Art, food, wine
Healdsburg will launch a new Art-Food-Wine weekend June 14 to 16 at various galleries, restaurants and wineries in the historic town.
The festivities kick off at 6 p.m. on June 14 with a party at Stafford Gallery, then will continue Friday with a lunch at Barndiva featuring “Art of the Table” by Dragonfly Floral, an exclusive private tour of the art at Oliver Ranch and a reception at the Dallas Saunders Gallery in Geyserville, catered by Catelli’s and Bellinis by Thomas George Estate and Dry Creek Peach.
On June 16, there will be a private VIP tour and tasting at Chalk Hill Estate, a picnic lunch at Roth Estate Winery and a tour and cave tasting at Lancaster Estate.
The weekend concludes with a Paul Mahder Gallery Art Tour and reception and art discussion at the Aerena Gallery, both in Healdsburg. Tickets range from $45 to $185. To reserve, go to healdsburgartfoodwine.com.
Transhumanance — the seasonal migration of livestock between lowlands and mountains — will be celebrated with a festival from 2 to 10 p.m. Saturday, June 9, at Steamer Landing Park.
The festival honors grassland culture and the work of shepherds, farmers and ranchers while bringing awareness to how our food choices affect our landscapes, local economies and waterways.
The opening ceremony at 2 p.m. will feature Balkan music, followed by a food tasting with Travis Day of Thistle Meats, various workshops and a marketplace. At 4 p.m., Marin rancher and carbon farmer John Wick will give the keynote speech, followed by Ruthie King on “A History of Domestication” and Stephen Satterfeld on “Food, Sovereignty, Food Sovereignty.”
The festival culminates at 6 p.m. with a dinner prepared by Chef Matt Roberts featuring Sweet Grass Grazing and True Grass Farms lamb asado, local delicacies and beer and wine. A belly dancing show by Rebecca Vasile and dancing to the City of Trees Brass Band concludes the festival.
Tickets are $20 per person, under 12 free, including local food tastings. Dinner is $20 per person. sassyandgrassy.com. 707-778-4380. 6 Copeland St.
Matanzas Creek Winery will host a two-month celebration of wine and lavender in June and July that celebrates the aromatic herb with garden tours, painting and photography workshops, honey bee labs and sauvignon blanc and oyster pairings.
The celebration will culminate with a harvest of the lavender gardens followed by lunch from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. June 30. Cost is $65.
The Season of Wine & Lavender will conclude at 6 p.m. July 14 with a Celebration Dinner. Cost is $175.
For a complete list of events and to reserve, go to matanzascreek.com. 6097 Bennett Valley Road.
Great rosé pairing
The Culinary Institute of America at Copia will host the Great Rosé Pairing for Summer from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. June 16 at the downtown Napa venue.
The immersive experience held outdoors in the amphitheater will pair award-winning wines from a recent competition with gourmet cuisine created by star chef students from the CIA.
There will also be rosé cocktails and refreshers, demonstrations and live music by Steel Jam.
Look it up: If you are in doubt, research a flower to see if it is safe to eat and always refer to its botanical name to identify it exactly.
The good and bad: The flowers of most vegetables and herbs are safe to eat, but avoid the flowers of tomato, potato, eggplant, peppers and asparagus.
Clean eating: Eat flowers you have grown yourself or from a farmer you know. Avoid eating any flower that has grown on the roadside or been sprayed with chemicals or pesticides, which means most flowers from florists and nurseries.
Pick it: Harvest flowers during the cool times of day such as early morning or late afternoon.
Know your flower parts: Not all parts of the flower are harmless and/or edible, so don’t assume you can eat all parts. For example, rhubarb stems are a delicacy but its leaves, root and flowers should not be eaten.
Petal power: Some flowers, like nasturgium and borage, can be eaten in entirety. For roses and lavender, only the petals are edible so separate them just prior to using. Roses and marigolds have a bitter white portion at the base of the petal where it attaches to the flower, so trim that before serving.
Pollen a problem: Pollen can detract from the flavor of the flower, so remove pistils and stamens and use the edible parts.
Clean it up: Gently rinse flowers before consuming and use within a few hours. To keep them fresh, place on moist paper towels and refrigerate in an airtight container.
Serving advice: When serving flowers fresh, add them to you dish just before serving, as you would fresh herbs.
Go easy: Some flowers, like lavender, have a strong taste and are best used in moderation. Also, some flowers, such wild pea blooms, can cause digestive issues when eaten in large quantities.
Dining out: Not all chefs know their edible flowers, so it’s up to you to educate yourself. Some flowers may be on the plate simply for decoration.