Food & Wine

UC ASKS RESIDENTS TO INSPECT CITRUS TREES FOR ASIAN CITRUS PSYLLID THIS SPRING

 

California citrus - both on farms and in home landscapes - face a very real threat from a disease that is spread by Asian citrus psyllid. Florida and Texas citrus is already suffering terribly. California may be able to avoid the same fate, if all residents and farmers do their part to combat the pest.  A video on YouTube has details. View more high-resolution photos

Photos: Asian citrus psyllids, malformed leaves and deformed fruits caused by the destructive pest

By Jeannette Warnert, UC Agriculture and Natural Resources

March 7, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- A tell-tale sign of spring in California is a flush of new leaf growth on citrus trees. Because the feathery light green leaves are particularly attractive to Asian citrus psyllids (ACP), the leaves' emergence marks a critical time to determine whether the pest has infested trees.

CASI CIELO WINERY AT MANESS VINEYARD OPENS TASTING ROOM

 

 

 

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

March 7, 2016 (Jamul)—60 guests hoisted glasses last month to toast the grand opening of East County’s newest wine tasting room: Casi Cielo Winery, located at their historical adobe ranch house at Maness Vineyards atop a sunny hilltop in Jamul just off highway 94.  It’s a dream that has been a long-time coming to fruition –a dream that began with two Italian immigrants back in the last century. As the afternoon sun bathes the adobe bricks and vineyards beyond in golden rays, it's not hard to see how Casi Cielo (Almost Heaven) got its name.

The winery offers a selection of  hand-crafted wines made with 25% grapes grown at the estate and 75% grapes grown in San Diego County.  With a motto “from juice to jelly,” Casi Cielo Farm & Vineyard also has a charming gift shop licensed under GregoArt.com featuring  a new line of delicious vineyard jellies (served up over chocolate cheesecake—pure bliss) as well as colorful hand-crafted quilts by Kathy, vineyard lifestyle attire and more.

ONE TOMATO, TWO TOMATO, A HUNDRED TOMATOES ON SALE AT TOMATOMANIA MARCH 12-13

 

East County News Service

March 4, 2016 (El Cajon) -- Tomatomania!, the renowned Heirloom tomato seedling sale, returns to excite an enthusiastic group of gardeners in El Cajon this spring at the Water Conservation Garden, on March 12 and 13.


DEPOT SPRINGS BEER COMPANY OWNER BUBBLES FORTH

 

By Leon Thompson

 

February 29. 2016 (La Mesa) – Aaron Dean, owner of the Depot Springs Beer Company, in an exclusive interview with East County Magazine, spoke exuberantly about the brewery/restaurant/music/event venue now under construction in a neighborhood shopping center on Fletcher Parkway at Dallas Street—and his vision for the facility’s contribution to revitalizing the community.

MILAGRO FARM VINEYARD AND WINERY CLOSES TASTING ROOM FOR REMODELING

 

By Miriam Raftery

February 16, 2016 (Ramona) – The Milagro Farm Winery has announced that it is closing its tasting room to the public effective immediately while undergoing upgrades, with plans to reopen in the next couple of months.

PROHIBITION LIFTED ON CRAFT SPIRITS INDUSTRY SEEN AS THE START OF SAN DIEGO'S NEXT CRAFT BOOM

 

East County News Service

Assemblyman Jones to purchase first bottle from local distillery

February 16, 2016 (Santee) -- As of January 1st, new legislation (AB 1295) allows craft distilleries to sell individual bottles of craft spirits from tasting rooms. Prior to this law, the public could only sample distilled spirits at a tasting room but could not purchase bottles directly from a distiller.

VINEYARD GRANT JAMES IN RAMONA DRAWS RAVE REVIEWS

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

February 11, 2016 (Ramona) -- Savoring an afternoon of superb wine tasting at Vineyard Grant James in Ramona, it’s not hard to realize  why this family-owned winery has been drawing rave reviews on Yelp.  The place has ranked five stars—the top rating, with 64 reviews. 

