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Zero Kilometer Culinary Experiences

California is home to sustainable farms, businesses, and zero-waste restaurants working hand-in-hand to create the freshest meals with little to no impact on the environment. The following list highlights some of the Golden State’s best places for exceptional culinary experiences.


SingleThread Farm Showcases Seasonal Dining in Sonoma County
SingleThread Farm is nestled in the Dry Creek Valley bringing 24 acres of biodiversity to Sonoma Wine Country. Driven by nature and in stride with the seasons, farmhands work the fields to minimize human impact on the land. SingleThread Farm grows hundreds of different varieties of culinary crops throughout the seasons as well as flowers, all with care and integrity. The result is beautiful nutrient-dense produce, gorgeous flowers, and a strong and lively biological habitat. Tended by owner and head farmer Katina Connaughton along with the SingleThread farm team, the property consists of a greenhouse, shade structures, loamy fields, an heirloom fruit orchard, olive trees and beehives. The farm supplies vegetables, fruit, herbs, flowers, honey and olive oil to SingleThread, its three-Michelin Star restaurant located less than six kilometers away in Healdsburg. 

The Ecology Center Brings the Table to the Farm with Campesino Café
The Ecology Center, a Regenerative Organic Certified™ non-profit farm and education center, brings the table-to-the-farm with Campesino Café, their newest zero-waste, closed-loop food and beverage model featuring the freshly harvested organic ingredients grown directly on the farm. The Ecology Center grows over 200 ingredients: vegetables, grains, herbs and flowers, all which can also be purchased at their Farm Stand, which matches each dollar a family spends using EBT funds. Valued advisors include farm-to-table cooking pioneer, Alice Waters and James Beard Award-winning New York Times Bestseller, Samin Nosrat. Celebrating 15 years of service, The Ecology Center has transformed into an ecological oasis and hub for sustainable solutions, paving the way for a transformative community farm.

SLO CAL Culinary Scene
SLO CAL, renowned for its farm-to-table culinary experiences, offers numerous options to savor local cuisine and enjoy locally grown food. Experience authentic Santa Maria-style BBQ at popular spots like Old SLO BBQ in the City of SLO and Jocko's in Nipomo. With miles of open landscapes, grass-fed beef contributes to steakhouses found around San Luis Obispo County. The region proudly boasts eight Michelin recognized restaurants, with two earning a coveted Michelin Star. Notably, The Restaurant at JUSTIN in Paso Robles stands out as only the fourth restaurant in the country to receive a Green Star for Sustainability.

Award-Winning Sustainable Dining in Long Beach
In 2023, local restaurant Heritage earned the first Michelin Star in Long Beach for its sustainable farm-to-table cuisine. The restaurant grows produce used in its dishes at a farm site just over a mile away, and their zero-waste kitchen is also Green and Blue Certified. Beloved local coffee shop and breakfast spot Wide Eyes Open Palms purchases most of its ingredients at local farmers markets and bread from local bakery, Gusto Bread. Their menu changes seasonally, and their philosophy drives its focus on food made with organic ingredients that is good for the body and for the planet. Casa Chaskis is a Peruvian restaurant in North Long Beach that sources its produce from an onsite vegetable garden, complete with a beehive. The restaurant composts kitchen scraps to help fertilize the garden, which also serves as a site for community gardening classes.

Connected Culinary Experience in Morgan Hill
MOHI Farm sources produce from its own farm, the local farmers market across the street and herbs grown onsite. Breakfast starts with a barista bar for cold pressed juice, Colombian coffee and takeaway items. Lunch and dinner are table service crafted by diverse chefs, featuring family-style shared plates of local veggies and separate proteins of salmon, chicken, shrimp and steak. The bar is stocked with MOHI wines, beers and seasonal cocktails. Likewise, Craft Roots is locally owned and created from the idea to give the community a concept that embodies artisan ideologies and healthy whole foods focused on a 100% plant-based menu. The owners source as local as possible and follow the seasons with specials inspired by local produce and an ever-evolving menu. Complementing the food, there is a curated craft beer and cocktail menu focusing on sourcing local breweries who share passion for fresh ingredients.

