Photo by Eden Rose Photography
T ake a whiff. The heavenly aromas of late autumn are my favorites — the crisp breezes carrying leaves and a tinge of fireplace smoke, a juicy turkey roasting in the oven, and a freshly chopped pine tree. My senses come alive with the season’s magical scents, sparkling decorations dripping from our tree, fuzzy blankets just right for cuddling under with my daughter, and holiday music I play nonstop through New Year’s Day.
I’m an absolute sucker for the holidays, and, now, so is my daughter. We revel in our family holiday traditions, checking off our annual bucket list: Put up the Snow Village on the shelf? Check. Host our annual Christmas Eve open house? Check. Drive the neighborhood to look at lights? Check. Really, this time of year is about family memories and traditions. And it was with this idea in mind that we planned this, our holiday table issue. In our cover story, meet Sacramento-area families who are helping both to bring flavor to our tables and to make California the epicenter of the nation’s olive growing and olive-oil production — including the Coldanis of Lodi, for whom olive growing is at the heart of their family traditions, and the Terneros of Placer County, who have handed down the art of making olive oils through five generations. Many a table will feature lamb this winter. Here, you’ll meet local rancher Ryan Mahoney, whose work with the nation’s largest lamb company, Superior Farms, has enabled him to pass along his own family’s ranching heritage to his children. No holiday table would be complete without sweet potatoes — a crop that does exceedingly well here in Sacramento. We’ll share advice for picking and cooking them. Raise a glass for a delicious holiday cocktail recipe and our tips for selecting a sparkling wine. You’ll find much more inside our pages, too. And if eating, drinking, and supporting local is important to you, and if you love what you see here in our magazine, would you please subscribe? You’ll not only receive every issue right in your mailbox as soon as it’s out, but you’ll be supporting our efforts as well. Plus, it’s worth remembering that edible Sacramento makes a great gift (or two, or three!). May your season be delicious! Jessica