the Tent Merchant Inc. A Cazita can be a pool cabana, guest room, Home office, art studio or any extra space that serves you. Ships nationwide.

A moment for the eclipse

One of the things I like about being a solar contractor is that it connects me to all things celestial. Whether it’s talking about the sun, tracking planets, looking for satellites or simply gazing out at the beauty of a starry night – I just love looking up in wonder.

As I write, I’m looking forward to the solar eclipse. While it will not be a total eclipse here locally, the effect will still be noticeable. As you read, you will reflect on your experience for what it was like to stop, even if only for a moment, to take in the wonder of having a normal day be something completely different, all because the moon was in a position to block out the light from the sun.

In the renewable energy community, however, there is much about the natural phenomenon that brings great anxiety. A quick glance at the trajectory of the eclipse shows that much of Texas will experience a total blockage of the sun for a majority of the day. This means that trillions of photons will not splash on the solar fields of North America.

Grid stability is one of the primary reasons folks mention when they speak about their motivation to spend the money on solar and energy storage for their home (that, and huge increases in utility bills). It is the natural response to try to control the environment in which we live in. Grid experts have been working round-the-clock to predict weather and energy consumption patterns to be prepared for a major shortage of power – but there still is no guarantee that all of that work will be what is needed to meet the need in real time.

My son told me about a series of writings posted by the New York Times (Interactive Science) that highlight so much of the big science that will be active during the eclipse.

A quick glance at the trajectory of the eclipse shows that much of Texas will experience a total blockage of the sun for a majority of the day. This means that trillions of photons will not splash on the solar fields of North America

Things from being able to watch the flares and plumes and solar wind through time lapse, launching balloons to predict shifts in weather patterns, tracking bees to see how their behavior changes with a lack of sunlight and changes in atmospheric pressure – seriously, Google it and go check it out. It was a fun reminder that there are people doing things that I didn’t really know were thought about.

Similarly, it fascinates me to think about the many layers of impact the solar eclipse will have on “us” – from the ethereal to the practical. My hope is that I (and we) will take moments like these and use them as a reminder that perspective is everything. The world around us, and the people we share life with, provide a real opportunity to engage and explore and experience that which truly should inspire us to look up with a sense of wonder. I hope for this.

Marshall Howen has been involved in the solar and energy storage industry for over 20 years and is the president and founder of Sunrise 805.

Illustration by Jonny Jim
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A free-flowing backcountry ramble along the Sisquoc

The chaparral surrounding Big Pine Mountain was still cloaked in kneedeep snow. It was a chilly remnant of powerful winter storms that pummeled the Santa Barbara backcountry in December 2021.

The first week of January 2022, Malek Mehai, Forrest Van Stein, Danny Trudeau, and I left the Franklin Trail in Carpinteria for the Sisquoc River in the San Rafael Wilderness of the Los Padres National Forest. To reach the headwaters of that westward flowing, year-round water source, it required long stretches of bushwhacking before drinking from this tranquil tributary of the Cuyama and Santa Maria Rivers.

Water is life

The Sisquoc is one of 16 rivers in California designated as Wild and Scenic by Congress, part of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System. The rivulet originates on the north slope of Big Pine Mountain at 6,320 feet, and the runnel is entirely freeflowing. The Sisquoc runs for 57 miles and initially converges with the Cuyama River before merging with the Santa Maria River.

In the Chumash language Sisquoc means “quail.” It’s one of the last bastions for steelhead trout, western pond turtles, and arroyo toads, endangered backcountry fauna still clinging to natural freshwater arroyos.

To be at the headwaters of any river is a special moment. It’s where its essence begins, breathing life to surrounding flora and fauna. It may start with a mere trickle percolating from a crack in a rock, but soon that trickle begins to flow, and the cubic inches increase as the trail crisscrosses downslope over the serpentine ebb.

Steady flow

After trudging through persistent kneehigh snowpack while rounding Big Pine Mountain, our gradual descent eventually brought us to the soft, forgiving scree at Alamar Saddle. We bade farewell to our last views of the coastal range and Channel

Islands and quickly descended beneath the dense canopy of towering Douglas fir, sturdy bay, cedar, and sycamore trees that cast long shadows over the Upper Sisquoc.


The area has been off limits for decades, a sanctuary for Pleistocene remnants hidden within the forest. Endangered California condors will always need the protection of such environments, but the Sisquoc Condor

Upper and Lower Bear Camps were our favorite campsites along the Sisquoc, as the shaded canopy nearly blocked out all sunlight penetrating the forest floor. A warm fire was the solution to thermoregulating and drying out soggy, crusty socks.

