Melons. Basil. Strawberries. Tomatoes. This is the peak of summer eating. We love watermelon seed spitting contests in the backyard and making a quick lunch simply of avocados, tomatoes and basil with just a drizzle of incredible local olive oil. Ambrosia melon, feta and mint salad? Yes, please! Sweet, late summer strawberries right from the box? Thank you. I’ll have another.
Sandwiched between the Santa Ynez Mountains and the Pacific Ocean, Santa Barbara winters are warm and summers are cool with over 300 days of sunshine. With our Mediterranean climate, conditions are prime for a year round bounty of incredible and locally sourced produce. Dozens of farms located right in Santa Barbara County help enable the delicious diversity and seven Farmer’s Markets grace us each week year-round to make our food finding fun and convenient. Even better? Many of the restaurants in town are following Farm-to-Table principles in their own kitchens. On any given day you can shop right alongside a chef from any number of the high-end eateries. There is even a Farm Friendly Dining Certification for restaurants.
While juicy greens and sweet root vegetables tempt us year-round, there’s something particularly indulgent about strolling the Farmer’s Market this time of year. We find joy in ambling list-free down the aisle, pausing to nibble this or smell that. The warm smiles and casual conversations that develop amongst strangers feed our souls.
Take time to connect more with your farmer and we can almost guarantee happier mouths and bellies and not just because you’ll know where to find the crispest apples or buttery lettuces.
We feel so fortunate for our food and we are doing our very best to eat our way right through summer to show our appreciation.