I love a lot of things about my home county. The Lake District has, in my opinion, some of Britain’s most astounding views. Our landscape is incredible. I’m passionate about our farming industry and the shellfish that comes from our coast. But heck, it rains a lot here. We actually get more rainfall a year than anywhere else in England and on those rainy days, I’d easily swap it all for California.
See, California seems to have everything I need. It has the valleys and mountain ranges that I adore so much here. It has the seafood and a massive agriculture industry, but it doesn’t have the rain. Then, let’s not forget the bonus of a built in wine region.
Local food and produce is important to me and in that sense California truly has it all. If the sky was my only limit, I’d live there and I’m sure we’d eat better and be healthier for it. Our fruit and vegetables would be almost entirely local and plenty home grown, which as you know is my dream no matter where I live.
The food of California has a distinctive style thanks to it’s abundance of fresh produce and stylish nature, but it would be difficult to stamp a single cuisine on a state that’s such a melting pot of cultures. It really is the epitome of fusion food. They do pizza well, but not in the traditional sense, toppings are more abstract thanks to Wolfgang Puck‘s influence. There’s a strong latin influence that finds it’s way to work with unexpected dishes, taco pizza, taco soup, taco salad, taco everything! I think of Californian food as laid back, fresh and unpretentious.
Imagine the recipes I could concoct with so many fresh, local ingredients to hand. As you’d guess, my Californian dream revolves around food. I daydream about travelling the state, cataloguing tastes and plates and blogging my way through. Here’s how I’d begin:
1. Eat our fill of sushi, and plenty of California rolls.
2. Get a drive thru In-N-Out double double burger with animal fries
3. Stroll down Venice Boardwalk, people watching, street food in hand.
4. Skip breakfast and eat our way around a farmers market.
5. Find a waterfront sea food shack in Malibu and watch the surfers as we eat.
6. Dine out at The French Laundry. My love affair with all things French probably will never end but this Michelin Star restaurant is on my life long bucket list.
7. Get a hotdog from the original Pink’s stand in Hollywood – I don’t care about the queue.
8. A wine tour of the Napa Valley
9. Have lunch at The Ivy
10. Pack a picnic and take in the sights at Lake Tahoe
Of course I want to explore, but once the big city adventures were over, what I’d really want to do is find a table in sight of the Napa vineyards. I’d settle outside with a glass of wine for a late night candle lit meal with Matt.
We’d sit, enjoy our wine and just soak it up. You know the type of places that just a fleeting memory of fills your senses? I feel like California will be one of those, where you can feel the atmosphere and adventure and the scent and sounds will stick with you for life. I want to go and bottle that up for my rainy Cumbrian days.
There’s much more to California than the food I’d like to eat, I imagine I could fill a month of travelling in that state alone. Seeing Yosemite, Death Valley, The Hollywood Sign, Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, Columbia Historic District, Red Wood National Park, Coachella, Google Campus, Hollywood Walk of Fame, Newport Beach, The Jurassic Museum, Huntington Pier, Lake Tahoe… the list goes on…
Have you ever been to California? If you have, I want to here all about it. I’m hoping to work with Visit California more in the future, but for now, it’s my big dream. What’s yours?