Food and Wine


Great food and wine (and cider and spirits) abound in the Great Flavors community. The simple pleasure of fresh local produce picked right before dawn, restaurants serving everything from street food to epicurean events, award-winning wineries nearly too numerous to count.

Life is much too special to settle for mediocrity. Fortunately, we are literally surrounded by great food, often prepared with local ingredients, and world-class wines that happen to made right here on the Central Coast.

We share our Flavor Team flavorites, from restaurants, coffee shops, and markets (and places to find some great gluten-free fare) to wines and wineries, from Arroyo Grande, up the coast of the tri-beach communities (Grover/Pismo/Shell Beach) to San Luis Obispo, with a few notable outliers here and there.

Food Posts

  • Divine Thai: Explore the Savory Treasures of Thailand (without leaving the Central Coast)

    Life’s a journey and an adventure, right? On our journey, we get to see new places, experience new surroundings — and savor the foods unique to the place. As the journey unfolds, we learn a little more about the world, and about ourselves. As part of our journey, we travel, and travel is good for […]

  • Talley Farms Fresh Harvest CSA: Local, Fresh Produce Made Easy

    If Oliver Talley were here today, I think he’d raise a fresh green bean* in a hearty toast. Why? Because the vegetable farm he started in 1948 in the fertile Arroyo Grande Valley now also provides fresh produce to 4,500 subscribers from SLO County and throughout California, Nevada, and Arizona, through the Talley Farms Fresh Harvest CSA. […]

  • Beda’s Biergarten: SLO’s Home for Gemütlichkeit

    Camaraderie and community transcend language and geography. Food: German Category: Pub Gluten-free friendly: Yes The Umami of a Place If a restaurant is to become the go-to place for locals and a destination for out-of-towners, great food and drinks are assumed. Instead, it’s the special sauce — the umami of the indescribable combination of ingredients beyond […]

  • Karami Salsa

    Combining local ingredients with a regional flair, Karami Salsa joins the great flavors of green chiles with a delicious twist. What if the ingredients for a beloved side dish from your native country are not just hard to come by, they’re impossible to procure? The first generation of Karami Salsa was born from this predicament. […]

  • Hard Core Cider Tour 2016 Comes to SLO County

    When Flavor Team member Andrew shared the Facebook post for the Hard Core Cider Tour’s first-ever stop in San Luis Obispo, I voted an enthusiastic thumbs up. What possible reason could the Flavor Team have for not attending this monumental and flavorful event? Nada. Zilch. None. We bought tickets that afternoon. And a good thing, […]

Wine & Spirit Posts

  • Bristols Cider House: The Art of Hard Cider

    Quick. Name a hard cider maker on the Central Coast. If you’re like many people, the first place that comes to mind when you think of hard cider is Bristols Cider House in Atascadero. Today, Bristols Cider House is an institution—one of the oldest, biggest, and well-respected hard cider companies on the Central Coast, as […]

  • Winery Wanderings: Balistreri Vineyards [Denver, Colorado]

    The Flavor Team seeks out wine-related experiences whenever we travel. Winery Wanderings shares our adventures to wineries beyond the California Central Coast. Tucked away in an unpretentious North Denver neighborhood lies a little gem: Balistreri Vineyards.  Surrounded by industrial properties, the oasis built by the Balistreri family starting in the 1900s includes its winery, tasting […]

  • Roll Out the Barrels 2017: Three SLO Days of Celebrating Summer and Central California Coastal Wines

    Like a good vintage wine, the SLO Wine Country Association’s annual “Roll Out the Barrels” festival has aged well and continues to improve with time. While we think of the vibrant Central Coast wine region and its ever-increasing reach and recognition as always being so, there was a time before AVAs and before the quality […]

  • Quick Tour: Tolosa Winery [it’s all about the experience]

    There’s more new at Tolosa Winery than this year’s vintages. This Edna Valley AVA winery has its eye on an even higher level of quality in every aspect of the operation. A few months ago, the Flavor Team had the opportunity to attend our first World of Pinot Noir event and the Edna Valley Collective […]

  • Good Chemistry: Monterey Wine Company (High Touch + High Tech)

    Blending  client focus, high tech, and high touch to create great wines Feature Video “My name is Rohit.” He pauses, carefully placing three wine glasses in front of him on the Formica-topped table. “And I am a wine chemist.” With these six words, we know we are in the right place. And where, exactly, is that? […]

  • Winemaker Focus: Stephen Ross Dooley | Stephen Ross Wine Cellars

    It’s a long way from Mankato, Minnesota, to the Central Coast of California, but Stephen Ross Dooley harnessed the tailwinds of passion and heeded the pull of the grapes. Here’s what happens when the whisper of a passion becomes the clear voice of a life aligned with purpose. “Turning sunlight into wine.” This simple yet […]

  • Around the World with Pinot Noir: Experiencing the Edna Valley Collective Dinner at WOPN, March 3, 2017

    The singular event that drew us to our first WOPN, like Monarch butterflies seeking the eucalyptus groves south of Pismo, was the Edna Valley Collective Dinner: six courses, masterfully created by Brian Collins, chef at Ember in Arroyo Grande, to pair perfectly with Pinot Noir wines from six Edna Valley AVA wineries: Claiborne & Churchill, […]

  • Tasting Notes: Tablas Creek Vineyard

    Winery: Tablas Creek Vineyard, Tasting Date: November 19, 2016; December 31, 2016 Wine AVA: Paso Robles Varietals: Rhone. Reds: Mourvèdre, Syrah, Grenache, and Counoise. Whites: Roussanne, Marsanne, Grenache Blanc, Viognier, and Picpoul. Great Flavors Winery Spotlight story: Tablas Creek Vineyard The complexity and depth of Tablas Creek wines is readily apparent. However, it is very […]

  • Wine and Animals – 46 West Wine Safari, February 12, 2017

    I saw a “Wine Safari” poster on Instagram late Saturday last week and I was instantly interested. I thought, “who does not like wine and animals,” right? As the last day of the event was the next day, I emailed the 46 West Wineries event host and asked how to get tickets and what animals were […]

  • Tasting Notes: Biddle Ranch Vineyard

    A recent tasting at the new beautiful tasting room for the Biddle Ranch Vineyard included six wines — three whites and three reds — starting with Sauvingon Blanc 2014 and finishing with Cabernet Sauvignon 2012. Winery: Biddle Ranch Vineyard, Tasting Date: December 18, 2016 Wine AVA: Edna Valley Varietals:  Reds: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Pinot  Noir, Sangiovese, Syrah. […]

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