Local author wins gold!


Andrea Granahan, my grandmother, won a gold medal for The Wandering Widow, the fifth book she has published in six years. The announcement came during the 30th annual North American Travel Journalist Awards competition, hosted by the association (NATJA) which encourages high quality journalism. Granahan will travel to Puerto Rico for their delayed conference in May where she will receive the honors.

After a successful book launch in Occidental last fall, she is proud of her self-published accomplishment. You can find “The Wandering Widow” in Sebastopol at Copperfield’s Books and in Occidental at Hand Goods, as well as online or by buying directly from the source itself. For more information about NATJA or the full list of Travel Media Award and “Honourable Mentions” winners, visit www.natja.org.

I can’t pretend – you are what you eat!

Samantha Ramey owns and operates Estero Cafe in Valley Ford and Americana Restaurant in Santa Rosa. Americana recently reopened two days a week and is hosting a private dinner this month for women involved in rural agriculture. If you pass by Railroad Square, you can try their mouth-watering comfort food on Fridays and Saturdays, 5-9 p.m.

Here at Valley Ford, the authentic Estero Cafe has remained true to its values ​​through this difficult time and is once again publicly recognized for this greatness. [Did you see the last “Made Local” magazine?!] Straight from farm to table is not a quick or easy task, but Ramey has managed to keep everything afloat with all the moving parts while maintaining quality at every level.

Community Alliance with Family Farmers hosted the 2022 California Small Farm Conference last month and can be viewed on YouTube (CAFFflix). Ramey was part of a discussion group on greenwashing issues in the local food system. Sustainability is more than a misused slogan. We need to get closer to our food and where it comes from.

Pricing becomes confusing when companies misrepresent or misinform in various ways because people have different expectations based on what a particular restaurant is claiming. It is not fair to farmers, restaurants or customers to have such a lack of transparency. It’s good to have food labeled, but if things are mislabeled, it causes complex issues.

Marketing can spiral out of control when brands misrepresent themselves. There are a lot of gray areas that obscure the specific details that define “local” and other overused buzzwords, confusing even the best intentioned consumers. Distrust is destructive for those who have boots on the ground and makes it harder for those who do good work.

Ramey is committed to sustainability in the strict sense of the term. People like her talk about responsibility, and we can feel fantastic about eating at restaurants with integrity like hers. The food in Ramey’s two restaurants is fresh, local, mostly organic, healthy but “accessible”. Did I mention delicious? Check for yourself!


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