Prevue July/August 2013 - (Page 14)
MONTEREY COUNTY CVB
The sustainable food trend started here...
According to Diaz, “Everyone in the Central
Coast knows and loves him” for his behind-thescenes access to so many vineyards. Diaz says
groups should work with Oakes to create a farm-tofork dinner on the very land the food is grown.
Monterey County is the birthplace of the “farm-to-fork” boom, in
part because of its year-round growing season. It is also one of
Wine Enthusiast’s Top 10 Wine & Travel Destinations for 2013.
“We’re considered the salad bowl capital of the world,
which means lettuce, greens, spinach, produce, artichokes,
herbs, mushrooms and berries are grown year-round here in
Monterey County,” says Jerry Diaz, meeting sales executive at
Monterey County CVB.
According to Diaz, most of the food events he attends in
the area share the mileage of where the food came from, and
most of it is grown just 20 to 30 miles away.
“Everything is uber fresh, and you always encounter
executive chefs who love living here and going nuts in terms of
creativity,” Diaz says. “Most of the menus are changed daily.”
Bernardus Lodge in Carmel Valley is particularly known
for its culinary offerings. An onsite winery and vineyard pavilion
are surrounded by 300 live oak trees mixed in with the 220acre vineyard. Chef Cal Stamenov at Marinus restaurant has
a 2-acre onsite garden full of fresh herbs, vegetables and a
variety of indigenous tomatoes. Up to 12 attendees can taste
them in the wine cellar with over 1,800 labels.
One of the best ways for groups up to 12 people to
experience the area’s bounty is via Ag Venture Tours. Owned
by Evan Oakes, an agricultural scientist, the company offers an
agricultural education tour that takes guests to observe field
harvesting, irrigation, planting and organic farming.
For a post-meeting bite, Portola Hotel & Spa has
some new F&B offerings that include a “phenomenal
happy hour,” says Diaz, with champagne flights
and sustainably raised oysters available at Jack’s
Restaurant & Lounge.
New to the nearby Carmel food scene, Vesuvio
offers a Mc-Suvio “adult happy meal” including a
cheeseburger, fries and a Jack and coke.
The 30,000-sf Asilomar Conference Grounds
in Pacific Grove sits within 107 acres of beachfront
filled with rustic cottages. At the new Phoebes Cafe,
grab some local wine and cheese to enjoy on the
outdoor deck facing the ocean.
Groups can make their way a bit further
south to Big Sur, where the Big Sur River Inn
& Restaurant hosts groups up to 200 among the area’s
redwood forests. Opt for a backyard barbecue of ribs, brisket
and chicken. Or grab a seat literally in the river, where wooden
chairs and tables are set up so guests can dangle their feet in
Lastly, Diaz highly recommends Earthbound Farm
Organic’s Farm Stand in Carmel. He says planners can create
almost any type of program in which attendees can pick
organic produce with the chefs who prepare it in the cooking
pavilion. Groups should also spontaneously visit one of the
various farmers markets and stands along Highway 1, which
are always filled with delicious treats to inspire a menu.
Diaz says, “Any time of year at the farmers market there’s
something to pull from and prepare.”—Jessie Fetterling
Drinks with Doris
Classic cocktails are all the rage at the 44-room
Cypress Inn in Carmel, built in 1929. Actress
Doris Day is a co-owner. Stop by Terry’s
Restaurant & Lounge for its cool cocktail menu
filled with Old Fashioneds and Sidecars.
14 | prevue magazine
7/3/13 8:58 AM
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Prevue July/August 2013
Planner's Pick: New Zealand
Fresh Meets: Autograph Collection
Bureau Buzz: Monterey County
Good Business: South Africa
sea Shores: Small Ship cruising
The Local Kitchen
Special Section: Caribbean
On Location: Hilton/LXR, Puerto Rico
On Location: The Broadmoor
The South, Florida & Las Vegas
On Location: Starwood Resorts, San Diego
On Location: Travaasa Austin
On Location: Moon Palace Cancun
On Location: IRF Cancun
Check Out: Hard Rock Hotel Punta Cana
Prevue July/August 2013