Eventide Oyster Co

With the summer people nowhere to be found, Eventide Oyster Co is back on my weekly rotation. A dozen of oysters is mandatory for each visit, allowing one to share in the amazingness of the Maine coast, and for a taste of New England and Washington State gems.

From there, the comfortable luxuriousness can go as far as you, and your wallet, are willing to go. Crudo, stew, octopus, buns and rolls, sparkling, sake, sherry or cocktails. Eventide has all of your new favorites.

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Sur Lie

Welcome to the newest hot spot in Portland! Sur Lie has entered the foodie landscape with quiet ease. Great service, actually creative cocktails, tapas style menu and robust wine list full of future favorites quickly made Sur Lie my new favorite go to.

Pea hummus was a table favorite. A bit sweet, and wonderful paired with a minerally white.

The cheese plate and house charcuterie were full of unexpected flavor combinations and accoutrements. They worked so well, we ordered a second cheese plate.

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The house cured lox had a very fresh and clean flavor, surpassing all notions of what great lox can be.

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Fried oysters with kale and bacon. Order it. Share it. Love it.

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Chocolate torte with Arabica Coffee espresso ice cream. Nothing earth shattering, but delicious and perfect for sharing…and a little sherry!

Gather up your girlfriends and head out for a night of great fun, food, whiskey and wine!

Grandvewe Cheeses – Hobart

birchs bay blonde 2

I really cannot imagine my life without cheese. From a well-aged cheddar to an oozing triple creme, I love them all. Even the stinky ones. And especially the ones made with love and care, from paddock to cheese plate. Grandvewe Cheeses is one such producer, taking the time to nurture the animals who produce the milk, and making it a family affair. Locally produced and loved across Australia, their award winning cheeses are utterly delicious and ewenique. Ryan Hartshorn shares all things cheese in this interview.

Can you tell us a bit about Grandvewe Cheeses? Who you are, what makes your products unique etc?

We are Australia’s only organic sheep milk cheesery. We have won the highest awards for any sheep cheesery in Australia. In 2012 our Blue cheese won Champion cheese against 360 cheeses of Australia at the Sydney Royal Show. We were then ranked in the top six fine food producers of Australia.

blue

We have our farm cheesery located 40 minutes south of Hobart in a place called Woodbridge. We are open to the public 7 days a week all year round. At our cheesery you can meet The Girls, as the sheep are fondly known, taste up to 15 different cheeses and enjoy our wines while viewing the whole process of cheese making from paddock to palate. We also have a café to enjoy various seasonal dishes and platters on our deck overlooking the spectacular D’Entrecasteaux Channel with a menu that incorporates our famous cheeses and farm grown smallgoods.

Our products are ewenique because we control the entire process from the grass grown for the sheep to eat, milking, manufacturing, packaging, distributing and selling. Having this total control of the entire process we can ensure quality the best quality of product is achieved consistently. We also try to constantly critique our cheeses as well as experimenting with new ones. This mix keeps our range interesting and always changing while still maintaining quality.

Cheese making seems like so much fun! What got you interested in making cheese?

We used to live in Brisbane and about 11 years ago our mother, Diane, travelled to Tasmania for a holiday and fell in love with the place. The land value in Tasmania at the time was also very cheap in comparison to Brisbane and mum was ready for a midlife crisis. So she first thought of planting a vineyard and got thinking about what animal could graze between the vines. Ducks were the first thought, then goats; however they were not appropriate as they would destroy the vines. The last thought was sheep with the hope they would be less likely to eat the vines. Then she had the hard task of convincing her children to move from their city lives in Brisbane to a quiet country town in Tasmania. With a lot of promises and persuasion, my sister Nicole and I made the move.

Mum had always enjoyed making cheese in her kitchen before the move to Tasmania, so this was a small passion of hers, though she had no professional cheese making skills. She then embarked on a cheese making journey around the world and learnt from more than 17 different cheese makers throughout Europe, Jordan, America and Canada. This experience further increased her interest in cheese making.

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Why sheep’s milk cheese?

