Photo by Joanne Bluett
As I write this letter introducing our fall issue to you, it’s late July and we’re in the midst of a heat wave. It’s 96 degrees outside and still climbing on a blazing summer afternoon. Blame it on my origins — born in Maine during a December blizzard — but this is the kind of torturous, blinding heat I hide from like a vampire, guzzling iced tea and trying to avoid any sweat-inducing sudden moves.
But waiting for us on the other side is fall. Sweet autumn, with its bountiful harvest, is a well-earned reward, full of delicious produce that has developed character in the summer sun, not to mention the many celebrations surrounding it. I think of fall as a season of great expectations.
In particular, this issue honors the grain and the grape, two of the most important agricultural and economic staples of Northern California. In our cover story, travel with writer Amber K. Stott across the brilliantly green, patchwork landscape of rice country to meet some of the farmers who employ business savvy and environmental stewardship to make rice reign in California.
If you’re like me, fall also is a season of grape expectations. How can it not be in this arid region whose high daytime temperatures and cool nights are perfect for producing such flavorful, robust wines? In this issue, we pay homage to wine with a profile of Jack Gorman, Amador Vintners Association’s executive director and wine evangelist; a guide to Greater Sacramento’s multitude of wine-centered events; a behind-the-scenes story on home winemaking; and tips for hosting your own wine-tasting party.
And to celebrate Farm-to-Fork Month and our abundant harvest, we also introduce you to some of the names behind our region’s most recognizable produce, from the Daily Brand pears of Stillwater Orchards to those pies bursting with fruit from Ikeda’s in Auburn, and we have the scoop on your favorite local pumpkin patches.
Go ahead and dig in. I’ll be over here in front of the fan.
Correction: In our Summer 2018 issue, in our story “Turning Passion Into Gold,” we mistakenly reported that the Alchemy Kitchen project was set to open its first location at the La Superior Supermercados on Franklin Boulevard. In fact, the project is slated for the Franklin Neighborhood Development Corp.’s Franklin Boulevard Mercado. Additionally, we mistakenly called the Mack Road Partnership’s Valley Mack Farmers’ Market the Alchemist CDC farmers’ market. We regret these errors.