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SAN FRANCISCO: 5th edition of Good Food Awards in SF

The Good Food Awards will celebrate its 5th anniversary from 5:30 to 10 p.m. Jan. 8 with an announcement of the 146 winners at the Palace of Fine Arts Theater in San Francisco.

Food writer Mark Bittman will deliver the opening remarks and will be joined by honorary hosts Ruth Reichl and Alice Waters. The awards recognize the artisan cheesemakers, curers, preservers, brewers, roasters and distillers that are an integral part of the American food culture.

To celebrate its fifth anniversary, the awards will be announced by 11 of the country’s best independent retailers, led by Sam Mogannam of Bi-Rite Market in San Francisco, along with longtime supporters Williams-Sonoma.

A limited number of tickets will be available to the awards ceremony, which includes a buffet of 100 winning products, whole roasted lamb and finger foods accompanied by winning cocktails, beer, ciders and coffee. Tickets are $120.

The public celebration will take place from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Jan. 10 at the Good Food Awards Marketplace held at the San Francisco Ferry Building in conjunction with CUESA’s Ferry Plaza Farmers Market. Tickets are $5 at the door.

The Good Food Awards Cider, Beer & Spirits Garden will take place adjacent to the Marketplace from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tickets are $16.

Here are the finalists from the North Bay:

Cheese: Bellwether Farms’ Whole Jersey Milk Ricotta and Blackberry Sheep’s Milk Yogurt; Cowgirl Creamery’s Inverness; Marin French Cheese Company’s Petite Breakfast; Saint Benoit Creamery’s Meyer Lemon Organic French Style Yogurt; Tomales Farmstead Creamery’s Atika.

Coffee: Flying Goat Coffee’s Ethiopia Kochere.

Oils: Clif Family Winery/Gary and Kit’s Napa Valley Extra Virgin Olive Oil; Long Meadow Ranch’s Napa Valley Select Extra Virgin Olive Oil; Stonehouse California Olive Oil’s Basil Oil; The Olive Press’ Sevillano Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

Preserves: KATZ’s Laroda Plum Preserves, Late Harvest Viognier Honey Vinegar and Late Harvest Zinfandel Vinegar; McEvoy Ranch’s Lisbon Lavender Jelly.

Spirits: Hanson of Sonoma’s Organic Vodka — Original; Long Meadow Ranch’s Grappa; Sonoma Syrup Co.’s Pure Olive Juice; Spirit Works Distillery’s Vodka; Wine Forest’s Wild Elderberry Shrub.

The Good Food Awards is organized by the nonprofit Seedling Projects in collaboration with a community of food producers, writers and lovers. For a complete list of finalists, go to goodfoodawards.org.

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POINT REYES: Get cheesy down on the farm

The Fork at Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Company has launched a new series of winter farm dinners, culinary classes and other special events.

Farm Dinners will be held on Jan. 22, Feb. 19 and March 19. A farm-fresh, Southern-style brunch will be served on Jan. 31. Romantics will enjoy local cheese, oysters, grass-fed beef and chocolate during a Valentine’s Dinner on Feb. 13.

Jennifer Luttrell, executive chef of The Fork, will give a hands-on class on “Soups and Stews” on Feb. 6. Allison Arevalo and Erin Wade, chef/owners of Homeroom in Oakland will give a “Mac’n’Cheese Please!” demo class on Feb. 27. Louella Hill, the San Francisco Milkmaid, will give a hands-on class on “Artisan Cheese at Home” on March 27.

Full class details and cost can be found at theforkatpointreyes.com. To reserve, call 800-591-6878.

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PETALUMA: Crab feed benefit

Lagunitas Brewing Company will host the Fresh Crab Feed to benefit Cinnabar Theater at 5:30 p.m. Jan. 13 at the Petaluma brewing company.

The crab feed, held in a heated tent in the beer garden, will include fresh Dungeness crab along with coleslaw, pasta salad, bread and dessert.

Reservations are required by 4 p.m. Jan. 9. Tickets are $55. To purchase, go to cinnabartheater.org or call 763-8920. Lagunitas is located at 1280 North McDowell Boulevard.

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HEALDSBURG: Palmer announces Pigs & Pinot lineup

The 10th annual Pigs and Pinot Weekend, a benefit for Sonoma County charities and No Kid Hungry, will feature pork and wine experts from Sonoma County and beyond on March 20 and 21 at Chef Charlie Palmer’s Dry Creek Kitchen and Hotel Healdsburg.

Palmer, who puts on the weekend each year, has invited chefs Bryan Voltaggio, “Top Chef Masters” runner-up and chef/owner of VOLT and RANGE; Nancy Oakes, chef/owner of Boulevard; Michael Kornick, chef/owner of mk The Restaurant; and Ludo Lefebvre, chef/owner of Petit Trois, Trois Mec and Ludo Bird.

Pinot pros include Merry Edwards of Merry Edwards Winery, Alex Gambal of Maison Alex Gambal, Nicolas Morlet of Peter Michael Winery, James MacPhail of MacPhail Family Wines and Gary Pisoni of Pisoni Vineyards.

Serving as the emcee will be actor and comedian Mario Cantone. The weekend kicks off at 6:30 p.m. March 20 with The Taste of Pigs & Pinot, featuring 60 pinot noirs alongside a variety of pork dishes created by Palmer, guest celebrity chefs and local Healdsburg restaurant chefs.

Guest Chefs will compete in an iron-chef style competition, Tournament of the Pig, at 10:30 a.m. March 21. The Ultimate Pinot Smackdown, in which master sommeliers pitch their favorite pinots, takes place at 1 p.m. March 21.

Two dinners will be held on March 21: a five-course Gala Dinner at 6:30 p.m. at Dry Creek Kitchen created by the guest chefs and paired with pinots from the guest pinot pros; and a Swine & Wine Dinner at 7 p.m. at Spoonbar in the h2hotel, featuring a five-course, Asian-influenced dinner paired with pinots from Brogan Cellars and George Wine Company.

Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Jan. 14, Individual tickets are $175 for Taste of Pigs & Pinot and $125 for the wine seminar. The event sells out quickly, but you can check pigsandpinot.com for regular updates and new offerings.

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NOVATO: Central Market chef cooks at Fresh Starts

Chef/owner Tony Najiola of Central Market in Petaluma will cook a farm-fresh dinner at 6:30 p.m. Jan. 15 as a benefit for Homeward Bound of Marin, a nonprofit providing shelter and job-training programs for the homeless.

The dinner, which costs $55, takes place in the showcase kitchen of Homeward Bound’s Key Room, 1385 N. Hamilton Parkway, Novato.

The menu includes a Winter Citrus Salad with Fennel, Red Onion & Feta Cheese; Chicken Bomba (meatball stuffed with Bellwether Farms Ricotta Cheese); Basil Mashed Potatoes with Stewed Sweet Peppers and Sugar Snap Peas; and a Baked Fuji Aple-Cranberry Crisp with Vanilla Ice Cream.

To reserve or for more information, call 415-382-3363, ext. 243, or hbofm.org.

Compiled by Staff Writer Diane Peterson, who can be reached at 521-5287 or diane.peterson@pressdemocrat.com, and Peg Melnik, who can be reached at 521-5310 or peg.melnik@pressdemocrat.com.

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