Wednesday, June 26, 2013

June 29: California Beer Festival at Stafford Lake Park

Posted By on Wed, Jun 26, 2013 at 7:47 PM

A beer-drinking bear as mascot? Sign me up! For one great day in Marin County, the California Beer Festival churns out 70 beers on tap, live entertainment and a barbecue cook-off. Petty Theft, the great Tom Petty tribute band, are set to perform, along with the rock tribute band Metal Shop and the Bay Area band Monophonics. Food includes CBF Garlic Fries, Hula Huts, SK Wings (which are “cluckin’ good,” if you didn’t know) and the Shark Bite, and brews include local and nonlocal beers from Lagunitas, Hopmonk, Widmer Brothers, Bruvado and others. What could be better than getting to sample such a robust selection while smelling the sweet scent of barbecue and listening to live music? Glug, glug, glug on Saturday, June 29, at Stafford Lake Park. 3549 Novato Blvd., Novato. $25—$65. 12:30—5pm. 805.351.5650.

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Thursday, January 17, 2013

Jan. 17: Battle of the Baristas Final Showdown at Taylor Maid

Posted By on Thu, Jan 17, 2013 at 12:50 PM

I spent years behind coffeehouse counters, steaming up foamy lattes with glum despair before learning how to make a proper coffee drink. It took training by a boss who viewed coffee as an art form to change my ways. Under her tutelage, I learned the exact temperature at which milk caramelizes, how to make a superb espresso shot (tiger stripes, people), and the way to pour freshly steamed milk so as to produce crema-licious rosettes. I’m now as obsessed with a well-made cappuccino as the 30 Oliver’s Market baristas who’ve trained with Taylor Maid Farms for the past three months in preparation for the ultimate challenge. Bask in their knowledge and skill at the Battle of the Baristas Final Showdown on Thursday, Jan. 17, at Taylor Maid Farms. 7190 Keating Ave., Sebastopol. 6pm. 707.634.7129.

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

July 17: Brews and Bites at Lagunitas Brewing Co.

Posted By on Wed, Jul 11, 2012 at 2:34 PM

Chill at Lagunitas’ Beer Sanctuary for some Brews and Bites. Enjoy Lagunitas beer and wine with Rosso’s brick-oven pizza, and some fresh picked community grown salad from the Bounty Farm. The Lexicon of Sustainability project will be exhibiting some riveting photography and the steel-hided, gold-hearted Highway Poets will be playing their sweet muses. Get drunk and enjoy good music with a good conscience—all proceeds will be donated to Petaluma Bounty’s programs to make healthy and affordable food available to everyone. Oh, and bring the kids—ages 6 and under are free. Just don’t fill their baby bottles with IPA on Tuesday, July 17, at Lagunitas Brewing Co. 1280 North McDowell Blvd., Petaluma. $20. 5:30pm. 707.778.8776.

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Thursday, June 7, 2012

June 9-10: Novato Festival of Arts, Wine, and Music at Grant Avenue in Novato

Posted By on Thu, Jun 7, 2012 at 11:42 AM

Novato. Land of abandoned airport hangars and ’80s suburban sprawl . . . or so it would seem. Long inhabited by the Coast Miwok, Novato was settled by whites via Mexican land grant issued in 1839—and soon after, with what this writer considers the most photogenic oak-to-grassland ratio in California on surrounding hillsides, the Novato Festival of Arts, Wine and Music attracted a crowd exactly 116 percent larger than the population of the city. Beer. Wine. Food. Music. You know the drill. Get your summer on with headliners Chuck Prophet, Cold Blood and others on Saturday and Sunday, June 9–10, in downtown Novato. Grant Avenue between Redwood Boulevard and Seventh Street. 10am–7pm. $5. 415.897.1164.

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Thursday, April 26, 2012

April 28: Pastapalooza for Parks at Santa Rosa Vets Building

Posted By on Thu, Apr 26, 2012 at 10:36 AM
People do crazy things when they’re in love—leave voicemails at 3am, show up at the other person’s house unannounced, and maybe participate in things they wouldn’t admit being proud of later on. But if you’re in love with county and state parks, there’s no way you’re going to let them be taken away without a fight—or, in this case, a feast. Head to the Pastapalooza event with “Pasta King” Art Ibleto for pasta, live music, a silent auction and much more to benefit local parks. Luckily, Jack London State Park is being spared from the chopping block, but Annadel and others are still in danger. Eat in the name of love on Saturday, April 28, at the Veterans Memorial Building. 1351 Maple Ave., Santa Rosa. 6pm. $30. 707.565.2041.