Black bear sign was evident too. Although we never saw any Ursus americanus, their mark was everywhere: scratches on trees, fresh mounds of scat piled atop soddened leaf litter, and their impressive spoor found along the open trail.

Sanctuary is a gem hidden away within a backcountry wilderness that possesses many.

Created in 1937 by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the sanctuary was the first of its kind for these incredible raptors. It encompasses 1,200 acres of backcountry wilderness, hugging the southwest fringe of the Sisquoc River. Remote and choked with overgrown brush and fallen trees, the Sisquoc

Photos and text by ChuCk graham


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Condor Sanctuary is the kind of ideal habitat condors require.

Currently there are no condors nesting on the towering, sheer cliffs of the sanctuary, but that doesn’t mean they don’t soar over it or briefly roost. Condors reared in captivity and released into the wild are fitted with tracking devices. In fact, some of that data have revealed random visitation by reintroduced condors that on average soar 150 miles a day.

Backcountry junction

As we approached the South Fork of the Sisquoc, there was a great divide in the river, a convergence of trails veering off in all directions. White Ledge and the San Rafael Mountains loomed on the western fringe. The steep Sweetwater Trail traversed northeastward into the Sierra Madre Range. The Sisquoc continued over its boulder-strewn self, wild and scenic to the end.

When we rested at the South Fork of the Sisquoc River, the sounds of a crackling fire were a welcomed respite after another stellar day rambling down from the river’s headwaters. The South Fork cabin was also a welcome site, as a wisp of smoke billowed from the woodburning stove within.

Still, I elected for my tent pitched beneath burly oak trees. Serenaded by croaking frogs, I drifted off to sleep next to the unfettered flow of the Sisquoc.

Chuck Graham is a freelance writer/photographer and kayak guide at Channel Islands National Park. Author of the award-winning “Carrizo Plain, Where the Mountains Meet the Grasslands.”


Rain or shine, water conservation needs to


a way of life in Santa Barbara.

With rebates like the Sustainable Lawn Replacement Rebate, residents and businesses can replace their water-thirsty lawn with water-wise plants and receive a rebate of up to $2/square foot.

Rebate amount is based upon square footage of lawn removed.

LY RAIN Down the Drain!


Scan here or visit to learn more about our rebate programs.

water and money in the long term with a waterwise garden.
Water Conservation Save
Learn more at! @SBCreeks
When it rains, pollutants on the ground can quickly w a sh in t o our s t o r m drains, creeks, and ocean. rains, c eeks, For healthy creeks and beaches, keep pollutants out of our streets and storm drains. or beaches, reets


A truly immersive experience

In the Santa Ynez Valley, Roblar Winery and Vineyards shines as a gem for food enthusiasts and wine lovers alike. Here you can taste wine just steps from where the grapes are grown and savor seasonally inspired cuisine featuring ingredients grown on site. But what makes Roblar stand out is the fact that you can indulge in the fruits of its land and stay on the same property where the vines and gardens flourish. It all adds up to an immersive “agritourism” experience.

Spread across 40 acres adorned with majestic oaks, Roblar Winery and Vineyards (named after the Spanish word for “oak”) is a testament to the Gleason family’s commitment to celebrating the beauty and bounty of Santa Barbara wine country. Their journey began with the founding of their inaugural vineyard, Refugio Ranch Vineyard, from which they released their first wines in 2008. Years later, inspired to expand their wine and hospitality potential, they acquired Roblar Winery, Royal Oaks Winery, and the adjacent Royal Oaks Ranch — a 2017 acquisition that laid the groundwork for the family’s dream to create a holistic agritourism destination that seamlessly integrates wine, food, and sustainability.

In 2020 the Gleasons welcomed head winemaker Max Marshak, infusing new passion and perspective into their winemaking program. Marshak, who joined after years on the winemaking team at Jonata Estate, now oversees production of the entire Gleason Family Vineyards Portfolio, including such Roblar, Refugio Ranch, and Royal Oaks wines as Sauvignon Blanc, Malvasia Bianca, Grenache, Petit Verdot, and Cabernet Sauvignon, to name a few

The organic Roblar Farm, planted on the property in 2018, stands as a symbol of the Gleasons’ commitment to sustainable agriculture, boasting over 40 varieties of vegetables, herbs, and flowers. Under the

guidance of farm director Jorge Reyes, the farm has expanded to five acres, with a focus on enhancing regenerative practices. Roblar Farm provides a daily source of inspiration for chef Cham, whose ever-changing menus are a celebration of the region’s freshest and most seasonal produce. Though you can’t go wrong with anything on the brunch, lunch, and dinner menus (trust me, I’ve sampled my fair share!), my personal suggestion is to plan a visit around the Buttermilk Fried Chicken Special, which is only available on Thursdays.