Sheep milk cheese is the highest quality milk and is the healthiest of all milks. This is a scientific fact that sheep milk has the highest milk solids so it makes a very creamy product. The flavour of the milk is also very sweet so this helps our products appeal to most palates. The health benefits include low allergens, meaning 98% of people with cow milk allergies will not react to sheep milk. The milk contains monounsaturated fats, reduces cholesterol and has triple the calcium of cows milk. All these qualities and health benefits made it the obvious milk choice for us.

Grandvewe has lots of delicious cheeses and specialty items. What are some of your most popular ones? Which is your favourite?

My favourite is the cheese I have eaten the least of at the time. Normally it’s the cheese we have not had for a while, however I always enjoy our popular White Pearl and Sapphire Blue. I like the White Pearl because it is so versatile – a great cheese to simply dip bread into on a platter or spread on bread with some smoke salmon on top. If you want it in a meal then just mix it through a good fresh pasta.

Some really great Australian restaurants are using your cheese. What is a popular way to serve your cheese?

Some of Australia’s top chefs, such as Peter Gilmore of Quay Restaurant, are using our milk to make their own sheep milk gelato on their dessert menu. Others enjoy our Friesland Fresh in dollops through a nice summer salad.

Anything else you’d like to share with readers?

Thanks to everyone who has supported us! We are a small family business who pride ourselves on making honest good quality cheeses without pretention. If you would like to try some of our cheeses please order from our website and we will express post it to your home anywhere in Australia.

Find Grandvewe Cheeses at 59 Devlyns Road, Birchs Bay, Tasmania or on Twitter@GrandveweCheeses

*Originally posted on Neat Eats*

Shop Local & Give Big This Holiday Season

It’s getting down to crunch time! But there’s no need to rush into bad choice this holiday season! Shop local, give bliss and spread the love this season. Here are some of Local Sprouts’ favorite shops, studios and organizations!

SHOP LOCAL!

Australia:

Bas and Lokes: Looking for something special for the special guys on your list? Looking for something special for anyone with style on your list? This American-Aussie duo design and maker really well crafted, and gorgeous, handmade leather goods.

Martian Embassy: Launch your holiday gift giving season into another galaxy! Quirky gifts for all the space cases on your list. The payload: all purchases support Sydney Story Factory!

Salt and Rock: Specialises in quality, technical clothing and equipment with an environmental twist for those with a real sense of adventure. And they carryPatagonia gear!

USA:

Bobo’s Coffee: Have a coffee lover, either naughty or nice? Beans from cooperatives in Uganda and Malawi, Bobo’s Coffee benefits the kids at Malayaka House, a home for children in Uganda.

Dobra Tea: Perhaps tea is more your cuppa. Dobra is serious about tea so you can sit back, relax and enjoy. Share the gift of relaxation and time with something special from Dobra. Better yet, visit one of their 5 teahouses and share some tea and time with someone special on your holiday list.

Creativity Explored: Creativity Explored advances the value and diversity of artistic expression. They provide artists with developmental disabilities the means to create, exhibit, and sell their art in our studios and gallery, and around the world, and have an AWESOME online gift shop!

Ferdinand: Owned by my friend Diane, Ferdinand is home to the drumming squirrel t-shirt (a staple in my closet) and all things letterpress, googley-eyed and crafty or vintage.

2 Note Perfumery: Carolyn and Darcy are creators at heart, and are both musicians with a long-standing love affair with the art of bottling nature. I love all of their perfumes, bath and body care products, especially the Clementine range only available in the holidays!

Planet Botanicals: A unique collection of natural and luxurious skincare products that are made with rare and indigenous plant oils and aromatic flower extracts from the far corners of the world.

Spain:

GreenLifeStyle: With a mix of European designers, GLS represents ethical fashion and sustainable organic living. No hippie business here, all style, on trend clothing and accessories.

Ifil: Knit one, purl one. Cast on some beautiful yarns for the knitter on your list!

Susie Sweet Dress: Treat your sweetie to an original design with vintage flare. Fab dresses which will make the season bright!

Two Thirds: Two thirds of our planet is covered by water. Share something special with the little fish or surfer on your holiday list. Rockin’ tees, bags, jackets and gear.

YOGA!

Lila East End Yoga in Portland, Maine

Yoga Vermont in Burlington, Vermont

Yoga con Gracia in Barcelona, Spain

GIVING!