Experience Tognazzini’s: Fresh Seafood with Stunning Morro Bay Views
Tognazzini’s Dockside Restaurant in Morro Bay is a culinary gem that embodies the essence of fresh, local cuisine. Nestled in the heart of a vibrant fishing community, Tognazzini’s prides itself on serving the freshest seafood, directly sourced from the bountiful waters of the Pacific Ocean. This family-owned restaurant knows a thing or two about fishing, with Captain Mark Tognazzini being an experienced commercial fisherman who concentrates on the salmon and albacore seasons. Guests can savor expertly prepared dishes, from succulent Pacific Gold Oysters straight from the Morro Bay Oyster Company to perfectly grilled fish, while watching boats sail in with the day’s catch.

Ox + Anchor at Hotel San Luis Obispo
Ox + Anchor redefines the traditional steakhouse with a contemporary twist, drawing inspiration from the picturesque hills and coastal beauty of San Luis Obispo. The local area infuses every aspect of the menu, from a thoughtfully curated selection of the finest Central Coast wines to the innovative presentation on the plate. This culinary venture pays homage to the region's natural bounty while staying firmly rooted in a commitment to showcasing the best of local flavors and sustainable practices and was rewarded with a mention in California’s Michelin Guide.

Culinary Experiences in Santa Monica
Overflowing with colorful produce from California’s rich agricultural land, Santa Monica’s four weekly farmers’ markets are a playground for lauded chefs from top local restaurants. Look no further than the Michelin-recognized establishment, Lunetta. Dishes from Raphael Lunetta represent Californian fare and highlight food grown responsibly. Another favorite is The Lobster where guests can choose from celebrity chef Govind Armstrong’s menu featuring California spiny lobster and meals made from locally sourced produce. Award-winning chef and co-owner Jeremy Fox’s Michelin-recognized Birdie G focuses on Eastern European cuisine and Californian ingredients. Nearly everything is made in-house, with a zero-waste focus, using ingredients from farmers, ranchers and fishers aligned with eco-friendly values. Lastly, Socalo is a sustainable California canteen and Mexican pub owned by award-winning chefs Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken.

Chef Leah DiBernardo Revolutionizes Temecula’s Fast Casual Dining
Chef Leah DiBernardo, owner of EAT (Extraordinary Artisan Table) Marketplace, runs not only a sustainable no-waste kitchen, but a regenerative up-cycling 100-mile dining spot. EAT has redefined the concept of farm-to-table dining by sourcing food items locally and mindfully, thereby supporting Temecula's food shed and local economy. The marketplace is committed to supporting small local producers. Artisanal breads are sourced from as close as Idyllwild and San Diego, while fresh produce is procured from three local farmers in nearby Aguanga, Vista and Temecula regions. Being a 100-mile restaurant, EAT is reducing the environmental impact of long-distance food transportation while ensuring freshness and quality of ingredients.

Ranch 45 Brings Sustainability and Local Sourcing to the BBQ Game
Ranch 45, the Solana Beach eatery and butcher shop, serves exclusively sustainably raised beef from Brandt Beef along with a "Head to Tail" initiative which ensures that as much of the cattle is used in products like bone broth, dinner rolls and soap. Additional local farmers include charcuteries essentials from Angel’s Salumi (Carlsbad), eggs from Eben Haezer Poultry Ranch (Ramona), 100% certified organic coffee beans from Cafe Virtuoso (San Diego), corn tortillas from Tortilleria Hermanos Reyes (Vista), fresh artisan breads from Bread & Cie (San Diego), and produce from Chino Farms (Rancho Santa Fe). 

Seed-to-Table Ingredients at San Jose’s GrandView Restaurant
The GrandView Restaurant in San Jose focuses on “seed-to-table” sustainability in its kitchens. Seasonal fresh ingredients are central to the menus, with produce, eggs and grass-fed meats sourced from its own GrandView Farms just across the road. The farm’s proximity allows for dishes to be prepared and served just hours after their components are harvested. First opened in 1884, the restaurant overlooks Silicon Valley from its perch on Mount Hamilton and is renowned for “The GrandView Experience”, a five-course tasting menu of signature dishes. An optional wine pairing includes selections from GrandView vineyards in the Santa Cruz Mountains. The dishes are Mediterranean-inspired and California-perfected, with traditional favorites like handcrafted pastas, steak and seafood, and even a house-cured salami.