In recent years, as part of the Gleasons’ plan to transform Roblar Winery into a true destination for visitors to immerse themselves in the land, they’ve opened two rental homes on the property. There’s the charming threebedroom Casita, which overlooks the tranquil property and farm, as well as a grander five-bedroom home, the Farmhouse, featuring a pool, hot tub, and horseshoe pit. With two more rental options in development, there’s a perfect retreat for everyone. And let me tell you from experience, you can’t beat having a comfortable place to retire nearby after eating and drinking all the delicious things Roblar has to offer.

The intricate dance between food and wine underscores the belief that what grows together, goes together — in the vineyard, on the farm, and on the table. And at Roblar Winery, the Gleasons have created a place that embodies the essence of Santa Ynez Valley’s local-minded ethos, offering a farm-to-fork, vine-toglass experience that leaves a lasting impression of the region’s natural beauty and agricultural richness.

Roblar Winery and Vineyards is located at 3010 Roblar Ave., Santa Ynez. Refugio Ranch Vineyards

Tasting Room is located at 2990 Grand Ave., Los Olivos. Visit and to learn more.

Visit our tasting room in Los Olivos!
Family-owned winery focused on producing classically styled wines from Santa Barbara County.

30 years of Jaffurs Wine Cellars

Winemaker Q + A with winemaker Stephen Searle by hana-lee sedgWICk

In 1994 Craig Jaffurs established Jaffurs Wine Cellars, a trailblazing winery in California dedicated exclusively to Rhône grape varieties. Over the years, while the beloved winery has diversified its varietal portfolio and undergone changes in ownership and winemaking personnel, it has continued to honor the legacy of its pioneering founder.

In celebration of Jaffurs’s 30th anniversary, I had the pleasure of speaking with winemaker Stephen Searle, delving into his journey to Jaffurs, the unique touch he brings to the wines, and why he thinks the brand continues to shine three decades since its inception.

First off, can you share a bit about how you ended up getting into wine, and what led you to Santa Barbara?

I was studying music in Boston and waiting tables at a couple different restaurants that

had terrific wine programs. I had never considered wine as a career option, but after tasting some great wines and doing a little research, I found that there was a college degree in winemaking. It really was a “light bulb” moment for me, and within the year I was headed to Cal Poly with a clear goal to study enology and eventually make wine. After graduating, I bounced around to different wineries for a few years. I knew I wanted to be in a cooler-climate coastal region and had always loved the wines from Santa Barbara. When the opportunity at Jaffurs came up it was an easy decision to move here.

You’ve been with Jaffurs since 2012. How have you put your personal stamp on the wines since becoming Head Winemaker? I was assistant winemaker at Jaffurs for

several years and when the winery was sold in 2016 to Dan and Janelle Green, I was afforded the opportunity to take over as head winemaker the following vintage. Jaffurs was already a successful brand with a defined house-style and it has been important to me to honor that. To that end, winemaking changes have been made with the idea of pushing quality forward year after year, rather than a complete shift in direction. I’m a big fan of what stem inclusion can bring to a wine. I’ve also dialed the new oak back a little, have brought concrete vessels into our aging program, and am fermenting primarily with native yeasts present on the grape skins. Additionally, our “reserve”-level wines are being bottled unfined and unfiltered. My goal has always been to allow the vintage, vineyard, and varietal to speak through the wine, and I take a “less is more” approach in the cellar.


Jaffurs doesn’t own any vineyards. How has your experience been working with different sites throughout the region?

Craig had exceptional instincts early on when choosing vineyard sources and specific blocks to source from. It’s a continual learning experience to coax the best possible wine out of each site, particularly in our syrah program. We’re bottling five single-vineyard syrahs now, and no two wines are grown or made in the same way, as each site is unique and requires something different.

You make wine from several different Rhône grapes, as well as Burgundian varieties. Which wine would you say captures the spirit and essence of Jaffurs?