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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Dec. 21: SRJC Culinary Arts Holiday Fundraiser

Posted By on Wed, Dec 21, 2011 at 11:41 AM

One of the worst-kept secrets for lunch in Santa Rosa is the SRJC’s Culinary Arts Center, which offers delicious creations, courtesy of students, for cheap. The place fills up quickly, which for late-coming, bill-savvy diners means dejection. But alas! Under the direction of program director and chef Michael Salinger, the SRJC culinary arts program is moving to its new, relatively humongous location next year. Four times the size of its current location, it’s already causing a buzz and it’s not even open yet. The program hosts a holiday fundraiser for the move with food, wine and holiday cheer on Wednesday, Dec. 21, at the Culinary Arts Center. 458 B St., Santa Rosa. Noon—2pm. $25. 707.576.0279.

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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Oct. 23: 'Chocolate & Wine' at Westin Verasa

Posted on Thu, Oct 20, 2011 at 11:18 AM


I have never been as ashamed as I was the day my roommate came home to find me sprawled on the couch surrounded by an empty box of See’s candy and an even emptier bottle of wine. I lied—I said I had help in the gluttony that had ensued, when in actuality I was the only guilty party involved. The 24th annual Chocolate and Wine event provides a rare opportunity to leave one’s self respect at home while gorging on fine chocolates from 25 chocolatiers and wines from 25 wineries. Leave your belts at home on Sunday, Oct. 23, at the Westin Verasa. 1314 McKinstry St., Napa. 3pm. $40–$45. 707.257.1800.

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Friday, September 2, 2011

Sept. 4: Oyster & Fog Festival at Rocker Oysterfeller's

Posted on Fri, Sep 2, 2011 at 12:15 AM

Hopefully the sun will come out for bit—just in time for the solid lineup of Americana bands set to play the Oyster & Fog Festival 2011. Tiny Television, Easy Leaves, Stratospheres and others provide the entertainment, while one of Valley Ford’s most charming dining establishments knocks out barbecue oysters straight off the grill, fried green tomatoes, shrimp po’ boys and other delicious treats. Slurp up them oysters on Sunday, Sept. 4, at Rocker Oysterfeller’s. 14415 Hwy. 1, Valley Ford. 12pm. $15. 707.876.1983.
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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Aug. 27: Taste of Petaluma in Downtown Petaluma

Posted on Wed, Aug 24, 2011 at 10:03 AM

Can someone become an official patron of the arts, a food connoisseur and a wine junkie all in the same day? Taste of Petaluma offers the possibility, with samples from over 40 of the town’s finest chefs and wineries. The whole event raises funds for the Cinnabar Theatre, a signature staple in Sonoma County arts. Wine and dine for a good cause on Saturday, Aug. 27, starting at either Putnam Plaza (129 Petaluma Blvd. N., Petaluma) or Haus Fortuna (111 Second St., Petaluma). 10:30am. $35. 707.763.8920.
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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

December 22: Polly Lappetito at the Culinary Institute of America

Posted By on Wed, Dec 22, 2010 at 3:14 PM

After the rush of decorating, shopping, organizing, shuffling relatives, fielding RSVPs and wrapping presents, who the hell wants to cook? One could take a cursory flip-though of the Larousse Gastronomique as inspiration—or opt for a cooking demonstration at the Culinary Institute of America with none other than in-house Greystone Restaurant chef Polly Lappetito. Anyone with “appetito” as part of their name has to be good with food, right? And especially if you’re talking family recipes. Lappetito will be preparing her family’s Christmas manicotti recipe and demonstrating the fine art of making manicotti shells. By the day’s end, you’ll want to call off that turkey and order up eggplant, basil and chicken for Christmas dinner. Lappetito inspires on Wednesday, Dec. 22, at the Culinary Institute of America. 2555 Main St., St. Helena. 5–7pm. Free. 707.967.2320.
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