  1. Vermont Cares works for and with Vermonters affected by HIV/AIDS to promote wellbeing through a continuum of prevention, support, and advocacy services.

  2. Malayaka House is a home for children in Uganda, with a focus on cultivating active citizens through education, community engagement, health and agriculture.
    Malayaka House en español.
    Malayaka House auf Deutsch.

  3. Spark Microgrants helps poverty-stricken communities find and implement solutions to their most urgent problems and currently works in Rwanda, Uganda and Burundi.

  4. Africa ELI builds gender equity, improved economic conditions, peaceful development, and strengthened leadership capacity in South Sudan by advancing women’s education through academic sponsorships, partnerships, enrollment-retention programs, and life-skills development.

  5. Girls on the Run (Maine) inspires girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum which creatively integrates running.

  6. AGE Africa provides life-changing opportunities to young women in Malawi through targeted initiatives in education, mentoring, and leadership development.

  7. Medecins Sans Frontieres/Doctors without Borders is an international, independent, medical humanitarian organisation that delivers emergency aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, natural disasters and exclusion from healthcare.

  8. Educate! develops young leaders and entrepreneurs in Africa.

  9. Saint Michael’s College is a Catholic college founded by the Society of Saint Edmund in 1904. Their guiding principles of education, justice, and service to the poor are at the heart of the Saint Michael’s experience.

  10. Preble Street Resource Center, in Portland, Maine, provides accessible barrier-free services to empower people experiencing problems with homelessness, housing, hunger, and poverty and to advocate for solutions to those problems.

  11. Compass Project uses boat building and rowing to provide positive direction to youth by encouraging the development of personal responsibility and community and environmental engagement.

  12. OzHarvest Food Rescue is a non-denominational charity that rescues excess food which would otherwise be discarded. This excess food is distributed to charities supporting the vulnerable in Sydney, Newcastle, Adelaide and Brisbane.

  13. Sabera Foundation provides meaningful equal opportunities through shelter, education and healthcare for the social and economic development of the poorest of the poor so that they gain dignity and respect in life, focusing on differentially vulnerable people in Calcutta, India.

  14. Fundaction Vistare makes a direct and efficient action against poverty based on education as a tool for more effective social sectors that, by their economic and social status, or geographic location, never reach the opportunity to access formal education, with a focus on girls education in Nepal.
  15. Water for South Sudan‘s mission is simple: drill borehole wells which bring safe drinking water to the people in South Sudan’s remote villages, transforming lives in the process.

  16. MOFGA helps farmers and gardeners in Maine to: grow organic food, fiber and other crops; protect the environment; recycle natural resources; increase local food production; support rural communities; and illuminate for consumers the connection between healthful food and environmentally sound farming practices.

  17. Education Outside is transforming public education by bringing learning to life in outdoor classrooms. Education Outside is committed to advancing science in San Francisco public schools, outdoors.

  18. Refuge Point provides lasting solutions to the world’s most vulnerable refugees.

  19. Telling Room is a nonprofit writing center in Portland, Maine, dedicated to the idea that children and young adults are natural storytellers. Focused on young writers ages 6 to 18, we seek to build confidence, strengthen literacy skills, and provide real audiences for our students. We believe that the power of creative expression can change our communities and prepare our youth for future success.

    826 Valencia is a nonprofit organization in San Francisco dedicated to supporting students ages six to eighteen with their creative and expository writing skills and to helping teachers inspire their students to write. Our services are structured around the understanding that great leaps in learning can happen when trained tutors work one-on-one with students and that strong writing skills are fundamental to future success.

    Sydney Story Factory is a not-for-profit creative writing centre for young people in Redfern, Sydney. Our trained volunteer tutors offer free help to write stories of all kinds. Programs target marginalised young people, and those from Indigenous and non-English speaking backgrounds, but are open to everyone.

  20. Seeds of Peace inspires and equips new generations of leaders from regions of conflict with the relationships, understanding, and skills needed to advance lasting peace.

  21. Africa Yoga Project has empowered people across East Africa by supporting physical, mental and emotional health, facilitating authentic personal expression, building supportive communities, and inspiring positive action to contribute to others. We are dedicated to delivering all that yoga has to offer to the diverse communities of East Africa, while at the same time providing opportunities for members of the global yoga community to participate and contribute.