Syrah for sure. It’s hard to choose which one, but probably the Santa Barbara County appellation blend. It comes from all the same vineyards we use for the vineyard designate syrahs and is a great introduction to Jaffurs.

Do you have a favorite Jaffurs pairing?

It’s unoriginal but it has to be syrah with lamb. I love a slow-braised lamb shank with garlic potatoes and broccoli rabe (I’m a sucker for bitter greens). Our viognier is great with Thai or Mexican food, bold flavors with a touch of spice.

Jaffurs Wine Cellars has been producing wine for 30 years. Though it has evolved quite a bit, it’s remained a sought-after boutique wine brand. What do you think is the secret to this longevity?

The brand has absolutely gone through evolutions — everything from the facilities to the ownership. Our vineyard sources have evolved, as have the varieties we produce. But the vision to make beautiful, distinct wines that offer exceptional value for the price has remained throughout. The most important factor in Jaffurs’s success is our loyal customer base. We have a very strong wine club with members who have supported us for years. Making so many small lots of wine as we do would be impossible without dedicated supporters to purchase and enjoy them!

Are there any new projects or directions you are exploring?

We recently launched a new line of wines called “State Street” that is directed towards the wholesale market. They are terrific wines for everyday drinking, bottled under screw cap and offered at a very approachable price-point. We’ve also been working on an international collaboration that hasn’t been fully announced yet, but let’s just say I’ve been spending a bit of time in the south of France.

Jaffurs Wine Cellars is located at 819 E. Montecito St., Santa Barbara. Tastings are offered Monday - Sunday, 11a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Reservations not required for groups under six people.

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Seasonal sips


Ah, spring – a season of renewed energy and a lovely precursor to summer. With longer days and warmer weather, it’s a time when our palates yearn for something a little more lively and refreshing in our glasses. Whether you’re enjoying a sunny afternoon picnic, celebrating Mother’s Day over brunch, or gathering with friends for Memorial Day, these five local wines are the perfect companions to the warmer season.

Donnachadh Estate

Rosé of Syrah ($30)

If you’ve been reading this column for a while, you may remember Donnachadh (pronounced DON-nuh-kuh) from a previous seasonal roundup. This familyowned vineyard and winery crafts a range of delightful wines from the Sta. Rita Hills AVA, including chardonnay, pinot noir, syrah, and gamay, but the rosé is a standout for spring. Winemaker Ernst Storm uses syrah grapes from Donnachadh’s organically-farmed estate vineyard for this bright, refreshing rosé, which offers notes of strawberry, watermelon, and citrus, along with sea salt-like minerality on the finish. Sure to please your wine aficionado friends, it’s also light and approachable enough for casual drinkers, making it a versatile wine to reach for all spring.

Marbeso “Magic Hour” ($32)

Marbeso is a boutique label by husband-and-wife duo Colin and Hannah McNany. The name, meaning “kiss of the sea,” speaks to the vineyards that veteran

winemaker Colin sources from: organically-farmed vineyards within close proximity to the ocean. “Magic Hour” is a carbonic blend of grüner veltliner and albariño from Santa Barbara County, and displays a beautiful orange hue due to skin contact during fermentation. But beyond the sunset-like color of this orange wine, it’s just really fun to drink, offering complex aromas and flavors of pear, tangerine, and Meyer lemon, as well as a vibrant, textural finish. Psst… Keep an eye out for Marbeso’s new vintage of Magic Hour, a 100% pinot gris showcasing juicy watermelon and rose petal notes that’ll be ideal for summer.

Hubba Wines “Mutha” ($50)

Hubba Wines, a hidden gem in Paso Robles, is owned by winemaker Riley Hubbard. With an impressive resume that includes stints at such renowned Paso Robles wineries as L’Aventure, Law Estate, and Desparada, as well as time honing her skills in Australia and France, Riley now showcases her minimalist

approach to winemaking through her own small label. Sourced from two long-standing vineyards, Massa Vineyard in the Carmel Valley and Bien Nacido Vineyard in Santa Maria, this 100% chardonnay—playfully called “Mutha”—is a delightful departure from the conventional. Unfined and unfiltered, it sings with notes of peach and lemon, with a light, yet creamy mouthfeel. Fun, interesting, and somewhat wild, it’s a tribute to the gifts of Mother Nature (and great for the funloving mother in your life).

