Category Archives: More Food Gal — In Other Publications

Belcampo Ushers in A New Age of Sustainable Food

A butcher making porchetta at Belcampo Meat Co. in Larkspur.

A butcher making porchetta at Belcampo Meat Co. in Larkspur.


Belcampo Meat Co. in Larkspur may look like the latest trendy, farm-to-table butcher shop stocked with pedigreed meat for sale at sky-high prices.

But it’s so much more than that.

It’s part of a corporation that aims to start a new food revolution — by producing sustainable food on an unheard of scale. And at a profit, to boot.

It is the brainchild of Todd Robinson, a Wall Street veteran with deep pockets; and Anya Fernald, a California-native and long-time locavore entrepreneur. She may look familiar from her previous appearances as a judge on “Iron Chef America” and as the founder of the Eat Real Festival in Oakland.

The two founded Belcampo, Inc. in 2011, which consists of several operations spread across three countries. They include: a 10,000-acre certified organic, sustainable ranch at the base of Mt. Shasta in California, where cows, pigs, chickens, sheep, rabbits, goats, turkeys, geese and squabs are raised sustainably, organically and on pasture; another cattle ranch in Uruguay; and an eco-lodge and farm in Belize that produces coffee, chocolate and rum.

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The New Edible Silicon Valley

Don't miss my profile of Jesse Cool in the new Edible Silicon Valley magazine.

Haven’t you scratched your head over the fact that there was an Edible San Francisco, Edible Marin, Edible Monterey Bay and so many others — yet no Edible Silicon Valley magazine?

Wonder no more.

Now, there is one.

Edible Silicon Valley debuted its first issue this month.

Yours truly is proud to be a regular writer for the new publication. Enjoy my first story for the magazine, a profile of Jesse Cool, the Peninsula chef-restaurateur who’s been a long-time champion of sustainable, organic and local foods.

An experimental crop of organic wheat that Cool grew in her backyard.

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Hear the Food Gal on KQED’s Forum

If you missed yesterday’s “Restaurant Roundup” on the airwaves of KQED’s “Forum” program, you missed out.

But not to despair.

You can catch the nearly hour-long podcast to hear what yours truly, along with Restaurant Reviewer Michael Bauer of the San Francisco Chronicle and Jonathan Kauffmann, San Francisco editor of Tasting Table, dished about Bay Area restaurants, chefs and dining trends.

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World’s Youngest Master Sommelier

Roland Micu, the youngest certified Master Sommelier in the world. (Photo courtesy of the International Culinary Center in Campbell)

Last year at age 28, Roland Micu passed the last of four rigorous exams to become the youngest certified Master Sommelier in the world.

To get a sense of the weight of that accomplishment, consider that since the Court of Master Sommeliers was established in 1969 that only 197 people around the globe have attained that certification.

For most candidates, it takes multiple tries to pass the daunting Level IV exam, in which six wines must be tasted blind in 25 minutes to identify the varietal, country of origin, district and appellation, as well as vintage precisely.

Micu did it on his first attempt.

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William May, the Famous Doorman at the San Francisco Fairmont

San Francisco's fabled doorman, William May.

Most people only notice service when it’s bad.

Because when it’s good, every need is anticipated so you never have to ask for anything.

William May prides himself on that kind of outstanding service.

For 26 years, he’s been the main doorman at the world-famous Fairmont San Francisco, the grand hotel where kings, queens and every U.S. president has stayed.

For many guests, he’s the first face to greet them when they visit San Francisco, setting the tone for the rest of their stay.

You might not think the position of doorman anything exceptional. But May has turned it into not only a skill, but an art form. In the process, the 60-year-old May has become as much of a  celebrity as the 105-year-old hotel atop Nob Hill, itself.

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