The wines are complex and satisfying.  Owners/hosts Jacques and Susanne Sapier are warm and welcoming.  A stone patio with views of the sun setting over nearby mountains provides an idyllic setting.  Live music by a Dave Billock and his local band, plus delicious locally-made cheeses, round out a palette-pleasing experience.

LUCK OF THE IRISH AT BARONS BACKROOM BEER PAIRING MARCH 16

 

 

Speakeasy pairs Irish-inspired appetizers, local brews to benefit San Diego Food Bank

 

East County News Service

 

February 11, 2016 (Alpine) – As luck would have it, St Patrick’s Day happens twice this year, and for a good cause. Dust off your favorite green outfit and join Barons Market, a locally owned grocery store that sells simply good food at simply good prices, on Wednesday, March 16 for a St. Paddy’s Day themed beer and food tasting with San Diego brewer, Modern Times. 

HOMETOWN BUFFET CLOSURES PROMPT STATE INVESTIGATION

 

East County News Service

February 9, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) – California’s Labor Commissioner is investigating the abrupt closure of Hometown Buffet’s closure of restaurants statewide without any notice to its employees.  State law requires that employers with over 75 workers give at least 60 days notice before mass layoffs.

APHRODISIAC’S DELIGHT: VALENTINE DINNER AT JEREMY’S ON THE HILL

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

February 3, 2016 (Julian) — From Maine Lobster-watermelon salad to leg of lamb, scallops in saffron and banana bruleé, the Valentine’s weekend “aphrodisiac menu” at Jeremy’s on the Hill in Julian has an array of delights you’ll love to savor.  This special menu will be served up Friday, Saturday and Sunday, February 12-14 from 4 pm. to close.

HATFIELD CREEK WINERY & JEREMY’S ON THE HILL TEAM UP FOR FARM-TO-TABLE FOOD AND WINE PAIRING FEB. 5

 

By Miriam Raftery

February 3, 2016 (Julian) — If you’re looking for a delectable experience Friday evening, Jeremy’s on the Hill’s Courdon Bleu-trained chef and owner will be cooking up culinary delights featuring farm-to-table foods paired with wines from Hatfield Creek Winery. 

WINERY ORDINANCE AND HOSKINGS RANCH TO BE HEARD FEB. 5 BY PLANNING COMMISSION

 



 

East County News Service

January 31, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) – The San Diego County Planning Commission, after months of review and public input on proposed changes to the tiered winery ordinance, will hold a hearing on Friday, February 5th on the proposed zoning ordinance amendment.  In addition, planners will consider a proposed map for the Hoskings Ranch residential development project in Julian.

Some winery owners voice continuing concerns over the proposed changes. Teri Kerns, co-owner of Ramona Ranch Winery, told East County Magazine, "We are pleased to see that a few of our suggestions have been incorporated, for example, allowing the wineries to be open until 6 pm during the winter hours, and increasing van capacity to 15 but disappointed that the majority have not been.   We are concerned that new wineries will not be able to open, given the restrictions on structures and codes and disagree with the County's broad prohibition on events and parties, amplified music, and the stand against advertising.

AWARD-WINNING WINEMAKERS RECOGNIZED BY REPRESENTATIVE DUNCAN HUNTER

Indication of Growing Winemaking in San Diego County

By Miriam Raftery

January 27, 2016 (Ramona)  – Three award-winning Ramona Valley winemakers were presented recognition certificates from Representative Duncan Hunter at the monthly meeting of the Ramona Valley Vineyards Association (RVVA) on Tuesday, January 26th as an indication of the quality and growth of the  winemaking industry in San Diego County. Duncan Hunter has represented San Diego County in the U.S. House of Representatives for seven years and is co-chair of the Congressional Wine Caucus.

HONEY WINE BUSINESS BUZZING WITH SUCCESS, BUT OWNERS SAY HIGH FEES FORCE THEM TO LEAVE COUNTY

 

 

By Brigitte Garcia

 

January 26th, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- Dale and Mike Pearson wanted to start a new career after working in hazardous occupations.  So they founded Pearson and Pearson, a honey-wine making business in rural El Cajon. Now they’re savoring sweet success-- including a multi-million dollar deal pending to sell their products into Asia.

