Napa: Long Meadow farmstand a late-afternoon delight
Road Journals Blog—Every time I’m in the Napa Valley I harbor ambitions about getting up early to forage at the local farmer’s market. But Wine Country being, well, Wine Country, these notions are usually dashed by too much sipping at the tasting room bar the day before.
So here’s some good news. Long Meadow Ranch in St. Helena has opened a produce stand just outside their sustainable Farmstead restaurant and winery. Open late into the afternoon on Fridays and Saturdays (a clear bonus for sleepy wine drinkers), there are plans to take it daily.
Here, depending on the season, you’ll encounter a veritable cornucopia of unusual fruits and vegetables from the Hall Family’s renowned Rutherford Gardens (which supplies some of the top restaurants in the Valley, including their own).
Among the rare and coveted items: Ashmeads Kernel apples, sweet Blenheim apricots, Kadota figs, Seckel pears, cardoons, purple-striped Italian eggplant, Charantais melons, French fingerling potatoes, and more than a dozen rare varieties of heirloom tomatoes.
While you’re at it, pick up fresh eggs, Long Meadow vinegars and honeys, beef from their private herd of grass-fed Scottish Highland cattle, and Prato Lungo olive oil that hails from the ranch’s 1880s olive grove (believed to be the oldest in Napa Valley).
On a Saturday afternoon, I started out tasting wine, moved on to olive oil, sampled honey and Canoe Creek melons, and lunched on a fresh-picked lacinto kale salad dressed with chile pequin, lemon, and topped with toasted grana padano. All without leaving the property.
This blog post was first published in April 2011. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.