Unique Local Foods, Spirits And Craft Beers Abound In California’s Central Coast
Enjoy January In San Luis Obispo County, The Most Delicious Month Of The Year
San Luis Obispo County, located halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco on California’s breathtaking Central Coast, is a culinary paradise offering an assortment of locally-sourced and produced food and drink. The area’s range of coastal and inland influences is demonstrated by its broad assortment of gastronomic treats ranging from fresh foods, innovative spirits, unique craft beers and much more.
Indulge in and explore the culinary bounty San Luis Obispo County has to offer during Restaurant Month, January 4-29, 2016*. Once a year, participating restaurants offer special prix-fixe menus of three courses at$30-$40 per person. Whether taking in San Luis Obispo County’s flavors during Restaurant Month, or visiting some of the area’s producers throughout the year, the destination is overflowing with an abundance of great products found only on the Central Coast.
(*Days of offerings vary per restaurant and are noted here. See details below per restaurant. Split meals not allowed. Please call individual restaurants for open hours and additional information.)
Locally Sourced Foods Flourish in San Luis Obispo County
There are a wide variety of new and interesting farms and fisheries across San Luis Obispo County that specialize in unique foods including shellfish, meat, produce and dairy products supplying local restaurants and markets. Taste the fresh farm fare from the producers below at one of San Luis Obispo County’s restaurants or farmer’s markets:
Morro Bay Oyster Company: Morro Bay holds a long-standing history as a thriving seaport with beautiful ocean views and a tranquil yet productive estuary. Morro Bay Oyster Company harvests Pacific Gold Oysters by hand directly from the pristine water, which are then sold to local restaurants and to the public at farmers markets and off its barge in Morro Bay harbor.
The Abalone Farm: The largest aquaculture facility of its kind in the country, The Abalone Farm Inc. produces over 100 tons of California Red Abalone each year. The facility is not open to the public, but its products are available through several distributors.
Adelaida Springs Ranch: Savory and sustainable grass-fed beef and lamb, are the specialties of Adelaida Springs Ranch, where tours offer fascinating information about the area, from the geography and its history to the workings of the ranch.
Rinconada Dairy: Cheesemaking at this Santa Margarita dairy evolved from 25 years of organic gardening and a passion for producing healthful and delicious food. Every step in the process of breeding, lambing, feeding, milking and cheesemaking is hands-on.
Stepladder Ranch: This family-owned ranch in Cambria features Hass avocados, sub-tropical fruits, forest-raised pork, fresh goat cheese and a luxury vacation rental.
Windrose Farm: Located east of Paso Robles, Windrose Farm cultivates vegetable rotations including tomatoes, potatoes, onions, garlic, green and dry beans, and much more. The farm also has a sheep pasture and offers tours and special tastings in partnership with FARMstead Ed.
San Luis Obispo County is also home to dozens of craft olive and walnut oil producers including Pasolivo, Olea Farm, Kiler Ridge Olive Oil, and Limerock Orchards, just to name a few. Sample these and other unparalleled offerings at over a dozen farmer’s markets throughout the week.
Distilling Movement Growing in San Luis Obispo County
To rival it’s evolving foodie trends, the craft spirit industry in San Luis Obispo County has grown rapidly over the last several years. The movement is a terrific complement to an area known for producing world-class wines and there are a variety of distilleries in the region that offer tours and tastings.
Pendray’s Distillery: Having a distillery was always part of the business plan for PasoPort winery and in 2013, winemaker Steve Glossner began production of brandy for fortification of its ports, and has since expanded to brandy and grappa.
Re:Find: The first to utilize premium Paso Robles-grown grapes as their base, Alex and Monica Villicanaoperate Re:Find out of the Villicana winery, making limoncello, gin, vodka and whiskey.
Wine Shine: Co-owners Mark Sahaydak and Patrick Brooks operate this small still house specializing in flavored moonshines, brandies and whiskey.
Discover Craft Beers (and Cider)
There’s no shortage of craft breweries in San Luis Obispo County, producing a wide variety of beers including IPAs, porters, sours, and just about any other style you could imagine. Drop by any of the following craft breweries to raise a glass and sample some of their creations. Continue reading