Flavor Team

The Great Flavors Philosophy

We’ve all heard the sayings about “life is short” and “eat dessert first.” Here at Great Flavors, we think that sage advice applies to more than the finale of a wonderful meal.

Simply put, we believe life is meant to be experienced, enjoyed, and savored, so everything we do in showcasing the great flavors of life on California’s Central Coast can be summarized by our three pillars of belief:

Oishi Up!
Oishi is Japanese for “delicious.”
Oishi Up! is our code word for adding deliciousness to life, tapping into and sharing the most delicious parts of the Central Coast and fostering a community that believes more flavor is always the right answer.

GFA is our homemade acronym for “Gluten-Free Aftertaste.” Blech.
If you’ve ever had a mediocre (or worse) gluten-free food, you know what this means. Not-so-great taste and texture on the palate, followed by a lingering aftertaste that shouts gluten-free…and not in a good way.
Great Flavors was founded on a zero-tolerance policy for GFA – in the bakery and in life, so we offer you only the best, the tastiest, the richest flavors of the area we love.

In Japan, umami is the fifth taste, following sweet, sour, salty, bitter. It’s sometimes described as a flavor that is round, savory, and complete…and yet indescribable.
We share the umami-filled food, wine, activities, adventures, and events that attempt to define the undefinable magic of the Central Coast.

You can read more about why we created Great Flavors at our Welcome post, and please sign up for our Great Flavors Email (theScoop) to receive more flavorful tidbits.

This is what we call a life filled with great flavors. Tasty.



Meet the Flavor Team

The Flavor Team at Great Flavors is Kara (a gluten-free gal diagnosed with gluten intolerance in 2003) and Andrew (a decidedly not-gluten-free guy), and a shared belief that life is meant to explore, experience, and appreciate all it has to offer.

Flavor Team (Kara)

Before moving to the Central Coast in 2015, Kara lived most of her life in rural areas south and west of Denver. Moving waaaay west also meant moving her retired Arabian, Eddie. Neither misses the snow.
A writer, her love of words is matched only by her love of the outdoors and experiential activities. The only downside to living in paradise: what to choose next? That dilemma (someone has to do it) leads to swimming, hiking, surfing, kayaking, sailing, wine tasting, swimming, and the best activity ever: practicing Aikido on the beach. When not outside, she’s baking tasty gluten-free treats for Great Flavors Bakery as co-founder and Chief Baker.
Current flavorites
Food or restaurant: cookouts on the beach
Wine: A pleasurable part of life. Partial to reds (Zin, Pinot Noir, Syrah, and the elusive Teroldego) and exploring more whites
Activity: long beach walks at dusk and Aikido on the beach any time of day
What’s next: Stand-up paddleboard surfing
Goal: Somm1 exam in October 2017 and experiencing the tasks of a winery "cellar rat" during harvest

Flavor Team (Andrew)

Andrew, a Denver native, and his wife Mina and son Cyrus and three cats (Kojiro, Goemon, Princess Yuki), moved to the Central Coast in 2013 for a career opportunity. It didn’t take long (maybe a day) for him to synch with the lifestyle and appreciate its many facets: the beach, hiking, swimming outside year ‘round, wineries, and unique events.

When he’s not out exploring with the windows rolled down, he practices and teaches Aikido (for nearly 30 years, actually) and is co-founder of the Great Flavors Bakery and Chief Taste Tester.

Current flavorites:
Food or restaurant: Divine Thai, Goshi in SLO, and Juanita's Al Pastor Tacos in AG
Wine: Yes. Wine is good. (Zins, Pinot Noir, and exploring new blends)
Activity: Aikido on the Beach, Body Boarding in Pismo
What’s next: Exploring more on the central coast.
Goal: Somm1 Exam in the fall



California’s Central Coast is a pretty darn special place, and we’re lucky to live here. But no matter where life has taken us or which not-so-fun experiences life has bestowed so we learn and grow from them, we both do our best to live each day with appreciation — and sometimes downright awe — for the true gift it is and the gifts it will bring… if we pay attention.

That’s our inspiration behind creating Great Flavors: to share the great opportunities that surround us and to build a great community of people who also believe in filling life with great flavors.

We also founded the Great Flavors Bakery to share small batch, handcrafted, chock-full-of-flavor baked goods that happen to be gluten free. Flavor Team Fun Fact: if a product doesn’t pass Andrew’s (and others) non-gluten-free taste test, it doesn’t make it to our customers.

Please check out our small batch, handcrafted website at bakery.gr8flavors.com. You can find our tasty products in handpicked locations in San Luis Obispo county and by subscription/special order.

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