It’s apple and pear season and we recently found out about Gabriel Farm in Sebastopol which allows you to pick your own apples. What a fun food ‘venture to go on with the kiddos. Gabriel farm is a 14-acre organic farm located in the ideal fruit growing climate of Sebastopol, California. The Farm features 8 varieties of Asian Pears (very yummy), several varieties of Apples, Fuyu Persimmons, Lavender, Plums and many sorts of berries.
Gabriel’s Farm is the definition of a traditional “family farm” and they have a quaint, newly fixed up farm store surrounded by picnic benches and free roaming chickens. Ria is a little “chicken terrorist” – every time she sees chickens she has to chase (read:harass) them. Poor chickens. She has never caught one. She will never catch one. Secretly, I really want her to catch one just to see what happens.
The danger with these u-pick farms is that you end up with too much fruit. We showed some restraint but somehow still ended up with 7 pounds of apples and 3 pounds of Asian pears! Perhaps, it is time to try Stacie’s Apple-Pear Butter recipe. Some preschoolers at Ria’s school are going to be eating some apples for snack time this coming week.
Post Gabriel’s Farm we snuck in some wine tasting for the grown-ups at Merry Edwards Wines. They have some pretty yummy Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc that we probably should have bought less of. If the kids don’t put up with it, you can take turns tasting as the kids play around this picturesque winery and enjoy the rocky fountain out front.
All that sun, scampering about the farm and wine tasting made us hungry and we made our way to Hopmonk Tavern. Great tavern food with a twist (Indian samosas with black beans?), a kids menu with the regular favorites and tons of different kinds of micro beers. Ria and I shared the sliders and stole some of papa’s fries and finished about half a bottle of ketchup between the two of us. Ria loves ketchup. Like mother, like daughter. The Hopmonk could be a really fun place for a date night in the evenings. This coming Thursday they have bhangra music and dance party on the calendar. It feels like a very cool, hip biker tavern that during the day is incredibly kid-friendly. They have a lovely patio out back and if it was cooler we would have so been out there.
The hubby tried to talk us out of ice-cream (meanie!) but there was NO WAY the two of us were passing up on a trip to Screamin’ Mimi’s which is walking distance from the Tavern. According to their website “Ice cream is fun, but we take it seriously! Our passion is to make the very best ice cream and sorbet in the world. We feature the finest, all natural ingredients from all over the world including fresh products from Sonoma County. We can taste the difference and we think you will too.”
Oh, we tasted the difference! They have some pretty unique flavors like Pear Cinnamon which was almost like a creamy cake. What is novel is that each order of Screamin’ Mimi’s ice cream is weighed to determine the price. We got the cutest little mini scoops in mini cones which ended up being the perfect size given how much we had eaten at lunch. Screamin’ Mimi’s and Sebastopol are on the “must-go-back” list for sure!!