BREW BEAT: TWISTED MANZANITA OFFERS BOLD BEERS IN SANTEE

 

By Ed Barrena

January 25, 2016 (Santee) -- Twisted Manzanita.  The name brings images of arid trails on East County hillsides. Hikes in our local backcountry can make one thirsty, and the tasting room at Twisted Manzanita Ales and Spirits is a great destination to cure that internal drought.

HOMEGROWN FLAVOR FROM AN INDOOR GARDEN

Energy efficient and long-lasting high intensity grow lights will provide the greatest yields when growing tomatoes and other fruiting plants indoors.  Photo courtesy of Gardner's Supply Company. 

 

 



By Melinda Myers

 

January 18, 2016 (San Diego's East County) - Add some homegrown flavor to your winter meals.  From microgreens to tomatoes, it is possible to grow produce indoors.

WINE TASTING IN EL CAJON TO BENEFIT RESTORATION OF HISTORIC CHURCH JANUARY 23

By Liz Alper
January 21, 2016 (El Cajon) - A night of enjoying fine wines, great food and live jazz is on the horizon in East County.  On Saturday, January 23rd, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., the community will come together for a fun evening to benefit St. Pius X Catholic Church's building fund.  The money raised by the event is earmarked for the restoration of the church's buildings dating back to the 1950s.  Guests will enjoy unlimited wine tasting and heavy hors d'oeuvres. 

HOLLYWOOD CASINO IN JAMUL WILL HAVE TONY GWYNN SPORTS PUB

 

By Leon Thompson

January 20, 2016 (Jamul) – The Jamul Indian Village (JIV) of California announced the first ever Tony Gwynn Sports Pub will open in its Hollywood Casino Jamul slated for completion this summer.  Tony Gwynn’s Sports Pub will feature an unprecedented collection of memorabilia from the greatest athlete in San Diego’s history.

LOCAL NATURAL FOODS COMPANY LAUNCHES “FEEL THE BERN” ORGANIC RAW KIMCHI IN SUPPORT OF SANDERS CAMPAIGN

 

Joins tradition of naming foods for political figures, from Napoleon pastries to Washington Pie

 

East County News Service

 

January 14, 2016 (Poway) — Just in time for the presidential primary season, Gold Mine Natural Food Company is launching its new “Feel the Bern” Organic Raw Kimchi to drive donations to the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign. Online customers can enter a discount code at checkout. The code will discount the entire order by 20%, and that savings can to be donated to Bernie 2016 by following an ActBlue link.

FIVE LOCAL WINERIES, ENTERTAINMENT AND FINE FOOD JAN. 23 IN EL CAJON

 

 By Kim Beales 

 

January 14, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- A night of enjoying fine wines, great food and live jazz is on the horizon in East County.  On Saturday, January 23rd, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., the community will come together for a fun evening to benefit St. Pius X Catholic Church's building fund.  The money raised by the event is earmarked for the restoration of the church's buildings dating back to the 1950s.  Guests will enjoy unlimited wine tasting and heavy hors d'oeuvres. 

 

The event will feature the following wineries, all of which are located in East County along Highway 94:

LOCAL WINERIES WIN BIG WITH SAN DIEGO COUNTY WINES

 

Source: Ramona Valley Vineyard Association

December 17,  2015 (Ramona) – Vineyard & Winery Management’s 25th Annual Grand Harvest Awards revealed the results of this year’s competition, naming top honors for three local wineries: Ramona Ranch Winery, Altipiano Vineyard and Winery, and Lenora Winery. From a pool of nearly 1500 entries submitted from throughout the United States and as far away as New Zealand, the total number of awards included 48 Best of Class, 44 Double Gold, 183 Gold and 574 Silver medals.

FEASTING AND MERRYMAKING PARTY WITH EAST COUNTY MAGAZINE SUNDAY: YOU'RE INVITED!

