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Travel BLOG
August 08, 2018

WORK IT: SOMMELIER ALYSSA TWELKER

Photos by Garrick Ramirez

Meet Alyssa Twelker, one of a growing number of young individuals energizing the Santa Cruz wine scene. An early food and drink enthusiast, the Sunnyvale native went to work as private chef straight out of high school and celebrated her 21st birthday with a sommelier certification. Weeks later, she was in Santa Cruz working at Soif where she eventually became wine director. After tasting—and surfing—her way through Europe, she’s back in town behind the bar at the gorgeous new tasting room for Birichino. We recently sat down with Alyssa to chat wine and get answers to burning questions such as “Do we really need to sniff the cork?” and “What Star Wars character would make the best somm?”

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August 06, 2018

Dog-Friendly Wineries in Santa Cruz County

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Oh, the carefree life of a winery dog. It ranks high on our list of reincarnation fantasies. Yet in Santa Cruz County, which is home to over 70 family-owned wineries, you needn’t wait until the next go-round to enjoy a breezy life of leisure. Treat yourself—and your pooch—to a taste of the good life at the following dog-friendly tasting rooms.

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July 31, 2018

24th Annual Watsonville Strawberry Festival

Some might consider strawberries to be one of the crown jewels of Watsonville and we'd have to agree! These ruby red treats are grown throughout the year, and it's no wonder we take a full weekend to celebrate our love for all things strawberry!

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July 25, 2018

BREAK OUT THE BUBBLY: MARTINELLI’S TURNS 150!

Photo by Garrick Ramirez

Beloved sparkling cider and apple juice producer S. Martinelli & Company is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year, and we’re bubbling over with excitement! Founded in Watsonville in 1868—the same year Ulysses S. Grant was elected President—the effervescent company is still family-owned, locally-based, and making juice the way they always have: fresh and 100% natural. We’ve got the inside scoop below, and trust us, it gets juicy!

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June 18, 2018

EAT LIKE A LOCAL: A FOODIE’S HISTORY TOUR OF SANTA CRUZ COUNTY

Photo by Kyle Jouras courtesy of Liz Birnbaum

Everyone loves tasting the local cuisine when they visit somewhere new. Vacation, after all, is the perfect excuse to indulge and sample the variety of food and beverages a region is known for. With its rich soil and moderate climate, Santa Cruz County is an agricultural mecca with fertile fields of strawberries, tomatoes, artichokes, Brussels sprouts, vineyards, and apple orchards. It’s one thing to Yelp your way through each meal and snack break, but to truly savor each bite, you need to know the stories behind the food fueling your weekend adventure.

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