    Off the Mat and Into the World uses the power of yoga to inspire conscious, sustainable activism and ignite grassroots social change. We do this by facilitating personal empowerment through leadership trainings, fostering community collaboration, and initiating local and global service projects.

  22. Handel and Haydn Society Education and Outreach Program provides a comprehensive, active vocal music education to 10,000 children annually in Greater Boston and beyond.

  23. Best Buddies is dedicated to establishing a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).

  24. Surfaid International is a non-profit humanitarian organization whose aim is to improve the health, wellbeing and self-reliance of people living in isolated regions in Indonesia connected to us through surfing.
BRomley the Snow Dog! photo credit: my favorite sister

Bromley the Snow Dog! photo credit: my favorite sister

 

Urban Farming in San Diego

Local Sprouts curator Katie met Jenny Goff when they were both living on a small island off the coast of Maine. Having followed Jenny’s adventures, Katie knew Jenny’s idea of local had to be shared with all of you!

Jenny is a native San Diegan who has rerooted herself in this community after traveling and living around the world on land and at sea. After going to school in New York she discovered the watery world of sailing and found she could make her way to beautiful places using the wind,waves, and meals cooked on the diagonal to pull her along. She also learned about the beauty of self-sufficiency, the existence of open air markets for fresh produce, and the reality of limited resources. Stints on land in between maritime adventures included running a bed and breakfast with an orchard and garden on an island in Maine, doing theater in New York City, and backpacking through countries where you can get a roasted squirrel on a stick in most markets. A decade and a half after leaving San Diego Jenny returned to apprentice at Seeds@City and Wild Willow Farms in the Fall of 2011 to increase her knowledge about growing her own food. As crazy as it might sound, she found that the sailing life and farming life are remarkably similar in rigor, unpredictability, and the amount of joy they can bring in the simplest ways. Jenny can be found working with volunteers, digging, planting, and sharing culinary creations (dandelion pesto anyone?) as Seeds@City’s Farm Coordinator.

Community Farming

LS: Where is your local community and what do you love about it? How could you describe it?

JG: I work in downtown San Diego on the campus of San Diego City Community College. We are hemmed in by skyscrapers, the bay, and freeways. I love the urban setting. We use land that is otherwise underutilized in my opinion- like lawn or a difficult to access space between buildings. We are growing thousands of pounds of food on one acre, much of it terraced. Our community is diverse in age, ethnicity, physical ability, and background. We have every type of person possible coming through the farm and getting excited about growing their own food. Or at the very least eating more veggies.

Urban Farming in San Diego

LS: If you were showing someone from out of town around your local area, where would you take them? 

JG: If they are interested in local food systems I would take them to our local farms! Seeds@City of course, then Wild Willow Farm and Educational Center, Olivewood Gardens, New Roots Farm, and many of the urban community gardens like the Peace Garden in City Heights. There’s so much to do in San Diego that isn’t downtown in the Gaslamp or at the beaches. Wander through the neighborhoods like South Park for locally owned crafts or go get pho in City Heights or drive up to the mountains to go for a hike. Balboa Park, while touristy, is still pretty beautiful.

If we didn’t cook for ourselves with produce from one of the 50+ farmers markets in San Diego, we would go out to eat at one of the amazing farm to table restaurants in town. Urban Solace, Spread, Casa De Luz, Alexander’s, and Sea Rocket in North Park, Alchemy and The Rose Wine Pub in South Park, and JSix downtown are all great options.

LS: What does ‘local’ mean to you?

JG: Local means making sure that our community can provide for itself, that we aren’t relying on produce from thousands of miles away or on the natural resources we are depleting for the produce to make that journey.  I just love food and empowering people to take care of themselves and their community. I feel very lucky to be able to farm at such an inspirational place.

Harvest

LS: San Diego hidden local gem?

JG:  Not so hidden but I went there today and was blown away by the natural beauty: Sunset Cliffs for a great ocean view. My favorite wine bars with local food are The Rose Wine Pub in South Park and Counterpoint in Golden HillCoffee and Tea Collective is a new hip café with amazing brews! Presidio Park above Old Town is tranquil and has some great views. Biking along Mission Bay to Ocean Beach is a great way to spend an afternoon (I know I said stay away from the beaches if you want a more authentic experience but they are still gorgeous).

