Summer always feels like a time when I get to reconnect a bit with my childhood self.
To be honest, the moments that spark joy for me haven’t changed much since I was an eight-year-old on summer break from Evergreen Elementary School: A bite of fresh, cold watermelon on a hot day; a trip to the air-conditioned library for free books and respite from the heat in mid-July; the prospect of swimming to my heart’s content, whether in the ocean, pool, or swimming hole; the smell of corn and hot dogs on the grill, my mouth watering in anticipation of a tasty barbecue. Summer is simple, beautiful and fun—even when unrelenting adult responsibilities breathe like a wolf at the door.
Connecting—and reconnecting—also happen to be the overarching themes of this issue of the magazine. In our Eat feature, Jess D. Taylor explores the world of Mike Hudson Distributing, a Petaluma-based company that’s been connecting local food businesses with Bay Area markets for 50 years. Dani Burlison writes about the second annual Sonoma County Cider Week, which kicks off at the Gravenstein Apple Fair in August. An invention of the folks at Tilted Shed, Cider Week allows cideries to share their stories and reconnect the drinking public to the marvelous apples that have been overshadowed by wine grapes over the last century. In this issue, we also visit Radical Family Farms, a no-till, family-owned farm on Coastal Miwok and Southern Pomo land in south Sebastopol where farmer Leslie Wiser is explicitly connecting her family’s Chinese and German heritages with her choices of what crops to plant. And don’t miss our interview with Neil Pacheco in our recurring My Favorite Eats section. Pacheco, a vivacious radio host and hospitality expert, takes us on a tour of his favorite local restaurants and markets with a special focus on the food businesses along Sebastopol Road in Roseland.
Thanks for reading and happy summer! Let’s connect! As always, I welcome emails about your favorite eats, summertime food memories, and story tips.