Lieu Dit Sauvignon Blanc ($24)

No spring wine list would be complete without a sauvignon blanc. This varietal is perfect for spring sipping thanks to its light, crisp profile highlighting classic citrus and herbaceous flavors, which naturally complement spring’s bounty. This sauvignon blanc, which leans heavier on the citrus, is from Lieu Dit, a Santa Barbara brand founded by Eric Railsback and Justin Willett focused on varieties grown in the Loire Valley, France. Sourced

from two vineyards in the Happy Canyon AVA and fermented in both tank and barrel, this bright sauvignon blanc reveals lemon, crushed stone, and lime zest characters, but with a soft acidic profile due to oak aging. Even if you’re not usually a sauvignon blanc drinker, give this one a try this spring.

Kunin Counoise ($40)

Counoise is a grape grown primarily in the Rhône Valley of France, where it is recognized as one of the 13 varieties allowed in Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Though typically a blending grape, you’ll find several producers throughout Santa Barbara County, such as Kunin Wines, bottling this varietal on its own. Very light in body, with good acidity and enticing notes of strawberry, plum, licorice, and pepper, this approachable wine from a beloved producer fully demonstrates the grape’s potential. Plus, it’s a wonderful match for anything grilled—Memorial Day barbecues, here we come! Serve it slightly chilled for the best experience.


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1 The Andersen–Loaded sirloin steak burgers.

2 Black Sheep–Beet & Chèvre “Cheesecake” Hazelnuts, coco nibs, pickled kumquat.

3 Holdren’s Steak & Seafood–Signature cowboy cut ribeye.

4 Restaurant Roy–Signature chicken Marsala with house potato cakes and Marsala wine sauce.

5 Three Pickles–Signature Reuben sandwich.

6 Olio e Limone–Pork Belly (Maiale)


of Olio Crudo Bar and Gary Moss

7 Gala–Local halibut crudo with aji Amarillo leche de Tigre, pea tendrils and beets. Pairs beautifully with Sauvignon blanc.

8 Opal restaurant & bar–Tiger shrimp pizza.

9 Stella Mare’s–Classic Coq au Vin. French braise of chicken with all the fixin’s.

10 Bluewater Grill–Shrimp tacos.

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11 Intermezzo by Wine Cask–Oysters.

12 The Natural Café–Chicken enchiladas.

13 Café Playa Azul–Scallops Picado.

14 Scarlett Begonia–Spring beet salad.

15 bouchon–Forest mushroom ragout.

16 Jane–Seafood pasta.

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Napa, you say? Look homeward, angel

Unless you’re an AI wine critic without any feelings (soulless robots do exist by the way, and I think most of them work at the Wine Spectator ), human preconceptions that have accumulated in your cranium may have jaundiced your vinous viewpoint.

For example, if you recall most of the melancholy lyrics to Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Stuck in Lodi Again,” you’ll probably never want to visit that town or taste their generally flavorsome vino:  “Ran out of time and money

Looks like they took my friends.”

This sounds more like a Rod Serling lyric than John Fogerty’s, and casts eerie and fatalistic imagery (low…die), diminishing a region that makes some perfectly fine, if fairly ripe wines.

(There is one appellation that actually exists as the Rodney Dangerfield of California producers, a punchline to buyers and sommeliers everywhere. I’ll name it shortly).

Most wine-crafting provinces throughout the Golden State have a chip on their shoulder. Hell, even I do, and I’m not even allowed to apply for American Viticultural

Appellation status, though I may be one Entenmann’s donut shy of it.

Napa Valley is The Big Dog, of course: welcoming and gracious, but budgetarily so brutally beyond belief that it prompts me to alliterate with absurd frequency.

You may crave dinner for two at the French Laundry, but you may have to walk there when your battered 1974 Volvo overheats on Highway 29 and can just afford the multi-course menu and a gratuity but not a gallon of Prestone to fill the radiator and get home.

Then again, if you live in Santa Barbara, why go to Napa? Just stay here: There are hundreds of excellent restaurants, a plethora of lauded wineries, actual ocean views and wealthier celebrities…

And as promised, avoid Temecula: Gott in Himmel , it’s the home of an Almond Flavored California “Champagne”! GAAK!

I asked Google AI about it, and the response came back: “It’s known as the ‘OH MY GOSH’ sparkling wine.” You BET it is … maybe even “OMFG.”

Please don’t leave…

Bob Wesley is a Santa Ynez based wine buying consultant and writer specializing in California wines. You can reach him at
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