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    sebastopol, ca

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  1. I go every year to see what's new and trendy, to get inspiration, to see the latest packaging, to meet with some of my suppliers, etc. Comfy shoes, a sweater over a t-shirt, a comfortable bag to carry all the paper (and treats), bottle of water, nuts to combat the sugar crash, and super important......a baggie with a paper napkin in it to spit out the yucky stuff as you're walking away. I know that sounds terrible but trust me, you'll be glad you did.
  2. Tammy, the glucose sold for candy making is not corn syrup it is indeed derived from wheat. Many folks sub good ol' Karo but they're not actually the same. I use a caramel with a lot of corn syrup and sugar, both milk and cream, butter, of course and even sweetened condensed milk and it's roughly the same texture as that Vosges creation.
  3. Based on the sideview of the finished confection, I would say it is layered, then sliced, then dipped or enrobed. The thick chocolate on the top leads me to believe that it might actually be hand dipped. I have made something similar for a family member who adores See's Scotchmallow. I make the caramel first and after it cools, I cast the marshmallow right on top. Thin coating of chocolate, flip it, slice it, dip it. The caramel begins to bulge just a bit as it's waiting to be dipped. And sometimes you can see an indentation where the two layers meet. I noticed both in the Vosges product. I once added a layer of peanut butter ganache and crispies too. Big seller!
  4. The Union Hotel in Occidental is an old family standby. It's not the most interesting food you'll ever eat but it's comfy and pleasant and homey. In Occidental also try Hops and Barley. They're new and still getting their staffing straightened out but they've got a great beer list and a nice menu. Come into Sebastopol for lot's more options.
  5. Being such a small area I know folks at some of the best producers in town: Hanna and especially Hanna Bismark Iron Horse Try the Cuvee R for a very drinkable "dinner party white" Atascadero Creek, Bob Appleby is great (look for Retronnay next year) Graton Ridge, Barbara and Art are super nice Halleck , Ross only makes great wine Dutton Family and Sebastopol Vineyards, my kid goes to school with the Dutton's and their Syrah is my "dinner party red" Lutea, Suzanne is from South Africa. Her Pinot is organic and biodynamic Sheldon, person friends with fabulous wines. They really strive for perfection Martin Ray Sunce, ask for Cindy in the tasting room Gary Farrell, I haven't been here but the dinner tourists rave about it Hook and Ladder, this is the DeLoach family. They make a great Gewurtz. Carol Shelton makes a really interesting Trouseau Gris Lot's of options over here in small townville. The Russian River appellation is a place to meet winemakers and their dogs. To have conversations and enjoy truly drinkable and wonderful wines without paying a fortune to taste. Make friends with the winemakers and you'll likely get one of those Napa Valley Style $50 tours for free.
  6. Long time Sebastopol resident here. I gotta tell you all that the restaurants in Bodega Bay are not meant for people who enjoy good food. They cater to tired tourists who are excited by the idea of fresh fish. Service is bad, food is (overall) mediocre and overpriced. Make the 20 minute drive into Sebastopol and you have a number of really great options: Starlight Wine Bar (I work here and it's great) GTO's seafood (oaky, I work here too. Fish without the Bodega Bay lazy tude) K&L Bistro (Michellin star) Elmo's Steakhouse Cafe St. Rose Eloise French Garden Alice's on Main I'm sure I'm missing something but any of these is a great meal and a good time. Check it out. BTW maybe I'm just loyal but I disagree about Dry Creek being better and cheaper than Russian River. I think the two appellations strive for the same goals: Great wine, made with care by local people with the best grapes, great pricing, warm and comfortable experience.
  7. Lior, the difference is likely caused by your white chocolate. I find that the whites can be so different and can really change a recipe.
  8. I've been hearing that the French Laundry has had more than a few walk-in slots available lately. You might just try your luck when you're here.
  9. You should be able to use a mix of coconut fat and chocolate. You can get the coconut fat at whole paycheck.
  10. Syrah is right by your hotel and quite good. You've gotten plenty of Healdsburg suggestions and if you head out to west county, I would suggest K&L Bistro or Farmhouse (both have a Michelin star) or Starlight Wine Bar right next to the Sheldon tasting room.
  11. If you know which wineries you'll be visiting we can lead you to a great dinner nearby. Will you be checking out the boutiques on the West side of the county or will you be heading up 101 into the Dry Creek and Healdsburg area?
  12. Please do come through Sebastopol. Visit Graton Ridge, Dutton Estates, Sheldon, Atascadero Creek, Paul Hobbs. Have dinner at the Starlight Wine Bar.
  13. I'm off to wait tables now and will probably enjoy a snack of fresh made potato chips, drizzled with truffle oil around 10.
  14. Yes, we have chix too. Such a happy addition to the garden as long as they aren't free ranging all day long. Last year we didn't get to eat a single tomato from our 8 plants! Chix are voracious eaters! I have started to add super dwarf trees to my front yard also. They only get about 6 feet tall and produce just enough to eat out of hand and not have to spend time making jam. This allows me a variety without excess. We love them.
  15. Sorry, I am without camera for a little while. Nothing's very pretty right now anyway. I think you should go wander the nursery and find what looks yummy.
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