LS: Local person, cultural or food experience Local Sprouts should seek out?

JG:  The new San Diego Public Market is trying to do great things for the food scene here.

Bounty

Eat your way across Seattle!

Welcome to Sarah’s trail for eating and marketing across Seattle! Sarah writes an engaging and delicious blog cook.can.read, and is dedicated to all things local. Here’s her rundown of where she’d take you if you came to visit!

Fruit from Remlinger Farms with Sarah-picked berries

Fruit from Remlinger Farms with Sarah-picked berries

LS: If you were showing someone from out of town around your local area, where would you take them?

Sarah: I am lucky to have frequent out of town visitors, and usually take them to some or all of these spots.

Macrina Bakery: homemade baked goods with an emphasis on using local fruits and grains. Such a treat!

Theo Chocolate Factory: the only chocolate-maker in the US (at last check) to make chocolate starting with raw cocoa beans. Their emphasis is on fair-trade, fair-wage, organic, responsibly-sourced ingredients from start to finish. Theo chocolate is worth seeking out for so many reasons!

Espresso Vivace—well, we are in Seattle, so coffee has to come into play. Vivace is my favorite because they roast in-house. My husband and I sometimes buy green beans from them and roast at home, but labor-wise, I much prefer sinking into a comfy chair with a Vivace latte and the Sunday paper. It’s also conveniently located across from REI, a terrific outdoor gear outfitter.

Golden Beetle—Maria Hines is the chef/owner of this Ballard restaurant serving seasonal, organic Mediterranean food made from primarily locally-sourced ingredients. From brunch to dinner and including happy hour, GB has some of my favorite food in the city. Don’t miss the muhammara!

Lola—Tom Douglas is Seattle’s resident celebrity chef, with more than a dozen restaurants around the city. My favorite is Lola, another Mediterranean restaurant with a heavy lean toward Greek food. The atmosphere is wonderful, the buzz is exciting, the location is convenient, in the middle of downtown, and the food is my favorite in the city. I learned to love roast lamb and squid kebabs with chermoula at Lola.

In addition to these spots, everyone gets a trip to the farmers’ market!

Haul from Ballard Market

Haul from Ballard Market

LS: Hidden local gem?

Sarah: The Walrus & the Carpenter, a tiny, hard-to-find, expect-a-wait, bright and beautiful space in the old fishing district area of Ballard with a menu centered on local seafood, particularly oysters. The food is stunning, like you have never had, fresh and surprising and exciting. The staff is friendly and engaging, knowledgeable and just cool. The best meal I ever had was at W&C with my husband and my mother-in-law. We ate and ate and ate: 6 varieties of raw oysters with fresh horseradish; fried oysters; the best tomato soup you can imagine; cured salmon with pickled tomatoes; grilled fresh white sardines, house-cured bresaola; cold and strong Moscow mules; pudding with espresso butter sauce for dessert. I smile and groan remembering that meal, every time.

LS: Local person, cultural or food experience Local Sprouts should seek out?

Sarah: Go to one of the neighborhood markets—Pike Place is fun, but going to the Ballard Market, or West Seattle, or University District, or Columbia City will allow you to see the heart(s) of my beloved city. The range of available products makes me giddy with excitement, sometimes to the point where I am overwhelmed. You will see local chefs choosing fish and greens for tonight’s dinner service, moms buying fresh, just-picked apples for their kids, crazy ladies like me buying *another* case of apricots to make jam, folks out to see and be seen, friends meeting to grab a crepe and a bike-powered smoothie for a strolling breakfast… It’s the truest snapshot of the city I know.

Beautiful bunches piled high at Magnolia Market

Beautiful bunches piled high at Magnolia Market

Snowshoe 5k for CSA in Vermont

Are you in Vermont this upcoming weekend? If so, get yourself, your snowshoes & some friends over to the Good Heart Farmstead, just outside of Worcester Village. All the funds raised will go towards the completion of their seed house, which will be used to start all the vegetables for the CSA. So go on! Get outside! Enjoy nature & spend some quality time with family & friends and support some homegrown goodness! Click here to learn more about the 5k!