Davey Jones Deli Supports Local Businesses in Sausalito
Davey Jones Deli is a hidden gem in Sausalito’s Marinship – itself home to some of the most innovative, sustainable businesses in California. Located inside of New Bait Shop Market the deli is committed to only using fresh and local ingredients sourced from businesses in towns nearby. Their bread is from Bordenave, a 105-year-old bakery in San Rafael; olive oil is from Pacific Sun Gourmet while its brown rice bran oil comes from California Rice Oil Company; and sea salt, grains, and flours is from Guisto’s Mills. All of their condiments (except mayo) are made in house and are sugar and chemical free, and they roast their own hormone-free turkey, pork and beef daily. The deli purchases its nuts, fruits and vegetables from local farms, with cheese from a nearby creamery. When eating at Davey Jones visitors not only can feel good about the quality of ingredients, but also know that they are supporting local businesses as well.

Small Carbon Footprint at Rosalind Bakery in Pacifica
Recognized for having some of the best sourdough in the Bay Area by the SF Chronicle, Rosalind Bakery does more than just make great bread. They are committed to working with and supporting local farmers within a 30-mile radius of Pacifica. The bakery believes in making the world a better place and does so by working with their neighbors and leaving behind a small footprint. In addition to amazing sourdough visitors can enjoy a number of other baked goods sandwiches, toasts, drinks and more.


Presqu’ile Winery’s Wine + Food Tour
Presqu’ile, a family-run and award-winning winery in the heart of Santa Maria Valley, is best known for their exceptional cool-climate Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. Presqu’ile’s Wine + Food Tour offers a wine flight accompanied by a pre-set, chef-prepared mezze picnic featuring fresh ingredients and seasonal bounty from the winery’s one-acre garden. Chef Julie Simon joined Presqu’ile in 2019, having previously served as the executive chef of the renowned Thomas Hill Organics Bistro and the opening chef at Foremost in San Luis Obispo. Weather permitting, visitors are invited to wine and dine outdoors on a terrace overlooking Santa Maria Valley and the stunning vineyards. 

Baldacci Family Vineyards’ Wine & Chocolate Tasting
Baldacci Family Vineyards is a family-owned winery in Napa Valley that passionately supports local businesses. The family works with fruit from their estate-grown vineyards and other local grape growers with whom they have had longstanding relationships to craft their extensive portfolio of fine Napa Valley wines. In fall 2023, to support more local businesses and to offer a unique wine-tasting experience, Baldacci Family Vineyards launched their Wine & Chocolate Tasting. The tasting pairs their estate-grown wines with artisan chocolate crafted by local Napa Chef Holly Peterson of Flourish Chocolate. Each chocolate is handmade in-house in Napa and the grapes for each wine featured are grown in the Baldacci family's estate vineyards in Stag’s Leap District and Los Carneros of Napa Valley. 

Vacaville's Annual Farm-to-Table Dinner
Once a year, locals gather for an unforgettable summer evening along Main Street in Downtown Vacaville, celebrating the freshest flavors of its Northern California agricultural heartland. Vacaville's Annual Farm-to-Table Dinner highlights the freshest seasonal flavors of the area with five courses prepared by some of the area’s best chefs, paired with local wines from the Suisun Valley wine region. Featured chefs have worked in Michelin Star restaurants, as celebrity personal chefs, and in family food and wine businesses, and come from a variety of backgrounds. The event is expected to return in May 2024.


Forty Years of SLO Farmers Market
San Luis Obispo has turned Higuera Street into a sustainable street fair every Thursday for the past 40 years. The Downtown SLO Farmers’ Market has grown to become the second-largest farmers’ market in the western United States spanning six blocks, featuring local farmers selling fresh produce, vibrant flowers, handcrafted goods and meals from restaurants that purchase their produce and meat locally. Every Thursday from 6:00-9:00 p.m., both locals and visitors converge downtown to partake in the market, enjoying meals, shopping for fresh food and actively promoting sustainability through the choice of locally sourced ingredients.

Monterey County: A Culinary Haven of Local Produce and Seafood
In Monterey County, chefs are spoiled by the bounty of fresh produce from the Salinas Valley and seafood from the pristine Monterey Bay. Local sea salt is harvested from Big Sur’s coastline and honey from the Carmel Valley makes regular appearances on menus throughout Monterey County. New restaurants such as Foray and Chez Noir in Carmel-by-the-Sea are showcased in dishes like Monterey Bay Abalone or 14-Day Aged Monterey Bay Black Cod, while staple restaurants like Old Fisherman’s Grotto highlight local clam chowder and fresh-caught calamari.