December 17, 2015 (Mt. Helix) -- Our holiday parties are legendary! Come join the fun Sunday, December 20 from 2-6 p.m. at our editor's home on Mt. Helix.

  • Delicious feast! Glazed ham and yams, cinnamon baked apples, beet/strawberry and eggplant salads from Baba al Hara,  pasta and salad from Olive Graden, desserts from New York Bakery
  •  Wine tasting with Grant James Vineyard and Pearson Bros. Winery, plus holiday beverages (21 and up.)
  • Live music (folk, rock, and holiday songs) with Paul Nichols, Cindy Burnham, Tim and Marijo Luranc,
  • Holiday games, prizes and surprises! Prizes include a mountain vacation,  wine lover’s baskets, dance lessons, silver jewelry, hand-woven shawl from Weaving Works in Santa Ysabel, California Wolf Preserve tour in Julian,  Passes and big-cat feeding for 2 at Lions Tigers &  Bears, dinner at Descanso Junction, Glamour Girlz gift basket, personal trainer for a month at CHN Fitness in Santee, yoga lessons at CHN Yoga, and much more. 

END OF AN ERA: GROVE PASTRY SHOP AND PINNACLE PEAK STEAKHOUSE CLOSE DOORS

 

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

December 11, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) – Two of East County’s most beloved businesses, Grove Pastry Shop and Pinnacle Peak Steakhouse,  have closed down, leaving  behind cherished memories.

I ordered my own wedding cake with raspberry filling and whipped cream frosting from Grove Pastry Shop in Lemon Grove 36 years ago, as have so many other brides since the bakery first opened its doors back in 1947. The wedding cake portion of the business will continue; you can custom order those through www.artisticweddingcakesbythegrove.com .  But gone is the pastry shop, rich with the aromas of freshly baked cookies, cakes, breads and buttery pastries.

VINE SPIRITS: HOLIDAY WINE TRAIL CONTINUES DEC. 12-13

 

 

East County News Service

December 9, 2015 (Ramona)--The Ramona Valley Vineyard invites you to take a break from the holiday hustle and give yourself and and your friends a unique holiday wine experience.  You can join  Join 15 RVVA member wineries on December 12th & 13th for the second weekend of wine, fun and holiday spirits along the Holiday Wine Trail.

Your “Get Your Merry On” Holiday Wine Trail Passport is your ticket to great deals and festive fun over all four days of the wine trail.  Each participating winery is offering different holiday wine trail specials including heavily discounted tastings and pairings, bottle and merchandise discounts, unique holiday gift items featuring local artisans.

CELERY PRODUCTS RECALLED NATIONWIDE AFTER E-COLI OUTBREAK

 

East County News Service

December 2, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) – Over 155,000 products containing celery have been recalled, the Food & Drug Administration has announced. The products were sold at major retailers including Costco, Walmart, Sam’s Club, Safeway, Albertson’s, Target and 7-11.

PRODUCE PICKS: THANKSGIVING FEAST AND HOLIDAY RECIPES

By Greg Dunne

                                          

November 21, 2015 (East County).  It is coming up on Thanksgiving and time to eat! It is also a time for gathering with family and friends. I am a healthily-conscience eater most of the time, but on Thanksgiving the rulebook goes out the window. I am already thinking of all the yummy food that’s going to be on the dining table and without a doubt will probably eat way too much of everything. Half of what most of us eat on Thanksgiving is healthy food. Turkey, yams, green beans, and cranberries for a few - but don’t count calories, let’s just eat. There are some awesome recipes at the bottom of the article by my wife, Dianne.

BREW BEAT: BALLAST POINT SELLS FOR $1 BILLION

 

By Ed Barrena

November 19, 2015 (San Diego)--One of San Diego’s most beloved and famous brewers has been sold. Perhaps Dr. Evil from Austin Powers could say it best, but the price was a staggering $1 Billion. Ballast Point Brewing and Spirits, famous for its Sculpin India Pale Ale has been sold to Constellation Brands, which primarily distributes import beers from Mexico such as Corona, Modelo Especial, and Pacifico.

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